Stitching small lettering

Need a new hostess gift idea? How about my cheerful and oh-so-practical Recipe Tea Towel.  It’s embroidered with a yummy chocolate peanut butter mug cake recipe on the front and trimmed with pretty strips of cotton print. It makes a great hostess gift. All you need is your embroidery sewing machine and a tea towel in a solid color.

In trying to get the recipe into an embroidery design, the right size to fit the tea towel, I had to go to some fairly small lettering. I also used a script font to avoid as many of the dreaded jump stitches as possible. Now I know what some of you are going to say, "Snez I don't have to worry about jump stitches cause my embroidery sewing machine has auto trim".  And to that I say, have you noticed the back of the embroidery? Yikes, there are bird's nests at every trim. The auto trim command may be fine for embroideries where you don't see the back, but for a tea towel, I am afraid that you should probably turn off that handy dandy function.

Now back to the small lettering. Google "stitching small lettering", and you'll get a long list of sites with lots of great tips. Some of the information is very technical and some is very basic, but all extremely helpful. If you plan on stitching lots of items with small lettering then go right ahead and Google away, you may want the extra information. If you want to just get through this project, here are the highlights:

1.    Use a small embroidery needle; size 75 or smaller. I like the Schmetz embroidery needles for stitching small lettering. Normally I use Inspira embroidery needle; in fact I buy them in bulk. But for this project Schmetz is better. The tip of the needle is smaller than the Inspira, even in the same size.

2.    Use a fine thread. With very small lettering you may want to use a 50 or 60wt rayon embroidery thread. For this project 40wt rayon is fine.

3.    Stitch on good quality, finely woven, smooth fabric. You don't want a fabric with an obvious open weave or slub; and certainly no terry, fleece or velvet.

With all these tips, I hope you'll try the Recipe Tea Towel for your next hostess gift giving.