Hedgehog Needlepoint Grommet Tag
“Give a DamN”
Gun Violence Awareness

Written by: JoAnn Gardella

Published: OCT. 26, 2023

Finish Style:

Finish Style: Island House Needlepoint Grommet Tag

Finisher: Island House Needlepoint


Designer: Hedgehog Needlepoint

Canvas Name / ID: Give a Damn

Mesh Size: 18 Mesh Mono canvas

Artwork: Stitch-printed by Pixels on Cotton

Fibers Used:

Orange – Planet Earth Fiber – Pepper Pot Silk – Color Cider #213 (1 skein)

Neon Yellow Sparkle – Kreinik – #8  Braid – Color Number 9132 (2 10m spools)



I am Gutted!

Last evening, mass shooting number 565 for the year happened in America.  Lewiston, Maine, has lost 18+ members of their small community during two mass shootings seemingly at the hands of one gunman wielding an assault rife against unarmed, unsuspecting civilians enjoying a fun evening with family and friends.  Countless people are injured in addition.  During 2022, the state of Maine reported only 29 murders, of which 15 were domestic incidents.  I’ve forever viewed Maine as one of the safest places in the United States to live.

In December of 2012, I was working in Bethel, CT, a stones throw from the Sandy Hook Elementary School, where 28 innocent children, teachers, and school workers were murdered in a mass shooting.  I had colleagues with children in the school district.  The effects of that day will haunt me forever.

We are privileged to have raised our children in an upper-middle-class neighborhood in suburban West Norwalk.  Four doors down from us lived a family with two boys the same age as our girls.  The younger of the two boys is currently serving jail time for “showing interest in mass murder”.  fortunately, he was stopped before implementing the high-capacity magazines he was collecting.

But now, my brain’s rational / engineering side is carrying my broken heart.  In Engineering, we often use a method called “5 why’s” to solve complex problems.  The “5 why’s method” is the practice of asking “why did that happened” repeatedly when a problem is encountered.  This drives one to consider possibilities beyond the obvious symptoms to help discover the root cause of a problem.

I am stuck trying to understand why these mass shootings continue to happen at an alarming rate in our country.  I see our politicians and media sparring on the political battlefield.  So here’s where my thoughts begin – the US Government has only scratched the surface, typically fixating on one or two aspects of the “why”, sometimes deflecting or echoing the views of the NRA.  In doing so I contend that they are falling short of their government responsibility to address the actual underlying cause(s) of these senseless acts.

What truly underlies these mass shootings?  We must implore our Government to set aside their political disputes over firearms and explore many more layers of “Why”.  Our leaders must devise a comprehensive solution that ends the disturbing number of senseless casualties suffered by our citizens who watch  in terror as these mass killings tear their lives apart.

XX JoAnn



I stitched this GIVE A DAMN Hedgehog Needlepoint Retro Travel Tag™ during the summer of 2023.  

Hannelore, the artist that designed the canvas told me that she had designed it to raise awareness of gun violence in the USA.  The canvas is one of her “Canvas for a Cause” pieces.  It is available when proof of a donation is made by the stitcher to Everytown, Wear Orange, Sandy Hook Promise, or an Anti Gun Violence Organization of the stitchers choice.

Inspired by the design supporting gun violence awareness I chose to stitch my GIVE A DAMN tag in the colors of a reflective gun vest.  I did search hard for day-glow neon yellow beads but came up short.  I settled on tying French knots with the neon yellow Kreinik to achieve a similar look.

I finished the canvas in using our standard Island House Needlepoint Grommet tag finish.

2 Responses

  1. Oh JoAnn, this is so beautifully expressed. So many of us have been touched in some way by gun violence. My sweet neighbor, Mary Lou Gayle was murdered in the Virginia Beach shooting. I miss and think of her every single day as I pass her house. Thank you to you and Hannelore for highlighting this very important subject. My ‘Give a Damn’ is on my protest tote.