How to Choose the Right Fabric for Your Embroidery Project

There is nothing that makes a garment shine like embroidery. Embroidered flowers, a name, or a simple design can take an everyday project and make it a spectacular piece of art. The thread and fabric you choose will make all the difference in the world. Satin, metallic, and vibrant colored thread will bring out the best in your embroidered work. You must be aware of the fabric choices you choose. You want your fabric to accentuate your the thread and design. They have to work together seamlessly. So, how should you choose your fabric?

It’s All About the Weight

The weight of your fabric is crucial for your projects success. The weight you choose is determined by the design you plan to create. You cannot, for example, embroider a bouquet of flowers with shiny buttons attacked on a piece of chiffon. The design will be too heavy for the fabric to support it. The fabric you choose needs to withstand the weight of your design and the weight of the thread. It also needs to be a fabric that will prevent the thread from bleeding through. You do not want the thread to show through the fabric distracting from the design.

Thread Weight

Thread weight varies according to what it is made out of. You can use silk, yarn, cotton, nylon, ribbon, and various others. Each type of thread has it’s own weight and the heavier the weight of the thread, the heavier the design will be as it comes together. You must consider the heaviness that will be created by your design and the thread in order to ensure your design will sit properly on your garment.


Believe it or not, the type of stitching you use will be affected by your fabric choice. Stitches created by a heavyweight thread will require heavy fabrics. Lightweight stitches with lightweight thread can be used on all types of fabrics especially lightweight fabrics like silks.

Fabric Weaves

Fabric weaves can enhance your work or completely swallow it whole. Imagine you have a fabric that is super plush and you use a light, thin thread. Your design will be lost in the plushness of the fabric. Pay attention to the weave of your fabrics. Heavy fabrics like velvets and thick fleece are great for ribbons and thick threads. Fabrics with loose weaves will not catch the thread very well. If you are going to use a loose weave fabric, it is best to use a large thread or ribbon anything smaller will not work. Close fabrics will take both an embroidery thread and ribbons.

Embroidery projects are a beautiful way to enhance any garment. The fabric you choose has to work well with the thread and design you are putting together. It is best to match the fabric to the thread correctly in order to save yourself the time it takes to take the project apart and redo it.