ribbon embroidery, blog, silk ribbon, designs for beginners, photo, photographs, inspiration

Welcome to Tatiana Popova`s BLOG, dedicated to silk ribbon embroidery and lots of other things about it.
Here you will find new items by Little Owl SmartCrafts, information about forthcoming products and designs, see some ribbon embroidery in process, learn more about ribbon stitces and techniques. The photos of pieces of art which were represented on this or that Craft Show all around the world will be also awailable in my Blog. I am going to place here some fresh ideas and items for inspiration as well. Our new ribbon embroidery kits and books on silk ribbon embroidery will be also announced here, as well as some information about Little Owl ribbon embroidery contest and workshops. Well, in fact, there will be a lot more...

Whishing everybody a pleasant time while browsing articles of my Blog.


Ribbon embroidery: getting started!

Step 1. Transferring a template. Designs for silk ribbon embroidery may come either as templates or as multi-coloured images. Therefore different ways for their transferring are used.

For templates just draw the lines on to your fabric using a sharp HB pencil or e.g. a special water erasable fabric marker. The fewer the strokes and marks you make, the better! For - you see - they should be totally covered with silk ribbon. (Even in case you are going to remove the lines with water, it is better to have fewer of them to avoid spots).


If you want a colourful image to be transferred, make a printed panel. Use a special transfer paper or go to your local printing office to ask for their assistance. This time - on the contrary - you may remain certain areas unstitched to add 3-dimensional effect to your embroidery.


Follow the link to see how to transfer a pattern using transfer paper.


A template transferred using a soft pencil (best for those of us who prefer soft lines of the design) Usage of water erasable marker (is a better option if you want your template to be rather bright) A printed panel ready to embroider
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Step 2. Preparation to do ribbon stitching. Collect, sort out and iron silk ribbon, pick up the other necessary material.

If you are stitching a design of your own, check carefully whether the selected colours go nicely together. Remember that there always are several possible ways for combining colours. (And it is fun to work the same design in different colour ways!)

Still if you are working on a kit for silk ribbon embroidery, you have already got a prepared ribbon selection. It is helpful to fix the ribbon organizer as it is shown in the photograph. (If some of the ribbons are of big lengths, wove them around any spools you have for more comfortable stitching).



And do you know how to knot your ribbon for stitching?


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Step 3. Your working place. It is going to be your area of comfort and The Land of delightful moments that will cirtainly come while you are doing ribbon embroidery. That is why nothing about its arranging is a triffle or unimportant thing. E.g., do you see a tiny blue button-magnet in the top right corner of the embroidery frame? It really helps a lot for it holds needles you are working with. It is nice to have all the necessary things at hand!


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Step 4. The very first stitches. Be sure never to be in a hurry while doing silk ribbon embroidery. You can only get beautiful petals and leaves if your ribbon stitches go properly. For that, it is important to shape your ribbon every time you start working a new stitch (see the left-hand image below). You will get the detailed instructions on the subject here.


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Step 5. Fixing ribbon tails on the back side. While you go further in, more and more of those tails appear on the back of the fabric. Some embroiderers prefer to fix them at once. As for me, I usually do it when all the work (or at least half of it) is already done. To fix dozens of ribbon tails at once is far easier for two reasons:

- you can connet them together, thus saving your time;

- before you start doing the job, prepare some 5 to 10 threaded embroidery needles at the ready. Thus it would be no need to re-thread your needles. Just pick up another needle and continue the work.


Use one strand of stranded cotton thread to do the job.


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Step 6. Work order. Which part of the design is suposed to be stitched first? There are no strict rules on that matter. Just mind that e.g. the leaves that go underneath flower petals should be worked first (and then you stitch the petals and cover them). That rule was observed e.g. when embroidering this design.


If you have a kit for silk ribbon embroidery, there usually comes instructions with detailed step-by-step directions. Here is an example.


The image below shows one of the ways of stitching sunflowers: you can start either with petals or with flower centre, depending on which stitches you are going to use. Think it ower and follow your intuition to find out a more comfortable way!


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Step 7. Author`s tip. Keep all the ribbon leftovers you get during stitching. Sort them out into two boxes (for shorter ribbons, about 5cm long and longer ones). Use them for your future ribbonwork designs, to have a try on dying silk ribbon, to study ribbon stitches and/or to develope new ribbon embroidery techniques of your own!


You will find more ideas on how to use ribbon leftovers (about thirty of them!!!) in The Seasons in Ribbon Embroidery book, available from our web site. Enjoy!


Until then - Happy stitching and...

...see you soon in My Blog again!