Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Hand Embroidered Monogram: Delicate Spray A-C


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It’s time to add a new monogram alphabet for hand embroidery to the embroidery patterns page!

I love this particular alphabet! It’s from the late 1800’s – early 1900’s (it came out in two different editions of a French publication). I’ve cleaned it up and added the missing letters from the alphabet (I and W… or was it J and W?).

Often, in old publications that offered alphabets for hand embroidery, certain letters were left out.

Sometimes, it was the I or J, because they can be interchanged for each other. Sometimes, the W was left out, because the M could be flipped. Sometimes, the alphabets are missing X’s or Z’s – maybe because there aren’t as many people out there whose names begin with X and Z? Or perhaps because, in the particular language in which the embroidery pamphlet was printed, the letter didn’t figure as a common letter for the beginning of names?

Whatever the case, eventually, the complete alphabet will be available here on Needle ‘n Thread. We’ll start with A, B, and C.

Monogram for Hand Embroidery - A - Floral

I call this particular set of monograms “Delicate Spray.”

Back in the day, decorative alphabets were not actually named. But it helps me keep things in order if I give the alphabets a name.

They’re kind of like kids or pets – if you didn’t name them, how would you ever refer to them?!

In any case, this one is Delicate Spray in the files because it features some delicate little sprays of flowers.

Monogram for Hand Embroidery - B - Floral

The alphabet would look very pretty in any kind of monogramming technique – padded satin stitch, other simpler line stitches, even shadow work.

Monogram for Hand Embroidery - C - Floral

If you wanted to get really fancy, you could even swing it in goldwork.

Yikes! That just came out – I hadn’t thought about it before, the juices are flowing…

Monograms for Hand Embroidery – Printables

If you’d like to print these letters for your files, or save them to your computer, here are the links to the individual PDFs for each letter. On each PDF, you’ll find three sizes: 1.5″ high, 3″ high, and 4″ high. If you turn off the scaling options on your computer, the letters should print at those sizes.

If you want to change the sizes of the letters, use the scaling feature in your printers settings, or use a photocopy machine.

Monogram for Hand Embroidery – Delicate Spray A (PDF)
Monogram for Hand Embroidery – Delicate Spray B (PDF)
Monogram for Hand Embroidery – Delicate Spray C (PDF)

Favorite Monograms – PDF Collection

You’ll find this complete alphabet – along with 15 other decorative alphabets – all in one place in Favorite Monograms, a downloadable PDF collection of 16 monogram alphabets perfect for hand embroidery and other crafts.

Favorite Monograms for Hand Embroidery and Other Crafts

In the photo above, you can see samples of each alphabet available in Favorite Monograms.

Each letter in each alphabet in Favorite Monograms has been carefully traced into a clean line drawing that can be easily enlarged or reduced on a home printer or a photocopier.

The 16-alphabet collection is delivered as via a download link to your inbox shortly after purchase, so that you can begin creating right away! Priced at less than $1.00 per complete alphabet, monogram lovers can’t go wrong with this collection!

Favorite Monograms is available in my shop, here.


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(28) Comments

  1. OH YES! I found the other monograms here, lovely, but a bit intimidating for someone with my mediocre skills. These look so very FRIENDLY. Also gorgeous of course. I can’t wait to see the K!

  2. Miss Mary!!

    Thank you! I can’t wait for my skills to “mature” so I can work these beautiful monograms.

    Time to practice. ­čÖé

  3. Dear Mary

    I do like monograms and the Delicate Spray design monograms are very pretty and you say they are delicate silk threads come to mind. Thanks for giving us the opportunity of embroidering these lovely monograms and I hope you have a lovely weekend.

    Regards Anita Simmance

  4. Many, many years ago there was an embroidery service that would sell you your particular monogram as you chose from about 24 different alphabets. The sample from each alphabet was the “Q” most likely because there are so few people that need a “Q,” they wouldn’t lose a sale by those that would just copy the sample. Trivia…..

  5. Mary, do you know the Pattern Maker site? The site owner has scanned an enormous number of 19th century pattern books, mostly French, and has even re-charted the cross-stitch patterns. A wonderful resource library of over-the-top decorative alphabets – your delicate floral spray is very restrained. http://patternmakercharts.blogspot.com.au/

    1. Yes, I’ve written about it and I often recommend it to people looking for especially cross stitch alphabets.

      Well, restrained or not, I like it – I think it’s pretty and delicate, and sometimes, a restrained alphabet is more suitable – just depends on personal tastes.

    2. Delicate and restrained are compliments, not insults! Your alphabet is elegant and graceful, whereas it would be hard to find a place to use some of the excessively florid designs.

  6. tengo hilos de sedaque guardo celosamente en un cajon, y ├ęsta es la oportunidad que esperaba. gracias muchas gracias se├▒ora. felicitaciones por su elegante blog.

  7. Thank you, Mary. I love the idea of monograms but sadly don’t get much opportunity to use them. Still, as someone once said, hope springeth eternal….

  8. Marie,
    Beautiful monogram, thank you…… I dare not speak of white embroidery …. In seeking satin stitch, I found your alternative chain, it’s really great as a point. I wondered if it was not possible to put under the satin stitch point chain for more relief and it is easier for the stems to the letter are fairly thin.Good sunday.

  9. Hi Mary, this could just be the ‘A’ I’ve been looking for, for a project I have in mind. So lovely! Thank you for sharing these.

  10. Hello Mary!
    I just started initials and monograms. With thread “├á broder” n┬░30 I find it’s still too big yet my fabric is not very fine. Why do I have this unbalance between thread and fabric?
    Also I saw on ebay a box of n┬░12 floche from a defunct brand. It looks beautiful and undamaged but I don’t know how fine n┬░12 is, what kind of fabric it is suitable for, fine or coarse? Is this number like the numbers for Perl├ę, that go from 5, 8, to 12? Is the series of numbers for lace crochet a different system, as it also has 5,8 then goes 20, 30, 50 up to 100 and 120?
    Thank you for any lights on this subject.

    1. Hi, Brigitte – the higher the number, the finer the thread. #12 is a slightly heavier thread than regular floche, I would guess, since standard floche is a size 16.

      If you’re embroidering a small letter, the thread may seem too heavy. You could always try using regular stranded cotton if your design is small and delicate.

  11. Dear Mary,
    The Delicate Spray monograms are delightful. Thank you.
    I have a question for you. I have been visiting http://elisabettaricami.blogspot.com.br/
    She does a GORGEOUS satin stitch monogram. They seem VERY raised to me. I have been experimenting with padding to try to achieve this look, but the padding keeps getting bulky. I have used a layer of split stitch, straight stitch, and split stitch again, always using the technique that minimizes the bulk in the back, but still is not high enough. Any suggestions for me?
    Thank you for everything you do!!

    1. Hi, Fay – you might look up a technique called “trailing”. This involves satin stitching over laid string, and adding or removing strings as you want the line to thicken or thin out. Also, there’s a figure-8 filling technique that might do it for you, but it’s kind of hard to explain…. With elisabetta’s work, I’d guess trailing, anyway. -MC

    2. Fay I have seen some Italian embroidery books where they make the padding with chain stitches. They also do it with lines of running stitches very closely aligned where they take very little fabric and on the surface make a long stitch.

      The Dilmont Encyclopaedia (free to d/l from project Gutenberg) shows padded scallopped edges where the padding stitches are layered on top of each other with the top layer smaller than the bottom one, according to the volume that is sought.

  12. Hello Mary,
    A while ago someone asked how to build up the padding for monogram embroidery. It was on another thread…
    and I just saw how you make “heavy chain stitch”, and since chain stitch is one of the methods for padding a motif or letter, the heavy kind is even better!

  13. Hi Mary,

    I just wanted to share the monograms that I got from you … after I embroidered them, but I don’t see where I can upload a photo.

    Thanks anyway,

  14. I’ve been using this set of monograms to make sets of pillowcases for my sons. I’ve changed them up a little though and they are coming out very nice! Instead of using all the lines of the letters (to make a wide letter), I’m using just one line in backstitch and they come out a little more swirly. I start with the inside of the globy end of the letter you have, to to make a small swirl and go around the outside edge of each of the letters. Sometimes, I’ve had to gradually switch over to the inside edge of the letter and sometimes I haven’t. I’ve also done the flowers with one lazy daisy stitch inside another, to make a fuller, filled in petal for the flowers. I haven’t decided whether or not to make a center for the flowers with a french knot at this point, since each of the letters are looking pretty good the way they are right now. I wish there was a way for me to send you a photo of the projects we make, to make it easier for people to understand descriptions of what I’ve done. Hopefully you’ll be able to understand! lol
    Thanks for sharing these monograms. I’ve got a son that doesn’t like a whole lot of flowers on the designs I create for him and these may just work for him too.

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