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7 Steps to Improve Your Embroidery

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1. Print a template(s) of your embroidery design so you can plan the embroidery layout. Place it on the item (garment, home décor, craft or quilt) and critique its placement and size.

1-IMG_38322. Build a test stash. Keep a test polo shirt, stretchy t-shirt, terrycloth towel and common items that you embroider on all the time in your test stash. Use this resource when testing a design for a final project. Fill every available inch with test designs then toss it when there’s no more room for additional tests.If you’re stitching on plain fabric, always buy more than you’ll need so you have material to use for a test stitch-out. So many problems can be avoided by stitching a test of the design with the fabric, stabilizer and thread combo that you’ll be using for the final project.

3. Press the fabric – use starch and steam to get the fabric to behave. Press the stabilizer if it’s wrinkled so it will lay flat behind the fabric.

4. Hoop on a flat, sturdy surface, not your lap. Ironing boards work in a pinch but best results are achieved when hooping on a solid surface, such as a cutting table and mat. Use the lines on the mat to square the fabric in the hoop.

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5. Select the right hoop for the job. The best hold is achieved with the smallest hoop for the design. For instance, a 4” x 4” hoop is the best choice for a 2 ½” x 3” design.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

6. Insert a fresh needle when starting a new embroidery project.

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 7. Learn how to use simple embroidery editing software. You probably don’t need a full-blown digitizing system but a simple sizing and editing program can do 75% of daily embroidery tasks. Rotating, merging, mirror imaging and sizing designs are the top four chores I do to almost every design I stitch.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

 

Here’s your assignment this week:

We so enjoy sharing our love for embroidery with you! What things have you done to get your children, grandchildren and/or friends interested in embroidery projects. It’s always fun to stitch with a friend or family member. One comment will be chosen to win a $25 gift certificate to use online at the Designs in Machine Embroidery website. Thanks and good luck!

DIME Gift Certificate

If you had 15 minutes to spare on organizing your sewing room, what area would you tackle first?  Post your comment and one lucky winner will be randomly selected to win a copy of Embroidery Studio Organization in 6 Easy Steps.

Embroidery Studio Organization in 6 Easy Steps

The winner is… Rena  “Last year I decided that everything in my sewing room should have a place with:

• a bungee cord to attach the ironing board to two wall hooks

• lots of small plastic boxes in drawers for little things

• labelled clear plastic shoe boxes for quilting fabrics (colour sorted)

• a cast off wine rack for stabilizers

• a narrow wall cupboard (built by hubby!) with space for embroidery and sewing threads with a white magnetic covers on the door for notes and pattern sheets

• hot pink accessories to make me happy including a broom and dust pan

plastic drawers for more odds and end”

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123 COMMENTS

  • Sue Fisher

    I got my friends embroidering with me by offering to teach a technique they didn’t know how to do. I offered a short lesson, they brought their machines, learned something new, and went home with a finished project.

    • Sobezy

      I wish some one close to would lesson like that. My dealer don’t have lessons to learn making items to get learn. Are you new Cincinnati, O.

    • Alexander Morrin

      So I am new to the embroidery game and I want to get some software but don’t want to spend an arms and a leg. Do you have any suggestions.

  • Cindy McCarty

    Hi!

    I post pictures on my facebook page of the things that I am the proudest of. I try to make my things not to look “homemade” but rather as though they were from a fine boutique. It works! I have helped a number of friends and family to get into their embroidery machines. Admittedly, it keeps me busy but I am such a nut about embroidery that I don’t mind. It is like a drug, you know,…..very addicting!

  • Heidi

    I BOUGHT THE MACHINE!! OUR EXCHANGE STUDENT LOVED IT!!! SHE WENT HOME WITH A FROG ON ALMOST EVERYTHING SHE OWNED>>>

  • Marcie B.

    MY HUSBAND went with me to a conference and he attended classed, met with other business owners and now he is learning what I know how to do. I think he saw it a just a woman’s world but no more! 🙂

    Also, I have to add to keep your machine clean and oiled. If you don’t do that, you will have nothing but problems.

  • Marsha H

    I have my teen daughters assist in putting a design together on the computer, have them thread and start the machine. Plus whenever possible have them join me in classes. A tradition passed down from my mom who is very crafty. Love it and a great way to bond with my daughters.

  • Kathy Meyer

    I have designed and made several tshirt quilt with the grandchildren. We use their shirts and they help pick which parts to use, indicating what is most important to them. They treasure them for the memories of the events, and also the time we spent designing and making them.
    Also have done pajama pant with the group. They pick fabric and cut out and help sew on a day that all can attend.

  • Patti

    I have given my friend hours of personal time, helping her to understand her embroidery machine. She had had the new machine for years, with no support from the store she bought it from, and no particular user manual regarding embroidery! We got it figured out, and she’s now happily underway!

    • Sobezy

      I understand your friends stituation. I have had my machine for 9 yrs., but have taken 1 short class which we embroidery a leave. I did not buy my machine there so I paid for the class. To expenese to far to go back. No confidense!

  • Chris

    A few of us at work bring things we’ve made to “show and tell”. So I’ve been bringing my embroidered projects in. I haven’t convinced them to buy an embroidery machine yet, but I know they are thinking about it.

  • Sandi

    My friend and I both quilt, but she doesn’t have an embroidery machine……I do!!!! I’m constantly showing her how she can make her quilts pop with embroidery. I’ve also given her hand towels that I’ve embroidered with Halloween designs and dish towels with rooster hangers that I’ve embroidered in the hoop. She really liked them and I think she’s fixing to crack and by a machine!!!!

  • Bonnie Gable

    I have my grandson’s (age 9,10,11) pick out their own designs and then they love to watch the machine create their picks.

  • Fran Coleman

    I love making things for other people. What I love is that my daughter thinks I can do anything. She asks me to embroidery items for her and her friends. I made matching neck scarfs for a group going out for her birthday. She found an embroidered hoodie she liked and sent photos. She now proudly wears it. It is fun to give her what she enjoys.

  • Ethel Clayton

    My grandsons showed a lot interest in my embroidery machine — I think “machine” is the key word here. They sat on my lap, chose colors and embroidery designs, and then enjoyed pushing the start button and watching the machine sew out the design. One grandson has now at age 12 developed an interest in all things sewing! Granddaughters, too.

    • Karen W

      My grandson was only 7 yrs old when he 1st saw my embroidery machine & commented “I can do that!”. Of course he wanted to make something – anything right away! Now he’s attending college & always shows an interest in whatever I’m making, whether it’s a quilt-project (sometimes embellished w/ embroidery) or a gift for someone. It’s so funny that the 2 grand-daughters could care less unless it’s a gift for them!!

  • Kathryn

    I made a simple christening dress of batiste, but added tons of machine embroidered designs. The most expensive part of the dress was all the cotton embroidery thread. It amazed and delighted the mom and grandmother.

  • Marilyn Weiss

    My two granddaughters pick out the designs they would like and are allowed to push the “start” button, but are too young to do much more than that, but they are definitely hooked.

    Now, whenever the youngest (two) sees anything embroidered she says, “I made that”!

  • patti

    Very good tips. I love to learn from others!!

  • Connie W

    Twice a year I host a week long sewing/embroidery “Retreat” for 4 of my sewing family and friends. My Aunt travels from Texas and she and my mom stay at my house and the others travel back and forth each day. We work on whatever projects we want, sometimes the same things and sometimes different ones. I have my basement set up so that each person has her own space. My sister, mom and I make most of the food in advance. In the evenings we watch movies or sewing u tube videos. It is a blast and we never want it to end!

  • Ellen Perry

    I love your new book…I now have a hooping station. I used to cut and hoop on the same table and it made it difficult since it was always covered up. My grandchildren love all my items with embroidery I think the pillowcases are the best!
    Ellen

  • Christine m

    I love making personalized items. especially if the person has an unusual name. It makes anything soooooo special!

  • maria elena

    My 5 year old granddaughter loves my sewing room, she picks out designs, and I let her push the buttons in the machine, she sits and watches as the embroidery is done!!! She color coordinates all the threads in my cart too.

  • Leora B

    I took my daughter to one of the workshops, to introduce her to how machine embroidery was done.

  • Frances Powell

    Whenever I make something for my grandchildren, I let them help pick out the fabrics for applique, the thread, and any other embellishments that we decide to add to the project. They love helping with the choices.

  • Ruth

    I thought I was getting my husband interested enough to ” help” / join me! Well, I only succeeded in getting him to ask for me to do projects for him. I’m doing something wrong!

  • Melissa Rosander

    I am only just beginning to sew and embroider, but for Christmas I made everyone something hand-made. When I first got my machine, my mom thought maybe I was losing my mind investing in something I didn’t even know how to use, but I’ve been teaching myself and every time I make something, I would put it on Facebook. And of course, I’d show my Mom in person. She is now coming to me with ideas for things to make for people! My aunts keep bringing me things they think I can use from auctions, like old thread and fabric. My son, who just turned 7, watches me every stitch of the way. He has autism and is actually mesmerized by watching the machine, so sometimes I will have him help me press the start button on an embroidery or something simple like that and then I’ll let him sit in my sewing chair and he has become my little sewing alarm. I can step away from the machine for a few minutes and if a thread breaks he comes running to tell me! We made a gift for Nana together for Christmas, a beautiful tote bag with custom embroidery on it. He helped me pick out the designs to put on it, and then I let him help me put decorative stitching on the handles… so he sat on my lap and I helped guide his hands. He’s my lil crafting buddy now and is begging me to make him a clock with cars on it to play with. They’re learning to tell time at school and he is fixated on clocks presently. I embroidered cheer bows for the middle school cheer leading team and my niece on the team was so proud. They had the school initials and girl’s initials on each one. She wants more bows made now and said she’d like to learn how to make some things. Everyone who has received a gift from me has become interested in how I made them. I’m hoping to make some tutorials on YouTube for various things as I learn more. Though I’m still learning myself, it’s been a lot of fun creating and giving and I just decided I would start selling. We’ll see where the journey takes me!

    • Kristi D.

      Melissa It sounds like you are doing great. I find that the kids love to put things together, like colors that we wouldn’t. They have no fear. Just wanted to congratulate you on your work and your fun.

      • Melissa Rosander

        It’s true! My son was very particular about the designs we picked out for Nana’s bag. Had to send her hearts of course! I think if he picked out the colors though they would have been all blue! LOL. We are having a lot of fun. Temporarily I am breaking from learning because I am waiting for a fix for my machine. Seems a firmware update ruined the tension and consequently ruining my projects, but I hope it’s fixed soon- I have a “clock” to get started on!

    • Mary Jo

      Melissa, this is great! I have a granddaughter who might like to do this. Thank you for sharing.

      • Melissa Rosander

        I bet she would! It’s simple things but just including them seems to make the kiddos light up! Even my niece who is in 7th grade looks at me when I make something as if I had done something magical. I wish I had someone in my family to teach me more when I was a kid! But it’s all fun!

  • Cathy

    I have my niece watch me, and then the next project is hers to embroider. This last year she embroidered towels to take with her to college. She is a fashion design major, so I’m still trying to “sell” her on adding embroidery to her designs.

  • Diane W

    I’ve had friends kids and my grandkids come over and helped them pick designs and let them push the start button and help set the machine up. They really enjoyed it.

  • CarolKE

    I sew with our grandchildren, let them choose designs and thread colors to embellish the item they made. I print the template for them to color.

  • Terri Willner

    When in college, fashion design major daughter wasn’t interested in embroidery, then I did embroidery and appliqué, that she designed, for her award winning childrenswear senior collection! I purchased embroidery software originally so could produce her designs. Still learning, but enjoying the process and especially like collaborating with her!

  • Mary birenbaum

    When my grandkids learn their colors, I ask them to push the green button on the machine to start the embroidery. Also send them off to find a certain color spool of thread. Keeps them busy and allows me to plan my next move!

  • Benie Webre

    I have signed my two oldest grandkids (ages 10 & 9)up for Superior Threads’ Jr College. We get a monthly project to complete together. The first was a pillow case. We used “Nitelite” (glow in the dark) thread to embroider their names on the cuff. They helped me pick out fabric from my stash and created the font in my embroidery software. I hooped the cuffs but they stitched out their names and did the rest.

  • Sherrie Lilly

    We have a group of gals that meets once a month and one of us lead a project. We also meet two other times a month for a free sew when we sew or embroidery on anything. This is a great way to keep us motivated and learn new things.

  • Sallie Sirhal

    Have enjoyed teaching a friend’s granddaughter (whose mother never sewed – did it skip that generation?) and at 9 years old she already has decided she’s going to be a fashion designer! All the possibilities with adding embroidery to projects is exciting and inspiring – and it keeps me on my toes trying new things, too!

  • Shelly Christensen

    I love sharing the projects I make but I hsven’t been able to find someone to sew with, my daughter isn’t even interested, go figure!!! LOL

    • Lori R

      I went to an Anita Good Designs workshop in Kansas City.(I live 60 miles away) A lady that just happen to sit at my table and I had so much fun together and later learned that we live 3 blocks from each other. Since then we have sewn many projects together and attended more classes in KC together. I recently was able to upgrade my machine, so now we have very similar machines. We certainly motivate each other.

  • LeAnne L

    I don’t have anyone interested in embroidery in my group of friends, so I joined an embroidery group and made some new friends.

  • Kristi D.

    I invite my grandkids to play with my 6D software with me. They make the best designs!!! I get my daughter to embroider on the kids clothes. I think I almost have her convinced.

  • DORIS ZELLERS

    My sister in law and I attend an embroidery group together, it gives us some ‘alone time’ without the hubby’s and we share patterns and projects that we have completed. We also attended a weekend workshop together. I love doing projects and posting them for all my friends and family to see and I get lots of compliments on them. But the best compliment I get is from my grandson, I made him a book of colors on my embroidery machine and it is a staple in the diaper bag. Whenever he wants it he calls it Neenaws( his version of Nana..lol) book, and this is how he mastered his colors!

  • tammy v w

    I machine embroidered a in the hoop project and a cardstock project with my friends 5 yr old and now he wants to help make more projects.

  • Shirley Clark

    I post lots of projects I make on Facebook, and some people will ask me questions about how I did it. I also belong to a sewing forum where people help each other.
    I don’t mind helping anyone who asks for help. I’ve also had a couple of friends who bought embroidery machines to come to my house and watch how I do it.
    I love sewing and/or embroidering with other people. We all learn from each other.

  • Angela

    This is really good information thank you for posting it. I’m guilty of not testing, it’s something I know I should do but I just want to get things done. When I don’t do a test stitch out is usually when I run into problems.

    • Karen W

      Yes, some people feel testing is a waste of time & materials, but perhaps you can save your stitch-outs in a binder w/ notes about color changes/better stabilizer choice/other issues. I’ve found some stitch-outs came in very handy for letting me know when I wanted to change something & have used some “perfect ones” to attach to another item, saving time for a quick gift.

  • Janie Mason

    Our six year grand daughter came for a visit. She had several loose teeth. I helped her design a tooth fairy pillow. She choose the fabric, the thread colors and the design. I let her start the machine. After the pillow was complete she pulled one of the loose teeth so that she could put the pillow to use !! We had such a wonderful time using the embroidery machine!

  • Barbara McKenzie

    I had my granddaughters choose which designs they wanted on a shirt. They enjoyed it, but so far none of my children or grandchildren have caught the “sewing bug”. But I certainly value the wonderful friends I have made at embroidery classes.

  • Tamra Botkin

    I have an eight year old granddaughter that really enjoys what I create for her. I picked up a cute levi jacket at a yard sale for her. We sat done and looked through all the embroidery motifs to choose the ones she wanted and we did the project as a team. I was so elated to be sharing something I love to do with her. Isn’t that how we pass on traditions?

  • Jo Anne Watson

    I let my five year old granddaughter pick out a design for a pillow case. Then she “helped” pick out the colours. It was simple and completed quickly so she could take it home with her. She was very proud of “her” work.

  • Carolyn morgan

    When I upgraded to a newer machine I sold my smaller machine to someone local & taught her how to use it. We became friends & joined the “Brother Club” at the local fabric shop.

  • Marsha N.

    Belonging to a quilt guild is a great place to show off embroidery. They love it, so I encourage them to try. One lady did and she is having fun, fun.

  • Shirl R

    My daughter wanted to make a long cape as part of a Halloween costume and she asked for my help. Together we made the cape; I showed her how to lay out the pattern on fabric and she cut it out. Then I gave her sewing tips as she sewed it all herself. She was hooked! Over the next 6 months, I introduced her to my embroidery machine and showed her some of the projects I had completed. She was even more excited about this and could not wait until she purchased her first embroidery machine. It has been a wonderful experience to watch her grow in this fascinating hobby. We are now exploring and learning the world of quilting. This year she even entered one of her quilts in the County Fair where she resides. Such fun!

  • Sandy

    I have enjoyed getting my grandchildren involved in my embroidery. They help pick the designs that are used on the many projects that we create.

  • Lynn

    My granddaughter helps make items for her like small purses

  • le floch

    Nothing,I have done nothing yet my kids are always around when I work, I have a hard time keeping them away! Any sggestions for that? It’s distracting and I always worry they’ll get too close.

    • Karen W

      Give them something to do — they can help w/ choosing fabrics, colors & let you know when the machine beeps!! Some machines have a “pin code” or “lock-out” to keep inquisitive fingers from pressing buttons inadvertantly. I hope you don’t just sit & watch the machine stitch out — that’s time to be used (to get the next part ready) while keeping an ear out for any issues/stops.

  • Crissy Caldwell

    Once I discovered this site, I have purchased a couple of how to classes. Watching these has inspired me to “re-learn” to embroider. Knowing how to embroider is more than just stitching a design on an item. I was inspired to purchase all new Embroidery software. I have purchased just about every type of stabilizer that was used or suggested in those 2 classes. Now, I just need to get this room organized. My tables have accumulated just about everything except what they should have on them and in some cases, they shouldn’t have anything on them except the iron and accessories. We have got to organize! Thanks for the inspiration. Now, we just need to get it in motion and keep it that way.

  • Edith Goss

    I gave sewing and embroidery lesson to my granddaughter and a friend who could not effort lesson for 4 years after two years I added the sister of the other little girl and a friend. They were 9 years when they started. They have moved on but every so often they will come and do a project with me. It was such a joy to teach them

  • Nancy

    I embroidered designs on faux suede and made a handbag. It launched an interest from many who wanted to learn how to make bags themselves so I taught a class at my church for basic instruction. It also served to encourage those who have embroidery units they hadn’t been using much. I discovered a skill myself in teaching others how to accomplish sewing handbags.

  • Nancy Weber

    My husband tells friends’ husbands that I am dangerous as I have gotten 3 of my friends into embroidery over the years. Of course this means new machines for the women! I started out embroidering quilt blocks for my SIL and it was not too long until she had to have her own machine. That was 10 years ago. A few years later my best friend decided she had to have her own machine as well after spending time with me. The third friend had a embroidery machine, but did not use it very much until spending time with me. Now she is having a building built just for her sewing and embroidery and quilting hobby! Of course I have been blamed for all these expenditures!! But it is wonderful to have others to share your love of the hobby with. Hugs.

    • eileenroche
      AUTHOR

      Great story, Nancy!

  • Marilyn

    At Christmas, my 13-year-old granddaughter asked me how long it would take to make a pillowcase. I told her no more than 1/2 hour. Then it turned out she wanted to embroider “World’s Best Mom” and “World’s Best Dad” on the pillowcases. Yes!

  • Debbie

    My young grandson was intently watching me embroider, so I taught him how to read the screen for color changes, and he immediately began to tell me when to change colors and what I would be stitching next. It was wonderful! He ran downstairs with the finished piece and yelled, Dad, Dad, you have to believe me–I did this all by myself!

  • Donna G.

    Embroidering something for them has encouraged my husband and daughter to participate in doing their own projects. They now pick out their designs, thread colors and even hoop!

  • Jana spencer

    One Thanksgiving I offered to help my niece and my sister in law by embroidering Christmas gifts for them to give to some people on their Christmas lists. We all got involved in the projects and had a ball. My sister in law was hooked and my brother bought a machine for for Christmas!

  • Adeline Brill

    As a teacher, I always incorporated an embroidery design in one of the projects. They loved seeing their name on their projects, labels on their quilts etc. Now that I am retired I embroider because I CAN!

  • Patty Fiske

    I give gifts. Makes people interested and give input to future ideas.

  • Patty Fiske

    15 minutes to organize. I am trying to devote 15 min. per day to work on my studio. Small progress but not overwhelming. Today I am gluing pieces of molding to the ends of my wooden shelves. It is an easy way to add space to an over packed room. Tiny shelves for narrow items to keep in view. Stamps, jars of embellishments, jars of special buttons……

    • eileenroche
      AUTHOR

      Great idea!

  • Julie Fry

    In response to what type of embroidery do we do for grandchildren, etc. – – –

    My passion for embroidery started over 8 years ago when I was expecting my first Grandchild. I wanted to be able to create special bibs for their “firsts” – – Christmas, Valentine’s Day, etc. I started out with a 4×4 machine. I quickly upgraded to a larger machine to be able to do the “in the hoops” projects. I now have 5 grandchildren – – and I can proudly say they ALL have their “firsts” special bibs!! I love to embroider 🙂

  • Kendra Mullen

    I have a local business and my daughters and niece love the monogrammed headbands I sell. Their friends in college and high school really like them and that has them interested in embroidery. They are now sharing what is “in” with me and are starting to sew and get involved in the shop. Much more fun with them involved…sometimes. 🙂

  • Pam

    I let my 5 year old granddaughter pick out the fabrics for the applique designs I do for her. She really enjoys telling all that she helped make the shirt. She also tells everyone that I’m going to teach her how to sew when she is old enough.

  • Dinah M.

    I’m teaching my niece to embroider items for her new little son! You can add so much with just a little touch of embroidery.

  • Valerie Gwara

    Actually my friends have been the ones to encourage me to embroider! Nancy especially has embroidered the most wonderful things on her knitwear!
    We are getting together this weekend to plan more wonderful things.

  • Patty Schrock

    I bought my machine 6+ years ago after I found out I was going to be a Grandma. Now I just (this week!)I got my seventh grandbaby (a girl). I am just finishing up her quilt. I always make the last square with all their info (I call it the time and temperature square!) So far only one has expressed an interest in sewing but it sure feels great when one or more of them wants to be (just like Grandma!)

  • Jane Thomas

    I showed my daughter what my embroidery machine would do and she went out and bought herself a much better machine than I have.

  • Colleen Gnehm

    Currently, my grandchildren are the ones that I do most of my sewing for. They love to see their name or initial on things, especially the real little ones that are just starting to recognize what it is. They all have personalized pillows reflecting at least one of their special interests and many washcloths making cleaning up more fun. Currently we are working on dressing up a pair of bib overalls so one little girl will want to wear them instead of being forced. So glad I spoiled myself with a new machine last year.

  • Patricia Hite

    I have spent the time with my 2 youngest granddaughters, 9 and 6 creating their own designs on my PE Design program. We had fun with the creative process and then I showed then how to use the machine to sew their creations. It was great watching their creavtive minds at work.

  • Denice Weys

    I have family and friend interested in sewing and embroidery because I make them stuff all the time. Nobody has started in the craft on there own but they do ask for stuff. The shop where I bought my machine has a club and we get together once a month, insperation, coffie and fun.

  • Julia Brokhoff

    My grandchildren love the pillowcases for every season and interest with something embroidered on them.
    Also I just embroidered a mans diaper bag for my son. Has a lion on it as he’s the protector of his pack and I put the word Daddy on it. It included inside embroidered baby blanket, bibs, burp cloth and more. His 2 sons are 6 & 8 so their sort of starting over with this new baby in May.

  • Patty

    I have a friend whose daughter is always asking me to show her how to sew and embroider! We spend 2 Sunday afternoons a month together sewing small child appropriate projects. When I lived in Ohio I also taught a children’s sewing class which I loved!

  • Liz

    My granddaughter really enjoyed playing with thread and spools of thread as I did hand sewing. We moved up to hand sewing a seam and then a button onto fabric. Next I attended a class with her at Joanne’s where she learned to applique a snowman onto a fleece throw. She loved it! She made a pillow for her doll’s bed. I have recently let her explore the Singer Featherweight machine, showing her how it is threaded, the bobbin, etc. She is very excited — the next step will be sewing straight and curved lines on paper. This is all so much fun for us both. (And her 3 yr. old brother was watching the machine demo with great concentration…) I look forward to teaching her to make clothing for her dolls and moving up from there.

  • Paula Watson

    I am always monogramming, using applique, and creating clothes, bags, towels, hoodies, etc for my grandkids and daughters-in-love. (The men don’t seem to get into the embroidery – I just don’t know why!) My daughter-in-love, Amanda is always on the lookout for new projects for me to sew up. This past Christmas, I made matching pajamas for the 4 grands. We took pictures and that is what became our Christmas card. Trust me taking pictures of 4 little ones from ages 4 months to 5 years was pretty funny!! But the “jammies” were a big hit!

  • Tara

    The little girls at church embroidered luggage tags, the neighbor children have all sewn in the hoop zippered purses and wallets, my friends have embroidered on towels and bags, my married daughters have amazed me by coming over at least once a week and working on in the hoop quilt blocks, finger puppets, wall hangings, in the hoop bowls, embroidering designs on shirts for family and friends, and making in the hoop stuffed animals. Machine embroidery has brought my family closer together (cheesy, I know… but so true!!)

  • Karen

    I have worked with friends kids teaching them to sew. My 2 sons both know how, they also use the software. My husband will sometimes change thread colors. My niece and I have done some things. We have a sewing night at our church about 8-10 times a year. I also take local classes when I can and online ones. So little time for the fun stuff.

  • Karen W

    I love to give personalized gifts for family & friends, so I’m always on the lookout for new ideas. I think this year I’m giving my hand-quilting group a Wish List to fill out. They’ve seen me make lots of items (some by special request) & have expressed amazement, but haven’t been very good at letting me what they’d like. I made a blue & white quilt w/ a center of 6 cutwork blocks, make embroidered labels for all the quilts we complete, along w/ many embroidered scarves, kitchen towels, plastic bag holders, calendar holders, tote bags, placemats (even for my 2 cats!), napkin sets, t-shirts, etc. I have photos of most items I’ve made on my PC, but I need to put them in a portfolio album. Sometimes I personalize purchased items/ clothing, or use embroidery to hide a tear or other mistake. I guess while most of my friends are impressed, only 1 has shown an interest in learning to machine embroider, even though I tell them it’s not as complicated as it looks!

    • Karen W

      I forgot to mention the FSLace bookmarks, Christmas ornaments — nearly everyone loves these, so I sent them inside Christmas & thank you cards & gave 2 dozen out to the doctor & hospital staffs who have been so kind to my husband over the past 2-3 months.

  • Rhonda Kimbrough

    I would spare 15 min to organize my embroidery threads by color and weight.

    Rhonda Kimbrough

  • Annette Luth

    Have a granddaughter that loves to embroider with me. She likes to pick out designs and change colors and fonts with software.

  • Debe

    My Mom who taught & encouraged me to sew, I now encourage & teach how to use the computer & embroidery machine. My young grandsons love to sit on my knee & “help” me sew & embroider items for them.

  • Pam

    All I have to do is mention a project to my sister and she spreads the word. She posts pictures of items she would like and has a wish list.

  • Mary Ann Genre

    I loved those old stitching cards. They had a picture on the card and holes punched for one to stitch through with yarn and a large plastic needle. I haven’t found any locally but I have made my own for when my little four year old great grand daughter is with me.

  • BeckyM.

    I love helping others learn about machine embroidery. I just volunteered for 3 (1 day set-up, 2 days event)complete days at a WONDERFUL embroidery event in Augusta, Georgia. The teachers were FABULOUS, they were very patient, knowledgable, experienced and FUN. I helped as a “table angel” and volunteered to help with the group of approximately 140 attendees so they could learn more and have fun with machine embroidery. Oh, by the way, you might all know these wonderful teachers – Stitching Sisters. If you get an opportunity to attend one of their workshops, you will not regret a minute of the time there and in fact you will want more. If everyone helps another to learn these skills and all sewing skills the future generations will benefit.

  • Beth R

    In my situation it was not me getting someone else interested in embroidery – it was my Mom getting me interested. Now we’ll try and get together a couple of days every once in a while and stitch things out, especially fun to do FLS Christmas ornaments.

  • Pam

    Gave my daughter a sewing machine.

  • Mary Ann

    I got my 8 year old granddaughter to learn to use my embroidery machine. She used the draw pad on my Ellisimo and traced a Christmas tree from a coloring book. We then sent it to the machine and picked our colors. She was having a ball!! I had her pick her threads and she stitched it out. It came out wonderful. She added her name and date on the bottom. I framed it for her. She was thrilled!! Then she went on my machine and designed a heart with flowers and her name from the designs on the machine. She stitched that out, too and we made a pillow out of it. I took her this weekend to my sewing store. She was enthralled. She wants to make more things she said. A girl after my own heart!!!

  • colleen

    I give embroidered gifts to all of my friends that don’t machine embroider to get my them interested in embroidery projects. I also share techniques and ideas with my friends that do machine embroider.

  • Lyvonne Hill

    Having painted and sewed for years, I run dry on ideas sometimes. I have asked my granddaughter and grandson for color suggestions, combinations and choice of fabric and had great results. It feels good to have your opinion matter, and they know how it turns out matters to me. Their ideas are fresh and often unexpected and the results are exciting to both of us. I almost always use their suggestions, too. It costs me nothing and boosts their self esteem.

  • Helen Hughes

    I took my embroidery machine for service last week and the owner of the shop said she could not believe that I had 40 million stitches on that machine. I have 3 embroidery machines and a serger. I love my embroiderymachines. Helen

  • Debra Garnett

    I have to say it was my aunt, Sarah Wachtendorf, who was my inspiration to get me started. She was always eager to share with me what she was working on, and helped me decide on an embroidery machine. My mom, who taught me the love of sewing, passed away over 20 years ago and it was Aunt Sarah who stepped in and filled the gap in this hobby I love. We live 4 hours apart, but at least once a year we make it to an embroidery class or event. One of our favorites was a Stitching Sisters 2-day event. She is always encouraging and helpful in whatever project I am working on.

  • Maria henderson

    The very first project I embroidered was for a gift for a little one turning 2. She needed a special dress for the party. I love making things for the little ones in my life. I post what I make on Facebook. I found someone in my neighborhood that has the same brother machine I have!

  • Hugh Wingate

    Education and support is the key to success and enjoyment. Many stores that sell embroidery software and embroidery machines do not have the skills or resources to train and support their customers. A considerable investment is required to develop the skills to be able to support people learning machine embroidery. Resources and staff are also required.
    This is why we give all our customers free support and tutorial as required, to make sure they learn and enjoy using our software, as well and help and advice for their projects. World wide.

  • Emily Alongi

    I need to find a way to get left over fabric in order some how so that it would be better accessible. putting everything in one large plastic bin just isn’t the answer. then to straighten out my cupboards where I have embroidery designs in a better filing system.

  • Rose Miller

    I used to embroider by hand but the old hands just aren’t what they used to be. Love to sew and make quilts, make my own patterns and templates. Just bought a sewing/embroidery/quilting machine that finally came in on Feb.6th so have been learning to do things with it and have already made a few designs. My sister and I used to make quilts for the kids together and now there are all kinds of new things to learn. I look forward to making embroidery part of my quilts once again and learning new things with the new software and machine.

  • Dolores Paulsen

    I have a Viking #1+ machine with a plus hoop. Does anyone know where i can find some some embroidery designs for this hoop.I would prefer not to have to cut them. I enjoy reading all the comments on the embroidery. Thank you much, Dolores

  • Gail kemp

    I need more counter top space or somewhere to place my projects because I usually have several projects going at the same time. And I have a nice large room but not sure how to get it set up for its best possible use.

  • Jaye Jaye

    My kids draw pictures for their grandparents that we digitize and embroider on special gifts for them. My 12 year old was able to digitize his most recent drawing all on his own. They also love picking the colors for designs that go on other gifts. Sometimes I question the choices, but so far they have all turned out great. I guess it does take thinking outside the box, and fresh minds are perfect for that!

  • Kim

    I purchased my sewing machine with embroidery unit just a couple months after a friend at work got hers. We now go to another friend who teaches us different techniques every month or so. It is so much better than a regular class as we can decide together what day works for us and not be tied down to a specific day and time which doesn’t always fit our work schedules. We both work in a hospital and our schedules don’t always jive with normal 8-5 M-F type classes. It is fun and we are learning a lot with lots of laughing!

  • Sue Conard

    Anyone have suggestions for simple embroidery editing software? I have an older machine but it runs well. I can’t do much editing on the machine itself and there is no way to link it to my computer. But I would love to be able to do more with it. Most of my projects are for friends and family. My favorites are the ones I do for my son’s honor guard.

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