Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Hand Embroidery on a Christmas Card: Not Quite as Frustrating!


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Thanks for the feedback on my embroidered towel frustrations. I like embroidering on towels, don’t get me wrong! It’s fun. It goes quickly (usually) and even though I know the towels will not be as gently used as heirloom linen, I still think they make great little gifts. Most of yesterday’s post was written tongue-in-cheek: yes, a little frustrated over the amount of time and effort, but really, I’m just laughing at myself for getting into the situation in the first place! Today, a much simpler embroidery project….

Perhaps you don’t really get into the whole “embroidery on paper” scene, or the card-making scene. You may even think that hand embroidery on paper isn’t really the same thing as Hand Embroidery. You know what? I agree with you! Embroidering your Christmas cards isn’t really what I would classify as the “art” of embroidery, so much as the “craft” of card making. This type of embroidery on paper involves crafting techniques… it doesn’t really involve the skill and artistry we associate with a proficient embroiderer!

But, hey. It’s still a needle. And it’s still thread! And it’s a simple way to do something creative involving both. And it’s a great way to kick up your Christmas card to the level of “small gift.”

With all these excuses in mind, I present yet another card:

Hand Embroidery on Paper: Christmas Card

This card features an “ornament.” The ornament is really just a circle cut out of a goldish-tan-and-white decorative paper. I tried to cut the circle so that the design on the paper was centered.

Hand Embroidery on Paper: Christmas Card, 2008, by Mary Corbet needlenthread.com

The ornament “hangs” from a little gold half-bead stuck onto the paper.

Hand Embroidery on Paper: Christmas Card

The embroidery design is worked in red, mostly, over the decorative paper. I’m using Sulky machine embroidery thread here. The outline around the ornament is worked in gold, as is the ornament string.

Hand Embroidery on Paper: Christmas Card

I added little red gemstones and gold beads to the tips of the star. Unfortunately, they don’t quite sparkle in the photo as they do in person. I like sparkly things on Christmas stuff… so I bought these little tiny stick-on gems and beads found in the scrapbooking supplies at a craft store. They come in handy! I find myself sticking them on just about every card I can. If you use these types of embellishments (that stick up off the surface of the card), remember to “pad” your envelope before you seal it, by inserting another piece of cardstock over the face of the card.

Well, time is ticking! With Thanksgiving over, I have a feeling Christmas is going to hasten my way before I can say boo. Before the week is out, two things will happen in my needlework life:

1. I will do the finish work on my ornament.

2. I will post the December stash give-away, so that it’s feasible that you’ll get it before Christmas! (And maybe even be able to use it!)

Surely other stuff will happen, too… but you’ll just have to wait to see what does!

Enjoy the day!


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(7) Comments

  1. Oh my gosh! I love the design of this card! It is just stunning. I wish I had the time and the patience to do this sort of thing. Maybe someday . . .


  2. Hi, Mary!
    I’m new to your site and I am just completely blown-away by your skills, imagination, wit and EVERYTHING!
    I’d like to get my hands on the materials and design for the ornament in this article. Did you do the design? Where did you get the perfect paper?
    Any information you could give me would be appreciated!
    Thanks so much! Merry Christmas and many, many blessings, Connie in North Idaho

  3. Hi, Connie –

    Thanks very much for your kind and enthusiastic words!

    The pattern is from Erica Fortgens “Merry Christmas” book, which is full of designs for embroidered cards. The paper was from the scrapbooking section at Hobby Lobby. If you don’t have a Hobby Lobby nearby, I would imagine you could find similar paper at any craft or hobby store that has scrapbooking supplies. I picked up the red cards in the stamping section at Hobby Lobby or Michael’s, I don’t remember which!

    I hope that helps!!


  4. Thank you very much, Mary! I’ll look into these for next year. I have 3 quilt tops that need to get done in the next week and I’d really like to get the Shepherd’s Bush stocking done that I started for our first grandchild’s first Christmas…..
    Wish me luck!

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