Needle punching is a craft or art technique of looping yarn, floss or ribbon in the format of a pattern through fabric. The looping gives the pattern a rug like appearance. The origins of needle punching are debatable. Some claim it has been in existence since the ancient Egyptians began making needles out of hollow bird bones, others claim needle punching originated from the Old Believers in Russia, while others trace its origins back to Germany or England. Needle punching is used to embroider items, create wall hanging, ornaments, pillows, rugs and other décor and crafts. Needle punching is done as a hobby and commercially. Before creating your own item you will need to know how to needle punch.
1. Pick a design.Needle punching designs can be purchased already transferred into fabric. You can also draw your own design onto the fabric.
Purchase fabric that is a cotton polyester blend.
Cut the fabric so that 4 inches (10cm) of border remain on all sides of the pattern.
Use a waterproof pen to draw your pattern onto the back of the fabric in the center of the border.
2. Choose an embroidery hoop that will tightly fit the pattern without covering or touching any of the pattern.
3. Center the fabric over the inner embroidery hoop with the locking loop facing up.Lock the larger hoop over the top. Make sure the pattern is as tight as possible. Adjust as needed as you punch the design.
4. Thread the punch needle.A punch needle contains a hollow shaft and depth gauge. A needle punch has 2 sides, the pointed side contains the eye of the needle and is beveled.
Slide the thread through the eye of the needle into the hollow shaft. Push it through to the other side. Use the color and number of threads required for your pattern.
1. Hold the needle like you would a pencil with the bevel side facing the direction you are punching.Let thread rest over your finger, making sure nothing is stopping it from freely moving.
2. Punch the pattern.Place the sharp end of the needle on the pattern, punch directly through the fabric so that the depth gauge touches the fabric, then pull the needle back towards you but do not pull the needle completely out of the fabric.
3. Move the needle head over a few stitches to make the next punch.The needle head should always remain touching the fabric. Again punch the needle through the fabric so the depth gauge touches the fabric. Then slowly remove the needle back towards you.
4. Repeat this punching process until the pattern is complete.Start with the outline first, then fill in the main elements from the inside out going a row at a time. Finish by stitching the background elements.
5. Complete the stitching by slowly pulling the needle out of the fabric.Leave a 1/2 inch (1.3cm) of thread, cut the rest. Clip the thread to hold it in place.
6. Pull apart the embroidery hoop to remove the completed pattern.