Welcome to the shiny world of Punch Needle. Let’s find out how to make those fluffy hand-tufted objects we’ve been seing all over the internet.
This technique is really fun and easy, so let’s start, shall we?
Punch needle…what is it?
Punch needle is an actual tool that we use to punch a fabric and create our own 3D embroidery objects. The yarn we use goes through the needle, and with a series of movements, it binds to the fabric and that’s how we get this fluffy three-dimensional effect.
What we can make with a punch needle?
- Small or bigger wall decor objects
- Pillow cases, like this one
- Magnets, like this one
- or even a…headband! Yes, check this out ‘
For more inspiration, check this video out!
The Punch Needle Kit you hold in your hands has…
- A Punch needle set with one wooden tool, 3 needles (3 different thickness sizes) and one needle threader.
- Monks cloth : The special and most suitable fabric for this technique. Please be careful! Do not attempt to punch needle any other fabric as you may damage it. Of course, you can try to do it, but from my experience I tell you that this is the most suitable fabric.
- A special hoop that holds the fabric in place.
What else will you need:
Depending on what you’ve decided to do, you’ll also need some additional tools.
For example, if you want to make piece of wall art, or a coaster or something simple, you will need silicone glue and a piece of felt or any thick fabric.
The first thing we need to do is to think about what we want to create. I suggest starting with something simple and beautiful. Something that will be easy for you to draw, so that you can practice your technique well. For example, you can make a flower, or a landscape. You can get ideas from what we make in the Punch Needle workshops.
What kind of yarn should I use?
The Punch Needle set you have in your hands has 3 spare parts to match 3 different thread thicknesses. We choose which thread+needle to work with, depending on what we want to do.
With the thick needle+thread, we will finish our project faster, and the result will be more fluffy. However, we cannot do much detail if we are on a small scale design.
With the medium needle+thread, which is my favorite at the moment, the result is fluffy and we can make more details. However, it will take us a little more time.
Here are some examples made with the thickest needle :
And some made with the medium one :
Once we decide which design we’re going to do, we are ready to start!
Preparing the punch needle :
In the following video you can see how we assemble our needle and how we determine its height.
How to decide the height of the needle :
In this video you can see what the needle height means and how we can adjust it according to what we want to make.
If we put our needle low (min. 1.5 cm) then our result will be flatter. This is not necessarily a bad thing. We want a low needle setting if we plan to do a pattern with details like this:
The higher our needle is, the higher the loops.
My advice for your first steps in Punch Needle is to try to have an average needle height, around 1.5-2 cm height.
How to secure the fabric using the hoop :
Once we’ve put the fabric in the hoop, we tighten the screw well and make sure that the fabric is very well stretched. If we have stretched it well from the beginning, we will not have any problems at all afterwards. If we have not stretched it well, our work will be interrupted because we will have to be stretching it constantly.
Threading the needle :
The technique :
Here we are! Are you ready to punch?
The 5 rules I want you to remember :
- Make sure that you have plenty of slack on the ball end of the yarn. Otherwise, any tension you have could pull your stitches out.
- Punch the needle all the way down into the fabric until the wooden part of the handle is just touching the fabric. The length of the needle creates the depth of he loops. If you punch down to the same place on every stitch, then the loops will be a consistent pile height at the end.
- Don’t lift the point of the needle off the surface of the fabric between stitches. Rather, just barely drag the tip of the punch needle across the surface. If you pull up too far, your loops will be uneven — or even worse, your loops will keep coming out.
- Our fabric needs to be constantly tight.
Extra tips :
- Start from the outline! Use smaller, closer stitches in the outlines than the fill stitches. Try for 6 stitches per inch for the outlines, and 4 stitches per inch to fill in the shapes.
- There’s no such thing as a mistake here, and anything is fixable! If you don’t like an area, you can pull your stitches back out. Go slow and be careful, so you don’t rip out too much.To fix any lingering punch marks in the monk’s cloth, run your fingernail over the fabric to close up the holes in the weave. Then, just try again!
Having trouble? Here are some reasons…
- You have not set the correct thread on the correct needle. This equation must always be correct. The thread should always be of such thickness that it comes out with minimum ease through the hole at the top of the needle. If the thread is thicker than the needle hole, then it will not be able to easily come out and create a loop in the fabric. If the thread is thinner than the hole, then the needle will open a hole of size X, but the thread will be thinner than this hole opened in the fabric and so it will not be able to be fixed there, and it will slip.
- Your thread is blocked somewhere. Either you hadn’t unwrapped it, or you were stepping on it with your hand, or something like that.
- Your fabric is not tight.
- You’re not punching all the way down, until the wooden part meets the fabric.
Let’s give it a haircut!
Once we’re done with punching, we need to take care of our piece.
We need to seperate the loops of different colors one with each other.
Let’s finish our work!
Tadaaa!! Our fluffy creation is ready to be hang!
Don’t forget to share your fluffy artwork with our shiny community! 🙂
Keep shining bright!