Tapestry & Needlepoint Kits

Needlepoint Kits

Many people find needlepointing a very relaxing sewing activity, giving them a break in the day. Creating a project from a needlepoint kit gives a person a great sense of accomplishment. If you are new to needlepoint, then you may have many questions.

What is a needlepoint kit?

Needlepointng is sewing with fiber on even-weave fabric. It's usually done with diagonal tent stitches, although basketweave stitches, half-cross, and continental stitches are sometimes used. A variety of items can be designed with needlepoint, including Christmas ornaments, stockings, tissue covers, trains, pillows, purses, and other objects. The most common, however, are wall hangings.

A needlepoint kit usually comes with a piece of design-stamped needlepoint canvas, fiber, needle, and instructions. Some kits contain a hand-painted needlepoint fabric where an artist has painted the colors on the needlepoint canvas leaving no doubt about what color belongs in each hole. Most needlepoint kits, however, are stamped at a factor, and the sewer may have to use some discrimination on what color to use in each hole.

What are the different types of fiber used for needlepoint?

While embroidery floss and ribbon can be used for needlepoint, the most common fiber is yarn with different kits, including various types. Three-play Persian yarn is normally comprised of two or three strands of fiber that can be divided into individual strands. Tapestry yarn cannot be separated. It is most commonly used on 10 count projects. More than one color of crewel fiber is often sewn with at the same time on smaller-count needlepoint canvas.

What are the different types of background fabric found in needlepoint kits?

There are many different needlepoint canvases including:

  • Interlock-mono canvas- Most needlepoint kits contain interlock-mono canvas. Manufacturers twist two threads around each other for the lengthwise thread while using a single strand for the crosswise thread. Many different size weaves are available measured by squares per inches. 14 and 18 are the most common in kits.
  • Mono canvas- This material has one weft thread weaved over and under a single thread running the opposite direction. Manufacturers make it in a variety of colors and different squares per inch.
  • Penelope canvas- This canvas has two threads running side by side lengthwise and crosswise. Sewers normally split these threads in half while sewing. It is usually used in smaller projects requiring lots of detail.
  • Plastic canvas- This stiff canvas is usually used for three-dimensional projects, and it usually has the fewest stitches per inch.
  • Rug Canvas- Manufacturers first wrap two lengthwise threads around each other before locking them in place with the crosswise thread.
What motifs are found in needlepoint?

There are many different motifs available in needlepoint. Common examples include:

  • Holidays
  • Wildlife
  • Native American
  • Flowers
  • Landscapes
  • Quilt patterns
  • Butterflies
  • Ladybugs