Christmas Cross Stitch on Vintage Tennis Rackets

Christmas Cross Stitch on Vintage Tennis Rackets

I don’t know about you, but I just love all of the oversized cross stitch project ideas scattered across Pinterest. Whether it’s on a large peg board or on a cane back chair, they just look amazing- and I’ve wanted to try my hand at it for a while now. I wanted to get in on the fun but in my own unique way – with Christmas cross stitch on the heads of vintage tennis rackets!

Luckily for me, wooden tennis rackets are easy to find at thrift stores these days. So, I began gathering them en masse.

Vintage tennis rackets to be upcycled and repurposed into unique Christmas decor

Once I had the wooden tennis rackets in hand, it was time to get to work on some unique Christmas decor! This post contains affiliate links for your crafting convenience.

Preparing the Vintage Tennis Rackets for Christmas Cross Stitch

Since the vintage tennis rackets reminded me of oval picture frames, I decided to lop off the handles. I knew a gal with a full wood shop, and she let me use her miter saw to cut them off.

We’ve since purchased our own since I fell in love with it!

Cutting off the head of a wooden tennis racket for upcycling ideas and Christmas cross stitch

When I was done, I was left with four heads from vintage tennis rackets. These would be much easier to deal with for the Christmas cross stitch that I planned to do.

Using the head of a wooden tennis racket for Christmas cross stitch and unique Christmas decor

Curious about the handles? This is what I did with them!

To keep my fireplace Christmas decorations unique, I decided to spray paint a couple of the racket heads. This way, some would be “au natural” and others would be colorful!

Spray painting the head of a wooden tennis racket for upcycling ideas and Christmas cross stitch

Anyway, I was ready to do some Christmas cross stitch on my vintage tennis rackets, but I had no patterns. I’m a complete novice when it comes to this kind of needlework, and I had no idea how to design my own pattern. What’s a girl to do?

Working with Christmas Cross Stitch Patterns on Unique Christmas Decor

Well, I turned to one of my blogging “She-roes”, Bev from Flamingo Toes.

Talk about coming to my rescue…she created four different patterns for me to use, including this snowflake and Christmas tree. (Want to download the other two patterns? Head over to her blog post to get them!)

Oversized Cross Stitch Pattern – Snowflake

Oversized Cross Stitch Pattern – Christmas Tree

Now that I had the Christmas cross stitch patterns in hand, I could finally work on my idea. Because I was working with vintage tennis rackets, my Christmas cross stitch required chunky yarn.

Chunky yarn to do the Christmas cross stitch on the heads of vintage tennis rackets

After studying the first cross stitch pattern, I figured out where I wanted to start and cut off a length of chunky yarn. Just like in real cross stitch, I didn’t knot the end. But rather, I caught the tail underneath stitches – but I did use a spot of hot glue to ensure it stayed put.

I used painter’s tape (like this kind!) on one end of the yarn (like an aglet on a shoelace) to help ease the yarn through the strings, and it worked like a charm!

Christmas cross stitch patterns to use for vintage tennis rackets as fireplace Christmas decorations

I followed Bev’s Christmas cross stitch pattern which was easy to do because of the large size. I stopped and started new yarn periodically so that there were no long stretches across the back (which could be seen through the strings).

Christmas cross stitch with chunky yarn and vintage tennis rackets as unique Christmas decor

Fireplace Christmas Decorations with Christmas Cross Stitch on Vintage Tennis Rackets

After a short while, I finished my first Christmas cross stitch! It was super easy to do – and just as I had hoped, the wooden tennis racket was the perfect frame.

Christmas cross stitch patterns of a snowflake for chunky yarn on a wooden tennis racket

I went ahead and made a couple of others, the Christmas tree (scroll up for pattern) and the Poinsettia (pattern on Flamingo Toes’ page).

Christmas cross stitch patterns of a Christmas tree for vintage tennis rackets as fireplace Christmas decorations

Then it was time to display my Christmas cross stitch results on our fireplace mantel! I cut the racket handles with that little “nub” on purpose- in case I wanted to add a D-ring or sawtooth picture hanger to the back.

But for now, they’re just our fireplace Christmas decorations that lean against the wall.

Fireplace Christmas decorations for the mantle with Christmas cross stitch on vintage tennis rackets

Amazing, right? And super bonus- you can usually find vintage tennis rackets at your local Goodwill or other thrift store. I won’t lie to you, I’m quite tickled at how they turned out.

Unique Christmas decor by upcycling a wooden tennis racket with Christmas cross stitch

If you enjoyed this upcycling idea for unique Christmas decor, then you’ll love these tabletop trees made from serger thread, as well!

Cone Christmas trees and tabletop trees by upcycling the serger thread or thread cone as a Christmas project

Craft On!

S

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Vintage tennis rackets from the thrift store are upcycled into fireplace Christmas decorations with Christmas cross stitch

How to upcycle the vintage tennis rackets into fireplace Christmas decorations with Christmas cross stitch

Comments

  1. Oh my goodness, Sarah. These are the best! This is a post waiting to go viral. If it’s not already on HT, it should be!

  2. I saw these on Flamingo Toes. I think they are amazing ! I love oversized cross stitch. Thanks for the inspiration and Merry Christmas

  3. Great idea!

  4. A W E S O M E!!! love them so much. (can’t wait to see what the handles become)

  5. You have given me an awesome idea! My nephew plays Tennis….so I started imagining his name or a term from tennis on a tennis racket. But….yarn didn’t seem to be the right thing……I’m wondering if I can use bungee cord? Of course, now comes the part about how to map that out. Thanks…..love the idea!

  6. Sarah, these repurposed tennis rackets are super cool!! Love the idea of turning them into cross stitch wall art!! Beautiful job!! 🙂

  7. Oh my gosh, I can’t wait to try this. Thanks!

  8. You so SMAHT! Dayum! I woulda never thought of that, but it’s amazing! Hmmmm, now where in the barn did I stash those ol’ rackets….*wanders off muttering to self like the crazy ol’ cat lady I am….

  9. So different, unique and vintage! Love the old racket look with an old stitching pastime of mine. Yours came out perfect!

  10. Sarah! This was so much fun and I love how the rackets turned out! Merry Christmas!

  11. What a fabulous and very unusual idea!
    Liz @ Shortbread & Ginger

  12. You, my dear, are a GENIUS.

  13. I love these! I am an avid cross-stitcher and am always looking for new project ideas. These turned out incredible and very unique. I came across your post at the VIP on Knick of Time. 🙂

  14. I love this vintage look. Super fun

  15. Beautiful! And totally surprising project!!! You never disappoint with your creativity! Thank you for linking this up to Welcome Home Wednesday!

  16. What an great idea! Love this!

  17. I absolutely love your creativity and this project just blew me away.. Thank you for sharing with OMHGWW Party and I am so happy to have you as my feature this week! Happy Holidays! http://fromevijawithlove.com/2015/12/29/wonderful-wednesdays-link-party-december-5/

  18. This is such a neat idea!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J! Happy 2016!

  19. I love this idea! Very, very cute.

  20. This is a fantastic idea! These would make a great gift for my mom next year! Thanks for sharing.

  21. Oh goodness!! These are absolutely fabulous! So unique!!

  22. Sarah, another great project. You always come up with the best ideas. I have a few wooden tennis rackets hanging around so I might just give this a try. Thank you for sharing your project and tutorial with us at Vintage Charm. sb

  23. I LOVE these! So clever!!

  24. Amanda Kolb says

    Cute idea! I am crushing on all of the cross stitch projects I see on Pinterest too. What a creative spin on those! Thank you for sharing at Merry Monday!

  25. This project is beyond cute – and amazing – and clever. I’m speechless!

  26. You freak me out a little – in a totally good way lol – I just can’t believe the things you come up with – you’re pretty incredible !!!

  27. What a cute repurpose! I think I’d even like them with the handle. Thanks for bringing this by to Throwback Thursday! I’ll be pinning to our board.

  28. Oh my goodness, these are so adorable! What a great project! Thank you for sharing with us at Create • Share • Inspire, we hope to see you back this week!

  29. What a fun idea!! Thanks for sharing on the Pleasures of the NW’s DIY party!

  30. Love the idea and look

  31. Fantastic idea…………….we like it very much!!

    Natalia & Sergio

  32. Wow…what a neat idea! 🙂

    I would love for you to share this with my Facebook Group for recipes, crafts, tips, and tricks: https://www.facebook.com/groups/pluckyrecipescraftstips/

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!

  33. I just got into cross stitching and totally love these!!

  34. What a fun idea! Love those vintage rackets and great source for your cross stitch designs. Thanks for sharing on Funtastic Friday!

  35. These are so stinkin’ cute and original! Love them!

  36. These turned out so fabulous! I love that you have repurposed some old rackets and given them such an awesome new lease on life! So clever!!!

  37. Denise Bryant says

    This is beyond clever and adorable. Thanks for sharing it with us at the Waste Not Wednesday Link Party.

  38. handmade by amalia says

    Love the idea of cross stitching on tennis raquets. Two hobbies in one.
    Amalia
    xo

  39. These are incredible and so creative! I love cross stitch, so I can really see doing these! Thank you!!!

  40. These are awesome! I’ve tried cross stitch but it’s too tedious for me, plus my eye site isn’t as good as it use to be. But I think I could handle the oversize cross stitch. I think my favorite has to be the Christmas tree! 💖

Trackbacks

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  4. […] I know it’s January now, but let’s roll back our calendars a few weeks and revisit my favorite Christmas project from 2015. Remember my oversized cross-stitch on those vintage tennis racket heads? […]

  5. […] knew I could try my hand at some needlework on it. At first, I thought I’d do some cross-stitch (like this crazy-cool project). But, due to the shape of the mesh, my stitches would be more “t’s” than “x’s” and I […]

  6. […] came the scary part- designing my own cross stitch pattern. The last time I did oversized cross stitch, I teamed up with Flamingo Toes! But this time, I was going at it solo and channeled my inner […]

  7. […] really fit with the theme of our life so I didn’t buy it.  Here is a great tutorial for Cross stitching on old Tennis Rackets. I think I would have left the handles on but how amazing do they […]

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  13. […] And because I can’t get enough oversized cross stitch, I decided to create a large, colorful heart on each piece of webbing. Plus, I already had leftover chunky yarn from my tennis racquet project! […]

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  17. […] I know it’s January now, but let’s roll back our calendars a few weeks and revisit my favorite Christmas project from 2015. Remember my oversized cross-stitch on those vintage tennis racket heads? […]

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