In-Person Comprehensive Studies Program: Needlepainting (Level 1)

Tiffany Chin

Registration Page

Date(s) - March 14, 2022 - March 18, 2022
9:30 am - 4:30 pm



Needlepainting creates naturalistic embroidered effects on a two-dimensional surface. This effect is typically worked in long and short stitches, in rows that either overlap or interlock with one another. The blending of colors, the sheen of the thread, and the staggered and angled manipulation of the threads leads to realistic-looking flowers, foliage, animals, figures and draping in embroidery. This technique is also referred to as thread painting, silk shading, long and short, and soft shading.

During this course we will cover many techniques, including:

  • Natural shading
  • Tapestry shading
  • Canvas shading
  • Split stitch shading
  • Crewelwork
  • Free style thread painting
  • Flat silk stitching

In addition to covering needlepainting techniques and styles, we will observe and study color play and how shadow and light help to define shapes. We’ll practice the manipulation of stitching for both smooth and textured blending to be able to express plant and animal forms, interpreting highlights and shadows, and working for naturalistic effect in order to create three dimensional shapes on a two-dimensional surface. Dedicated time will be given to studying:

  • Color theory
  • Long and short stitch
  • Shading and blending in the needle
  • Thread types
  • Stitch styles
  • Combination techniques
  • Light play
  • Stitch enhancements
  • History
  • Design process
  • Fabric selection
  • Overall best practices

The needlepainting concentration focuses on the fundamentals of shading and shape interpretation while practicing the technical uses of the stitches to create both realistic and surreal embroideries of a subject. The student will gain confidence to design, plan, and implement future works in needlepainting.

Prior to the course start date, each student will receive a pack of detailed course instructions, describing the course, required pre-work, class schedules, and an equipment list.

Questions? Check out our FAQs!

For more course details please visit our Comprehensive Studies Program page on our website.

Please click HERE to register.

Registration for this class closes 1 week prior to the start date. If you would like to inquire about the possibility of late registration, please contact Late registration will be accommodated when possible.

Cancellation policy: SNAD will refund tuition less a $25 processing fee up to 3 days (72 hours) prior to class start time. No refunds for cancellations with less than 3 days notification before class start time.

SNAD is a nonprofit organization committed to preserving and promoting the traditions of hand embroidery. If you are able, you can make a donation which will allow us to continue to develop fun and innovative community outreach programs.