Curve Appeal: Pleasing Shapes for Machine Embroidery

Why are curves, curls, and ripples more appealing? Turns out, there is science behind that theory, as well as plenty of machine embroidery designs to back it up.

You may not even realize that you like curved shapes, but it is a scientific fact. We humans prefer curves to sharp corners and angles. Studies have shown that circles and curves invoke a sense of calm, positivity, and peacefulness.

An Elegant Touch

This stunning skirt fabric was stitched with Elizabethan Scrolls Set 2 from Art Embroidery. Embroidered against a black background, the colors and stitching pop and shout nobility.

A sweet teddy bear, part of Shapes Scrolls from Louisa Meyer Originals, gets a feminine touch with some curvy fill.

Monograms become something other than a mere font with the addition of some curls. Although this is not to scale, you get the idea. The Aurora Monogram from Oma’s Place can be further embellished with the addition of  Swirls from Dianas Dezigns.

Vintage Hearts from Dancing Thread is beautiful with its combination of soft scroll work and wing needle stitching. Adding a single Swirls and Curls font from Oma’s Place (not to scale)

Even simplistic tone-on-tone embroidery, like Charming Scrolls from Enigma Embroidery, takes on a look of elegance when curved lines and leaves are part of the design.


At the very least, curved lines imply movement. When you see Autumn Winds from Kreations by Kara, you know the leaves are blowing and swirling.

Good design keeps your eyes moving.  Dainty Flowers from Stitch Delight does just that.

Graceful Embroidery created the dance of dragonflies and dandylion seeds in Amore Grunge.

Great Quilting Lines

Whether you use it as traditional stitching or as a quilting motif, Quilt Swirls 1 from Kreative Kiwi is not your ordinary color work. Gentle curves take it beyond standard straight-line quilting.


The Quilted Swirls Table Runner from Designs 4 Africa includes a variety of quilting shapes. These give the impression of curvy free motion quilting without the bother.

What is your favorite way to use curved embroidery designs?

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