Nice hat Angelina! (drawing with thread)

Today I went to a freestyle machine embroidery workshop in Oxford, where we learnt to draw with thread and a sewing machine.

The first challenge was attaching the right foot to the machine! A cool little springy thing. and remember to put the feed dogs down. Then put the material in a hoop and we were away – some wiggly practice:




Then I got a bit carried away and ended up accidentally folding the corner of the material under, tangling all the threads and somehow sewing the hoop inside so I had to cut it out…


For my final practice I drew a little bird. Here we were trying out the technique we’d use to copy a photo – drawing a simplified version of the image onto pattern paper and then sewing straight through it:


on to the main event! choose a photo, draw a simplified version onto the pattern paper, tape to the material in the hoop and sew sew sew! Hi Angelina, nice hat :)


rip out some bits of the paper, leave others. Decide which loops and loose threads to trim or leave long


Then finishing off the eye and eyebrow details


There was a bit of time left at the end so most of us decided to have a go at some simple applique

Here’s me proudly holding my applique hot air balloon

When I got home later I added some hand stitched birds to finish the scene:



And finally here is a collection of all the creations from the day compiled by freestyletextiles (check out their Instagram through the link below for more photos)

My machine jammed and tangled a lot (I’ve had it about 15 years and I don’t think I really take care of it properly…) but to be honest all the wiggles and jumps and clumps just added to the effect. It was a really cool morning and I now feel confident enough to give it another try at home. Eleanor was a great teacher and let us take home a hoop and some other materials so we could have another try straight away.



3 thoughts on “Nice hat Angelina! (drawing with thread)

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