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Popular in Decorating

Harvest Cross-Stitch

These cross-stitch projects will spread autumn cheer throughout your home. Use our stitched hand towels in your kitchen or bath, and be sure to hang your sampler in a place of prominence.

The verse on our charming sampler reads, "Count your pumpkins while they last, for soon their time will come to pass. The Winter winds are sure to blow, turning Autumn fields white with snow."

What You Need:

  • 18x19-inch piece of 14-count ivory Aida cloth
  • Cotton embroidery floss in the colors listed in the key (see Step 1)
  • Size 24 or 26 tapestry needle

For the frame:

"Count your pumpkins while they last..."
  • Wooden frame with 8-1/4x9-1/8-inch opening
  • Delta Ceramcoat Acrylic Paint: Forest Green #2010
  • Medium-grit sandpaper
  • Tack cloth
  • Self-stick mounting board
  • 9x10-inch piece of fleece
  • Small brads or glazier's points
  • Tracing paper
  • Transfer paper
  • Thin sheet of rusty tin
  • Tin snips
  • Hot glue and glue gun
  • 10 small twigs
  • Sheet moss


1. Download the free pattern and color key for this project. (Downloading requires Adobe Acrobat software.)

"Count Your Pumpkins" Sampler pattern

Download Adobe Acrobat

2. Stitch the design. Zigzag-stitch or overcast the edges of the fabric to prevent fraying. Find the center of the chart and the center of the fabric; begin stitching there. Use two strands of floss to work the cross-stitches. Work the backstitches using one ply of floss. Work the French knots using one strand of floss wrapped twice around the needle.

3. Press the finished stitchery. Iron the fabric facedown on a soft towel and carefully press from the back. Center and trim the stitchery to 12x13 inches.

4. Finish the frame. Paint the frame forest green, and let the paint dry. Sand off some of the paint from the corners and edges of the frame to make it look rustic. Wipe the frame with a tack cloth to remove sanding dust.

5. Mount the stitchery. Cut the self-stick mounting board to fit the opening of the frame. Center the fleece over the self-stick mounting board. Trim off the excess fleece as necessary. Center the pressed stitchery over the fleece-covered board; wrap the excess fabric around the mounting board and tape it in place. Using small brads or glazier's points, secure the mounted stitchery in the frame.

6. Add tin pumpkins. Trace the patterns for the tin pumpkins onto tracing paper. Transfer the one small and two large pumpkins onto the rusty tin using transfer paper. Cut out the shapes using tin snips.

7. Decorate frame. Referring to the photograph for placement, use a glue gun to adhere moss and twigs onto two corners of the frame. Glue the tin pumpkin shapes onto the moss and twigs.

These towels will look stunning in a guest bath. Repeat the pattern to make a longer band for large towels.

What You Need:

Guest towels always come in handy.
  • 1 yard of 2-inch-wide white 16-count Aida cloth banding with sage green edging
  • Cotton embroidery floss in the colors listed in the key (see Step 1)
  • Size 24 or 26 tapestry needle
  • 2 hand towels
  • White sewing thread or clear nylon thread


1. Download the free pattern and color key. (Downloading requires Adobe Acrobat software.) Note: This pattern is the same as the "Count Your Pumpkins" sampler. Use the top or bottom border from the sampler chart to create the pumpkin-bordered towels.

Pumpkin-Bordered Towels pattern

Download Adobe Acrobat

2. Prepare the fabric. Cut the banding into two 18-inch lengths, then zigzag-stitch the cut ends of the banding to prevent fraying.

3. Stitch the design. Center and stitch the top or the bottom border from the sampler chart on one of the banding lengths. Use two strands of floss to work the cross-stitches. Stitch the other border on the second length of banding in the same manner.

4. Iron the fabric. Place the finished stitcheries facedown on a soft towel and carefully press from the back.

5. Attach stitched pieces to towels. Position and pin one stitched banding piece onto the hand towel near the bottom (we used the woven band near the bottom of our terry towels as a guide for placement). Turn under the narrow ends 1/2 inch and pin to the back of the hand towel. Sew the stitchery to the towel along the top and bottom edges. Attach the other stitched band to the other towel.


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