Have you ever tried to embroider on a t-shirt, but found that it’s a bit more tricky than you had expected? Learning how to embroider on stretchy fabric can be a challenge, so I’ve got a few recommendations that have helped me.
How To Embroider On Stretchy Fabric
This is my number one tip to help make it easier to stitch on stretchy fabric. The thing with stretchy fabric is that it wrinkles and warps super easy under the tension of embroidery stitches. Stabilizer will help to keep the fabric still and give it some extra support.
I personally use and recommend Pellon stick and tear away stabilizer. You can put this on the back of the article of clothing you’re going to stitch on and it tears away when you’re finished.
You can also check out this article that uses baste on stabilizer.
You can also read about all the different types of embroidery stabilizers if you’re curious.
Use A Smaller Needle
Because stretchy fabrics tend to be knit fabrics with a tighter weave, using a thick needle with a large eye will be harder to get through the fabric. I recommend selecting a smaller embroidery needle and maybe using less strands of embroidery thread. This makes it way easier to pull through the fabric and also decreases your chances of damaging the fabric.
Be Gentle And Pay Attention To Stitch Tension
You’ll have to use extra care when embroidering on fabric that stretches because you won’t want it to wrinkle. You may have to slow down a bit and be really mindful of how tight you’re making your stitches.
If you notice wrinkling, stop and try to loosen the stitches. If that doesn’t resolve the problem, use a seam ripper and take some of the stitches out.
With a little care and practice, along with the right tools, you’ll be able to embroidery stretchy fabrics with ease!
Amanda is a hand embroidery artist and teacher. With over 15 years of experience in the craft industry and embroidery, she owns and runs Crewel Ghoul, sharing tutorials and patterns to help inspire fellow crafters to get inspired and creative. In addition to running this website, she teaches on Skillshare and Youtube.