Free Pattern: Air Mail Tin Topper

I am leading a workshop in March for one of my local embroidery guilds on finishing techniques for an embroidered tin topper, such as an Altoids mint tin.

I love doing tin toppers, but I have a hard time finding quick and easy patterns that fit a tin top, so I’ve started making some of my own. I’ve decided to share this one as a free pattern, and I am also sharing my finishing instructions. If you have never done a tin topper before, it is super easy to put together, and they are so much fun. Beware, because you may get addicted!

The “Air Mail Tin Topper” is a simple pattern that only uses five colors. It will fit a tin top when stitched on 28ct evenweave/linen or 14ct aida. It would also be simple to personalize the pattern with someone’s name if you would like to stitch the pattern as a gift.


Click the image to download the PDF pattern for the “Air Mail Tin Topper.”

Tin Topper Finishing Instructions

These instructions are also included with the PDF pattern:

  1. Cut a piece of matboard the same size as the tin top. (You can trace around the bottom of the tin onto the matboard for a perfectly sized piece.)
  2. Then cut a piece of batting that is slightly smaller than the matboard. This will provide some padding for the stitched piece. Glue the batting to the matboard and let dry. (I use Sobo glue, but any regular white craft glue will do.)
  3. Trim the edges on the stitched piece to about 1″ all around.
  4. Center the trimmed, stitched design over the padded matboard piece and then lace the stitched piece to the matboard using all-purpose sewing thread. (Don’t use embroidery floss for this because it just isn’t strong enough.) Adjust the piece until it is centered.
  5. Glue the design onto the tin top and press into place (a couple of heavy books on top helps). Let dry overnight.
  6. Decorate your tin with cording, ribbon and any other embellishments you wish!


If you do create a tin topper using this pattern, I would love to see your photos, so please share them. Post them to your blog and send me a link, post them to Instagram and tag me @thatrabbitgirl or send me an email at rabbitgirlcrafts [at] gmail [dot] com!

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