One thing I absolutely love about Instagram is the sheer volume of inspiration that’s present on the platform! Recently, I was inspired by one of the accounts I follow to create my own hand embroidered sweatshirt.
I’ve been embroidering on and off for years and this easy project is perfect for those experienced in the craft and those looking to dip their toes in for the first time.
- A cozy sweatshirt (I’m using the green version in this post but also bought the light pink)
- Embroidery floss (I’m using DMC #158 and #3839)
- Embroidery needle
- Water soluble marking pen
- Embroidery hoop
- Fusible interfacing
- Scissors or thread trimmers
- Iron & cotton cloth (for interfacing application)
- Washi tape (optional)
- Notebook (optional)
Hand Embroidered Sweatshirt
After you’ve gathered your supplies, the next thing you’re going to want to do is decide on your design and then its placement.
Your design can be as complex or as simple as you would like. As you’ll see, I went the extra simple route and couldn’t be happier!
To determine design placement, I put my sweatshirt on and faced a mirror. While looking in the mirror, I placed two pieces of washi tape where I thought my design would look the best.
I went with the upper left chest region where the majority of shirt pockets, logos, etc. usually reside.
I then took off my sweatshirt, placed it on the counter, and slid a notebook inside, underneath my washi tape. The notebook served as a hard surface, which made it easier to use my marking pen and start drawing my design on my sweatshirt.
Once your design has been drawn, it’s time to start thinking about what embroidery stitches you want to use.
I chose to use a split stitch for my heart and a back stitch for my initials. You can find tons of different stitch options in DMC’s embroidery stitch guide.
Now, it’s time to start stitching! You can use whatever color threads you like, but if you want to mimic my design, I used DMC #158 for my heart and DMC #3839 for my initials.
My initials are a little off-center in the photo above, so I had to make a few adjustments in the stitching process (which explains the mess of marker you’ll see all around them in the photo below!)
Once you’ve finished stitching your design, turn your sweatshirt inside out and grab your fusible interfacing.
The interfacing will seal the backside of your embroidery and protect it from snagging as you wear your sweatshirt.
Read the instructions that came with your interfacing before you begin ironing it on. Instructions will likely vary by brand, but you will more than likely need to trim a piece of interfacing to fit over your design and then use a damp cotton cloth between your embroidered piece and your iron.
I’ve never used interfacing before, which was a tad intimidating for me at the start. But I’m here to tell you that it was SO EASY to use. I’ll be adding it to all my stitched projects moving forward.
Once interfacing has been applied, you are ready to turn your hand embroidered sweatshirt right side out and begin modeling it for all your friends and family!
I LOVE how this project turned out so much that I’ll be making a second hand embroidered sweatshirt later on this week! For my next project, I’m going to embroider a cute quote and some little decorative stitches. Stay tuned! I will share on Instagram when it’s complete!
If you’re interested in other hand embroidery projects, check out this post on making a hand embroidered face mask.
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