The hand-embroidered monogram I’ve been working up on a guest towel is finally finished! The whole point of this “little” project was to work it up as a class sample, so I tracked the statistics on it so I would know how to gauge our class time and our supplies. So here’s the finished product, with the final statistics on how long it took to embroidery the piece, how much thread, etc.
Time-wise, it took me about 8 hours and 15 minutes to embroider the monogram. A little bit of that time was taken up in removing stitches (I started with the wrong sized thread, for example, and at another point, I didn’t like the shape of some of the petals on the ornamentation, so I took those out, too). The majority of the time was just regular stitching, though. I didn’t rush, really, and, looking back on the project now, I think I could’ve sped it up a bit if there had been any real pressure to get it done faster.
After I finished the embroidery, I filled a glass bowl with cool water and rinsed the piece. I let it soak about 10 minutes, and then smoothed it onto a towel to dry.
Before it was completely dry (still a little damp), I ironed it, wrong side up, on several layers of flannel covered with a pillow case. It’s important, especially with any raised embroidery like this, to place the piece on something well-padded when you iron, in order to avoid crushing the stitches.
Now, keep in mind that, as a guest towel, it is reasonable that this thing will have to be washed. So I didn’t treat it with any kind of ginger care or anything. I treated it like a household linen that would go through a regular washing and ironing process! The only exception is padding the surface of the ironing board really well, and ironing on the wrong side of the work.
After it was all ironed and ready to show off, I took it outside to photograph it, since the light was pretty good!
And there’s the completed piece. I do like the natural colored linen. I was thinking I might touch up that drawn thread edge with white stitching, just to set it off, but perhaps not. It might look too “accented,” if you know what I mean! What do you think?
And here’s a close up.
Overall, I’m pleased with the way it turned out. It’s always a good thing to work through a project that you’re going to be teaching, so that you can know what points will need careful instruction and so forth. So I’m glad I managed to work up the whole sample. It isn’t perfect, which is good – so I know the pitfalls when I teach the monogram!
By the way, I used about 35 strands of #20 coton a broder, and the strands were about 14″ long, so about 13.6 yards of thread (I think that’s about half a skein, maybe…)
Now, I’m off to prepare for my Monday morning class, which is the youngest group of children. I spent days and days last week (it seemed like years and years) tracing designs on towels, ironing, separating threads, and on and on. And here it is, Monday morning, and guess what? I’m not ready! Aaaack!
I’ll be showing you some other samples and classwork along the way. Hope you enjoyed the monogram!
You can follow this project step by step with the following links:
Part I – Setting up, transferring design, discussion of supplies, and beginning the stitching.
Part II – Continuing the stitching, discussion on working padded satin stitch, stitches used, and some trouble-shooting.
Part III – Discussing taking the curves with satin stitch: how to work around the tight curves in a monogram, stitch direction, and so forth.