Needlepointed Award Ribbon Craft

I was cooking a new recipe the other day, and it called for a teaspoon of turmeric. When I took off the lid of the spice jar, I had to pull off that little shaker insert that comes with all spice jars. After I removed the insert and set it on my counter, I dipped my teaspoon into the spice to add to my recipe. I was cleaning the kitchen later that day, and I realized that I hadn’t replaced that little plastic circle and for some reason, in that moment, a lightbulb went off in my head. These inserts are like tiny, star-shaped needlepoint canvases just waiting to be stitched!

diy award ribbon needlepoint craft for kids

It felt like one of my most outlandish craft ideas, but I’ve really been attracted to needlepoint, embroidery, and stitching lately. I grabbed some yarn and needles and started playing. Then I went into the spice jar and removed as many shaker inserts as I could find on spices that I KNOW I will never shake!

I turned my stitched circles into award ribbons, but I think there are so many ways to use them: necklaces, refrigerator magnets, framed in a grid and turned into wall art!

diy award ribbon needlepoint craft for kids

Here’s what you’ll need:


diy award ribbon needlepoint craft for kids

Let’s make it:

  1. Remove those goofy little inserts from your spice jars. Who really shakes out spices unless you are making cinnamon toast??
  2. Cut yarn and thread the needle. Tie a double knot at the end of the yarn; make sure it’s large enough so that it won’t go through the hole.
  3. Stitch as though you were working on a canvas. Here are a few tips:
    • When you are stitching through a hole that already has yarn though, try to push the yarn to the side so that you are not stitching through the yarn. That could pull the strands of the yarn in a funny way and mess up the look.
    • Try going around the entire shaker insert to create a sun-ray effect. Think outside the circle!
    • Stitch with two yarn colors at the same time to create a cool striped effect.
    • If you want to create a “french knot,” you can sort of cheat it. With the yarn on top of the “canvas”, tie a knot in the yarn close to the surface of the shaker lid. Thread the needle back through the hole. This is a great way to hide the hole.
  4. If you choose to turn yours into award ribbons, Cut 1-to-2-inch pieces of felt, about 1/2″ wide. Trim a triangle out of the bottom to make it look like ribbon ends, and glue them to the back of the stitched shaker insert. Feel free to add some stitching to make the ribbons dynamic too! Also, if you happen to have ribbon, you can certainly skip the felt step and just use ribbon.
  5. Glue a pin back to the back of the center of the circle.


I had asked Sommer if she preferred the ribbon design or the one that looks more like a military medal, but she had no reference for that, so we went with the award ribbon design. But here’s what that looked like just for your reference!

diy military medal craft for kids

diy award ribbon needlepoint craft for kids

April 28, 2020| Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Grown-Up, Jewelry and Fashion, Older Elementary, Tween to Teen