Thursday, April 29, 2010

Using Tracing Paper to Transfer an Embroidery Design

A question was brought up about transferring embroidery patterns to crazy quilt blocks so I thought I would share how I do it with tracing paper.  First, either find a pattern you like and trace it onto a piece of tracing paper or you can draw one directly onto the tracing paper.  I don't obsess about getting it perfect since it is basically a guideline.  You can make adjustments as you are stitching.  Baste the tracing paper onto your block where you want the design.

Stitch the design onto the block right through the tracing paper.  You don't need to necessarily stitch it all, just the parts you need.  In this case I will be doing the lily of the valley blossoms with silk ribbon embroidery so I will add that after the tracing paper is removed.  I have not made up my mind about whether I will fill in the leaves but with the outline in place I'll have that option if I wish.  Sometimes I simply baste the design through the tracing paper and will do all the actual embroidery once the tracing paper is removed, using the basted lines as my guide.  A lot depends on your design and what type of stitching you will be doing.

When you have done as much of the embroidery as you want, remove the basting you used to hold the tracing paper to the block.  Now just gently tear the tracing paper away.  If you are too rough you can distort your stitching so take a little care doing it.  Any small pieces of paper stuck under the stitches can be removed with tweezers.

Now you have your embroidery, or at least the basics of it, on the block without having had to use any kind of marking pens that may give you trouble down the road.

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