Archive of ‘Stitching on Knits’ category

Embroidering on Onesies

Is there anything sweeter than welcoming a new baby into the family right at the holidays?  It brings the meaning of Christmas home…time to focus on the important things in live and leave the mall hustle and bustle to others.  One of our team members, Sandy Griggs, became a first-time grandma on Dec. 18th to Bo Braun – a beautiful, healthy 8.3 pound cherub.

We couldn’t be more thrilled for her family and since Sandy is a previous collegiate softball star, I thought it was only appropriate to stitch a onesie for Bo.  It’s a little cold up there right now but come spring training, he’ll be ready for batting practice!

I purchased a baseball applique design at Applique For Kids and added lettering to personalize it for Sandy. 2016-12-28_15-27-17

Here are the easy steps for stitching an onesie. Fuse polymesh cut-away stabilizer to the wrong side of the onesie.  Place the onesie on a work surface and position the Children’s Perfect Placement Kit Center Chest template on the shirt. Match the shirt’s vertical center with the template’s vertical line and the curved neckline at the bottom of the ribbing. Place a target sticker in the opening. one1

Turn the onesie INSIDE out.  Slide the top magnetic frame of Snap Hoop Monster into the shirt, centering the target sticker. You’ll have to peek into the garment to see if it’s centered.  Attach Hoop Guard to the frame and pull the shirt over the Hoop Guard as shown. one2

Carefully transport the hoop to the machine (use the magnetic shield that came with the hoop). Attach the hoop the machine.  Use the machine’s editing features to center the needle over the target sticker.  Rotate the design so that it will stitch in the proper orientation. one3

Stitch the first color, the placement guide.one4

Place the applique fabric over the outline and stitch color 2, the tackdown.  Trim the applique close to the stitching and continue with the embroidered details. one6

Remove the hoop from the machine, turn the onesie inside out and trim away the excess stabilizer. Fuse a soft, tricot knit interfacing over the wrong side of the embroidery to protect the baby’s skin. one7

If you like this baseball applique, then there’s a good chance you could win a $20 gift certificate at Applique For Kids. Just leave us a comment and we’ll pick FIVE winners next week!  Since Applique for Kids designs are just $2.00, that’s 10 designs!  Pop on over to Applique for Kids and tell me what’s your favorite category of designs – they’ve got plenty!5winners

Happy New Year!



Stabilizer Experiment

2016-07-30_16-41-18Normally, I use fuse polymesh stabilizer to the wrong side of the design area to stabilize knit fabrics. But recently, I was working on a couple of knit skirts. The brown one, shown above, is an a-line skirt and easily slips over the hip. I used polymesh cut-away stabilizer on it with satisfactory results. The second skirt, a pretty avocado green is more fitted. I really needed to keep the stretch of the skirt so it could slip over the hip. I opted to use Piece & Stitch  wash-away tear-away stabilizer instead of my usual cut-away.2016-07-30_17-06-54

As you can see, the stitches are lovely, they sit nicely on the fabric without a ripple.


This Piece & Stitch wash-away tear-away stabilizer breaks down in water leaving soft fibers in the embroidered stitches and practically vanishing from other areas. And I was thrilled with the results. The stitches are gorgeous and after laundering, the skirt has not lost any stretch.  As a bonus it’s so comfortable to wear because the remaining stabilizer is very soft.

Do not confuse Piece & Stitch wash-away tear-away stabilizer with a water-soluble stabilizer. Water soluble stabilizer means it dissolves and disappears in water. Wash-away tear-away means it breaks down in water, like tissue paper, leaving no gummy residue.  2016-07-30_16-57-43

It’s good for many uses but not a substitute for water soluble, so don’t try to make lace with it!  Normally, I use it for piecing quilt blocks in the hoop but now it’s my go-to stabilizer for stable knits.

Multi-Needle Monday | Applique and Onesies – Oh, My!

Applique and stitching on onesies have always challenged my multi-needle machine skills. First, trimming applique in those deep standard hoops is tricky on a small item. I can’t seem to get my scissors to trim close enough to the stitch line in those hoops without nipping the base fabric. And of course, hooping a onesie when the design requires a larger than 4” x 4” hoop is almost impossible. Multi-Needle Monster Hoop solves both of those problems. Let me show you how.

Iron fusible polymesh stabilizer to the wrong side of the onesie shirt front extending the stabilizer above the neckline if your design has to stitch close to the ribbing.

Tape the embroidery design template onto the onesie. I use PAL to make sure the template is square on the garment before I tape it down. One1-1

Slide the magnetic frame (magnets side up) inside the shirt.   Place the metal Monster Hoop frame on top, aligning the frames. One2

Lift the frame and pull the back of the onesie over the frame. The metal arms of the frame will hold the onesie in place. One3

Check the back of the hoop to make sure nothing is caught under the hoop. Attach the hoop to the machine, center the design on the template’s crosshair and begin to stitch the applique. One4

After tacking down the applique fabric, remove the hoop and place it on a flat surface while trimming. Hold the hoop by the metal arms, not the frames, while transporting the hoop. One5

Reattach the hoop to the machine and slide your hand under the design area to make sure nothing is caught under the hoop. One6

There you have it! Never been easier. One7

It’s Cold in Those Chemo Centers

Bag of Hope

When you have a family member or friend diagnosed with cancer, it leaves many of us feeling helpless – what can you do to support them? Nancy Zieman and I decided to each create a bag stuffed with helpful items that we’d give to someone in treatment for cancer. The bags are a perfect way to show you care and can be used to to carry everything someone might need during their treatments which can sometimes last for hours. For our bags we used embroidery from the Embroider-a-Cure collection where all proceeds go toward the Be The Difference Foundation, an ovarian cancer research foundation founded by our friend Helen Gardner.

I decided to work with blanks and wrap a little hope and warmth around someone undergoing chemotherapy treatments with an embroidered sweatshirt, pashmina and tote bag.

I selected the Bald is Beautiful design because many patients see no need to cover their hair loss so why not make a statement and put everyone looking at you at ease? This versatile design looks great on both a sweatshirt and a pashmina.

Let’s start with the sweatshirt. Find the center front of the shirt and mark it with a pin. Print a template of the Bald is Beautiful design and place it on the center chest. It’s a large design so standard industry placement templates don’t work for a design of this size.  No worries – just place the center of the design on the shirt’s center. Leave enough room at the top of the design to hoop the shirt – about 3” below the bottom of the ribbing will do it. Make sure the template is straight and place a target sticker under the template.  Remove the template.

Bald is Beautiful in the hoop

Fuse polymesh stabilizer to the wrong side of the design area.  Place the hoop’s outer ring on the pointy end of an ironing board and ‘dress’ the ironing board until the target sticker is centered in the hoop.  Insert the inner ring.

Bald is Beautiful in the hoop

Attach the hoop to the machine. Retrieve the design and center the needle over the target sticker.  Add film-type water soluble stabilizer over the design area. Stitch the design.  Once complete, tear off as much of the soluble stabilizer as possible and spritz away the rest.  Trim the polymesh on the wrong side – ready to make a statement!

Bald is Beautiful in the hoop

Since the design is already loaded on the machine, let’s move on to the pashmina.  Fold the pashmina in half, lengthwise and measure 8” above the fringe on one end. Place a target sticker in that location.

Pashmina with Target Sticker

Place a piece of cloth-type water soluble stabilizer over the hoop’s outer ring; place the pashmina over the ring, centering the target sticker.  Insert the inner ring; tighten the screw since the pashmina is lighter than the sweatshirt – the previous hooping. No need to over tighten, just hand tight, is fine.

Target Sticker on pashmina

Flip the hoop over and make sure the water soluble stabilizer extends beyond the hoop in all directions. If it doesn’t, rehoop. Attach the hoop to the machine and stitch the design. Trim as much of the WSS as possible and spritz away the remainder.

Bald is Beautiful in the hoop

For the tote bag I chose the bold Survivor design in a vibrant teal color. It looks great against the black background of the tote and teal is the color of support for ovarian cancer. The bag was stitched in a jiffy on a 10-needle machine. I used Quick-Snap to hold the tote and was done in about 15 minutes! If you’re using a single-needle machine, it would take just a bit longer because it’s necessary to open the side seam to get the bag front to lay flat in the hoop. Once embroidered, just sew the seam and you’re done!

Survivor Design


To see more on the Sew a Bag For Hope created by Nancy Zieman please visit her blog here. And, for more information on ovarian cancer and the Be The Difference Foundation please visit their website here or join them on Facebook.

Nancy Zieman Sew a Bag of Hope


Here’s your assignment this week:

Leave us your ideas for items that would be perfect to put in totes for women in chemotherapy treatment. Two readers will receive this beautiful butterfly pin created on behalf of the Brookharts family in memory of their wife and mother, Joanne. If you’d like to pick up one for yourself or a friend you can do so here.

The winner of last week’s assignment is:

Leave us a comment about your favorite In the Hoop Project from the SewAZ Embroidery Designs website. Four readers will each receive a $25 gift certificate courtesty of SewAZ Embroidery Designs to the website.

And the lucky winner are…Patty, Colleen, Paule-Marie and Dana. Congratulations to you all!!

Put a Neckline on a Hemline!

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Uh? Put a neckline on a hemline? Well, kinda. I’ve been looking at the peek-a-boo transformation on Designer Necklines and wondered if I could use it to decorate something other than a neckline. After an aha! moment, I decided to try it on the hem of a sweatshirt. Look how easy it is.

First, remove the ribbing at the hem. Mark the side seam with a pin (if there isn’t a seam, just find the side of the shirt on both sides).

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Hoop tear-away stabilizer. Stitch the peek-a-boo neckline from Designer Necklines on the stabilizer. Remove the hoop from the machine and draw a straight line at the bottom of the curved stitched neckline.

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Spray the stabilizer with temporary adhesive. Turn the shirt inside out and place the hem edge on the straight line, matching the side seam to the short horizontal stitched line.

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Reattach the hoop to the machine. Slip the bulk of the shirt over the head of the machine and tape the shirt to the top of the machine. Love that!

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Stitch the decorative element.

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Place a piece of facing fabric (knit, woven or interfacing), right side down over the embroidery. Stitch the final color, the peek-a-boo transformation.

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Remove the hoop and carefully tear the sweatshirt away from the stabilizer. Cut the shirt between the V. Cut right up to the point of the V but do not snip the threads.

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Sew about 1” from the hem.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Turn the facing to the inside and pin along the seam. Edgestitch.  Repeat for the other side seam, then hem the rest of the shirt. Add the same design to the neckline as instructed on the Designer Neckline DVD. Voila! A refashioned hemline!

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This week’s homework assignment

Have you started your holiday stitching yet? Tell me what you’ve accomplished and what’s left to do and you could win our newest Stipple! Collection – Jingle Bells!

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

The winner of last week’s assignment answered the following question

Those license plates sure are creative and fun!  What message would you put on your own custom plate?  Post your comment for a chance to win a $25 shopping spree to the Designs in Machine Embroidery website.

The winner is: Nancy

“I would have Stitchn for all kinds of sewing, embroidery, teaching, etc.”

Congratulations Nancy!


Ribbed Knits

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Here’s a great tip for embroidering on ribbed knits.

Aren’t ribbed knits so comfy to wear? I love the stretch and texture but I’m not too fond of embroidering on that challenging fabric.  This weekend, I wanted to stitch something special for my daughter, Janelle. She’s in her second month of grad school – in two and half years, she’ll be a physician’s assistant.  So right now, she’s hunkered down in grad school life and just aced her first Anatomy test.  No surprise there, she got a 4.0 in Anatomy in undergrad studies at University of Oklahoma. It’s one of her favorite courses.

To celebrate her grade, I found the most appropriate embroidery designs at Urban Threads.  And yep, the title of the collection is Anatomy! Can you believe it? Aren’t we lucky? You can find ANYTHING in machine embroidery!

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Here’s where the ribbed knit comes in. I had a long-sleeve comfy t-shirt in one of Janelle’s favorite colors but I wasn’t so sure it was the right fabric for this hand design.  With a little ingenuity, I made it work.

First, I put the shirt on, inside out. Janelle and I are not the same size – I’m wider and shorter and she’s taller and leaner. But I needed to stretch the t-shirt to mimic the shape when she wears it. It’s a t-shirt, not a wedding dress, so close enough is good enough in this case.  Then I placed adhesive water soluble stabilizer (Floriani’s Wet N Gone Tacky) to the wrong side of the design area. Then I carefully took off the shirt and hooped it in Snap-Hoop. Love Snap-Hoop for t-shirt embroidery!

Once I nested the shirt around the design area, I used painter’s tape to hold the shirt out of the needle area. Due to the hills and valleys of the ribbed knit, I was worried the fill stitches would cave into the ribs so I placed a piece of crisp (or lightweight) tear-away over the design area.

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After stitching color 1, the fill stitches, I carefully pulled away the excess stabilizer.

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Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

I added a piece of film-type water soluble stabilizer over the design before stitching colors 2, the shading and 3, the outline.

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Here’s the key, use a tear-away that rips clean. It will feel stiff in your hand, unlike a soft tear-away (or medium weight) that tears with a jagged edge and has a softer drape.  The final colors – the shading and outline- will cover any pokies remaining in the crisp tear-away.  The fabric won’t bleed through and the embroidery won’t sink into the garment even after laundering.

This technique works wonders with faux fur (like Christmas stockings) or other highly napped fabrics.

This week’s assignment:

Fun stuff, wouldn’t you agree? Aren’t you amazed at the sheer number of embroidery designs available to us? Is there a design you’ve been looking for and have never been able to find? Tell us what you’re searching for and you could win a $25 shopping spree to the Designs in Machine Embroidery website!

The winner of last week’s assignment answered the following question

Let me know what you do when you want to try a new technique. Post your comment for a chance to win a $25.00 shopping spree to the Designs in Machine Embroidery website.

The winner is: Brenda Howard
“I am new to machine embroidery so all techniques are new to me, with that being said I decide what I want to do and try to make sure that I choose fabric that is a good match to what I want in the final project so that if it turns out good I can use it too in some way. Next I take a deep breath and go for it!”



How to stitch on baby soft knit fabric

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Those stretchy, skinny t-shirts are so popular. Here are some tips on how to stitch them successfully. First, the right embroidery design for the right fabric is crucial. Don’t try to force a design on any fabric. Look at the limitations of this baby soft knit fabric (sheer, 4-way stretch and nubby). That’s an embroidery suicide if approached wrong! So let’s control what we can.


The stabilizer has to disappear after the embroidery process. Our choices pare down to water soluble or heat away stabilizer. The stabilizer also has to hold the fabric stretched beyond its relaxed position during the stitching process so an adhesive is best. Use a water soluble adhesive stabilizer.


It’s a knit fabric so a ball point needle (70/10) will do the job.


I’m going to use-Snap Hoop because it’s flat and lets me stretch the fabric without distorting the fibers.


A low stitch count design will allow the fabric to relax and stretch between the stitches – keeping the garment comfortable and wearable.

I love this design featured in the Crosses collection from Anita Goodesign but I know this dense fill will destroy the delicate fabric.

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Fortunately, the collection was designed with fashion in mind so the same design comes in a raw edge appliqué version. Perfect for this trendy fabric.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

What if you don’t have the luxury of different versions of a design? Dissect the design in question and scale it down to an outline or sketched embroidery design in machine embroidery editing software. Remove whole color segments and see what’s left. Often, you’ll find a sketched outline and details that will work. Take a few moments to play with the design in your software.

Now that the variables are under control, it’s time to focus on the planning and hooping.

Print a template of the design. Place the t-shirt on a dress form and audition the template(s).

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Verify placement and slide a target sticker under the template to mark the center of the design. Remove the template.

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Carefully turn the shirt INSIDE OUT and place it back on the dress form. Your design area will now be in mirror image on the form.

It might help you see the entire embroidery design again at this point so just tape the template back on the shirt. Flip the template over to view in mirror image and tape it to the shirt. Mark the outer edges of the design with removable chalk.

Select your hoop and place it over the design area to verify you have the right hoop. You might want to chalk the outer edges of the hoop. But this is just for reference, it’s not a crucial alignment mark.

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Remove the hoop and the template.

Cut a piece of water soluble adhesive stabilizer larger than the selected hoop. Remove the protective paper from the stabilizer. Adhere the sticky stabilizer to the design area using the chalked marks as a guide. Smooth the stabilizer to the fabric over the form. This can be a bit awkward but you’ll get another chance to smooth the layers after the garment is removed.

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Remove the shirt from the dress form (don’t dislodge the target sticker). Smooth the stabilizer.

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Place the shirt over the hoop’s outer ring or over the flat metal frame of Snap-Hoop or Quick-Snap.

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Place the inner ring inside of the hoop and capture the design area in the hoop.

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In Snap-Hoop or Quick-Snap, pull the fabric taut in the frame. Nest the rest of the shirt around the hoop.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Attach the hoop to the machine, center the needle over the target sticker. Remove the target sticker and stitch the design. I often use painter’s tape to hold the fabric away from the design area.

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Remove the hoop from the machine. Gently peel the adhesive away from the shirt and trim all excess stabilizer. Rinse the stabilizer under running water to activate the dissolving process. Fill a container with this solution: ¾ water; ¼ fabric softener. Soak the t-shirt in the solution for about 30 minutes. Agitate the water occasionally. Rinse thoroughly. Wash right side out in the washing machine with like-colored garments. Air dry.

Once dry, you’ll notice a bit of puckering around the stitches.

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No worry – once the garment is on, the fabric and stitches will be stretched – and flat! Works every time (well, for me, hope it does for you too!)

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Here’s your assignment this week:

Tell me about your embroidery habits.  Are you stitching Valentine and Spring themed projects now?  Or maybe you are the type to get ahead of schedule and you’re stitching for the summer or fall?  Post your comment for a chance to win 30 Favorite Embroidery Tips & Techniques.

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There were TWO opportunities to win in last week’s assignment.

The winner of the Little Black Tee answered the following question:

Tell me what fabric you find to be the most challenging to embroider on? Post your comment on this blog and you’ll be entered for a chance to win The Little Black Tee!

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

The lucky winner is: Judith Torphy!
“I find knits with lycra the most difficult.  I will truly put your great tips to work.” – Judith

The winner of the $100 Visa Gift Card will be randomly selected later this week.  Stay tuned!



A Favorite Fabric – Knit

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A Favorite Fabric – Knit!

Take a moment to think about what types of fabric you’ve worn over the last 7 days. I’ll wager a bet you said you wore knits on more than four of the seven days. And we all know why – comfort! Comfort is a characteristic we must keep in mind when adding machine embroidery to those delightful fabrics. Here are my top tips for stitching on knits.

Design Selection

Avoid machine embroidery designs with large solid areas of fill stitches. Open airy designs work best on knits because the open areas of the design allow the fabric to drape and relax. Heavy, patch-like embroidery designs definitely change the hand of the fabric resulting in an unprofessional finish. The comfort of a knit comes from its stretch and open airy designs still allow the fabric to stretch between the embroidered areas and helps maintain its comfortable wear ability.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog


Select a ball point needle when stitching on knits. The slightly rounded tip will slip between the fibers instead of piercing the fibers. You’ll get good results with an 80/12 ball point needle for embroidering on sweatshirts while a smaller ball point needle, 70/10 is appropriate for finer knits.


Your goal when embroidering on knits is to completely eliminate the stretch in the knit so that the fabric can accept the stitches. If the stretch still exists during the embroidery process, puckers and wrinkling will occur. Use a fusible cut-away stabilizer such as fusible polymesh, a strong but comfortable permanent stabilizer. A layer of film-type water soluble stabilizer on top produces a crisp, clean embroidery design. Just remember, once the fabric is laundered, the water soluble stabilizer completely vanishes so don’t depend on it for permanent stabilization.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Hooping Knits

Many knits suffer from hoop burn when secured in a standard embroidery hoop. So I use Snap-Hoop when I stitch on knits. Snap-Hoops are flat, magnetic hoops that grip the fabric between the two FLAT frames – the bottom metal frame and the magnetic top frame. Once the knit is sandwiched between the frames, just tug on the fabric to remove any excess fabric. Because the knit is stabilized and the frames are flat, no distortion occurs. I love these frames!

If you have to rely on a standard hoop to embroider your knit fabric then make sure you have a can of spray sizing (such as Magic Sizing) on hand. After you remove the knit from the standard hoop, spray the hoop burn area with the sizing and press away the marks. I strongly suggest testing this first on a similar fabric.


Tear away any excess water soluble stabilizer. Use a wet cotton swab to remove tiny bits of the film from small areas. Cut all thread tails from the right and wrong side of the embroidery.

Press the embroidered area from the wrong side. While the stabilizer is still warm, gently lift it away from the fabric. Trim the stabilizer to within ½” of the design. Pinking shears are great for this task as they leaved a pinked, jagged edge instead of a hard straight line. Once trimmed, press the wrong side of the embroidered area again, resetting the adhesive on the stabilizer.

Next week, I’ll address sheer, stretch knits such as burn-out cotton and stretch mesh.

Here’s your assignment this week:

You have two options to win this week!  First, click here to take a short 5-question survey and you’ll be entered to win a $100 Visa gift card– good anywhere Visa is accepted!

Second, tell me what fabric you find to be the most challenging to embroider on? Post your comment on this blog and you’ll be entered for a chance to win The Little Black Tee!

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The TWO winners of last week’s assignment answered the following question:

If you could have a one-hour private machine embroidery lesson with me, what would you want to learn?  Tell me and you could win one of two $100 gift certificates from Bunnycup Embroidery.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Our first winner is…Judith Carlon!

“I would like to learn how to use simple embroidery designs made for quilting quilts using my Babylock Ellegante2 machine. I am working on a quilt now and just about ready to put it together for quilting. I don’t want to send it out(too expensive) so would like to know how I can do it at home.”  – Judith

Our second winner is… Doree Shandera

“I would like to go over all the hoops again. I have them all, but am still not very confident choosing which one to use, and why I would make that choice. Have a wonderful wedding and honeymoon!!!” – Doree

Congrats to both you and a special thank you to Bunnycup Embroidery for their generous donation!


Stitching on Knits

A few weeks ago, we received many comments requesting information on stitching on knits. Well, knits is a pretty large category! So I’ll give you some general guidelines on stabilizing t-shirt knits.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery BlogEliminate the Stretch

The number one goal of hooping and stabilizing knits is to eliminate the stretch during the embroidery process. My favorite stabilizer for knits is a permanent cut-away, polymesh stabilizer. Polymesh is strong, translucent and comfortable next to the skin. Since it’s a cut-away, its permanent properties will provide stability to the embroidery throughout the life of the knit fabric. This is an important feature since knit fabrics are not as durable as wovens.

I prefer to adhere the polymesh to the knit by using a temporary spray adhesive or selecting a fusible polymesh. Cut the stabilizer large enough to extend beyond the hoop’s dimensions. Hoop the knit with the stabilizer firmly fused or adhered to the design area. When you run your finger along the knit fabric, it should not separate from the polymesh. If it does, take the time to fuse it properly.

Toppers help keep the edges of an embroidery design crisp. Use a lightweight water soluble stabilizer that will be easy to remove.

Design Selection

Eileen's Machine Embroidery BlogHeavy, dense embroidery designs will appear to be ‘bullet proof’ on most knit fabrics. Test your embroidery design on a similar knit fabric and give it this test. Roll the embroidered knit fabric onto itself, jellyroll style. If the embroidery appears stiff and boxy, the design is too dense. Reduce the density in embroidery software.

Proper underlay is key to beautiful embroidery on knit fabrics. Inadequate underlay will not provide the foundation required for the stretchy knit fibers. Don’t skimp on underlay to reduce the stitch count. Instead, adjust the density of the fill stitches to space the stitches further apart resulting in less stitches.

Delicate running stitch outlines can sink into knits so avoid these fragile stitches if possible.


When stitching on knits, I like to use caution and set up as many safety nets as possible. Hoop the entire knit fabric in a standard hoop, Magna-Hoop or Snap-Hoop. Use the machine’s basting feature and add a topper. Stitch the design in polyester thread (as most knits launder easily, polyester thread is colorfast and very durable).

After the embroidery is complete, remove the basting stitches from the back. The stabilizer will protect the knit from the seam ripper. If you used a fusible polymesh, press the fabric from the wrong side to reactive the adhesive. Gently release and trim the excess polymesh from the fabric. Leave at least ½” stabilizer around the embroidery. Press the stabilizer from the back to adhere it again to the fabric. Let cool.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Eileen's Machine Embroidery BlogWe love embroidering on blanks! There’s always the last minute gifts needed for baby showers, house warming gifts, hostess gifts or birthdays. Nothing is easier or more heartfelt than stitching a blank for someone special. Let’s be honest– no one needs to know it didn’t take you hours to stitch! We want to know what your favorite embroidery blanks are. How do you jazz them up and make them extra special?

Leave a comment on the above topic and you’ll be entered into our drawing to win Contemporary Machine-Embroidered Fashions!

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Last week we asked…Who do you know in your life that would do cartwheels to have a machine? What would they make? The winner of the $25.00 coupon on is…Danyl!

“My daughters would love to have a machine so that they could make anything they wanted. Right now they have to share mine and are only allowed to use it with my supervision.”

Congratulations, Danyl!

Teaming with an Icon!

Nancy Zieman and I had so much fun working on our latest endeavor – Designer Necklines, T-shirt Makeovers. It absolutely amazes me how progress is made when two very busy people commit to a deadline. And basically, that’s the key to success – setting a deadline and working backwards. Nancy and I had a phone conversation months ago, agreed on a taping date (late June), divided the responsibilities and started working. Remember, we are separated by huge business commitments, family schedules and 1000 miles! But through the wonders of the internet and the telephone, we made it happen. And wow- seems like we were on the right track. It’s a huge hit – right out of the gate. We’ve just about sold out of the first run but no worries, we’re printing more!

It addresses the struggles that all embroiderers face – placement – and does it in a simple way. Of course, Designer Necklines doesn’t leave you hanging at placement because it also includes delicate floral embroidery created specifically for knits and neckline embellishment. But we figured you were probably expecting more. So Nancy came up with some very cool neckline transformations – performed right in the hoop with a flawless finish.

This project was a unique experience for me. In the past, whenever I’ve had the pleasure of working with Nancy it was usually on her turf – Sewing with Nancy, Nancy’s Notions or the Create with Nancy series from FW Publications. Let me tell you something, when Nancy’s in charge, I sit back and follow her lead. She is so capable and thinks through every step of every project, that I feel like a guest, not a co-worker. I do what a guest does, get dressed, put on make-up and smile! So imagine my discomfort when I have to lead Nancy. Really, it was like bossing an icon around. Who can do it? But you know, she’s a natural born leader and even in this circumstance she encouraged me to tell her what to do!

Click here to watch the intro video!

And through dedicated team work – and not just Nancy and me – there’s a wonderful team here at Designs that brought it to life – we produced a product that makes all us very proud. My hat is off to the Designs production team: Denise Holguin, Sam Solomon, Amanda Griffin and Roy Garland. On the back end, Stephanie Stubbs, Lorraine Allen and Bryant Royal get the product out the door and to your house!

Want a chance to win one? Just tell me about your greatest fashion embroidery disaster. Come on, be honest – we’ve all made mistakes! Here’s a confession – when the hot fix crystals first came on the scene, I was adorning a sheer blouse with dozens of crystals. Little did I know I was actually fusing the blouse front to the blouse back with each touch of the hot wand! Quickly, (well, not quick enough!) I learned to slide a sheet of Teflon between the two layers! So tell me, does your embroidery disaster top that?

This is a big week here on the blog – we’re planning two postings, two give-aways and a link with Nancy! We’re pulling the name of the fashion disaster winner Tuesday (10/5) morning, posting a new blog and linking with Nancy’s blog to see what she has to say (and maybe give a prize!) on her blog.

In last week’s blog the discussion topic was…”So what’s your favorite tip for fashion embroidery?”

The winner of Contemporary Machine Embroidered Fashions is….Susan Burns!

“My tip for using blanks is to ALWAYS stitch out the design you want first on practice material before using your precious blank and finding things are not as you planned….ask me how I know this! Thanks, Sue”

Congratulations, Sue!