Posts Tagged ‘inspiration’

Lookbook Refresh

Our lookbook has recently been updated! We’ve added lots of new pages of designs and ideas to let you explore all the awesomeness that is embroidery.

If you’ve never looked through our lookbook before, now is a great time to flip through nearly 60 pages of glossy photos and project ideas to get your gears turning for the holiday season.

Check it out here, or visit it anytime by using the link on our sidebar.

Digitized Art by Jess Larson

I love finding new an unexpected machine embroidery artists. I especially love finding out that they’re local! The fab Mr X Stitch featured embroidery artist Jessica Larson today, who happens to be a Professor of Studio Art and artist from Morris, Minnesota.

Her work is a sublime mix of machine and hand embroidery, digitized with some stunning detail. I just love seeing what creative folks get up to when they get their hands on digitizing software. See more on the X Stitch post, or check out her website!

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome

Often when we grab a new embroidery design, the first thing that comes to mind is where we’re going to stitch it. Will it be on a pillow? A tee? Maybe it will make an awesome wall hanging. The world has a serious shortage of awesome wall hangings. What we think about a little less is how the designs themselves can be used in all kinds of new ways, whatever you decide to stitch them on. To pull these off, you don’t need any extra equipment, or even any real sewing skills, and they can be used for hand and machine embroidery alike. All these trends just use the awesome potential of embroidery you might not have thought of until now. We’re sure this is what MacGyver would do when confronted with an embroidery design challenge equipped with just the design itself. We’re pretty sure MacGyver does embroidery.

Today these new design trends are modeled by our lovely digitizing diva Danielle. Danielle is the head of our digitizing department, makes a fantastic model, and is likely totally bonkers (Exhibit A). Luckily, we’re all crazy around here. She’s going to showcase 13 of our favorite ways of making your embroidery more awesome, just by using the design itself.

So, next time you grab a new design for stitching, why not try…


The Warhol

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Warhol

Duplicate a single design in a four square pattern, all in different colors. Crazy sixties glasses, career in art and white hair optional.

Design: Astroman


The 3D Glasses

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The 3D Glasses

Give your design an update and your friends a headache by offset-stitching a design in red and blue. Find your favorite pair of retro 3D glasses and and rock your look in all dimensions.

Design: Lonely Robot


The New Black

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The New Black

Tone on tone is always king, and black is the new, well black. And the old black. Black is awesome all around. You can never go wrong by combining these two, with a solid stitched black design on a black tee. Of course, there’s nothing stopping you stitching pink on pink, or white on white (we call that one The Ghost). We just love black.

Design: Baroque Punk Skull


The Layer Cake

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Layer Cake

Take your embroidery designs to the next level by layering. Light stitching designs can be embroidered right on top of each other for a totally psychedelic effect that takes two designs and merges them into one brand new amazing composition.

Designs: Tribal Deer Skull, Nautical Rose


The Mirror

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Mirror

Designs repeated are twice as nice! Get a cool symmetrical effect by taking a design and flipping it on it’s axis for a great look on the back of shirts and jackets.

Design: Baroque Punk Swallow


The Painter

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Painter

Dig up that old tie dye kit, or just grab some regular fabric paint, and splash it on a light tee. Then pick your favorite scribbly or light stitching design and stitch it on top for a painterly effect perfect for artists and retro fashionistas alike. It’s the perfect way to add a pop of color to your favorite one color running stitch designs.

Design: New Heights


The Dubstep

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Dub Step

Grab a black tee and some glow-in-the-dark thread and you’re ready to rock the club all night long, whether it’s to dubstep, or old school techno. Heck, you could rock this while doing the polka. In fact, that might just be the coolest way to wear this one. Just tell them to turn off the lights have have plenty of glow sticks about. Want to see glow-in-the-dark thread in action? Check out this tutorial.

Design: Womp Womp


The Jewelry Box

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Jewelry Box

You can turn any dangling design into a “charm” just by freestyle stitching a necklace with the design! You can see an example of how we did it with our Charmed Tee tutorial. Once you know how to freestyle stitch the chain, any design fit for it can become a stunning accessory just by adding a draping line in stitches.

Designs: Flock Together Feathers  23 & 4


The Not-So-Freestanding Lace

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Not-So-Freestanding Lace

Just because it’s freestanding lace doesn’t mean you have to stitch it all by its lonesome. You can hoop a piece of fabric and stabilizer, and stitch it just like regular embroidery! It will be a little thicker than a regular design, but will give your shirt some awesome dimension. You can also stitch it on sheer fabrics like organza to “float” the effect, like we did with regular designs on this dress.

Designs: Antique Lock, Antique Key


The Runaway

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Runaway

Did you know you can stitch some designs right off the edge? It’s mostly recommended for very light designs with mostly running stitch. If it’s super light, you can just let the design stitch right off the edge, onto the excess stabilizer. We did it on a men’s front shirt pocket in this tutorial. Once it’s stitched you trim off the excess, and you can add some patch glue to keep the thread from fraying. Design too heavy? Embroider it near an edge, then just fold the bottom under and stitch a new seam.

Design: Painted Roses


The Mini-Me

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Mini-Me

Do you have a hoop that can stitch bigger than a 4″x4″ design? Well, why not grab two sizes of a design, a big and a small, and use a mirrored version of the other size to create a cute pairing! After all, you can never have too many flying monkeys, no matter what size they are.

Design: Flying Monkey


The Ransom Note

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Ransom Note

Who says you always have to use the same alphabet series when making a design? Throw caution (and perfect alignment) to the wind and mix and match two alphabet series to make a punk rock text-only design. Best yet, you can make it say whatever you want.

Designs: Cirque Alphabet Pack, Handwriting Alphabet Pack


The Evil Twin

13 Design Trends To Make Your Embroidery More Awesome - The Evil Twin

Embroidery has a dark side… or at least it does when you can pick the colors. Found a design that’s just a little too cheerful to stand in its current form? Switch the colors around for a laugh. It works both ways; gothic stuff stitched in rainbows is pretty hilarious too. Every design has an evil twin just waiting to come out.

Design: You Are My Sunshine


So, there you have it … no fancy hoop tricks, no magic sewing skills required. All you need to rock that embroidery design is the design itself, and a little imagination. Got a design trend idea for us we didn’t cover? Share it in the comments!

The Optical Embroidery Of Evelin Kasikov


Embroidery artist Evelin Kasikov’s work  has to be seen to be believed. She creates amazing stitched work focusing on the optical use of CMYK colors in order to create form. Instead of the usual printed dots, Kasikov creates her designs will precisely placed stitches of color. Her amazing portrait series (last above) has been making the rounds of late, but I really think her whole embroidery portfolio is worth a look.

Check it all out on her website.

via Colossal

Crafting In White

I’m not sure if it’s because we just got a whole white wash of snow here in Minnesota, or because bright whites make me long for spring, but I am totally smitten with pale threads in crafting of late. Have a peek, won’t you?

                                                                                                                Waltraud Janzen

                                                                                                                       Karine Jollet

                                                                                                                         Sweet Paul


                                                                                                                Cake Eaters Etsy

                                                                                                            Christina Chalmers

                                                                                                                             Karine Jollet

I think the thing I love about crafting in white the most is that it makes everything about the texture, the shadow. You can see each thread, each stitch. It makes it somehow beautifully simple and pure, no matter what the medium or subject.

Looking to refresh your crafting? Try it all in white. Winter, spring, or in between, it will work for any season.

Vintage Inspiration

Embroidered silk dress from 1904, part of the collection from the Met Museum. Sometimes, it really pays to look at the history of your art to really see what it can all be about. It’s a pale comparison, but I’m pretty sure this is what I was trying to get at with the Baroque Punk series. Stitch direction can be so stunning.

via pinterest


Face All Rotted And Shit - FINISHED

Really, I can’t stop staring at this. Gorgeous stitches by ohyeth2008 on flickr.

via pinterest