How much do you really know about needlework?

By: Dyann Joyce

How much do you really know about needlework?
Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

Throughout history, needlework has been an important art form, as well as a practical skill. Do you know your knurling from your brick stitches? Take our quiz to test your needlework knowledge!
What type of needlework uses yarn or thread to decorate fabric?
Knitting
Hemming
Hand embroidery
Hand embroidery has been around for centuries. In addition to thread or yarn, other materials, including gold, pearls or beads, may be sewn onto the fabric, using many different stitches.
Crocheting

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What do you pull thread through before quilting?
gum
wax
When quilting, thread is often pulled through wax or beeswax to help it glide through all the rough layers of fabric. It's always important to use the right weight of thread. Also, remember that thread can age, so don't sew important projects with old thread that could break.
sugar
Coke

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Which technique uses the business points of a porcupine as an aesthetic element?
Quillweave
Quillbraids
Quillwork
Porcupine quillwork is uniquely North American. Porcupine quills were often found as decoration on rawhide and tanned hides, until beading became more popular.
Bead-y eyes

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What type of needlework involves creating fuzzy objects with wool yarn?
Needle felting
Needle felting uses a needle to pull and tangle wool yarn, to form various three-dimensional objects and embellishments. This technique is used by fiber artists worldwide. Needle felting is also called dry felting.
Needle poking
Needling
Needle knitting

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What do you call patterns worked on a very fine canvas - 22 count per inch or higher?
Lace point
Petite pastries
Petite four
Petit point
The use of a frame is a hallmark of sewing the fine canvases in petit point needlework. This technique, similar to needlepoint, is used to create cushions, carpets and more.

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What is the most common stitch in needlepoint?
Tent stitch
There are dozens of needlepoint stitches, but the tent stitch is the most common. Straight stitches are used for design elements and decorative finishes.
Whip stitch
Open weave
Round stitch

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What type of needlework uses a hollow needle to create loops of yarn or thread while punching through fabric?
Needle punching
For needle punching, you need a frame with fabric stretched tightly over it, to enable the needle to punch through. The needle's size determines the width of the stitch.
Dagger needle
Embossing
Loose embroidery

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What technique combines three layers of fabric into a padded work of art?
Batting
Ironing
Quilting
You may have heard of quilting and not realized it was needlework. Quilting usually involves two pieces of fabric sewn around a middle piece, which can be batting or foam. The stitching that joins these layers together is usually in a decorative pattern.
Foaming

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What is a tool of tatting?
Doily
Shuttle
Tatting originated with fishermen, crafting their nets. Tatting is a method of creating delicate, lacy designs.
Dolly
Sifter

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What form of needlework gathers loops of yarn, then transfers the loops onto another needle with new loops, and so on?
Kneading
Kiting
Knotting
Knitting
Knitting is a form of needlework. Depending on the loops produced on the needles and in what manner they are transferred, different stitches are created.

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What type of needlework uses embroidery thread or floss to sew on linen?
Cross stitch
In Eastern Europe, as folk art flourished, cross stitching was used to decorate and embellish household items. Cross stitching was also used in samplers.
Crossfit
Cosset
Knitting

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What is the most famous piece of embroidery from the 11th century?
Unicorn and dove
Blue Bayou
The Bayeux Tapestry
The Bayeux Tapestry depicted the invasion of England by the Normans in 1066. Despite its name, it is not actually a tapestry, but rather it is embroidered, using stem stitching and laid-and-couched stitching.
Zwiegart Tapestry

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What gives the color in blackwork?
Squid ink
Black silk
Under the influence of the Islamic civilization of the Moors, Spain developed blackwork, with the black color of thread coming from silk. However, blackwork was sometimes done in green or other darker hues. Blackwork was always done on white fabric.
Crows
Walnut ink

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What is a sampler?
Cheese plate
geometric patterns
Primer
Record of favorite stitches
Although not intended for display, the sampler would be a record of a person's ability in favorite stitches and patterns, at a time when there were no pattern books. Samplers were sometimes kept rolled in a drawer or a trunk as family assets, or they were proudly dispayed. Samplers often included the alphabet and ornamental items.

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What item boosted the popularity of embroidery?
Steam engine
Paper boy
Running water
Printed pattern books
Printed pattern books distributed designs to more customers and boosted the popularity of cross stitch and other needlework, starting in the sixteenth century. Printed lace patterns were popular as well.

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Who stitched the earliest surviving sampler, in 1598?
Jane Bostocke
Jane Bostocke was an English girl who sewed animals, plants, herbs and an alphabet motif in the oldest surviving sampler. Some evidence points to her having had an early pattern book.
Jane Curtain
Jeff Goldblum
Anne Boleyn

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What type of needlework is traditionally done entirely in worsted wool thread or yarn on linen or similar fabric?
Tatting
Crochet
Crewel
Crewel embroidery is worked in wool, although today some people use the term more loosely. Crewel embroidery incorporates an endless variety of stitches and is usually done with thicker wool thread or yarn.
Cross stitch

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Can you name the zany new type of quilt that became popular following the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia in 1876?
Purple Rain
Crazy days
Crazy quilt
People fell in love with crazy quilts at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia in 1876. Silks, satins and velvets give an opulent Victorian feel to these quilts, with herringbone, blanket stitch and lazy daisy stitching. Fabric pieces were irregular, not meticulously measured.
Diamond quilt

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What is the term for a quilt made with only one piece of fabric on the decorative side?
Unilever
Warm cloth
Onesie
Whole-cloth
Traditionally, quilts are pieced, meaning they are made of many different pieces of fabric, sometimes all different sizes. Whole-cloth quilts, on the other hand, are made with one piece of fabric and the texture is created with beautiful and intricate stitches.

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What is a mile-a-minute afghan?
A racing-stripe afghan
A car seat cover
Saluki
An afghan made of crocheted strips.
A mile-a-minute afghan is made by joining together different crocheted strips, so called because it's quick and easy to make. Such afghans are a great way to use extra yarn from past projects.

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What is a join-as-you-go afghan?
An afghan made in one solid piece
An afghan made from squares joined together
A Join-as-you-go afghan is made by crocheting individual squares, then sewing them together. Afghans make good seasonal gifts, because they add warmth for a person or to a room's decor.
An afghan made by a group of friends
An afghan made from at least five coordinating colors

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What stitch stacks beads to look like pavers in a wall?
Brick stitch
A Native American beading technique, stacking 4-5 beads, one atop another, is called the brick stitch or Cheyenne stitch. Similar techniques are used in Guatemalan, African, Middle Eastern and South American designs.
Loom stitch
Back stitch
Straight stitch

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In 2014, who was revealed to have made a needlepoint for Ed Sheeran?
Kim Kardashian
Taylor Swift
The MTV documentary "Nine Days and Nine Nights of Ed Sheeran" aired in 2014. It revealed that "TayTay" herself made a drake-themed needlepoint for Sheeran as a sign of their friendship. That's drake the animal, we hope, not the singer.
Katy Perry
Kylie Kardashian

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Which royal has a needlepoint award named in her honor?
Mary, Queen of Scots
Elizabeth I of England
Marie Antoinette
Princess Grace
Given for needlepoint completed entirely in tent stitch with no embellishments, the Princess Grace Award was established by the American Needlepoint Guild to honor a lover of the needlework form, Princess Grace.

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What do you call the squares or blocks that are pieced together to make an afghan or clothing?
Hopscotch squares
Times squares
Crazy squares
Granny squares
Although there is no limit to the number of pieces or size of a granny square, many crocheters will make multiple small motifs (squares) and piece them together to create a variety of items, such as purses, household textiles, or even clothing. Granny square clothing was a trend in the seventies!

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What do you call an ornamental piece of fabric sewn on a bigger piece as decoration?
Applique
When a decorative, often elaborately shaped fabric piece is sewn onto a larger background piece, it's called an applique. It is a technique used often in textiles, but the same concept can be seen in other types of creative arts, like pottery. It originates from the Latin term "applicare," which means "to apply."
Alliance
Risque
Appliance

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What American football player released a book on needlepoint?
Tom Brady
Peyton Manning
Michael Jordon
Roosevelt "Rosey" Grier
"Rosey Grier's Needlepoint for Men" was released by player Roosevelt "Rosey" Grier. The book was chock full of samples and techniques that he personally sewed by hand. Grier is also famous for bravery during the Robert F. Kennedy assassination. Although unable to prevent the killing, Grier helped to subdue the shooter, Sirhan Sirhan.

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Which character design does actress Loretta Swit have in her book on needlepoint?
Ms. Pac-Man
"M*A*S*H" star Loretta Swit has a book with a needlepoint design of the yellow one herself, Ms. Pac-Man. The book is "A Needlepoint Scrapbook," first published in 1986 when Pac-Man was at the height of arcade magic.
Inky
Pac-Man
Pinky

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What diagonal needlepoint stitch is actually made up of three stitches?
Whip stitch
Mosaic stitch
The mosaic stitch is made up of three stitches - two short tent stitches flanking one long one. This diagonal design is distinctive and elegant.
Morrey stitch
Brick stitch

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What is the frame called that cloth is woven on?
Loom
The frame a cloth is woven on is the loom. Warp threads are held under tension while the weft threads are interwoven.
Rack
Frame
Spinnet

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On the cute little tomato made for sticking your pins into, what is the purpose of the attached strawberry?
Just cute
Smells good
For smaller pins
Full of emery
That cute little strawberry has a very acute function - it is filled with sand or loose emery and will sharpen the pins when you use it. The abrasive materials also keep the pins smooth and able to slide easily into cloth so they don't snag or ruin your fabric.

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What is knurling?
A falling knight
An Olympic sport
An sneer
The dimples on a thimble
When you see those dimpled indents on a thimble, that is knurling. Before modern machining, such dimples were added by hand! They provide a grip to prevent the needle from sliding. Thimbles were once considered valuable possessions for young girls and part of their dowry.

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Where does Shetland wool come from?
Shetland sheep
Shetland wool comes exclusively from Shetland sheep on the Shetland Islands. True Shetland wool now carries Protected Geographical Status - it's the only non-food product to be so regulated.
Shetland ponies
Shetland goats
Shetland plants

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What is a "Fingerhutverein"?
Thimble maker
Thimble sewer
Thimble knurling
Thimble museum
The Fngerhutverein is a museum especially made for the 400 members of the Thimble Society that meets every May. Thimble shows, collections, competitions and just passion of the little humble "finger hut" are displayed with love in Germany.

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What is "thimble-knocking"?
Teachers teaching sewing
Teaching on a thimble
Knocking a student in the head with a thimble
Victorian teachers started the practice of knocking students in the head with a thimble-covered finger when they were disobedient. Most of the thimbles were made of iron, so that could be quite a knock to the head! Supposedly this helped students pay attention, rather than risk more thimble-knocking. Such a practice wouldn't be tolerated today, of course.
Thumb wars between students with thimbles

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