Recipe for Finishing Carrots

Take 30 carrots (10 designs stitched 3 times each). Originally intended for cross stitch from Vicki Hastings , The Cricket Collection( ) and I adapted them to needlepoint using 18 count orange canvas.

60 pieces of illustration board (front and back): Cut out, identified (number and or arrows pointing to top) , and trimmed. I try to get both illustration boards to be identical as possible; these are probably the most important yet boring steps in preparing the boards for finishing. The more time you take preparing the basics the easier the rest of the finishing becomes.


Cut 60 pieces of quilt batting slightly smaller than the illustration board and attach with glue to bright side of each board. Yes I said glue, I use it. These pieces are going to my grandchildren, not the Smithsonian. They will probably last my lifetime and maybe even one of my grandchildren will have one or two to share with their children but adding glue will not destroy them next week or in a lifetime.

Next I added white material to 30 front side pieces; clip the curves and pull snugly around illustration board, taking care not to distort the boards.  The batting and lining are optional finishing steps but I like the padding and thought the lining was necessary since I did not have a background stitch on the canvases.

I finished 30 pieces with the backing fabric; clip and snugly fitting these also.

Then I carefully centered the needlepoint to front side of pieces with lining…clipping and wrapping boards snugly being careful not to buckle boards.

I allowed all these pieces to set and dry… but when you’re working on 30 ornaments at a time, by the time you get to #30, #1 will be set and dry enough.  I matched the fronts to the backs…remember the numbering I did in the beginning…this is when it pays off especially when you have 30 ornaments all alike! Also at this time take time to make the cording and cut the ribbons.

Next steps are best completed one at a time. Apply glue to both sides of the ornament pair, place ribbons on one side of the ornament and place both sides together. At this time I also applied the cording around each ornament and set aside to dry. I place these ornaments between wax paper with a phone book placed on top to help set them.

After all the ornaments were completed and I recovered from sitting days and hours I tied a bow with one set of ribbons and with the second smaller satin ribbon tied each ornament on the trees with another bow.

Placed Easter eggs and bunny candy around the bases (it was cold and rainy, so no egg hunt at our house this year) and waited for the Grandkids to arrive.

Finishing may not be a four letter word but it could be. BUT…Every time I take on these monumental tasks, it reminds me of how much I really appreciate Finishers.  Yes, Finishers with a capital “F”, because they really do deserve a title and our accolades. So next time you think the cost of finishing is high, remember it took me a 4-5 days working 6-8 hours a day to complete 30 ornaments. AND these ornaments were all the same so I could do each step while your finisher probably is doing one ornament at a time, and even if she is doing 30 round ornaments each will be a bit different. So Finishers of Needlework in the world, you deserve a thank you note every time we pick up a finished piece of needlework. You have made our needlework into a finished piece of art. So from me to all you beautiful, wonderful, talented Finishers of Needlework in the world…


Hope everyone has time to stitch today! Me? I’m still recovering from Easter and just reading and resting. ttfn…sue

Author: sudukc

I was taught that everyday you should learn something new, so I consider myself a needle artist in training. I may have more experience than some but I know there are needlepointers out there who have forgotten more than I will ever learn. I am a member of the American Needlepoint Guild (ANG), have completed the Fellow Level of ANG Teacher certification and am a member of TNNA. I also love to stitch using my computer...I do stitch diagrams for national teachers, needlework shops and my own business sd designs. In my other life, I am a wife, mother of 3 sons & GRANDmother to nine GRANDchildren (only 3 girls here too).

3 thoughts on “Recipe for Finishing Carrots”

  1. Your eggs look FABULOUS! Thank you so much for sharing your finishing techniques. WOW, what a project. I hope that you are now able to relax.


  2. Wow! What a labor of love. These are wonderful ornaments; your grandchildren are very lucky.. Thanks for sharing your work.


  3. Your designs look beautiful and I love the way you have them displayed. Thanks also for your detailed finishing tips. Like others, finishing has always been a challenge for me. What type of glue did you use?


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