Embroidery is the handicraft of embellishing fabric with thread and needle. It may incorporate other objects such as beads, metals, pearls, gems, and feathers. Its origins can no longer be traced, but ancient civilizations in China and Egypt left examples of embroidery. Northern Europe also provided ancient examples of embroidery work.
The earliest form of embroidery is thought to have started from tailor's work in patching, mending, and reinforcing clothes. Then the decorative functions may have lead to the art of embroidery. The development of sewing machines also led to sewing embroidery. The development of computers then led to digitizing designs and the use of machines in embroidery.
The basic methods of embroidery consist of stitches that have been in use since early times. Hand embroidery still uses the basic stitches--cross stitch, chain stitch, satin stitch, blanket stitch, and running stitch. Machine embroidery was thought to replace hand embroidery. The Industrial Revolution made mass production of embroidered textiles possible. Now, a different kind of machine embroidery is used to unprecedented heights. Any pattern and design can now be embroidered on any fabric. Even pictures may be embroidered with perfect precision.
Although machines and digitization made embroidered materials available to everyone, you may still want to do hand embroidery. Here are pointers in finding embroidery designs:
- Online. The Internet is a repository of a large number of embroidery designs. Type the keywords embroidery designs, or embroidery patterns, or embroidery design catalog and you will be presented with a very wide selection of embroidery designs. To narrow down the search, you may include the design you are looking for. Click on the given websites. Many of these websites offer designs for free, while others are for a fee. This is the easiest way to look for embroidery designs.
- Hit the library. Your local library also contains copies of design catalogs. Ask your librarian to direct you to the particular book or catalog you are looking for. Do not stick to just one copy of a catalog. Choose a number of catalogs you may want to browse. For easier searching of designs, flip to the Index part of the catalogs.
- Buy from a bookstore. Bookstores would also have copies of catalogs for embroidery designs. Ask your store attendant. Give the details or particulars so you could get the right catalog swiftly.
- Visit a specialty store. There are stores that particularly cater to embroidery. You may want to flip through your telephone book to see if there is an embroidery or stitching store near you. Try calling them to see if they have what you are looking for. Also, ask if they could deliver the designs or catalogs for free. These specialty stores would also offer stitching services. Aside from that they would also offer framing services and other embroidery accessories.
Embroidery can be a worthwhile pastime. This could also be a source of extra cash. To find embroidery designs, you have been provided with hassle-free suggestions; you can also enroll in an online design program if you want to take your passion for embroidery to the next level.