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Look What WE Made: Embroidered Portraits


Working at Potter Craft, I’ve picked up more than a few crafty obsessions. In fact, I first learned how to embroider with A Rainbow of Stitches and Alicia Paulson’s beloved Embroidery Companion, which combine a traditional craft with a totally modern aesthetic. I love how easy it is to take illustrations from my sketchbook to a whole new level with just a few simple supplies and skills.

Most recently, I stitched a set of portraits for two of my friends who tied the knot at a beautiful celebration with a decidedly D.I.Y. aesthetic (her mom made her dress, and her dad made their cake!). She’s a talented photographer and their apartment is full of photos, so I thought it would be fun to portray them in my own personal favorite medium.

I used good-quality 5″ wooden embroidery hoops, which doubled as frames for the finished pieces. After sketching out the two portraits, I lightly traced them onto thin paper and then used transfer paper to place them on the fabric. I used an assortment of DMC floss, hand-dyed thread, and a little bit of gold braid to create the heart-shaped medal that he wore for the festivities. Once I had stitched the original designs, I free handed some branches and flowers with a transfer pen and stitched over the decorative elements.

If you enjoy sketching, you’ll love embroidery. With a few basic stitches in your repertoire, you can recreate an amazing variety of textures and expressive lines. And what better way to celebrate a creative couple that with a one-of-kind handcrafted gift?





Jennifer October 11th, 2012

This is beautiful. What a lovely friend you are. I like doing the same with my children’s drawings. A precious keepsake many years later.



About the Book
A Rainbow of Stitches
Embroidery and Cross-Stitch Basics Plus More Than 1,000 Motifs and 80 Project Ideas
Written by Anne Sohier-Fournel, Agnes Delage-Calvet, Muriel Brunet, and Francoise Ritz
Category: Crafts & Hobbies - Embroidery; Crafts & Hobbies - Cross-Stitch; Crafts & Hobbies - Sewing
Format: Paperback, 240 pages
On Sale: October 20, 2009
Price: $24.99
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