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Almost quilt related - marking tool for hand embroidery

Almost quilt related - marking tool for hand embroidery

Old 04-12-2022, 05:52 AM
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Default Almost quilt related - marking tool for hand embroidery

I have a question for those who hand embroider. I have an heirloom Christening gown that I must now embroider three generations of babies who have worn this gown. The grands are on their way! This gown was hand made by a friend of my great-grandmother's for her grandson's (my uncle) Christening. The fabric is, I believe, cotton batiste. I'll be doing everyone's names in a simple back stitch. Still working on the specific font/size to do the names.

My thought has been to lightly trace the name onto the gown to do the embroidery. The big question - what to use to do that; make centering marks; etc.???

I did purchase tear-away stabilizer and a new embroidery hoop yesterday as it's been a very long time since I've done any embroidery and I couldn't remember the status of my tools.

I have all manner of marking tools for my quilting but I usually end up using a #2 pencil on light fabrics and a fine-line chalk mechanical pencil for darker fabrics - either white or pink. I don't think the #2 pencil is the way to go on this. I very occasionally have issues getting those marks out and don't want to take the chance with this item.

Any and all recommendations/suggestions are welcomed and much appreciated.
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Old 04-12-2022, 06:06 AM
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The gown has been washed ?. I am thinking of a product used in machine embroidery. It is wash away stabilizer. I am wondering if you could put your markings on this stabilizer, baste it to your gown, do your embroidery and then "wash" away the stabilizer. Anyone done something like this? I would just use a light #2 pencil I think for the marking on the stabilizer. I would also try this on a scrap first. It has been years since I have used the oesd Aquamesh product but to dissolve it, you just soak it in warm water and rinse.
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Old 04-12-2022, 06:36 AM
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Default Hand Embroidery on Christening gown

Originally Posted by NJ Quilter View Post
I have a question for those who hand embroider. I have an heirloom Christening gown that I must now embroider three generations of babies who have worn this gown. The grands are on their way! This gown was hand made by a friend of my great-grandmother's for her grandson's (my uncle) Christening. The fabric is, I believe, cotton batiste. I'll be doing everyone's names in a simple back stitch. Still working on the specific font/size to do the names.

My thought has been to lightly trace the name onto the gown to do the embroidery. The big question - what to use to do that; make centering marks; etc.???

I did purchase tear-away stabilizer and a new embroidery hoop yesterday as it's been a very long time since I've done any embroidery and I couldn't remember the status of my tools.

I have all manner of marking tools for my quilting but I usually end up using a #2 pencil on light fabrics and a fine-line chalk mechanical pencil for darker fabrics - either white or pink. I don't think the #2 pencil is the way to go on this. I very occasionally have issues getting those marks out and don't want to take the chance with this item.

Any and all recommendations/suggestions are welcomed and much appreciated.
If it can be hand washed. I have used "stick n stitch by Sulky" to draw the pattern on, then you stick it to the fabric, hand embroidery and wash it away. Another one made by Pellon is "Print, stitch and dissolve", but I haven't used it. This may work for you.
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Old 04-12-2022, 08:50 AM
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I would use a product designed specifically for marking on fabrics. I would not use a pencil, too many reports of people not being able to remove it. I think any quilt marking pen or chalk would work, just make sure you read the product instructions very carefully and KEEP the packaging! Some products remove with iron, some with water, some are made permanent by iron, and you don't want to get them mixed up!
The Clover water-soluble marking pen works well, you mark, sew, then spray with a fine mist and the ink disappears. Sewline also makes one that will fade away after about a week, or you can make it disappear immediately with water.
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Old 04-12-2022, 01:52 PM
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I would use an air soluble marking pen. It goes away itself.
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Old 04-13-2022, 03:29 AM
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Thanks, ladies, for the suggestions. It never occurred to me to mark the stabilizer! I was planning on using that behind the fabric. Since that was the case I decided on the tear away stabilizer as I just wasn't sure how 'wash away' that type would be and I didn't want anything scratching the baby's skin. But it's very fragile and I'm not sure that it wouldn't just rip to shreds as I traced onto it.

I'll have to look for the 'stick n sticth' product. That sounds very interesting.

The gown has been (hand) washed numerous times. There have been 10 of us christened in this gown over the decades. We're now onto generation #4 using this gown.

I'll dig through my Bohin and Sew Fine chalk colors to see what I have. If none of the existing colors seem proper (too dark?) I'll head over to the LQS to see what they might have on hand. I need to get moving on this as new baby is due early October!
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Old 04-13-2022, 01:18 PM
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October, you have plenty of time. My daughter only gave me 6 weeks to make the gown and bonnet and I ordered a lot on line (before Covid). Depending on your color of embroidery floss, but I was hand stitching with blue perle cotton floss, I think it's called. I made this 15 years ago so memory not good-lol. I used the old wooden pencils you get in the fabric department at walmart. Because I used blue floss and blue pencil, I wasn't too concerned if not all my marks came out, but mine did. Don't be confused with Mark-Be-Gone, as that is NOT what I am speaking of. I did a light tracing on white voile over skirt. We have Baby Dedication, not christening, so they can wear a color or what they want. All three of my daughters wore this. Good luck dear-Toogie
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Old 04-13-2022, 07:30 PM
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That was supposed to read, "Three of my daughter's children wore this." I was commenting with my smart phone earlier. That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it-lol
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Old 04-14-2022, 03:05 AM
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Toogie that's a lovely dedication gown and your embroidery is beautiful. I'm going to be using white embroidery floss as there is a bit of other embroidery already on the gown also done in white. I had originally thought ecru but when I looked at it the other day I decided to go with white instead.
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Old 04-14-2022, 04:32 AM
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NJQuilter ... What a special addition this will be to an already treasured family heirloom! You mentioned you have not done hand embroidery for awhile. When I got back doing hand work a few years ago, I found that I had lost the sense of getting my stitch length even and how much tension was "right" before puckering started. It took awhile for me to get back in touch with that! With a cotton batiste that puckering and random stitch lengths will be even less forgiving than a heavier one, so I would highly suggest you find some fabric as close to your gown to practice on, before you work with the real thing. It will be beautiful!

A suggestion about the floss. Like you, my first thought would be to stick with the previous all white. However, the original will have a different white colour and sheen from aging and washing than any new you add. Perhaps a very pale (almost white) pink or blue? The colour would be ever so subtle, almost unnoticeable, and yet a nice nod to the genders of each, and blend in better than a "new" white.

This is such a wonderful tribute you are creating and I look forward to hearing and seeing more about your enhancements. Good Luck!

Last edited by QuiltE; 04-14-2022 at 04:38 AM.
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