DIY Your Own “it’s a small world” Embroidered Hoop Ornament

Disney Style fangirl and expert hoop designer Natalie Murphy shows us how to make the perfect DIY for your tree, wall decor, or holiday gift! 

Hey Disney Style fans—Natalie here! For those who don’t know me, I’m sort of obsessed with making embroidered hoop art (check out my Toy Story set!). 

I love riding “it’s a small world” during the holidays. Something about seeing all the lights really puts me in the spirit and it has become my favorite tradition at the park during the holiday season. To celebrate the happiest cruise to ever set sail, I’m showing you how to create a small world hoop ornament with some Mary Blair inspiration. It’s the perfect gift for any Disneyland fan. diy hoop ornament - natalie murphyWhat you need:

  • One 3” embroidery frame/hoop
  • Gold and silver thread
  • Needle
  • Scissors (for on-the-go stitching I use nail clippers)
  • A thin marker
  • White paint
  • White fabric
  • Red ribbon
  1. For this project you will need all the goodies listed above, but most importantly, you will need time to complete the hoop. Allow yourself a few days to get this done if you are giving it as a gift. 
  2. Cut a square (6×6 inches worked for me) of white fabric and pull it tight around the inner hoop frame. Secure the fabric inside the hoop by snapping on the outer frame on and tightening the screw. Make sure your fabric is pulled extra tight—it helps to stabilize your stitching. I painted the frame bright white to match the clock, but this step is optional depending on preference. Unknown-6
  3. Use a thin marker (A Sharpie or Copic work best for me) to outline the clock face. I have made this a little easier for you guys by creating a graphic you can trace. The easiest way to do this is to gently tape your hoop to the screen of your computer or tablet and use the backlight to trace the design.
  4. Now you are all set to start stitching! If you want a thinner design, make sure to split your thread to get your desired thickness.
  5. What’s great about embroidery is you can really begin wherever you want, there isn’t a correct way to do it. I started with the nose because it was the thickest portion, but I bounced back and forth as I stopped to re-thread my needle. For this design I used mostly split stitch. I reference the stitch here if you’re not quite sure what that means.
  6. Stitch, stitch, and then stitch some more. Unknown-7
  7. When you feel like your clock face is just right, you need to stitch up the back! I usually cut out a piece of felt to the circumference of the inner hoop, glue it in the back, cut the edges of the fabric and then thread up the back and pull tight. There are a number of ways to “complete” the back of a hoop, and Pinterest is the best resource for ideas. On my “Zip-A-DIY” board you can find a few different methods as well. 
  8. To turn it into an ornament, add a 6-inch piece of ribbon through the frame and hang on your tree or on a wall.
  9. Ta-da! You have a beautiful Disneyland ornament to gift or display!


I hope you guys all have a wonderful and warm holiday season! We had a snow day in Oregon, which gave me plenty of time to DIY and create a video where I make this project. For more hoop art and DIY ideas, you can find me on YouTube or on my blog, Ariel and Alder

Happy Holidays, Disney Style fans! 

Posted 4 years Ago
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