Make Needle-Punch Snowmen Ornaments Embellished with Buttons and Seed Beads

Revive a time-honored form of embroidery with these needle-punch charmers. Buttons for coat and sky embellishments and seed bead eyes, mouths, and snow give the tufted designs extra dimension.

What You Need:

Small snowman pillows

  • White paper for tracing
  • 12x18-inch rectangle of weaver's cloth
  • Ultrafine-tip black permanent marker
  • Embroidery hoop
  • Weeks Dye Works embroidery floss: Cocoa, Dove, and Cognac
  • DMC embroidery floss: beige (613), golden brown (3829), burgundy (221), charcoal (645), deep orange (301), and dark olive (469)
  • 3-strand punch needle
  • 6 small black seed beads
  • 9 tiny black buttons
  • 10 small pearl seed beads
  • Snowflake button
  • Cardboard
  • Crafts glue
  • Cording
  • 6x13-inch rectangle of red wool fabric
  • Pinking shears

 

How to Make It: Prepare the Materials

  1. Download and trace the patterns onto white paper. Tape the white-paper patterns to a sunny window or light box. Center the weaver's cloth over the patterns so the direction that the fabric stretches is from top to bottom; tape in place.
  2. Use the black marker to trace the solid lines onto the fabric. Leave at least 2 inches between traced designs. Secure the fabric in an embroidery hoop.
  3. Separate the plies of floss. Referring to the pattern for colors and using three strands, thread the punch needle following the manufacturer's instructions. For these designs, the needle indicator pin, which controls the height of the loops on the front side, was set to 1.

How to Make It: Punch the Designs

  1. For the snowmen, first outline each color area with stitches just inside the drawn lines. Make the stitches close together so that no space shows between them, then fill in the areas inside the outline with stitches that follow the direction of the outline.
  2. For a single line of color, punch directly on the drawn lines.
  3. Start the background by outlining each of the previously punched elements. Continue adding consecutive rows of punches just beyond these outlines until the outlines meet. Fill in any remaining spaces to complete the background.
  4. Trim any long or loose pieces of floss, including the beginning and ending thread tails, to the same length.

Finish the Designs

  1. On the appropriate designs, sew on small black seed beads for the eyes and mouths, tiny black buttons for the buttons, small pearl seed beads for the snow dots, and a snowflake button.

Finish the Ornaments

  1. Cut a piece of cardboard to the size indicated by the outer ornament-shape lines on the pattern. Center the weaver's cloth over the cardboard, wrapping the excess cloth to the back of the cardboard; secure with glue.
  2. Form a hanging loop from a 5-inch length of cord. Glue the ends to the back of the ornament.
  3. Cut wool into three 4x4-3/4-inch rectangles for ornament backings; center and glue to the back of each ornament. Use pinking shears to trim the wool backing so it extends 1/2 inch beyond the ornament.