I’ll show you how to take my three free printable PDF patterns and produce three simple felt embroidery designs. Follow along for instructions and tips, and find access to the free patterns at the bottom of the post.
Trio of Felt Embroidery Designs
Recently I shared a tutorial for turning your designs into felt hoop art that contains step by step instructions for creating felt hoop art. You can read that full tutorial HERE. For that piece of art, I used my Mix Measure Make logo. When I was done, I wanted to create a grouping of felt hoop art pieces to put in my craft room. I designed three different designs that showcase my favourite creative hobbies and I’m thrilled to share them with you free. If you would like to make one or all of the designs, you can access the patterns at the bottom of the post.
For my versions of these felt hoop art, I chose to use only my four logo colours (with the exception of brown paintbrush bristles because I didn’t think it would recognizable with a strange colour). However, you can change the colours or use as many or as few as you wish. One of the pages of the pattern includes a colourless outline that you can use to colour in and plan your own colour schemes.
The method and materials to create the felt hoop art from these patterns are the same as in my previous tutorial, with only a couple of differences. I will give tips and highlight any differences in this post, but for complete step-by-step instructions and photos of each step, please refer to the original tutorial.
Materials to make the free simple felt embroidery designs
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You will need:
- The free PDF pattern of the felt embroidery designs available at the bottom of the post
- 1 sheet of 8 1/2 x 11 printable Sulky Sticky Fabri-Solvy Stabilizer
- Pencil crayons if you’d like to plan your own colour scheme on the pattern page
- Three 5 inch embroidery hoops (though you could scale the patterns on a photocopier and use a different size of hoop, but you might need another sheet of stabilizer if you go larger)
- 3 pieces of woven fabric cut bigger than the embroidery hoops – I like a warm white linen
- 1 piece of white acrylic felt to cover backs
- Wool, wool-blend, or acrylic felt scraps in the colours of your choice. I greatly prefer wool-blend to acrylic, and there are more colour choices. There are many places to get wool blend felt. In Canada, I like to order from Canadian Felt Shop, which you can also find on Etsy. In the US, I recommend Benzie Design.
- Coordinating embroidery floss colours to your felt scraps
- In addition to the coordinating colours of embroidery floss, I also used an off-white floss to make the quilting stitches on the quilt block
- Embroidery needle
- Sewing needle
- White thread
- Tacky Craft Glue
- Sharp Scissors
- Acrylic craft paint or paint samples
- Craft varnish – I like gloss
The PDF patterns and planning your colour scheme
There are two pages to print for the pattern. The first contains a coloured diagram and a black and white outline of all 3 designs. You will need to print this on regular paper at 100% scale. Should you wish to use a different colour scheme than mine, you can plan it and colour in the black and white outlines. I often use pencil crayons for this.
If you choose to use 4 colours like I did, the placement of my colours might help you find balance between the amount of each colour within the design. For example, I used red, gold, turquoise and aqua. Maybe you’d like to use blue, pink, light purple and dark purple. You could substitute blue everywhere I have red, pink everywhere I have gold, and so on. But feel free to make your own choices. Art is very individual and there are no right or wrong ways to do it!
The second sheet of the PDF pattern contains all the separated pattern pieces. This sheet will need to be printed on a sheet of Sulky Sticky Fabri-Solvy Stabilizer.
Painting the embroidery hoops
After making my original felt hoop art, I realized that I could streamline my process slightly by painting my hoops before the fabric went in. That way it doesn’t have to be removed, ironed, and put back. Either order works fine. If you’d like to paint your hoops first, but you find that during the stitching you made your fabric warped or wrinkly, that’s ok. You can still remove it, give it a quick iron and put it back in the hoop.
Again, I chose to use my four logo colours and paint each hoop a different colour. I used craft paint for the turquoise, and mixed a couple colours to get my aqua shade. I had to mix a paint sample and some craft paint to get my golden yellow colour. Each hoop has three coats of paint and two quick coats of a gloss craft varnish.
Cutting the pattern pieces and sticking them to felt
Be careful when cutting the pattern pieces for these patterns. The pieces are very small. Since there are three different patterns, I like to keep each of the three patterns (knitting, painting and quilting) in separate piles so I don’t get confused. Keep larger scraps of the stabilizer so you can trace a piece over again if you lose one.
Again, to keep things from getting confused, choose one pattern to lay out the stabilizer pattern pieces on the felt at a time. For example, put all the knitting pieces on their appropriate felt colours and continue before switching to the paint palette.
When you’ve cut out the pieces from the felt, again keep the three different patterns separate and work on only one at a time. Lay it out on the fabric in the hoop, alongside the printed design as an example for placement. Glue pieces one by one with only tiny dots of glue and let dry.
Here’s what my art looked like at this stage. The hoops were painted, the felt pieces were glued on, and they were ready for stitching:
Stitching the felt embroidery designs
Once all the felt pieces are tacked in place with a little bit of glue and have dried, then it’s time for the stitching. Here’s where you can get a little bit creative.
For the painting hoop art, I did stitching like I did in my previous tutorial, making tiny whipstitches around the outside. You can refer to the second method detailed HERE for photos and diagrams. The paint splotches and the paintbrush are glued on top of the palette, and you’ll be stitching through all the layers.
For the knitting hoop art, I also did tiny whipstitches around all the edges. Then I took the floss matching each yarn ball colour and made long stitches across the diameter of each yarn ball. I criss-crossed them in many different directions to look like a wound ball of yarn.
For the dangling tails of the yarn, I just ended up free-handing those using some long backstitches in two parallel lines, off-setting the spaces between stitches. In other words, I stitched down the dangling yarn line with long backstitches. Then I turned around and stitched back up alongside the first line of stitches to make it thicker. I made the space between the stitches in the middle of the previous stitches.
For the quilting hoop art, I also did small whipstitches around each triangle. Then I took some off-white floss and made two vertical and two horizontal lines of tiny running stitches to look like quilting stitches. They are imperfect, and I like that because they look hand-stitched.
Finishing the backs of the hoops
I finished the backs of these felt hoop art using the same method as from my previous tutorial. However, because they were smaller, it was much easier to produce a neater backing.
To make the backings, before I assembled my art, I removed one inner ring from a hoop. Using a Sharpie, I traced the inside of it on a sheet of white acrylic felt 3 times. I cut them out, cutting off the Sharpie outline so it wasn’t visible. Then I trimmed the excess woven fabric around the ring leaving at least an inch extra. I gathered it with a long gathering stitch, and whipstitched on the felt circle in the same manner as before. Then the art is ready to hang on nails, or from ribbon.
You might also like the post, Organizing Embroidery Floss.
Get Creative With Your Own Versions
If you make your own versions of these felt embroidery designs, share a photo on social media using the hashtag #mixmeasuremakefreepatterntrio. Don’t forget to tag me @mixmeasuremake so I can see what colour combos you’ve used. I can’t wait to see what you choose.
What colour combinations do you love? Do you have any questions about these free patterns? Let me know in the comments below.
All the best,