Stabilizing Solutions: Linen, Quilt Weight Cotton, Batiste, Napkins and Tea Towels
Embroidery on delicate woven fabrics can be somewhat tricky. The needle tends to perforate the fibers when stitching dense designs. Using a cut away type stabilizer would give the stability needed but would shadow through the fabric and would be visible from the backside on a towel or napkin. This is especially true when working with monograms or openwork type designs. A stabilizer should be used that can be easily removed as to not distort stitches or damage the fabric and will give the stability needed when embroidering on such delicate fibers. The perfect solution is Floriani’s Stitch N Wash® (Water Soluble Tear Away). This remarkable product is made of soluble and non-soluble fibers. This means that what you need to make the embroidery smooth and stable will stay within the design and the remainder will go away after laundering. To use Stitch N Wash®, simply hoop one piece along with the fabric and stitch out the design. Remove as much of the stabilizer as possible by wetting the design, let it set for about 10 seconds and then gently tear the stabilizer away. After the item is washed all that remains are a few of the non-soluble fibers and perfectly stitched embroidery! Remember that Stitch N Wash® is not a topping and should only be used on fabrics that can be laundered. Stitch N Wash® is also available in a fusible version for embroidery on fabrics that are somewhat stretchy or shift during the hooping process. Remember to use a low temp (silk or 260°F) setting on your iron and a press cloth (your iron should not come in contact with the stabilizer) when fusing the product to the garment.
When your embroidery design is more filled in or solid, a good choice is Floriani Heat N Sta ®Tear Away. This remarkable 1.5 oz tearaway has a light fusible coating and is easily removed from around the design. Use Heat N Sta® by fusing a piece of the stabilizer to the back of the fabric at least one inch larger than the embroidery frames outer edge. Hoop the item as normal. By fusing the stabilizer directly to the fabric, you have eliminated the stretch and will have a smooth embroidery design! Floriani Heat N Sta® can be easily removed from around the design by simply tearing it away. This is especially nice on light colored cottons such as quilt squares. Remember to use a low temp (silk or 260°F) setting on your iron and a press cloth (your iron should not come in contact with the stabilizer) when fusing the product to the garment.
With both products listed above (for embroidery on light weight woven fabrics) remember that each will support around 10,000 stitches and/or a 4″ x 5″ design. If the design is more dense or larger than this, “float” an additional piece of Floriani Medium Tearaway or Stitch N Wash between the hoop and the bed of the machine to support the additional stitches.
Tip! Use a Micro-Tex needle when embroidering on delicate fabrics. This needle is very sharp and extremely slender which means it won’t poke large holes in the fabric!