Thursday, August 19, 2010

Using Embroidery in your Quilts

Isn't this the cutest cat ever?  I found him at french-knots.com, a great embroidery website. (http://www.french-knots.com/).

As you've probably noticed my quilts feature a lot of embroidery.  It's one of those skills that I believe are necessary if you want to move forward and expand your quilting repertoire. 

Many of us remember learning embroidery when we were children.  I started off with punched cards and yarn and moved on to dishtowels where I practiced my backstitch and outline stitch.  I was fortunate to come of age during the 70s when embroidery and ethnic needlework was all the rage.  So, I learned how to do just about everything from molas to openwork embroidery.  I have to say that my cut off shorts were the coolest ever, (I wish I knew what happened to them!).

Anyway, if you never learned how to embroider you can check out http://www.french-knots.com/ for more info and a stitch library.  I suggest getting a hoop and practicing your stitches until you feel comfortable.  One of the things that learning embroidery does is help you learn how to keep your stitches even and how to place them properly.  You also learn how to use a needle and thread in ways that quilting stitches can only dream of.  It's a great training for good quilt stitching and opens up a lot of opportunities for embellishment.

I love to use embroidery to accent fabrics, it adds texture, integrates colors, and allows you to disguise boo-boos.  I love it as a way to cover up applique mistakes, it can help smooth corners and correct straight edges.  It's an amazing skill and one you should take the time to master.

Besides, just think of all of those beautiful floss colors you can buy, and at about .35 a skein it's a lot less expensive to acquire a great thread library!

Happy Stitching!

Susan

1 comment:

Linda said...

I realize that I am reading a post that is almost a month old, but it really strikes a chord with me. I also love using embroidery in my quilts. I love adding words and "telling a story". I treat quilts as illustrated pages with fabric as my medium. At least, that is what's in my mind while I'm designing them.
You have a great way with words! I'm enjoying your blog!