Have you noticed the embroidered jeans trend that’s being going on in recent years?
I have wanted to try this for so long but have been hesitant to try a lot of the embroidery positioning that I’ve seen. I think to make this feature work you need to be careful not to go overboard. I decided on embroidering one back pocket, the idea being that it’s enough to be a feature and is also a removable part of my jeans so if i get sick of it I can easily remove the pocket and sew a new one on. This is a great option if you are worried about fully committing to embroidering your handmade jeans.
I thought I’d walk you through the process I used and a few tricks I figured out along the way and some suggestions for where to find great embroidery designs!
The first thing I did was to find a great embroidering pattern. I knew I wanted a floral arrangement that was traditional but updated and I did a lot of hunting without finding exactly what I was looking for. Don’t you hate it when that happens? Sometimes I really hate having a super specific vision of what i want. Finally I did a call for help on Instagram stories and received so many amazing embroidery designer suggestions. After which I immediately fell in love with Thread Folk! Libby is a super lovely Aussie designer and all of her designs really just fit my personal tastes so perfectly. Her floral spray design was love at first sight and exactly what I was looking for – as an added bonus it’s the perfect size for the Dawn jeans back pocket!
Here are a few other embroidery designers who were recommended to me:
- Lark Rising
- Cozy Blue Handmade
- Sarah K Benning
- Thread Folk
- Sublime Stitching
- Gulush Threads
- Miniature Rhino
- The Embroidered Garden by Kazuko Aoki
- Tiny Stitches by Irem Yazici
- Embroidered Garden Flowers by Kazuko Aoki
- A Year of Embroidery by Yumiko Higuchi
- Florals By Hand by Alli Koch
- Zacca Embroidery by Yumiko Higuchi
If you have any other great suggestions let me know in the comments!
Next up I traced the design onto some tissue paper. Ordinarily I would draw the design straight onto the fabric with either pencil or disappearing marker using the window as a light box – but the denim was so thick this wasn’t working at all. If I had been more patient I think a better solution would have been water soluble stabilizer unfortunately my local sewing store didn’t have any, and I didn’t want to wait weeks to receive an online order – i wanted to embroider right now dammit!
I placed the tissue paper over the pocket, and inserted them into the embroidery hoop. I then embroidered directly on top of the tissue paper.
I did have to be careful as the tissue paper tore quite easily – you can see a few tears above – but by being careful I was able to get through the entire design without any distress.
Once I was done I tore away as much tissue paper as I could, and then careful removed the remaining tissue behind stitches with the tweezers that came with my overlocker. This worked really well and was an oddly satisfying task.
I used a 6″ (150mm) embroidery hoop and you can see how the pocket just fit it. If I was to do this again I would recommend cutting a larger piece of denim, doing your embroidery, then cutting your back pocket. Just so you have a bit more fabric to secure in the hoop.
After completely removing all tissue I gave the design a good press.
If you were using water soluble stabilizer you would simply need to wet your design and the stabilizer disappears. Magic!
After spending half the weekend on this one back pocket – I can’t remember the exact number of hours, but it felt like a whole lazy Saturday – I decided to take an extra step to protect my embroidery and help it last longer.
I am definitely a hands in back pockets kind of person – and though I had done my best to be neat on the wrong side, I was worried about the damage constantly putting my hands in pocket whilst wearing jewellery would do to the back of the design.
I decided to enclose the back of the design with some basic cotton. I cut some scrap fabric and sewed it to the wrong side of the pocket using a 1/2″ seam allowance.
Finally I attached the pocket on the right leg as per the instructions!
I’ve washed these jeans a few times already and the embroidery still looks brand new.
I hope I’ve convinced you to give embroidering your jeans a go! It’s such a fun way to personalise your handmade Dawn jeans or even an existing pair of jeans that need a freshen up!
// LOOKING FOR MORE DAWN POSTS? //
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- How to adjust rise
- How to lengthen or shorten the inseam
- How to sew flat felled seams
- Fly front
- How to sew a button fly
- How to sew an exposed button fly
- Front pockets
- How to finish pocket bags with french seams
- Back pockets, yoke, and back seam
- Inseam and side seams
- Belt loops and waistband
- Buttonhole and hem
- How to install rivets and jeans buttons
- How to distress denim
- Tips for embroidering jeans