One of the easiest ways of altering the size of a needlepoint design is if the original design is on a chart.By changing the needlepoint mesh size you stitch on, you will change the size of the design. For example, if your needlepoint chart uses a 13 mesh canvas for a finished design size of 5 inches by 5 inches, you can enlarge the design by stitching it on a larger mesh needlepoint canvas such as a 10 mesh. This will make the enlarged size approximately 6.5 inches by 6.5 inches.
To work out how much bigger your needlepoint design will become by stitching it on a larger mesh canvas you work out how many stitches there were across the original canvas. In this case you would multiply 13 by 5 which equals 65. Then divide this total by the new mesh size. For example, 65 divided by 10 is 6.5 which will be the new design width.
An alternative way to enlarge a charted needlepoint design is by stitching two stitches for every one stitch on the needlepoint chart. This will double the size of the original design.
If your design is printed onto needlepoint canvas, and you want to change the size of it, you can transfer the design to another piece of blank needlepoint canvas. To do this you will need to:
1. Make a color photocopy of the original design.
2. Enlarge or reduce this copy to the size you want it.
Then you can either;
Copy the new design onto graph paper by placing graph paper into the copy machine. You will then have a ‘charted’ version of the new needlepoint design to stitch from.
Trace the new design onto blank needlepoint canvas. Go over the design outlines on the paper copy with a black, thick marker pen so you can see what you are tracing. Then tape the blank needlepoint canvas you will be using on top of this color paper copy. Trace the outlines onto the canvas using waterproof colored markers. Select marker colors that are similar to the underlying design colors so that the colors do not show through the stitched canvas. Use a gray marker if you cannot match the colors.
With this outline now on your needlepoint canvas you can start stitching by using the original canvas, or the color photocopy, as a guide. Alternatively you can hand paint the details onto your canvas. Geometric patterns or simple designs can usually be stitched without painting, but you might want to paint in more intricate design areas, or work from a ‘chart’ as explained above.
You can change the size of a needlepoint design in a few relatively simple steps. Some designs will take to being enlarged or reduced better than others, so before you proceed, assess your design and make sure it will still retain its flavor if it were made bigger or smaller.