Tricks of the Trade: Embroidering on Felt

Felt makes such a nice base for embroidery. Follow these tips for successful ITH projects!

I like to embroider on felt, especially for freestanding applique, ornaments, and banners. Here are a few of the things I have learned along the way.

Quality Counts

Not all felt is the same. Be sure to use a premium acrylic felt or a wool felt. Better felt is opaque while you can see light through lesser quality felt. The adorable 3D Gingerbread from Omas Place is stitched on a lovely, quality felt.

Use a Topper

Felt is not particularly dense but does have enough surface fibers that using a water-soluble or heat-away topper helps to keep embroidery thread showing nicely.

Thread Matters

Rayon and polyester add a bright shine while cottons have a soft matte finish. Using a heavier thread, like 12 weight, mimics hand embroidery. Choose thread types and weights according to your project preference.

To Felt or Not to Felt

For most projects, I prefer the soft, smooth feel of a non-felted wool. You can felt wool by washing it in hot water and placing it in the dryer. The wool shrinks and pills for a more fluffy nap.

Join us on the Secrets of Embroidery Facebook Group page and share your tips for machine embroidery on felt.