Mention the word embroidery, and you think about those elaborate pictures and designs that are on quilts, curtains, decorative pillows and rugs. Beginner seamstress also may believe that it is only something that quilters do by hand as they place their sewing machine into its case. Yet this is not so!
You can use your sewing machine to do different embroidery techniques — from fancy designs to monogram letters and numbers. All you need are the right set of tools based on the type of sewing machine that you have.
Here are some of the embroidery tools of the trade that are suited for sewing machines so you can begin using your imagination to create designs that will fit into your personal design tastes.
Embroidery Tools for Sewing Machines
Yes, you can use embroidery hoops with your sewing machine. An embroidery hoop are two circular pieces of wood that latch together. One wood hoop will be smaller than the other so it can fit inside the circle opening. The fabric is drawn between the pieces of wood until it is taut, then the hoops are latched closed so the tension is not lost.
Embroidery hoops come in a wide range of sizes from as small as 4 inches to as large as 14 inches. You can work with any size on your sewing machine. Just keep in mind that the smaller the hoop, the more control you will have when holding it and moving the fabric around under the sewing machine needle.
Darning foots are designed to keep the fabric in the taut position in the embroidery hoop without pulling it up with the needle when the thread goes through. If you sew too fast or use the wrong foot, the fabric will bounce up and down almost like a trampoline in a motion called fabric flagging.
The darning foot may be included in your accessories when you purchased your sewing machine. If you have to buy it separately, you can find the right one by looking at the sewing machine manual that came with the machine so you get the one recommended by the manufacturer.
Vanishing pencil or marker
At this point in your sewing hobby or profession, you should have a stockpile of sewing pencils and markers designed for fabric that allows the ink or pencil line to fade away or become washed out when laundering your sewing projects. If not, then now is the perfect time to invest in a few.
For embroidery, you will be doing a lot of drawing before you even use the sewing machine. You want the right type of sewing marker or pencil so your ink doesn’t permanently stain the fabric.
Embroidery scissors and seam ripper
Never expect to get the embroidery right the first or even the second time when trying out this sewing method for the first time. While you will probably already have a seam ripper handy, there are special embroidery scissors you can purchase if you plan to decorate your fabric frequently. Embroidery scissors have a fine, needle-point tip designed to quickly and accurate cut those loose threads.
Embroidering can look complicated when you see elaborate designs on quilts, shirts and large pieces of fabric. Yet it is a skill that just about anybody can do on their sewing machine or free hand. This sewing technique requires patience at first, a steady hand and a slow speed until you build up your confidence and skills.
If you want to know more, you can watch this video that is geared towards beginners.
Then you will be able to do more elaborate designs once you perfect your technique. Begin embroidering on test scraps of fabric until you get the design looking like the way you want it. Then switch over to your desired fabric and create the embroidery designs that will look beautiful in your home.