Basic machine embroidery tools for beginners

Basic machine embroidery tools for beginners

Must-have tools and materials to help achieve embroidery success


Most machines have at least one hoops and we offer additional hoop sizes for purchase. The hoop size depends on sewing field, so check contact your machine dealer to find out hoops available in other sizes. The larger the hoop, the larger the design what can be stitched. However, for best results take hoop size as close as possible to the size of choosing design.

Embroidery hoops


Most embroidery threads are thicker than universal thread and provides better coverage when embroidering designs.

Rayon (viscose) threads have a very high gloss, but fragile, making the threads larger breakage during embroidery and not bleach resistant. It is nice for art embroidery.

Rayon (viscose) threads

Polyester thread is best for washed often items or with bleach because it is bleach resistant and will not fade.

Special polyester thread for embroidery available in many colors and has creating three-sided threads more reflective surface that shines almost as good as the rayon embroidery thread.

Cotton thread also use for embroidery machines. Cotton FSL lace looks like vintage handmade crochet lace.


 Use thinner thread in the bobbin than in the needle. Big bobbin threads are 60 wt. Difference in the weight helps to pull the needle thread purl fabric and makes the design looks laconic and professional.

The bobbin thread does not have to be the same as the needle thread, as it does not appear on the right side of the fabric. Usually a white bobbin thread is used, but when sewing on dark fabrics, select a black bobbin thread.

It is more profitable to buy bobbin thread for 5000 yards of cones because it is cheaper and often used in sewing. I prefer 15000 m cones by Gunold (about 16400 yards).

I prefer 15000 m cones by Gunold (about 16400 yards).


Use a needle specifically designed for embroidery. The embroidery needle’s eye is larger than the universal needle’s eye. Large eye let prevents thread chafing when embroidering at high speed.

Usually 80/12 is suitable for most projects, but always select a needle size according to the fabric. The lighter the fabric, the smaller the needle, and the heavier the fabric, the larger the needle.


Titanium needles last longer but they are more expensive. Choose the titanium needles when using adhesive-backed stabilizers. The titanium coating helps prevent the needles from gumming up.


Stabilizer is an urgently needed purchase after thread and needles.

You should buy al least tear-away and water-soluble stabilizers.

The tear-away stabilizer is universal. It suits for a variety of fabrics projects.

The tear-away stabilizer

The water-soluble stabilizer used for freestanding lace embroidery (FSL). It can be a topper for fluffy fabrics and items such as towels to prevent stitches from getting caught in the pile of the fabric. There are two different kinds of water-soluble stabilizer, one looks a little more like fabric, another has  plastic appearance. I prefer the first.

water-soluble stabilizer

Also you can purchase cut-away stabilizer. It is good for stretchy or knits fabrics.

All used stabilizers must be of high quality. The result of the embroidery depends on it.


Embroidery glue is not the first choice for an embroiderer. But it can help when working with difficult fabrics.

Apply a temporary spray adhesive and selected stabilizer to the wrong side of the fabric to prevent the fabric layers from shifting during embroidery.

Embroidery glue

I saw an advice to glue the two layers together before attaching them to the fabric if you are using two layers of stabilizer. But I never do this because I think it’s unnecessary.


– Snips with curved tips or small scissors to cut off thread tails.

small scissors

– Painter’s tape. It is wonderful to use when you stitch “In The Hoop” cases with zipper. It holds the attached details in place and easy remove after embroidering.

– Marking pen (pencil) to make center lines for correct design placement.

Marking pen

– A special foot “Q” for the embroidery machine. Great if you have it.

foot “Q” for the embroidery machine

– Pins. They are used to pin the FSL designs before rinsing the water-soluble stabilizer.


Enjoy machine embroidery!

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