By Lauren Wolfe
It’s easy for me to get stuck in the rut of quarantine and think about all the things I can’t do. But I’ve been trying to look at the bright side, to think about the things I can do, now that I have more downtime.
Embroidery is so appealing because it adds a cute touch to your clothing that no one else will have, it’s inexpensive, and it’s therapeutic! As a complete beginner, I was surprised by how quickly I picked it up and improved. If I can do this, so can you!
For my first attempt, I embroidered ‘C’est La Vie’ on an old denim jacket. After that, I stitched a cheeky phrase into the inside zipper of my jeans. You can see that on my second attempt, the lines look better.
via Lauren Wolfe
As I got into the groove, I wanted to embroider something I knew I would wear more often: my Sunday Forever Crewneck! Since my two earlier attempts had emboldened me, I had grander plans for this, my third project.
That meant I needed an embroidery hoop, which as a housebound novice, I did not have. Luckily, I had other items to use as alternatives around the house.
Next, I browsed Sunday Forever on Pinterest and found some inspo from these funky black eyes.
I drew a sketch of an eye in pencil lightly on the fabric, placed a mason lid underneath, pulled the fabric taut, and secured it with a rubber band. I watched a quick Youtube Video about basic stitches and I got started.
Embroidery thread has 6 strands, and you can separate the strands and use however many you want depending on how thick or fine you want the stitches. I did a back stitch and used all 6 strands for the eye because I wanted a chunkier look. I then filled in the iris with a simple blue satin stitch.
To jazz things up a little more, I separated the black thread and used one or two strands to make stars. I also added some cute blue and pink polka dots using a simple French knot stitch.
The back of the crewneck already has a stabilizer from the Sunday Forever embroidery, so no mason jar/rubber band contraption was necessary! It was so easy and fun to do the colored stars on the back. If you want the biggest reward for minimal effort, just stitch some colored stars! Embroidering stars is so easy, the design is forgiving, they’re adorable, and not having to use a hoop saves so much time.
As a final touch, I added a quick pink blanket stitch on the collar.
The end product:
via Lauren Wolfe
I’m in love with my DIY sweatshirt! The biggest thing I learned from this project was to embrace the handmade look of my stitches instead of driving myself crazy trying to make it look perfectly machine-embroidered. It’s artisan!
Want to watch the process? Check it out on TikTok:
Lauren loves her two dogs, anything DIY, playing the piano by ear, her mom’s cooking, and scrolling through @infatuation_nyc.
She studied psychology at Davidson College because she is fascinated by why people behave the way they do. If she has a faraway look in her eyes, it’s because she’s dreaming of Tulum, Bali, or the Swiss or Italian Alps. Or maybe that one time when she was sitting next to Cody Simpson at the Butcher’s Daughter in LA and he gave her his uneaten piece of avocado toast. You can find her on Instagram at @_LaurenWolfe