Mary Corbet

writer and founder


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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A Call for Embroidery Project Photo Contributions!


Amazon Books

Here on Needle ‘n Thread, I post a lot of hand embroidery patterns, hand embroidery tutorials – stitch instructions and so forth – and hand embroidery projects developed step-by-step.

Sometimes, I feel like I’m posting these things into The Void – they go out there, but do they ever really get used?

In the upcoming weeks, I’ll be featuring some readers’ embroidery projects, and I thought it might be fun to expand the selection a little bit by calling for some photo contributions of your embroidery projects that have developed from things you’ve learned or used from Needle ‘n Thread.

Read on, to see how you can contribute!

Stitch Fun Series on Needle 'n Thread

Maybe you’ve worked up an embroidery stitch sampler using tutorials from the Stitch Fun series

Lattice Embroidery Sampler

…or used used the Lattice Sampler Guide to stitch up your own lattice work embroidery sampler. Different colors, different threads – even different stitches? That’s what makes it fun!

Crewel Rooster Embroidery Project

Perhaps you’ve worked up your own Crewel Rooster embroidery project

Hand Embroidered Lettering Lessons

…or worked up your own hand embroidered lettering sampler using the tutorials for hand embroidered lettering here on Needle ‘n Thread.

Hand Embroidered Monograms

Have you monogrammed anything using any of the hand embroidery monogram patterns?

Tambour Embroidery

Maybe you started a new adventure in tambour embroidery, using some of the tambour embroidery resources here on Needle ‘n Thread?

Hand Embroidery Videos

Have you mastered an embroidery stitch using the how-to embroidery videos here on Needle ‘n Thread and created your own masterpiece?

Tudor Rose in Silk and Gold Embroidery

Or followed along with one of the many step-by-step embroidery projects here on the website?

Free Hand Embroidery Patterns

Maybe you’ve used one of the too-many-to-count free hand embroidery patterns to stitch up your own project? Or used one in a different type of craft application?

I know some of you have even entered competitions using some of the patterns on Needle ‘n Thread – won’t you share some photos of your work with us?

Lavender Honey & Other Little Things E-Book for Hand Embroidery

Perhaps you’ve stitched something from one of my e-books? Some Little Things from Lavender Honey & Other Little Things? Or a design from Patterns for Church Embroidery? Did you learn the plaited braid stitch by using the Plaited Braid Stitch printable?

Contribute… & Inspire!

If you’ve done anything in your embroidery pursuits that incorporates tutorials, patterns, or follow-along projects from Needle ‘n Thread, here’s your opportunity to share your work with others and to inspire us!

See, there’s a lot of me on this particular website, and I was thinking that there should be more of you on Needle ‘n Thread, too – after all, we’re a community, and I think the community part of Needle ‘n Thread is the most important part.

So, your task this weekend: take some photos of your Needle ‘n Thread-inspired works and e-mail them to me!

Along with your photos, include some information about the piece: the materials used, stitches, special supplies, what you liked (or maybe didn’t like!) about the project, why you made it or what you eventually did with it, any amusing stories you might have about the project…

This is a great opportunity to glean some publicity for guild groups and the like, too, or for your own blog or needlework website if you have one. If you’re a member of a guild group, let us know what group you belong to and where other stitchers in your area can find your group. If you have a website or a blog, be sure to include that information as well.

Deadline: I’ll take entries through Tuesday, June 10th for the first round of submissions. Of course, you can send photos any time – even after Tuesday – but for this more immediate planned feature, the deadline for photos is next Tuesday.

Email your submissions to mary (at) needlenthread (dot) com. And if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to drop me a line – or ask in the comment section below!

Now, I’m counting on all of you to chime in – either with your own submissions, or, if you don’t have any that fit the criteria, by encouraging others to submit photos of their work! Can’t wait to see what you’ve been up to!

Enjoy your weekend!


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(59) Comments

  1. Mary you inspire a lot of us with you work so looking forward to seeing what others have done, as soon as my camera battery has recharged I will be joining in.
    Secret garden is dormant at the moment as I need finish another piece of work but I am popping in to flickr to see how everyone else getting on.


  2. being new to embroidery i rely mostly on your videos. i have watched most of them and done small samplers so i can learn the stitches. Thank you so much for the videos, the exhibitions you talk about [one which i saw in New York], the books you review, your insights, links and all the other input you share with us. when i turn the computer on this is the first site i go to. thank you so very much. best wishes

    1. Thank you, kumu! I’m glad you enjoy the videos. I have plans to expand and upgrade some of those this summer, if time will permit. Which exhibition did you see in NY? I just finished reading something else about the ‘Twixt Art & Nature exhibit that was there some years ago – made me envious I never saw it, so if that was the one, you’re a lucky duck! 🙂 ~MC

  3. Mary,
    I’ve only recently started following your blog, but have learned more in that brief time than I would have imagined. I have done small samplers in the past, but with your tutorials, have improved so much. I have bookmarked this post, since it is a great reference tool for future projects and questions.

    I can’t wait to see the variety of the beautiful projects others have done. Again, thank you. Kansas is a bit far to come, so virtual hug from the South!

  4. I haven’t, yet, worked any of the projects here on Needle ‘n’ Thread, but I love this site and the work you do. I’ve picked up many, many valuable tips from reading your articles and I read your articles on long and short stitch and silk shading before embarking on a crewel piece which required those stitches, so thank you for the help you’ve lent. I do want to work my own Secret Garden piece one day so I’m reading those articles with real interest at the moment.

    1. Hi, Wendy – I hope you do a Secret Garden project some day. It really is fun! Though I probably should have scaled the first one down…. Thanks for your note!

  5. Dear Mary

    Now you have done it, I have embroidered so many projects from Needle n’ Thread and I am going to send you my photos so watch this space. What a good idea it will be great to view other followers and their work inspired by you Mary and all your tips and techniques which I avidly follow and I continually reference you when I am researching embroidery projects. So thanks for the opportunity of showing you our projects which without you I personally would not be embroidering.

    Regards Anita Simmance

  6. Mary, I try to use every single tool you give us in your website!
    From the patterns, tutorials, your book selection has helped me learn and increase my library ! I just shared your site with a friend that wants to try her hand at needlepoint and thinking this is the most informative website out there!
    Yes,yes,yes,,,,, I use all your aids that you give us!
    I am just finishing the Crewel Rooster project and anxious to go select one of your other patterns!
    I eagerly wait for your email each day to see what your are what to and learn something new!
    A happy follower, Thx you. Lynn Schofield, Maryland , USA

    1. Thanks, Lynn! Oooooh. Can you send me a photo of the rooster? Even if he isn’t finished? I’ve only seen one other version since he went on the website – I’m glad he’s not forgotten! ~MC

    2. Mary, I wasn’t expecting a response that was a nice surprise!
      I would be more than happy to send you a photo of my Crewel Rooster!
      This weekend I am finishing up the french knots ton the top of his head and I will send it to you via Facebook. I just started hand embroidery for the first time so please bare in mind, I am a beginner!!! This is my practice piece !!

      Have a great weekend, Lynn

  7. Mary, I use your site a lot for instruction on stitches. Also, I am doing the Enchanted Garden project right now. You have so many wonderful things to try on your site. You are very appreciated and I hope you will keep teaching us and opening our eyes to all the types of embroidery you share.
    In Christ,
    Gail J.

  8. I follow the blog quite for a while now…to be honest, I often don’t start an embroidery only because I don’t know what to do with the finished piece of cloth; I love practicality in all things; so now, after admitting my shameful attitude, I will stich something over weekend and send it 🙂

    Thank you for all your resources , I always admire all of them;

  9. Mary, I just wanted you to know that although I do not have a finished project to share that I use your stitch guides and ideas every day. I am working on the sampler but a couple of other projects got in the way. I did want to ask if you would consider making a finished book of the Secret Garden project. I would be happy to purchase it all in one place. Thanks for all you have made available to us stitchers. I am no part of Creative Stitchers at Sun City West, AZ, by the way.

    1. Hi, Charlotte! Thanks – I’m glad you enjoy Needle ‘n Thread and get a lot of out it. Not quite sure about the Secret Garden project book. That’s something I’d have to work out with the original artist. I suppose if I don’t supply the pattern, but rather the purchasing info for the book, it might be a possibility. We shall see! ~MC

  10. I am going to have to go home and dig out my camera. I have been working on my first embroidery project in *mumblemumble* years, and found your blog along the way. I have learned so much, and it has really made a difference in the quality of my embroidery as I’ve been going along. Learning how to start my threads without leaving a knot, the difference between back-stitch and split stitch, outlining before satin stitch, etc.

  11. Mrs. Corbet,
    Yay! I thank you kindly for this opportunity. I hope that I can find time to send you at least a few pictures! I’m looking forward to seeing what everyone else has been doing 🙂
    I’ve not been embroidering for a long time, so I’ll see what I can gather up.

    Hope you have a nice weekend 😀

    1. Mrs. Corbet,
      I’d be glad to send the turkey again. It is actually part of a picture I embroidered, but I couldn’t get a photo of the whole thing without it just looking like one big glare. I’ll have to try taking the picture again so you can see the whole thing. I also have Holly and Joy from Christmas, and I stitched up your Quaker Motif (the one with the bird in the tree), and I started to stitch the Hearts For Whitework pattern from Lilly’s Legacy (not in whitework, though!). That one, however, is not finished, and is kind of boring at the moment in all black stem stitch.
      I’ve been thinking about a good summer embroidery project to take to the fair, but I’ve been really busy lately so I haven’t really embroidered at all the past week or so. Need to get back to that.
      Postscript: Do you have a specific time for the deadline? Or is it just the first stroke of midnight?
      I’m thankful as always for all that you do 🙂

    2. LOL! Yep, if it’s not in by the first stroke of midnight, you’re a pumpkin! Oh wait. That’s not how it worked, is it? She didn’t turn into a pumpkin. Any time is fine, actually! The fair sounds fun!

  12. Marie,
    I have not done a project against you but I followed, discovered many of your tutorials, you are my bible open and lively. Also after mine, I’d be needlnthread project and I will send you pictures. Mary thank you for everything. And a big THANK YOU on this day of commemoration in France, because I would not be a free woman embroiderer without them.

    1. Thanks, Florence! I’m so glad you enjoy Needle ‘n Thread!

      My niece and nephew are in France this week, and are visiting Normandy. Perfect timing! They are really enjoying themselves and seeing so many beautiful places. They sent photos of Mont Saint-Michel, where they visited earlier this week. And they went to see the tapestry in Bayeux, so I’m looking forward to their return home, so I can see their photos up close.

  13. Good Afternoon, Mrs. Corbet. I have a question about the entry guidelines. I have an unfinished piece that I first used the Padded Satin Stitch from your video tutorials. Unfortunately it can’t be finished because of a major fabric problem. I have pictures though from emailing my progress to my grandmother and sister. Could they be accepted?

    I am really excited about seeing other’s work. No doubt, I might feel a bit inadequate too, but learning more will make it well worth it.

    1. Absolutely, Kristina! Send along photos of whatever you’re doing, whether finished or not! I think we ALL have unfinished projects, don’t we?!?

    1. Hi, Sharon! It’s mary (at) needlenthread (dot) com – in the normal email address configuration. Actually, this response, though I’m typing it on the website, should end up in your email, too, and you can respond directly to that email that comes in. Please let me know if you have any difficulties! ~Mary

  14. Mary:
    Today’s writing has inspired me to get up off my duff and DO something. I did do one of Trish Berg’s little pansy blocks. But my rotator cuff pain has kept my from doing many things. NOW you have inspired me to do better.
    To be truthful, I have been out of whack since a year ago in April. Most of what I have done has been applique and I have 12 blocks ready to be put together for a lap quilt. Several of those do have some simple embroidery on them. Thank you for giving us cyber gals a push!!!

  15. Hi Mary,
    No void here. I purchased your Church Embroidery book. Two designs were used on gowns, white on white,for Infant of Prague statues.
    The third went onto a red velvet cope for one of the statues.
    Did I use you advice, pics, stitch videos ?
    I have one of those Martha Stewart pens which I used to on white material- you did say to “use a light touch with it”. Did I follow your advice ? Well, I tried. I will be twice as careful next time.
    I used the issue paper with tiny little stitches ( it tears off better if the stitches are done well) to get the design onto the velvet cope. I learned about this from your site. I have now purchased prick and pounce from Tanya to use on a white silk organza design. Thanks to you, I know how to use it.
    Thru your site, I got the St.Michael icon embroidery book. That is the work in progress.
    Next I want to do the Marian emblem.
    I read what you have to say everyday. I like to read readers comments too.
    You will never know how much you have opened my eyes to different aspects of embroidery. I accept your recommendations for everything.
    I watch stitch videos when in doubt about an aspect of stitching. Corners especially.
    No guilds here, so you are my eyes and ears to what is happening in the embroidery world.
    If you ever come to Hawaii, you are welcome to stay at my house.

    p.s I want to do something with beetle wings so bad it hurts.

    1. Hi, Jacquelin – Thanks for your comment and assurance. Wow – you’ve been busy!

      Probably “void” was the wrong term. I just meant that I rarely ever see results or know what’s going on out there, related to Needle ‘n Thread.

      Oh, someday, I’d love to go to Hawaii – but I don’t think it will happen any time soon. I’d love to see a large body of water again. The muddy Kaw River just doesn’t do it, when you’re yearning for a coastline.

      Stay tuned for more beetle wings – I’ve been working with some lately. They aren’t difficult to work with, so I hope you do get a chance to try them out some day!

  16. Dear Mary,

    EVERY DAY I look forward to you and your wonderful blog about my beloved embroidery. Every day I am enchanted, delighted, enlightened and uplifted by the information, the quality of the work, the education and the BEAUTY you share with us. Due to a carpal tunnel and tendonitis issue in both hands, I don’t get to do very much of my own favorite hardanger, drawn thread and silk ribbon embroidery as in the past, so I don’t have much to contribute BACK here to the group, although hope still lingers and I can’t resist buying the projects 🙂 Nonetheless, I wanted you to know how important you and this blog are to so many of us, and the joy you bring to our everyday lives.

    Heartfelt THANKS and a HUG.

    Cathy in PA

  17. I belong to several quilting/embroidery RR groups on line. We exchange blocks monthly. I have and will continue to use some of your embroidery stitches, however, I cannot submit photos of what I have done because those blocks are now long gone to the owners.

  18. Hi Mary: I have to say that I am amazed at what you are doing on this site. What a gift you are giving. I design counted cross stitch samplers and have never tried surface embroidery although I have always wanted to. I always wanted to incorporate counted, pulled and surface work in one project. Anyway, I found you and your site just a short while back and have just gotten all the supplies to start your hummingbird project. I am so excited but I am thinking that I want to do your grape design first as a smaller learning project. I would like to pad the grapes. Do you have any tutorials on how to do such a thing or is that something I am just making up and should not be done? I am going to start on the small design today so I will post once I get something to post. Since I am a totally new beginner it may be horrible but it will be fun for everyone to remember what they were like when they began. 🙂
    Thank you so much Mary for all the time, knowledge and encouragement you are sharing with everyone. Your a star!

    1. Hi, Judy! Oh, definitely, you can pad the grapes – I would! Here’s a tutorial for satin stitched dots, which would work very well for the grapes.

      Padded satin stitch dots tutorial: https://needlenthread.wpengine.com/2011/03/satin-stitched-dot-tutorial.html
      Satin Stitch Dots follow up tip: https://needlenthread.wpengine.com/2011/03/satin-stitch-padding.html

      For a little more texture on the grapes – and some definitely lift in the middle – you could also try Rhodes stitch in the round – like these berries in this tutorial: https://needlenthread.wpengine.com/2012/12/stitch-fun-round-red-berries.html

      I am sure that your embroidery will be beautiful! Your samplers, cross stitch, and finishing work at Just a Thought are unbelievably lovely! So I’m sure you will take to embroidery like the proverbial duck to water. By the way, speaking of your blog, I’m jealous of your workstation! It’s gorgeous – what a great idea for repurposing a piece of furniture!


  19. Wow. I can’t wait to look at all the photos.

    Your posts are always so inspiring. As soon as I finish the applique quilt I’m working on, I’m going to do some embroidery.

    I was wondering if you have a pattern for the lettering project you did, the “Quick Brown Fox” one.

    I’d love to do one just like it.


    1. Thanks, DeAnna!

      I think I posted the scan of my doodle for the quick brown fox, but I never did turn it into a real pattern. The fun thing is, you can always do it in your own handwriting and sort of personalize it that way.

  20. Please don’t feel that all of your hard work has been lost in space, I have to tell you that you are an inspiration to me. You have motivated me to begin doing embroidery again and I have several projects in mind. Right now we are getting ready to go north for the summer and my plan is to begin a Chicken Scratch table cloth when I am not working in the yard. I promise, I will send a picture once it is completed. Thank you for your beautiful work.


  21. Dear Mary, A friend encouraged me to start stitching -other than cross-stitch and back stitch – a few months ago, and recommended your site to help me …what a life-changing thing that was! No finished projects yet, but I have been practising! I read your blog each morning and get lost in the wonders! I have viewed many of the videos, learnt about stitch construction, about selecting fabrics and threads, and, as a result of your Crewel Company promotion, I have bought, and started, one of Phillipa Turnbull’s kits. Have joined the local Embroiderers Guild and done a drawn thread class. I bought the book, and am following the Secret Garden project… learning so much in the process. Maybe some day soon Mary, I will be able to post a photo of something. But in the meantime, this little corner of the void is soaking up your sunshine! Thank you!

  22. I love reading your blog and have just purchased the Lattice Sampler – I’ll be starting work as soon as my current WIPs are finished (soon, soon!). This will be the first of your projects or designs I will have used explicitly, but I have picked up so much information and so many tips that I am using already. Next project to follow will be the long-and-short satin stitch; I’ve worked one tiny square just to try it, and it’s the first time I’ve managed to get this stitch looking like it should.

  23. Hi Mary,

    I haven’t done anything specifically designed by you but you have inspired me to stretch my needlework wings beyond counted work. A couple of weeks ago I started my first crewel embroidery, a Newbury Small by Tristan Brooks. I have joined a stitching group at a nearby LNS and am getting some instruction from the tutor their (the marvelous Liz) as well as watching your stitch videos. I’m also finding that pictures of your work help me to judge my work with greater clarity.

    Thank you so much for all that you do and for the inspiration you provide!

  24. I have just been reading and enjoying your work. I haven’t done anything of my own using a needle and thread. I’ve been knitting and crocheting for the last several years. I’ve made samples to teach from, but nothing else.
    I went to the other site to see what others had submitted, and there was only three pictures from one person. I was disappointed. Come on people, I can’t be the only one hanging around and not stitching. Let me see some photos.

  25. Mary, your work is definitely not going off into the Void! Even if I never stitched another thread I would still read needlenthread just to admire the beauty of your craft. And this is definitely where I come to get questions answered: what kind of fabric should I use for this piece? how exactly do I do that stitch again? I don’t have any work that’s worth sharing, but thanks to you it’s a lot less amateurish than it used to be.

  26. Hi Mary,I have to confess that although I have done many , many embroideries..I sadly have not done any of your patterns for one simple reason….I like to design my own…..But you inspire me greatly and many times I have come to your site for information on stitches and the like
    when I am stuck with any problem, it is always your site that I look to for advice ! I would love to send you some photos of my work but understand if you would rather not ! Keep inspiring us Mary,I dont know what I would do without your great resource……xxx

  27. I absolutely LOVE your blog and videos! I feel like I have a tutor right by my side. Thank you for sharing your knowledge on embroidery! I am learning so much. I’m positive it’s not just floating around in outer space somewhere. This is great!

  28. Mary, I could not do my embroidery without your site. The classes I take show several stitches and I take notes but when I get home, it is “How was that done?” I love your videos. I love your designs. I have been working on a project for a year and now I am ready to put the blocks together. It is not a finished project yet but all most. Thank you so much for your inspirations and knowledge.
    Bless You,

  29. Hi Mary , I have been reading for a few months now and I think your articles, opinions and embroidery are GREAT! I am also impressed with your photos and I thought you might touch on how you get such great shots, your set up, camera etc.. I am thinking of starting a flickr photo album of my work but the pictures I take with my iPhone suck, quiet frankly. I think it does my work any justices and I don’t like showing the photo to people because my work looks bad in them, can you help?

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