6 of the Best Embroidery Tools You Probably Aren’t Using

Best embroidery tools

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When you’re first learn­ing to stitch, there are the basic embroi­dery tools that you’ll use: a hoop, nee­dle, and thread. But there are many mate­ri­als that are game-chang­ers for your stitch­ing that fly under the radar. I learned about many of them by chance; for instance, I saw some­one on Insta­gram using stick and stitch sta­bi­liz­er and did some Googling to find out what it was and where to find it.

There are oth­er help­ful tools that go beyond the essen­tial sup­plies to make your embroi­dery eas­i­er and cre­ate the designs you always want­ed. I’ve com­piled your shop­ping list below.

Stick and Stitch Stabilizer for Hand Embroidery

Stick and Stitch Stabilizer

As I began stitch­ing cus­tom pet por­traits on embroi­dered shirts, I knew that I need­ed a bet­ter way to trans­fer the sketch of a kit­ty onto a col­lar. That’s when I dis­cov­ered stick and stitch sta­bi­liz­er. You just put a sheet of this into your print­er and print what­ev­er you want to embroi­der. It prints onto a spe­cial fiber that you then peel and stick onto your fab­ric. Start sewing like nor­mal and when you’re done, wash it away using warm water. Easy!

Try this: Sulky Stick N Stitch Sta­bi­liz­er 

Water Soluble Pen for Hand Embroidery

Water-Soluble Pen

If you like to draw free­hand on your fab­ric but don’t want to use some­thing as per­ma­nent as a pen, try a water-sol­u­ble mark­er made espe­cial­ly for stitch­ing. In my expe­ri­ence, the ink fades over the days after you start using it but will stay for the dura­tion of your stitch­ing. When you’re done, run your embroi­dery under the sink and the ink will dis­ap­pear.

Try this: Dritz 700 Erasable Blue Pen

Thread Gloss for Hand Embroidery

Thread Gloss

I did­n’t know what thread gloss was until my friend Melis­sa let me use some of hers. It is a spe­cial­ly for­mu­lat­ed wax and oil blend that pre­vents your thread from get­ting tan­gles (as well as fray­ing or brit­tle­ness). I like it because when you’re stitch­ing with the stick and stitch sta­bi­liz­er, it can be a lit­tle hard­er to take your nee­dle through the fab­ric and then the sta­bi­liz­er’s bit of stick­i­ness. The thread gloss greas­es the wheels.

Try this: Pon­derosa Thread Gloss (in a vari­ety of scents!)

Needle Minder for Hand Embriodery

Needle Minder

Noth­ing annoys my hus­band more than find­ing an errant nee­dle on the floor or stuck in the couch. (I don’t blame him!) Get­ting a nee­dle min­der—a mag­net­ic pin that you stick on your sewing—keeps my nee­dle in place. When you’re chang­ing thread or fin­ished stitch­ing, just let your nee­dle hang out there.

Try this: Kiri­ki Press Llla­ma Nee­dle Min­der 

Metal Rings for Hand Embroidery

Metal Craft Rings

Your embroi­dery will ben­e­fit from stay­ing orga­nized. So once you’ve select­ed the thread you’ll use in a project, string your bob­bins on a met­al ring—the kind you’d find in a three-ring binder. This will keep them all in place, and it’s great for stor­age. If you’re work­ing on mul­ti­ple projects, I also rec­om­mend label­ing the rings with a slip of paper to keep them all straight.

Try this: 3‑inch Met­al Rings

DMC Thread Card

DMC Thread Card

DMC embroi­dery floss is the indus­try stan­dard when it comes to stitch­ing. It’s easy to see why; they have so many col­ors! If you’ve ever felt total­ly over­whelmed while stand­ing in front of the thread selec­tion of Joan­n’s, you’re not alone. (I’ve been there many times.) This is where the thread card comes in handy. The fold-out dis­play has real thread sam­ples of all of DMC’s embroi­dery floss offer­ings. Look and see what you might need so you can go to the store (or order online) with a plan.

Try this: DMC Thread Card

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