Freestanding lace machine embroidery

As part of the workshop programme I have in place at the studio, I had a machine embroidery session on Saturday. Unfortunately since I’m so new around here, nobody showed up. I’m not one to let that get me down, so I set myself a challenge.

I had this thread. Madeira glittery thread

I had in mind doing another boat project, the same as one I did a little while ago

My lacey boat bunting

I even had my perfect shoes to help me along with the task Joe Brown's shoes

I got my thread in place, I hooped up the Ultrasolvy water soluble stabilizer. I crossed my fingers. I asked for luck from The Warrington Arts & Crafts Emporium Facebook page  and off I went to stitch.  That in turn led to me finding out about a machine embroidery Facebook page and about a local event that they’re holding, which I will go to. Those lovely people could meet here at the studio with their machines next time. If you want to come along too, send me a message at  So that plea for help reaped loads of benefits!

Yes, you’re right I knew this was a risky project. I’ve used metallic thread before successfully. I’ve done free standing lace machine embroidery before. But I’d never done them in the same project before.

It didn’t work out great to say the least. free standing lace machine embroidery.

The tension on the top thread was loose and it kept collecting up into thread balls underneath the ultrasolvy. It is a very intricate time consuming project but I watched it like a hawk the whole time, intervening when necessary. I was worried that the ultrasolvy would stretch and make the design off kilter, as I was taking it off the machine so often but that wasn’t the issue.

I stitched out the boat sections on the same hooping but with normal polysheen thread and they were fine.

free standing lace machine embroidery        free standing lace machine embroidery

You want to know if I threw a paddy and chucked the sail in the bin, don’t you? Well, no I didn’t. I was very calm and rational about it all for once. I’m looking on it as a learning experience. I allowed my creativity space; it didn’t quite turn out brilliantly but at least I let my creativity out, which is important to me and all of us. I’m going to put it on the same bunting ribbon as the first one and use it as a way of showing escapees at the studio, that mistakes can be made.

Metallic thread on free standing lace boat

Mistakes don’t have to be terminal and success isn’t infinite

When I look at it I’ll probably smile and think about what I could try to remedy the situation next time.

Oh yes. There’ll definitely be a next time but whether it’ll be using glittery thread or not with FSL I don’t know.

You’ll have to call back and visit again to find out 🙂

p.s Just look at how lucky I was with the polysheen thread I used for the boat sections – this is how little I had left when I finished – 20150425_141257   Phew!

p.p.s Since writing this post, I contacted Urban Threads who created the design and they put me onto this help page, which had some good ideas which could also help you if you’re having similar issues.

That’s it now. Honest!

Newsletter Signup

Sign up now and never miss a thing!

You're Signed Up!

Now that you are signed up, we will send you exclusive offers periodically.