Transferring the Design
There are a number of ways to transfer the design onto your fabric. My preferred method is a very sharp number two pencil. With a very light hand I draw only enough lines to give me an idea of the design area. These lines are then covered with the embroidery. This works well on light to medium colors. For dark colors I use a chalk pencil with a fine point.
This same rubber stamp is used to demonstrate both the stamping method of transfer and velvet embossing.
A rubber stamp and fabric ink pad or pen (available from Victoria Adams Brown). This special ink allows you to remove all trace with a water dampened cotton swab. Most of the commercial transfer pens and pencils can come back so I don't recommend them.
Solvy. Trace your design on the Solvy with a permanent marker. Trim close to the design. Place the Solvy on top of the fabric and stitch through the Solvy. When you have completed the design soak the entire piece until all of the Solvy residue is removed. Allow the piece to air dry or you can use a hair dryer from the wrong side of the fabric.
Using a regular needle and sewing thread stitch the design lines on the fabric with large basting stitches. These are easily removed when you have enough embroidery to establish the design.
You can also use waste canvas. Draw your design on the canvas, place it on the fabric, do your stitching and carefully remove the waste canvas fibers. This can cause your embroidery to be pulled out of shape if care is not taken as you remove the fibers.
Draw your design on graph paper making a chart, then stitch on an even weave fabric such as your Aida Cloth or Linen.
There is a product that was developed for use in hospital laundry bags. These bags dissolve in hot water so they can be used the same way the Solvy is used but they are considerably less expensive.
Iron on transfers are available but care must be taken with these the same as the commercial transfer pens and pencils. The markings may not come off or may reappear later down the road.
Which came first? Many people have difficulty deciding whether to stitch the flowers or the leaves first. In some patterns the directions call for one way while other patterns suggest the reverse. I prefer to draw at least a partial idea of the design and then looking at the drawing if the leaves appear to be under the flowers I do the leaves and the greenery first. If on the other hand leaves and greenery are shown separate from the flowers then I stitch the flowers first and add the greenery around them afterward.
There is no hard and set rule. Do what feels best to you and allows your design to flow smoothly.
Adding dimension and interest to a design can be done by embossing the velvet with the design you wish to stitch or with a background or accent design. You need a rubber stamp that has a good solid design area on it. Place it face up on a surface. Place your rayon/silk velvet face down on the stamp. Spritz the back of the velvet with water and press with a hot iron until the moisture is dried.
The right side of the velvet will show the imprint of the rubber stamp and you can then use your Silk Ribbon Embroidery to do all or any part of the design area in embroidery leaving the unstitched part to show the embossing.
Silk Ribbon Embroidery
Bluebonnet Village Craft Network
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