Tracing Paper Transfer

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So If you thought stitching in the corners was strange (see earlier post) wait till you see the weird way I transfer designs for embroidery on dark fabric!

In addition to making embroidery kits I also create fine art embroidery pieces. They start with hand dyed fabrics that are boro stitched onto a base fabric. I get really frustrated with tracing pencils that need to be washed out or fade as you work. I really don’t want to take the fabric out of the hoop if I can help it and I don’t like the idea of wetting the embroidery. I worry that the tension of the stitches may be messed with and that the sheen of the mercerized DMC embroidery floss will be dulled. This also saves me a step because I am already using tracing paper to draw out my designs. I can get a rough idea of the placement of the design because the tracing paper is not completely opaque. It helps if you can get the fabric and paper tight in the hoop so that the paper doesn’t rip as you work. I keep a tape dispenser next to me as I work to patch holes as I am stitching.

This method works best with simple stitches like back stitch. I have done some satin stitch over tracing paper but it is tricky getting the paper out from under the threads. I then use the outline to do more stitching on top.

For me the fun part comes when I get to rip all the paper off. I am guessing if you enjoy embroidery as much as I do that you may enjoy the tedious detailed process of ripping out the paper. I rip all the big pieces with my fingers and then go back over the stitches with fine point tweezers.