One of the most popular ways to use Stitch People patterns is to make your family tree! Some people love the idea but feel a bit intimidated by it for all kinds of reasons. Maybe they have an enormous family and the traditional tree style would be ridiculous, maybe it’s smaller, maybe their family is their friends, maybe their animals. In whatever way, their family doesn’t look like the cookie cutter nuclear family we’re all used to seeing. That works great for some portraits but families come in all shapes and sizes and fortunately, so can your Stitch People portraits!
Let’s take a look at some of the ideas from our community so you might find inspiration to stitch your family.
First off, the Queen of family tree Stitch People portraits, Jenny from Kayrazy Stitches.
Jenny is responsible for the family tree pillows that always get a double take.
Jenny uses just the heads of Stitch People with the names of the family member below. This leaves you a lot of room which is great if you have a lot of people you’d like to include or you’d like to keep your stitching to just one portrait.
But if you’re willing to stitch more than one portrait, you can do like Jenny has done here and stitch a portrait for each branch of your family.
Jenny also has touching ways of including family members who have passed away.
Jenny has tips and tricks for creating different types of family trees so check out her instagram when you can!
Another person whose family tree portraits may inspire you is our friend Alexandra Gurney. Similar to Jenny above, Alexandra uses just a portion of her Stitch People patterns but she also includes the shoulders which gives you a little more freedom to individualize your Stitch People family tree with the clothes that your Stitch People may be wearing.
Alexandra uses the more traditional family tree style but indicates branches using lines as well as placement.
If just the busts aren’t doing it for you, there’s no reason you can’t think about making your portraits longer like our friends The Sassy Cross Stitcher and Meghan Smoak Silvers.
The Sassy Cross Stitcher Meghan Smoak Silvers
If you’d rather go horizontal, you could make something similar to Lauren from You’re Sew Welcome who created this amazing family portrait for her grandmother. By layering her Stitch People, Lauren managed to fit 29 people into her portrait. We also love how this structure makes less of a statement about separate family units and more of a statement about how all these individuals are part of one big family.
Of course if you’d like to highlight the uniqueness of each of your family units, you could make them entirely different portraits. You could keep them together by using a frame with several sections like our friend Christy Pawloski has done here.
Or you could fill a whole wall with as many family members as you’d like using entirely different frames like our friend Ginny did at Christmas.
If the whole idea of lines, branches and units has you bummed out, why not try something completely different.
Here our friend Brittany May Caffet created this portrait focusing on the different generations of the family rather than who is in which branch of it.
In this portrait, Justine Wayne not only thought outside of the box but kicked it way across town by creating this timeline portrait in which she created a family portrait by showing how the family had grown over the generations (those Christmas sweaters though!).
All this to say, your Stitch People portraits can look as unique as your family is. Don’t be afraid to stitch something for the people you love simply because it doesn’t look like what you perceive a “typical family” should be. Start from who the individuals are that you love, what makes you call them family and go from there!
We’d love to see you’re take on the family tree! Send us your pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org or tag us @stitchpeople on facebook or instagram.