needlepoint robo pattern

Needlepoint Robo pattern & instructions

Here you can find a free pattern and instructions for making a Needlepoint Robo.

The measures of the finished work: width 16cm, height 16cm, depth 2cm.


You will need

For the needlepoint work:
ca. 25cm penelope canvas (thread count 60 / 10cm)
Tapestry wool yarns (e.g. DMC tapestry wool):
Natural white / ECRU
Light grey
Middle grey
Dark grey
Dark grey perle cotton

For framing:
16cm x 16cm wooden canvas frame
fuchsia or dark red sewing thread
thin steel wire

For the electric circuit:
Thick (4-ply) conductive yarn
2 green LEDs for eyes
1 red LED for heart
4 small iron nuts for switches
2 sewable coin cell holders
2 CR2032 batteries


Tapestry needles (small and medium size)
Small pliers
Sewing machine
Staple gun + staples


Stitch the Robo pattern onto the canvas with tapestry wool using simple tent stitch.

When you have finished the stitching, cut the canvas to the shape shown in the pattern image leaving 3-4 thread pairs as seam allowance. To keep the canvas from fraying, finish the edges with a narrow zigzag stitch on your sewing machine. Sew up the corners of the canvas so that it forms a square-shaped “box” with the frontside as the bottom.

Join the parts of the canvas frame. Stretch the canvas around the frame, making sure it lines up with the edges of the frame. Be extra careful with the corners.

When you think your canvas is properly lined up, fold the seam allowances to the backside of the frame and staple once on each side. Keep the fabric tight but don’t stretch too much – you want the front to be flat, not warped. Check the front side and if it’s fine, staple opposite sides of the canvas from center to the corners.

Block the frontside of the canvas by moisting it with cold water using a flower spray bottle. Let it dry. That makes small warps disappear.

Backstitch the outline of Robo using dark grey perle cotton.

Needlepoint Robo wired

Backstitch the electric circuits, see the pattern image for details. Leave long thread ends, you will need them for attaching the LEDs, coin cell holders and swithces. Leave the thread ends reserved for the switches on the frontside of the canvas, all the other thread ends are needed on the backside. Note that the coin cell holders will be positioned behind the head and the body.

Robo from the back

Attach the coin cell holder for the heart circuit behind the body of Robo.

Place the red heart LED by pressing the legs through the canvas. Twist the LED legs. Mark the (+) leg by twisting it in a square shape and (-) by twisting it in a round shape. Make sure you connect (+) to (+) and (-) to (-). See also this LED circuit tutorial provided by the Pixelversity e-embroidery workshop.

Test your circuit before knotting the conductive threads too tightly – at this point you are still able to make corrections if it’s not working.

Attach the coin cell holder and the green LEDs to the eye circuit similarly. Note that this time there are two LEDs in the same circuit. See the pattern image for instructions on extending the circuit. Again remember to connect (+) to (+) and (-) to (-).

Attach the nuts to the thread ends that are visible on the frontside. Use a bit of super glue to make sure that they are permanently attached. Your Robo should be working when you connect the nuts to each other.

Staple a clip of thin steel wire to the back of the frame for hanging (see photo above for instructions).

Robo with eyes on


Pattern images:
Needlepoint Robo pattern (pdf)
Needlepoint Robo pattern (png)


Creative Commons Licence

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