How to Embroider Your Own Handwriting
My search for a relaxing and satisfying hobby.
Years of loving arts and crafts and anything do-it-yourself has resulted in my current hobby and business, embroidery. I've enjoyed scrapbooking, stamping, photography, cross-stitch and even refinishing furniture. But embroidery has become my favorite for relaxing and creating my own original works of art.
If you can write and if you can thread a needle, you can do it too.
Here's how to create your own handwritten embroidered designs.
Embroidery hoops as home decor
Why this hobby will beautify your home!
Embroidery hoops are really fun to collect and display all together- I love to arrange them in groups with vintage fabrics and sweet sayings framed within.
They lend a retro flair to any room and can become a great conversation piece. They are inexpensive as well, making it easy to collect a bunch. If you create your own special pieces, you'll have treasures to pass down for generations.
Only a few items you'll need:
Embroidery is a relatively inexpensive hobby, since all you really need is fabric, an embroidery hoop, and a needle and thread. But it is time consuming!
For my handwritten designs, I like to use white cotton fabric, a wooden hoop and DMC embroidery floss. I prefer a small needle, and use a needle threader to make it easy to get that thread through the eye.
As with everything, you can get really involved with supplies. You can find an abundance of patterns that call for specific colors and weights of fabric with certain thread counts. For our purpose here though, I'm using a good quality, plain white cotton fabric. And you can pick whatever color you want for stitching your design because it is totally your design.
Wooden embroidery hoops in all different shapes: - Stock up because once you make the first one, you'll want to make more!
Plastic embroidery hoops - For a colorful, kitschy look
How to embroider your own handwriting
Here's the fun part
So the first thing to do is frame the fabric within the wooden hoop. Simply lay the fabric on top of the inner hoop and layer the outer hoop on top. Pull the fabric nice and taught so it doesn't buckle or move around and tighten the screw on the hoop to secure it.
Now for your design.
Let's use the quote, "You make me happy when skies are gray."
Practice writing out your words and play around with word placement. Don't worry about perfection, your handwriting has a lot of character and should be embraced.
Yes, it should.
There are a lot of ways to get your design onto the fabric so you can stitch it, but my favorite way is simply to leap in and use a pen and write directly on the fabric. Once I've practiced how I want it to look, I can write with a ball point pen quite smoothly on cotton and it makes for a unique, one of a kind work of art. If that is too frightening, you can also purchase transfer paper, so you can trace your design onto the fabric, or you can even use your computer printer to print on fabric. But I highly recommend the more daring approach. You'll need to practice with a few pens to find one that works well, but any high quality ball point pen will work perfectly.
The following video is quite helpful if you go the transfer paper route.
Three ways to transfer embroidery patterns - This is a very helpful video with an adorable soundtrack.
Transfer paper - So you can trace your design onto fabric
Keep it simple.
Detailed embroidery is very beautiful, but don't discount basic stitches.
A simple design with a straight stitch can be wonderful!
Common embroidery stitches
Achieve beautiful results with the basics.
I mostly use the stem stitch to embroider my handwriting.
(Check out the video below to see how its done.)
But there are moments when I sort of improvise, sewing with a straight stitch or a combination of stitches, to get the look I want.
As long as you follow your writing, you'll be delighted with the look of sewing over your handwriting.
How to sew a stem stitch - Perfect for outlining:
Completed "You make me happy when skies are gray" embroidery hoop
How to finish the hoop
To frame, or not to frame?
If you prefer, you can remove your work from the embroidery hoop and mount the fabric in a frame. I love how this looks! It is great for a more formal room, set among family photos or other collectibles. Its also a great gift.
Leaving your work in the hoop is very charming and goes very well in a casual, retro setting. A collection of embroidery hoops all grouped together looks sweet!
All you have to do in order to finish the hoop is trim the excess fabric and tack it down to the underside of the inner hoop with an archival quality fabric glue.
After all the time you take to embroider a design like this, you definitely want to enjoy seeing it displayed. That is the last step for this hobby- enjoy your creation!
How the back of your finished hoop will look:
My favorite DMC thread colors: - Keep in mind there are 6 strands here-
Be sure to separate out the strands, two strands is perfect for embroidering handwriting. All 6 strands can look bunchy.
Organizing embroidery floss - DMC thread holders
More ideas:Click thumbnail to view full-size
Come see what is currently in my Etsy store here:
- Makenzi and Madilyn Sew
My shop where I list current items for sale, and accept custom order requests.
Find a quote that suits you
"I have decided to be happy because it is good for my health." Whatever speaks to you will be perfect for your hand embroidered work of art!
Get inspired and find new quotes to sew
- Quote Garden
A directory of quotes by subject. You will most certainly find the quote you are looking for!
Last updated on April 8, 2014
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