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A look at embroidery basics 101, including the best fabric for embroidery, types of embroidery, using tea towels, secrets of embroidery, and more.
If you are new to embroidery basics, you probably have a lot of questions.
You might find yourself wondering “What is the best fabric for embroidery?” or “Is embroidery hard?”
Here is a look at the top questions about embroidery, from people who are thinking about learning how to embroider.
What Are the Different Types of Embroidery?
There are several subtypes of embroidery:
- Hand Embroidery is a type of embroidery where the stitches are made by hand.
- Machine Embroidery is where a machine makes the embroidery stitches.
- Cross Stitch is a specific type of hand embroidery that involves counted stitches, following set patterns, and using X stitches.
What Do You Need for Embroidery?
In order to do an embroidery project, you will need:
- Embroidery Hoop
- Embroidery Thread
- Embroidery Needle (with an eye big enough to fit the thread through)
What Is the Best Fabric for Embroidery?
Almost any type of fabric can be used for embroidery.
As long as it’s flat and you can get an embroidery needle through it, you can embroidery on it.
The most common types of best fabric for embroidery are:
- You can even use fabrics like burlap, denim, cotton duck, or flannel.
I prefer a neutral-colored, natural fabric that will let my embroidery designs stand out.
Tea Towels for Embroidery
A popular type of fabric to embroider is tea towels, like these from Amazon.
They would make a great handmade Christmas gift idea, wouldn’t they!?
How to Thread an Embroidery Needle?
Threading an embroidery needle follows the exact same process as threading any other kind of needle.
Follow the instructions in this how to thread a needle blog post, and you’ll be ready to go!
NOTE: For my embroidery projects, I always use a single-threaded strand, not a double strand. This will make sense to you after you check out the “how to thread a needle” tutorial.
How to Start Embroidery:
Step 1. Get supplies.
Step 2. Set up your embroidery hoop with fabric.
Step 3. Thread your needle.
Step 4. Find a pattern or inspiration, or just go freestyle!
Step 5. Practice your stitches.
Step 6. Finish off the back of the hoop
Step 7. Hang or display your new embroidery artwork!
Is Embroidery Hard?
If you are brand new to embroidery, it might feel a little overwhelming when you first start out.
However, unlike many other types of crafts and hobbies, embroidery is a very easy, low-cost hobby to get started with.
All you need to get started is fabric, a hoop, a needle, embroidery thread, and either a project plan or the intent to wing it!
Also, you can make an entire embroidery project using only one type of stitch, so you really can just jump right in!
The Secrets of Embroidery:
1. Prewash your fabric.
This will preshrink it and help to avoid puckering later on.
2. Consider how you will use your artwork before getting started.
Will you frame it in the hoop to display, or use it for a pillow cover, quilt, or in another project?
These decisions will determine how much excess fabric you need to have as you’re working on your project.
If you are framing your project in the hoop, you can cut most of your excess off, leaving only an inch or two around the edge of your hoop.
If you are going to use it in a quilt or as part of a pillow cover, the size of your fabric will vary.
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If you are looking for an affordable, portable, easy craft hobby to start, look no further than embroidery.
With only a few dollars in supplies, you might just find your next craft obsession; one you can totally do while you watch a Netflix marathon too.