To the Point

I needle pointed my first pillow sixteen years ago- a fish, for Mr. Blandings, who is a bit of an outdoors man. Since, I’ve rarely been without a project. Like all hobbies, it can become a bit of an obsession.

I stitched these nautical flags for all the boys; easy because you can draw them on the canvas yourself.

Sister Parish was a fan of needlepoint and was a stitcher herself. An ambitious project for even the most dedicated, this is the runner she stitched for her home in Maine.

Sister Parish’s runner, Dark Harbor house, H&G Complete Guide to Interior Decoration, 1970

A veteran of Parish-Hadley, Bunny Williams, also uses a good bit of needlepoint in her rooms. Two of my favorite rooms are of her hand, both with great needlepoint projects on display.


I do not have credits for these images, however, Williams has written a wonderful book about the property in the top photo, An Affair with a House. The other images are her home in the city.

I’d consider Diamond Baratta current champions of American craft. Whether you like their style or not, I think you have to admire their courage and creativity. As with all of their designs, their needlepoint pieces take on a larger, bolder palette than traditional – to great affect.

House Beautiful, March 2003

House and Garden, April 2000

You do not have to confine your needlepoint to pillows – it’s fabulous on furniture as well.

House and Garden, June 1997

House Beautiful, January 1995. Room by Christian Badin (so sorry for the quality of the image; it never occurred to me anyone else would ever see these pages.)

Horchow catalogue, 2001
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12 thoughts on “To the Point

  1. You have done some beautiful pieces! I tried needlepoint years ago and never got as far as you have, however, I have an appreciation for how much time and effort it takes. Thanks for sharing these beautiful photos.

  2. Anne – thank you! There is something so Zen about it to me – several of my friends have started and abandoned projects – I keep telling them, if it’s not fun, don’t do it.

  3. I’m working on an Erica Wilson pillow right now- and have been for a few years now! Great images, and I love your pillows! I also agree about Diamond Barratta!

  4. Peak – that’s the beauty of a needlepoint project – it waits for you! You’ll be so satisfied when it’s finished.

  5. wow, i had forgotten about needle point and petit point. i love that chair on the bottom especially. your fish pillow is great too. you’re giving me ideas!

  6. I just found your lovely website through a search for Bunny Williams. I have read her book An Affair With A House with a magnifying glass. I feel twice blessed to have found you as a result of this great book.

  7. What a fabulous post! I love needlepointing, or petit point, as I learnt – my grandmother taught me when I was about 5 years old. I have done mostly smaller projects but I have been dying recently to do a pillow!
    I think your post might actually be what will make me go out and buy a canvas! Do you have a favourite designer or company?

  8. I know this is one of your older posts, but I’ve just discovered you. I too stitched that Ehrman rooster– I’ve always loved him. I stitched him for my bff so I still get to see him now and again. Love your approach to the blog. I have my own but need to be more disciplined about updating. 🙂

  9. I too stitched that Ehrman rooster. I’ve always loved him! I stitched it for my bff so I still get to see him now and again. Love the blog– you are an inspiration.

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