My favorite embroidery tools

Wanna peek over my shoulder and get to know how my workspace looks like? Let’s talk about embroidery tools! In embroidery itself, there is not much you actually need to stitch. A needle, thread and something to stitch on. Yet something so simple as that can lead to the possession of many many notions and tools. When you are operating a business around that it’s even more that you need to use on a daily basis.

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Embroidery tools

I love to use these two vintage hoops I found at goodwill. It’s a 21cm/10inch and a 15cm/6inch wooden hoop. They are very sturdy, have a thick edge and a strong grip for getting the tension right. I love how they feel and look – it’s a pleasure to use them. I use other hoops as well, mainly the wooden ones from DMC, but these two are constantly in use.

  • Omnigrid Ruler 30x15cm, Omnigrid cutting mat, rotary cutter by Prym
  • needles: DMC embroidery needles (5-10), cross stitch needles (blunt, 24), mixed needles from Prym, various needles from my stash (mostly inherited or gifted ones)
  • embroidery scissors by DMC with leather case, fabric scissors from Prym (not in the picture)
  • pin cushions: ‘Pieks’ by Margamarina, who sadly doesn’t sell these anymore, and  a japanese pin cushion gifted by a friend
  • chalk pencil by Derwent – it’s for artists, not a craft supply, I found it works great for darker fabrics


  • 6 stranded embroidery floss by DMC, Anchor and many many vintage ones
  • vintage pearl cotton and thick cotton threads (used these for the lexicon ;))
  • specialty threads like glow in the dark, metallics, linen by DMC
  • vintage artificial silk pearl threads

Pattern Design

Apart from the embroidery tools used for actual stitching, there is more to the embroidery process: designing the pattern.
I’m a drawing by hand person. I love using the computer, but it’s much easier for me to whip up things on a notebook.

  • my trusty pilot v ball grip in black (05) – have a huge stack of them so I would never run out. I have tried many black pens, but none were as good as these! They are not archival ink though and will fade if you expose the drawing to the sun all the time (like for months, not days of course)
  • Pigma Micron 005 by sakura for very thin lines
  • HB pencil – no brand preference
  • sketchbook – I prefer thick off-white pages and spiral binding – no brand preference here
  • DMC color card – includes all colorways – essential for picking colors, one of the best buys ever!
  • Photoshop Creative Cloud – I use the monthly subscription model of Adobe (it’s around 10$ a month for photoshop and lightroom in the Photographer-subscription plan)
  • Inkscape – free program to make vector graphics for patterns
  • Open Office – free program for writing the patterns down and convert to PDF
  • Kamera: Nikon D3100 – it’s a DSLR, easy to use, not THAT expensive and survived a couple of cat-inflicted falls

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