Look out everyone, the woman has an embroidery machine!

It’s a beautiful day here on the Central Coast of California. Bright sun, not much wind and relatively mild temps. I do not take our move here for granted, not for a second.

Although I try to live with a sense of balance from week to week throughout each year, the month of January always seems to inspire an added feeling of renewal, hope and resolve to improve all areas of my life.

Now on to the subject of today’s blog entry.

Among certain sewing circles it has been said in jest that one of the dangers of acquiring an embroidery machine is that using it becomes so addictive that the owner will want to embroider everything in their house. I will go one step further to say that one might feel compelled to embroider a gift for every member of their family.

I indeed have my fair share of embroidered, seasonal tea and bath hand towels in my home linen storage at the moment. (Oh yes, and a couple of pair of embroidered jeans in my closet as well) But the extent of my enthusiasm for all things machine embroidery really came to the fore when, with some amusement on my part, I looked around the room during our family’s recent gift exchange gathering and realized that I had embroidered gifts (tee-shirts, tea towels, pillow cases, shirts) for everyone in attendance!

Here are both a video and photo from a design I embroidered onto a shirt pocket of a brand of sport shirt our “passionate for all things fishing”, brother-in-law really likes.

This second image is the back of the shirt pocket before I tore away the stabilizer from the design and top-stitched the pocket back in place.

He was thrilled. Hooray!

Which brings me to my last topic, sourcing “canvases” for machine embroidery.

Since I’m still learning about best practice, methods and the variety of stabilization needed for embroidering various fabrics, I have no guilt in sourcing used clothing, blank canvas tote bags, aprons, shirts, old jeans, etc. to experiment with. My general rule is that the items I use must be clean and gently worn to fit the bill. It also feels great to give a piece a second life and often the price for such an item is more than reasonable.

All the above said, the purist in me still enjoys the challenge of making something completely from scratch. In addition to my new-found love of up-cycling, I intend to continue creating pieces anew, well into the foreseeable future.

And look out, the woman has an embroidery machine!

One Reply to “Look out everyone, the woman has an embroidery machine!”

  1. Love the upcycling, Cathy. Lately I’ve been seeing more news about “creative repairing” on clothing too. Last time I saw you we were talking about “darning eggs” at The Sewing and Craft Museum.


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