Free machine embroidery designs

Published: 24th March 2011
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The sewing machine sitting in a corner of the room is a common sight of nearly every household. Throughout history, women of the household would spend time over the machine, stitching and embroidering garments, household items and gifts. Every once in a while, she glances over from the machine, lifts her creation up and smiles. Creating each masterpiece gives her immeasurable pleasure and pride in her accomplishments.

Embroidery has been an integral part of a woman’s life since time untold. Through technological improvements, from stitching with bones, to needles and now electric machines, methods have changed so much. Yet the essence of embroidery will always remain the same; using decorative and functional stitching to enhance and improve fabric projects.

Machine embroidery is the process of doing embroidery with a specialized sewing machine. The sewing machine creates tiny stitches in a predetermined pattern, which duplicates the pattern on the fabric, from electronic digital files. There is a wide variety of types of embroidery that can be done. Some of the main types of embroidery are appliqué, free standing lace, cutwork, full stitch and quilting. Women over the years have loved embroidery designs of all types. Embroidery designs are in certain shapes and sizes to serve specific purposes.

Appliqué is a form of embroidery that applies fabric cut out into the shape of the pattern being used with stitching tacking it down. The design is usually highlighted by stitching vibrant threads on to the lines which are in between. This kind of embroidery is beautiful when made and has existed for centuries.

Free standing lace is done entirely on the embroidery machine, creating the entire pattern with thread, in a way that it all remains intact without stitching it on fabric. The embroidery becomes ‘free standing’, with no fabric under it.

Cutwork, is just that… the art of having open areas in the pattern where the fabric below has been cut away, creating interesting dimension to the project.

Full stitch work is done on fabric or a patch, and fills in each area of the artwork with stitches.

Quilting is a form of embroidery done, when three or more layers of cloth are stitched together to create a thicker padded material. Quilts have been popular in many cultures throughout the ages. With the introduction of the embroidery machine, the quilter can add decorative embroidered designs on the quilt as they stitch the layers together. These designs usually represent motifs and things that the culture the woman belongs to, holds dear. In quilting, embroidery patterns are usually termed as quilt squares. These squares are stitched together with the rest of the layers when the quilt is being stitched. The result is a huge quilt segregated into squares, triangles and other shapes of colorful fabric alternating with squares with embroidery in them.

Another popular free embroidery design is linear designs for corners, hems and edges. These designs help to fill in areas and provide a beautiful edge to the cloth.

Before commencing with embroidery, every woman has a design, specific or otherwise, in mind. She knows what she wants to create. The choice of the embroidery designs is very important. Different types of designs will completely change the look of the project. Machine embroidery is a relatively fast method of embroidery as compared to hand stitching and therefore the design should always be at hand. Free machine embroidery designs are vastly available on the internet but quality designs are hard to come by. One great resource of all of these types of designs and more is the OPW Mall, where over 100 different vendors make available a vast array of high quality embroidery designs. It’s a great place to find all the materials you need to create a wonderful one of a kind creation

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