1997 National Exhibit, Detroit, Michigan
by Carole Lake

Each of the stitchers whose work accompanies this discussion was asked to provide more information about his or her needlepoint. Click on either the name of the piece or the thumbnail picture to see the stitcher's commentary and a larger picture.

What is needlepoint?

Needlepoint is what you love.... what you create... what you envision... needlepoint is traditions... innovations... creations... needlepoint is a message... a picture... a whimsy. Needlepoint can be all these things and more!

Needlepoint can be charted.

Something that has been charted has had a plan laid out for it. Here is Linda Sellar's stitching of "Baroque," from a Jean Hilton chart.

Needlepoint can be free-form.

Free-form means having an irregular design or shape. Mary Ellen Searcy's "Broken Dreams Trapped at Ebb Tide" brings free-form embroidery to the structure of needlepoint.

Needlepoint can be painted canvas.

Painted canvas is the most traditional form of needlepoint. This "Cat and Koi" canvas stitched by Anita Van Bogelen shows the timeless quality of a classic painted canvas.

Needlepoint can be whimsical.

Whimsical means lightly fanciful and what could be more fanciful than Caela Conn Tyler's "Merry Quiltmas" collection of Christmas quilts?

Needlepoint can be art.

Art has many definitions, but they all involve creativity. With her "Whispering Feet From the Past: Petroglyphs," Mary Ellen Searcy has created a work of art.

Needlepoint can be innovative.

An innovation is something new. Ellen Emanuel's "When You Open Your Heart to Another" uses novelty threads and a variety of stitches to interpret a classic motif.

Needlepoint can be abstract.

An abstraction is something that just IS -- it has neither a pictorial representation nor narrative content. Karla Kellengerger's "Vortex" exemplifies abstract needlepoint.

Needlepoint can be geometric.

Geometric designs are based on rectilinear or simple curvilinear motifs. Jan Heistermann's "Bergen Baskets" illustrates the elegance of a simple geometric design.

Needlepoint can be seasonal.

Christmas is a favorite season for many stitchers -- it gives us an opportunity to vary our house decorations. Mickey Snyder's "Santa with Tree Hat" would complement anyone's holiday decor.

Needlepoint can be timeless.

Classic designs are always popular. Robyn McVey's "Solstice Summer" typifies the timelessness of of a summer sunrise.

Needlepoint can be basketweave.

Basketweave is the most basic needlepoint stitch. Donna Groves' "Lady Butterfly" reminds us of the beauty that can be found in simplicity.

Needlepoint can be multimedia.

Today's needlepointer has an ever-increasing supply of wonderful and luscious threads at his/her disposal. Iris Lochner uses some of these fabulous treasures in her "Puzzle Purse."

Needlepoint can be inspiration.

Inspiration is different things to different people. Beverly Burgess's "Russian Santa" is a work of art that is sure to inspire something in all of us.

Needlepoint can be traditional.

Bargello is one of the most traditional forms of needlepoint. Billie White's "Opal Essence Florentine Bag" uses established Bargello patterns.

Needlepoint can be wearable.

It's nice to be able to use our needlepoint and what is more usable than a wearable vest? Julia Snyder's "Picasso Vest" combines stitching with custom-painted fabric.

Needlepoint can be personal.

For many of us, our house is the center of our personal life. Mary Louise Henderson's "Our Pets" combines her beloved animals with her home.

Needlepoint can be a gift.

A gift is something we give away. Pat Van Cleve's "Up, Up, and Away" has been given to a local hospice.