Tuesday, June 18, 2013

State Pride Embroidery Tutorial

Let's be honest... when I mention Iowa, people either say "oh, the potato state," "where is that again?", or they make some joke about cows, pigs, and corn.  Throughout the rest of the nation Iowa has a pretty bad rap for lacking diversity and being a whole lot of fun.  How wrong people can be.  Yes, Iowa does have a lot of cows, and corn, and pigs, but it's also pretty beautiful and there's a lot to do if you know where to look for it.  I suppose Arizona has a lot of the same things, but I've really found that I have an attachment to grass, trees, and I suppose even humidity.  And sidewalks... hello, Arizona?  Where the hell are your sidewalks!?!  Anyway, my homesick thoughts about Iowa inspired this little bit of hand stitched art.  You can easily create one for your favorite state, too. 



A small hand embroidery frame 
2 colors of embroidery thread
An embroidery needle
A pencil, fabric marker, or fabric chalk
Thin fabric 

The outline of your state
Printer paper 
Black printer ink 
An interesting font
1. Depending on your artistic abilities, you may have to take some different steps to complete this project.  Since I didn't want to attempt drawing the outline of my state free hand, I googled an outline of the state of Iowa and copied and pasted the picture into a word document. 

2. I then chose a font on my computer to place the word "home" inside the picture.  I chose the font "English Essay" that can be downloaded for free from http://www.dafont.com.  I created a small text box, typed the word, and changed the appearance of the text box by hiding the lines.  This can be done in Microsoft Word  by right clicking on the text box, scrolling down to "format shape," selecting "line color," then clicking "no line."  

3. Print the stitching pattern you just created. 

4. Cut around the edge of your pattern, leaving a margin around the edges.  Place the pattern under your fabric  If you find that your pattern is slipping, tape may be used to temporarily hold the pattern in place.  

5. I used thin enough fabric that I could easily see the black outline created by my pattern.  If your fabric is thicker you may need to use a light box or hold the fabric against a window so you can trace the outline on your fabric.  

6. Place your fabric in your embroidery frame.  Pick out your embroidery thread and start embroidering.  I used a back stitch for the majority of the project, but you can use whatever stitch floats your boat.  There are great stitch tutorials online and on Pinterest for your browsing.  

7. Cut the excess fabric around the back of your frame if you wish to leave your project in the embroidery frame. 

Enjoy your new hand-stitched art!  

Happy crafting! 

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