Additional Craft Information:
Are you new to the world of machine embroidery? Overwhelmed? Confused? Wondering why you thought you could do this? Well, don't despair. Once you get in the swing of things, you will love your new creative outlet. In fact, you'll become addicted!
DIY Craft Essential #1: Washi tape
DIY Craft Essential #2: Needle nose pliers
First, simply go through your machine manual and try out the different embroidery techniques described with the designs that came with your machine. Yes, you'll get bored if your machine only came with a few, but it's a good way to learn.
Next, find a good embroidery design gallery to start looking for new designs. These larger “malls” offer designs, tutorials and many, many ideas. You can learn about techniques and embroidery designs for things like cutwork applique, free-standing lace, and 3D embroidery patterns. There's a lot to see, so sit down with your favorite relaxing beverage and prepare to be thrilled. While you may get confused with the terminology and variety of embroidery related items and ideas, hang in. Your building enthusiasm will get you through! While you're there, be sure to download the free embroidery designs that you discover. They are a great way to build your design library. They also help you to try out different designer's designs to see if you like them and their style of digitizing.
DIY Craft Essential #3: X-acto knife
DIY Craft Essential #4: Spray paint
Remember, it is never okay to share these free designs with your friends! Now that you've built a bit of a design library, you need a way to get them from computer to your embroidery machine. Your machine may have come with software to facilitate this, or you may be able to link your machine directly to the computer. If your purchase didn't include these, you'll need to get either a software program or a box to help you. The box, as I call it, is a card reader/writer much like some of us use to upload pictures from our cameras. The card should be compatible with your machine's format!
That is very important. There are several brands of box, and they will come with basic software to help you. Be patient in learning how these work. Once you've got that down, you're going to need to add to your stash of embroidery supplies. Your machine probably came with some stabilizer and a pair of small scissors. That's fine for beginning, but you'll need more. Machine embroidery designs has evolved so much in the last decade; luckily for us, the supplies and tools have, too! The stabilizers you buy will depend on the types of designs and projects you want to make. For free-standing lace (FSL), you'll need some sort of water-soluble stabilizer (WSS). This type of stabilizer is also handy when both sides of your embroidery will show, like tablecloths or napkins.
Other than that, you'll want an assortment of both tear-away and cut-away stabilizers. These come in different weights, so there are many options to decide on. Have you picked up any thread for machine embroidery yet? You have a choice of rayon or polyester fibers. Rayon is super shiny and preferred for many projects. Rayon is becoming just as shiny and has the added benefit that it can be bleached without loss of color. I prefer polyester, but use both.
The choice is yours! Get some basic colors to start and add more as you need or want. That's it! You're ready to stitch your embroidery masterpieces! Visit the embroidery design gallery from time to time to look for new designs and free tutorials. Enjoy your new hobby!