Folk Art Needlepoint: 20 Projects Adapted from Objects in the American Folk Art Museum by Ruth Peltason. Potter Craft (September 9, 2008)

In this age of craft books that are funky beyond funky, I found myself (a not so old mum and [I think] a pretty groovy craft chick) totally in love with this book of traditional needlework projects. Each of the projects has been inspired from an object from the American Folk Art Museum.

When I first opened up Folk Art Needlepoint, I was prepared for a very traditional (staid) book of needlepoint, with old fashioned designs in old fashioned colours. But it wasn’t long before the simplicity of the authors’ approach got under my skin in the best possible way. They selected twenty objects from the American Folk Art Museum, including furniture, oil paintings and textiles.

Projects in the book range from decorative frames and pillows, to footstools, glasses cases and pincushions, the objects that inspired the projects are included in the book with some detailed contextual information.

Not only is this book well written, beautifully photographed and well referenced, it is a lovely collection of objects which only add to the enjoyment of making the projects, and also open a connection with the traditional craft of needlework in the context of other traditional crafts and folk art.

About the reviewer: Kate is a busy mother of four and has far too many craft projects on the go at any one time. These could include, but are not limited to, crochet, sewing, dyeing, paper making, spinning, felting and bookbinding. Kate has challenges in the areas of finishing things, saying no and craft supplies storage. She makes babyslings in her freetime – find them here.


Are you looking for a fast first project in needlepoint? Do you want to make a charming handmade gift in a few hours without getting your hands dirty? The Amish Quilt bookmark uses a simple needlepoint design, which can be done in any color you choose, uses simple materials to make a great design.

Materials: 4″ square of 14 mesh needlepoint canvas : 5 colors of #3 pearl cotton or other thread to coordinate with bookmark : (model uses brown paper packages Silk & Ivory in 125 (salmon), 12 (black), 14 (burgundy, and 65 (iris)) : one square of foam adhesive : bookmark 2″ x 6″ : alphabet stamps

Following the needlepoint chart (pictured), stitch the quilt in the center of your square of canvas.

Needlepoint stitches cover one intersection of the canvas and slant from lower left to upper right.

Once the needlepoint is stitched cut the canvas three threads from each side and unravel two of the threads. Place the foam square in the middle of the bookmark, near the top. Place the needlepoint onto the foam square and weigh down with a book. Attach letter stickers spelling “read” (or another appropriate word) down the bookmark below the needlepoint. If you like, embellish the bookmark with a tassel.

About the designer: Janet Perry is a leading expert on needlepoint. She’s known for her innovative approach to the craft, making it “fast, fun, and affordable.” She writes books, develops stitch guides, needlepoint projects and on-line classes. She blogs daily, and is developing a comprehensive needlepoint site. This is her first project for Whip Up. All images copyright 2008, Janet Perry