My friends are having babies, and boy does it look difficult. I try my best to offer support, but I’m obviously unable to completely understand what they’re going through because I don’t have kids and I’ve never really had to take care of one. I’ve borrowed my nieces and nephews before for a few days, but tend to return them to their parents a day or two early (I likes my sleep!). Being the creative and hands-on type, I tend to express support in making or doing things for someone. I decided to make something inspirational for a friend who just had her first child — something she could hang on a wall and draw strength from. I chose to embroider a short, but powerful phrase: YOU GOT THIS! I picked some fonts, created a template using Adobe Illustrator (you could just as easily use Microsoft Word or PowerPoint), printed it out, and went to work.
First, I carefully traced the design onto some tracing parchment paper. Do this with a pencil so you can erase your mistakes.
Second, I transferred the design, but not in the way you would think. To transfer the design perfectly, it’s best to embroider directly through the parchment paper. I punched small holes in the design where I planned to place every stitch. The parchment paper is pretty thick, so punching holes first makes it much easier to embroider through the paper. (And yes, I bought a tool for punching holes through parchment paper. Totally necessary.)
Third, I embroidered the thing! Once I finished punching holes through the paper, I pinned the paper directly to the area of fabric I planned to embroider. Following the punched holes, I embroidered the design. The paper is going to be stitched or stuck to the fabric, but it needs to be removed when you’re done. Carefully remove the paper when you’re done, pulling it back stitch by stitch. The last thing you want to do is weaken or break a stitch (trust me on this one).
Finally, I finished it up and slapped it in, you guessed it — a frame. After I removed the paper and felt that everything looked good, I used a lint roller to remove lint and ever-present cat hair, then gave it a quick iron to get out leftover wrinkles and set the design. Always with a few emergency thrift store frames on hand, I put the design in a frame and like magic … I had a hanging inspirational quote! The one shown right below was my tester. Take a look at the final one at the bottom of this post.
I have a few other designs sketched out and ready to be embroidered. FRIENDS OF NICHOLE: Prepare your walls for inspirational quotes! Here’s the final product. I hope it makes her feel like she can do anything! And if not anything, at least make it through another week of breastfeeding.