I've been a hand embroidery expert for years and years, but I notice
that a lot of people are switching to the machine embroidery. Before I
invest the money I'd like your opinions about which you prefer and why.
On 18 May 2005 17:47:35 -0700, "Annie"
I can see certain applications for machine embroidery, but very few.
What can compare with the hand embroidery feeling of peace and well
being? Not something I would find with the whirr of a machine -
Machine embroidery can emulate but never produce the beautiful work of
hand embroidery. Not even close. I just purchased a table runner from
China with machine embroidery and a border of simulated drawn thread
work. Every day I sit at the kitchen table I look at that and think how
much nicer it would have been if done by hand. In the first place, the
threads used in hand embroidery are in relief against the ground.
I think machine embroidery is useful in "quick" situations. I have a
friend who sells christening gowns and other baby items which are
machine embroidered. She simply couldn't command the price that hand
embroidery would entail. Customers are happy. But it's not the same,
and she admits it. Her comments are, she sits back and does other
things while the machine whizzes in the background. Hand embroidery is
a pleasureable pursuit where you are at one with the project as opposed
to disconnected from it. Not that you can't get creative if you
purchase all the bells and whistles (not cheap).
In the end, it will depend upon how you wish to spend your time.
I am going to respond to this prior to reading the other answers
because I very strongly am pro hand embroidery compared with machine.
I have happily worked on my skill since a child so almost 40 years and
the last thing I made for a gift, they actually said it looked so
perfect that they wondered if I did this with a machine. That is a
compliment for the unknowledgeable. But those of us who know about
this skill, one can never ever get them confused. Hand embroidery is
absolutely beautiful compared with machine embroidery. When i bought
my new sewing machine I chose the very best below the embroidery
machines. I will not use them and did not buy one. Barbie
It's up to you. Are you going to be trying to make money at your
embroidery machine, or are you just doing it for enjoyment? If you
want to try it, go ahead. If you do hand embroidery for the process,
or because you like doing it, you may not be happy with an embroidery
machine. If you just want to do nice stitchy-work on clothing, or
embellish pre-made items, an embroidery machine may be just fine for
Hand and machine embroidery are very different beasts, and the only
real similarity is that they both use a needle and thread to make a
design on fabric.
Some people feel that they cannot embroider by hand (usually because
they aren't willing to put in the time and effort necessary to become
proficient at it), but are willing to put forth a similae amount of
time and effort to make a machine do a pattern for them. (of course,
once they've got the pattern defined, they can do it over and over
agian with very little additional work.)
I have seen some really nice embroidery come out of a machine. It's
not hand embroidery, doesn't look like it. It is, however, quite
pretty, and in some cases it's perfect for the item. In other cases,
it looks like the embroiderer wanted to show off all the capabilities
of her/his machine, and put too much on. But that's a matter of taste
as much as anything else.
Jenn Ridley : email@example.com
WIP: Water Lilies, Rose Trio, Be Mine, Emperor's Coat II, Carousel
Most recently Finished: Romance, Halloween Circle, Always be a Wildflower
Well, I do both types of embroidery. There is a place for both
IMNSHO. I do lots of stuff for the SMDGD -- mostly Elmo designs. No
way would I spend the time & energy hand embroidering Elmo on a t-shirt
for the kiddo when I know she will only wear it for 2 or 3 months
before growing out of it! That would be a total waste of my time &
energy. On a *special* item of clothing -- a holiday dress, etc. -- I
would do the hand work. I also use my machine to embroider holiday
hand towels and embellish my everyday bath towels. I also have special
holiday hand towels that I have hand embroidered -- it all just depends
on the design, time constraints, etc.
I did machine embroidery on a set of six holiday finger tip towels
that I donated to a silent auction. I knew that the machine embroidery
would likely get a higher bid than hand work since few people in the
general population around here appreciate hand work. If you want to
make something that will appeal to the "common" person (I was going to
say man but didn't want to start a flame war!!) then I think machine
embroidery "sells" better. People are more familiar with it than with
I have done hand embroidery on daily use kitchen linens and will do
it again. I guess, for me, there are just some things that "speak" to
me and I do 't care if it's hand embroidery or machine embroidery. If
I like the look of the design then I will stitch it using whatever
method I deem to be best.
Just remember, if you are serious about getting an embroidery
machine, they are very $$$$ for a decent one. My friend has a Brother
which cost her about $1,500 & she's had nothing but problems with it.
I have a Janome 9000 which The Babies bought me for Mother's Day 5
years ago. At the time, it was a $4,000 top of the line machine and I
haven't had any problems with it and I have used it a LOT! With
embroidery machines, you DO get what you pay for!
So -- bottom line, IMNSHO, there's a place for BOTH types of
embroidery. As Mirjam said -- they are both fruits but one's an apple
and the other's an orange. One will never take the place of the other,
that's for sure and my all time favourite is still hand work :-)!
PAX, Tia Mary
As someone who does both, I wouldn't call either one a replacement of
the other. Just like I couldn't see crochet vs. knitting being a
Both have their uses. Machine embroidery is great for personalizing
gifts for others, for repetitive stuff (like motifs on a window
valence), and things you know will get a lot of wear (like kids
clothes). Hand embroidery serves it's purposes as well.
Machine is more product oriented, while I find hand is process.
Granted, I inherited my embroidery machine...I probably would not have
On 18 May 2005 17:47:35 -0700, "Annie"
>I've been a hand embroidery expert for years and years, but I notice
>that a lot of people are switching to the machine embroidery. Before I
>invest the money I'd like your opinions about which you prefer and why.