Hobby Lobby is a great place to discover a new craft. I have always wanted to learn needlework and sewing and back in my younger years, my mother had attempted to pass on her love of cross-stitch. I started my first cross stitch project around 2005 and finished it sometime in 2014? Yeah, cross-stitch was not going to be my jam. But enter Hobby Lobby and Embroidery. Embroidery feels a lot more like coloring. Unlike cross-stitch, there’s very little counting involved and very simple schematics. You can even draw directly on the fabric! There are a few different stitches you can learn but overall I find that it allows a lot more freeform. I prefer to fill in my designs with as much color as possible too.
The next best thing to hanging your art on the wall is actually wearing it. I have run out of wall in my home so for my first non-kit embroidery project, I picked a plain black dress to embellish. Of course, the dress was from a thrift store. The Hummingbird design is from Hobby Lobby’s Charm of Hummingbirds pattern pack. The final design is 6 inches by 8 inches and used only leftover thread from my first embroidery kit and the forever-ago cross stitch kit. The total process took about 10 hours.
I didn’t really plan the colors and mostly just made decisions as I went along. I experimented threading different colors together in the stems and it was an interesting effect. This was fun but for a more serious project, I would consider more careful planning. Some of my stitches are fairly long and loose. This works out for the feathers as it gives a more “feathery” feel. For the main body this can be a problem. Short aligned stitches can create unintentional lines where there are not supposed to be any (if you look in the bird’s face, there is a line created in the yellow thread). Eventually I figured out a short alternating stitch that created a homogenous shape and tight stitching (see the green thread in the bird’s body). My hoop was also too big. Clothes can have some strange shapes which make it hard to stretch taught. So I have bought a smaller hoop for future uses.
I have not yet decided what my next embroidery project should be, but I am hoping it can be on an original piece. I have recently inherited a sewing machine. Wish me luck!