Craft ideas

Make thread pictures yourself with nails – ideas, instructions and templates

The string art makes the heart of every hobbyist beat faster. By fixing nails on a solid surface and winding different types of yarn, wonderful and original yarn images are created.

Thread pictures with nails elephant-heart-sweet

Thread pictures with nails Doing it yourself takes time, but it is clearly feasible for everyone. Even children in elementary school are enthusiastic about the well-known thread art!

Make thread pictures yourself with nails and thread

Make thread pictures with nails nail pictures star Christmas decoration yourself

Thread pictures with nails are perfect as room decorations or as gifts for loved ones. The large variety of motifs allows many design options. In the article you will find some templates to print out that can be used as a template for your thread picture.

DIY thread pictures with nails – what surface

thread-pictures-nails-rustic-wood-disc-love-jute cord

The nails are fixed to a surface, usually a wooden plate. You can also use a natural wooden disc for a natural decoration. Pumpkins are also perfect for Halloween.

Thread pictures motifs for children’s rooms or for handicrafts with children: Instructions and templates

Make nail pictures yourself for Christmas – Homemade string art as Christmas decoration

Make pictures yourself as autumn decorations – 3 DIY ideas and decoration tips

What thread?


Nail pictures are often very colorful and expressive. This is due to the threads used. When choosing, one should pay particular attention to the style and the effect that should be achieved. For a noble overall picture you can use gold thread, for example. If the thread pattern looks rustic, then jute cord is also well suited. The smaller the nail image, the thinner the thread should be so that the lines appear more delicate.

Thread pictures with nails – heartbeat motif


As a rule, strong synthetic, silk and cotton yarns are used. You can also use normal embroidery thread, crochet thread, and sewing thread. They come in all colors of the rainbow and are very cheap. The color of the thread should also match the background.

Which nails to use for thread pictures?

Thread pictures with nails nail pictures heart make yourself gift jute yarn

The nails are hammered into the wooden panel and form the contours of the motif. As a rule, small nails about 15 to 20 mm long are used. The larger the design, the more nails you will need. If you want to make thread pictures with children, you can also get larger nails, for example 25 mm long and with a large head.

How to make thread pictures with nails?

Thread pictures with nails diy nail picture heart golden thread red background

So we have given you a few tips for making thread pictures. So now we come to the instructions. Here again the tool and material list:

  • Wooden board (at least 12 mm thick so that the nails also stick in it)
  • Wood stain or paint (as required) and sponge brush
  • template
  • Tape or painter’s tape
  • Nails (e.g. 1.2 x 20 mm)
  • hammer
  • yarn
  • Tweezers and pliers are also helpful.

Thread images on wood


First the wood is given a nicer color. If the end result looks rustic, you can simply use a wood stain. The great grain remains visible.

A thread pattern is difficult without a template. Find a nice motif and print out the template. It is then attached to the wooden plate so that it does not slip.

Thread pictures with nails nail pictures diy heart gift golden thread

Now the hammering starts! Drive in the contours nail by nail at regular intervals. After that, you can simply tear off the paper again. Small bits of paper can be removed with tweezers.

nail pictures heart template string art templates to print

Heart motif 

thread pictures heart nail pictures red thread black background

Now the picture is filled in by stretching a string between the nails. To start, tie one end of the thread to one of the nails and untangle. Start from the outside line and keep putting loops around each nail.

Different variants are available


When you have finished with the contour, you can now start filling it in. To do this, stretch the thread criss-cross between the nails until you are satisfied with the density of the mesh. Alternatively, you can fill in the background instead of the subject. Tie the end of the thread and you’re done!

Dandelion thread pattern

thread pictures nails dandelion gift on wood saying

With this technique you can of course design any imaginable motif. Whether a letter or entire lettering, seasonal decoration (Christmas, Easter) or timeless work of art … The principle is always the same! A nice saying goes with the thread picture.

Sea horse thread image


So that the nails fit perfectly with the overall picture, you can spray them with an acrylic spray in the same color as the thread. So that the wood is not painted, the perfect time should be chosen – for example after all the nails have been hammered and before the template is torn off.

Sea horse template


Make thread pictures with children

thread pictures-nails children nail pictures elementary school instructions encourage concentration

By doing handicrafts you can promote the creativity, concentration and patience of the children. For this reason, these thread pictures are also perfect for children, preferably between the ages of 7 and 14.

Template butterfly for children

nail pictures elementary school instructions nails children butterfly template simple

In order not to injure your fingers while you still have to hold the nail, you can work with aids such as a magnetic nail holder. First the nail is put upside down in the guide hole of the Fix nailer, then it is carefully hammered.

simple thread pattern star

thread pictures-nails-star-gift-children-elementary school

Template five-pointed star

thread-pictures-nails-star-template-children-elementary school

geometric nail pictures: pinwheel template


Thread image sailboat


If the surface is softer than wood, for example cork, pins with a pearl head can also be used. When it comes to geometric thread images, pay attention to the exact sequence of the corner points.

Nail painting sailboat template


Left sail:

1 -> A. -> 2

3 -> B. -> 4…

Sail right:

1 -> A.,

B. -> 2,

C. -> 3…


1 -> A.,

2 -> B.,

3 -> C.,

4th -> D.

(all horizontal points should simply be connected to the points below)


1 -> 2,

3 -> 4th,

2 -> 6th,

5 -> 4th

1 -> 6th

4th -> 6th

thread pictures-nails-ship-sailboat-children-primary school

Below are some great printable thread art projects and templates that you can use for free. Try out this interesting technique and let your imagination run wild! The decision about colors, motifs and style is up to you.

Thread pattern anchor


Anchor template for printing


Hemp rope as an accent


Feather thread pattern


Template for spring thread pattern

thread-pictures-nail-motif-feather-template-print-out-corner points

Lettering thread pattern HOME

thread pictures home make white yarn on wood yourself

Template lettering HOME

thread pictures home template print out template

Letter template


letters templates nail pictures a to h

letter templates thread pictures i to o

letters templates nail pictures p to v

letter templates thread images w to z

Numbers template


Nail picture world map

nail picture thread picture make world map yourself nail pictures world map instructions use old map

Make dandelion thread picture yourself


Dandelion stencil



Make nail pictures yourself for Christmas

nail pictures christmas template font fir tree

nail pictures christmas templates for kids angel star fir tree snowflake

Snowflake thread image


Snowflake template


Thread picture Easter bunny – nice gift idea

thread-pictures-nails-do-it-yourself-instructions-easter bunny

Stencil easter bunny


Paint the wood pink and create white dots with a pencil and paint


Easter egg motif for thread picture

thread pictures-nails-easter-easter-egg-gift-make-yourself

Easter egg stencil


More thread pictures templates for printing


Thread picture heart

Thread picture heart pink modern geometric thread art

heart template for thread images geometric heart template for thread images geometric to print out

Thread picture heart template instructions

intertwined hearts

Thread image hearts Valentine's Day gift family

intertwined hearts template

thread-pictures-nails-heart-love-intertwined-template-print out

Yin Yang sign with two hearts 

Thread image heart template Yin Yang to print out

Thread picture wedding template 

Thread picture wedding hearts rings template to print out

Template “three hearts”

Thread art template three hearts vertical

LOVE lettering




LOVE lettering stencil


NOEL lettering


“I love you to the moon and back” lettering