The Embroidery Stitches of Invisible Threads

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Embroidery hoop with Design Pool logo embroidered inside.
Posted by: Kristin Crane Category: In The Library Tags: Comments: 0

The Embroidery Stitches of Invisible Threads

We created the Invisible Threads collection out of an urge to bring embroidered textiles into interiors where they can’t usually be. It may sound strange that a type of fabric can’t be used in a room, but materials used in interiors need to pass different tests to be deemed serviceable in different kinds of interiors. For example, fabrics destined for fancy houses where no one actually sits on that living room couch don’t require high test results. However, fabrics destined for places like hospitals or restaurants need high test results because they are going to have a lot of people sitting down and standing up and a lot of spills and cleanings.

Real embroidery doesn’t pass these stringent tests. Yet, the look of embroidered fabrics can inspire memories and remind people in those spaces of special people or events. In Invisible Threads, we tried to tap into those feelings without sacrificing performance. Using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, Kristen created a technique to draw with textures that resemble stitches.

But first, sewing.

Kristen wanted the textures to look authentic and handmade, so she taught herself a few basic embroidery stitches. Though she had done cross stitch when she was younger, she had never embroidered before. (And might be hooked.) She found the process of embroidery very soothing and relaxing. While sewing, her brain was already seeing these stitches forming the shapes and motifs that eventually became Invisible Threads.

Photo credit: Jenn Bakos Photography

Four basic embroidery stitches are in this collection.

Chain Stitch

A chain stitch is a series of loops connected by stitches forming a chain effect. There are variations on chain stitches, but the basic chain resembles links in a chain. Embroiderers use chain stitch on curves or straight lines. It is slightly raised and is a popular stitch in crewelwork.

Running Stitch

A running stitch is a basic stitch with even stitches. The thread runs straight through, in and out of fabric and makes a broken line. Stitchers often use a running stitch for outlines.

Couch Stitch

Couching is a technique that involves laying a decorative thread on top of the fabric and stitching it into place with a second thread. It is often used with metal thread or thread too delicate or textured to go through the fabric.

Satin Stitch

Embroiderers use a satin stitch for covering large areas in color. It is a simple straight stitch sewn closely together in parallel lines. Satin stitch often fills round or pointed shapes as well as narrow borders.

Are you a stitcher? Did someone in your family embroider? We’d love to hear your memories of embroidery.

Hand & Lock
The Complete Illustrated Stitch Encyclopedia


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