Last week, I started a DIY Hand Stitching series and began with how to hand stitch your own handwriting. I stitched onto paper and showed a method for transferring the pattern by poking or drawing dots as a guide on the surface. The same technique can be used when stitching a simple pattern onto fabric but when you stitch more than one color or there's a lot of intersecting lines (like these), it's much easier to use a piece of tear away backing. I'll show you how-- it's really neat!
You will need: Fabric (linen, muslin & thick cottons), Needle (i use a #5 Embroidery Needle), Embroidery Thread, Scissors, Pencil, Thumbtack or Piercing Tool, Masking Tape or Low-Tack Tape, Tear Away Backing (available at fabric & sewing stores), Emboidery Hoop (optional)
1> Cut a piece of tear away backing, a bit bigger than your pattern. Trace the border of your shape or place the flat image below the tear away backing and trace the image (the backing is see-through enough).
Tip: For your first time using tear away backing, try a simple silhouette like a heart or banana. We'll work on a more complicated pattern in the coming weeks :)
Note: This step is not completely necessary since you can poke through the Tear Away Backing & Fabric at once-- but, I find it improves my stitch spacing when I pre-poke the holes. You can skip this step if you're trying to save time or don't find it helpful.
4> Begin stitching your pattern, start with my #1 Stitching Technique.
5> Continuous Back Stitch, using the poked holes from step 2 or the drawn lines on your backing as the guide.
6> This is what the back of the project looks like after you knot your thread (I have two knots because I ran out of thread along the way). Remove your tape.
7> Begin tearing away the outside pieces of the backing. Because the stitches create a perforation, it's easiest to tear along the stitches. Work on the inside piece last.
8> Once you've removed the outside pieces, the inside will come off super easy-- it's practically floating inside the stitches. You're not alone if it feels really satisfying to remove this piece... it's the little things ;)
Hope you enjoyed working with Tear Away Backing... we're going to use it again soon on a bigger project! See you next week for Part 3 in the DIY Hand Stitching series :) xo, LA