Tips for Starting an Embroidery Project

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Embroidery is a historic and beautiful craft that can be applied to clothing, art, home decor and so much more. There are many different styles and skills associated with embroidery, so here are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind as you begin your first—or next!—big embroidery project.


Make Sure You Have the Right Materials

Different stitches require different sized needles and threads, you’ll need hoops or frames, and likely your design as well, especially if you’re just getting started. Having the right materials on hand will improve your experience with any embroidery project, so make sure you visit your local craft store before you get started. Don’t forget your scissors!

Learn a Few Basic Stitches

If you’re just beginning your embroidery journey, it’s important that you practice a few basic stitches before embarking upon a larger, more involved craft. Just as you would learn chords and scales before playing complete pieces on piano, you need to know the elements of the craft before you can begin combining them.

Find the Right Hoop

Your embroidery hoop is designed to make the fabric taut, so you can get a bold and tight stitch for your design. There are many different types of embroidery hoops on the market today and you’ll want to make sure yours is the right fit for your hands and the position you most often sit in when you stitch, so try out a few different shapes and sizes.

Set Up a Good Environment

Whether you’re stitching outside or at the dining room table, the key ingredient to a successful embroidery environment is the lighting. Poor lighting can cause mistakes and make the project take much longer to complete than it would otherwise, so make sure you have good lighting. It will also help to reduce the strain on your eyes and on your back, since you won’t be bending over all the time to see.

Give Your Fabric a Break

The hoop, or frame if you’re lucky enough to have access to an embroidery frame, are designed to make your crafting process smoother and easier, but it’s important that your fabric is allowed to breathe. At the end of the craft day, be sure to release your fabric from the hoop, or you risk causing the shape to set and having wrinkles and curves in the final piece.

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