GETTING STARTED with HAND EMBROIDERY

interested in learning embroidery? hooray! i can help.
check out my 'getting started' guide below for the very basics and you'll be stitching in no time!

 

GATHER YOUR SUPPLIES

ESSENTIALS

fabric
floss
hoop
needle
scissors
NOTE: if you are starting with one of my embroidery kits, you already have all of these except the scissors!

OPTIONAL

stabilizer
water-soluble pen or pencil
thimble
needle grabbers
thread conditioner
seam ripper
needle threader
transfer or carbon paper


TRANSFER YOUR PATTERN

if you need to transfer your pattern onto your fabric, refer to my transfer methods here.

if you have one of my pre-printed patterns, you're ready to mount it into your hoop, see the next step.


MOUNT YOUR FABRIC IN THE HOOP

  • separate the inner and outer rings of the hoop
  • lay the inner ring on a flat surface
  • place the fabric over the inner ring, with the design centered
  • slide the outer ring over the inner ring and fabric; while keeping the fabric smooth, tighten the screw
  • you want your fabric nice and taut, but not so tight that it is stretched or distorted. try to maintain a tight surface while you are stitching -- no sagging or wrinkles

THREAD YOUR NEEDLE(S)

i like to pre-load a few needles before i start stitching, so that i can easily start a new color, or continue stitching without re-threading each time.

floss length should be about 18".
floss that is too long = tangles; floss that is too short = lots of stopping and starting.

SEPARATE YOUR FLOSS! (this is important)

my favorite floss is DMC cotton, which comes 6-stranded. you'll need to separate the individual strands to create stitches of varying thickness. using fewer strands of floss will help you achieve smooth and neat stitches; thicker floss will create bulkier stitches and
can sometimes be hard to keep smooth.

there's no rule about how many strands to use, but my favorite thickness is 2 strands.

for designs with lots of delicate details, fewer strands are better.


START STITCHING

download my ‘basic stitches for hand embroidery’ guide to learn some of my favorite basic stitches. you’ll be stitching in no time!

 

Download your very own copy of my Getting Started Guide;  for more tips & tricks click here.