New Contour-Cut Outs Alphabet from Fancy Jumbles

     Individual characters (letters, numbers and punctuation marks) from my alphabets can
be found on my Stock Design Page.  My designs are also available in packs, as described in
this blog.  Those can be found here.  For designs and packs available in multiple sizes,
choose the size you want in the drop down menu box.

     I have lately been hearing a lot about embossed embroidery designs.  In such a design it is the area surrounding a letter or name that is covered with thread rather than the letter or name itself.  When a plush fabric such as terry cloth or fleece is compressed by the stitching, the unstitched area inside pops out in contrast.

     This type of design often has a very high stitch count, as the fill for the background area is fairly dense.  Satin stitches around the perimeter and the edge of the inner design add even more stitches.  I have seen designs for the 100 x 100 mm hoop that have more than 10,000 stitches.  The look is lovely, but I wanted something quicker.

     Once again, I turned to the contour fill pattern my digitizing software offers.  I started with a tall hexagon and added a monospace font. (Monospace means that each letter is the same width.  Since the hexagons are all the same width I thought the letters should be, too.)  I named the alphabet Contour Cut-Outs since the letters appear to be cut out from the contour fill with scissors.

CAB cc on fleece

     I just had to play with the variegated threads I love.  The KCS design is stitched with a Robison-Anton thread and the CAB with Superiors Rainbows.  I prefer the all-over color of my initials but many others (including my friend KCS) prefer the look of the bands created by the longer intervals of color.

2 varis

     I also tried the Superior thread on white terry cloth.  Since I forgot to use a soluble topper for the embroidery, the loops peek through the embroidery, but it still gives a very nice look.  The tone on tone version shown with it isn't quite as bold.

b on terry twice

     Here is Lacy enjoying her fleece awning.  I arranged her name and stitched it in the diagonal corner of the fleece.  What better home can a cat want?  To embellish a similar blanket (for pet or human), fold one corner diagonally and lightly mark the fold.  Use a ruler to mark a centering line perpendicular to the first, making sure the space is wide enough for the design you have arranged.  If you prefer, you can print a template and use that for determining the position for your design.  Stitch and enjoy.


     Seeking feedback, I shared my new alphabet with a few friends.  One of them suggeted that a rectangular block would also be nice.  It does give a very different look, doesn't it?  I named this version Contour Cut-Outs Rectangle.


     Both alphabets are available 35 and 45 millimeters wide.  The rectangular blocks are about twice the width in height and the hexagons are slightly taller.  I kept the blocks small so that a reasonable number of letters can fit in a hoop.  Six 35mm or five 45mm letters will fit in a 240mm wide hoop.  (If there is enough interest in larger blocks, I will be happy to create them later on.)

     In addition to upper case and lower case letters, numbers and punctuation, I also include a club, a diamond, a heart, a spade and a flower.  A pound sign (#) will allow fun embellishment for guest towels:  #1, #2, etc. will help your guests identify the towels they used.

     Click here to view the complete collections.  You can also download a sample letter and a guide to using this alphabet.

Comments (8) -



jeanclarence 7/23/2009 1:14:43 PM

I downloaded the sample of the cut out letters fancy jumbles.  It took 1 hour to download. Than when I tried to get them it said     archives not supported   I am unable to get them  What do I do?     Jean Ross

Victoria and Pat,

Thank you for your kind words.


I have passed along your download problem.  Someone from Support will contact you directly.

The download should not have taken that long.  I will let you know what I learn.  Have you tried re-downloading the files?


danvillegirl 8/9/2009 4:02:06 PM

Just came across your blog from SE Digest group.  Like the embossing embroidery.  Just started hearing this term and your post was helpful.


I was happy to be able to explain embossing to you.  It is a fun look.  Have you tried stitching any embossed designs yet?  I am not a member of the SE group, so I thank whoever posted the link to my blog.  I went straight from the Designer I to the Designer Diamond and love it!


Was Support able to help with your download problem?


Hi Carol, I was just made aware of your talents by Mary Conley  (my cousin-in-law)  I am very into embroidery and so appreciate your creativity..........thanks for doing Lacy justice  :>)  Ginny....   will be keeping track of your projects..........Thank you .... PS ,  are you able to digitize for DST or CND formats??  I do not digitize----I have 2 Tajima Neos ............

Hi, Ginny

Thank you for your kind words about my blog and designs.  Lacy does look cozy with her embroidered awning, doesn't she?  My software allows conversion to DST but not to CND.  I have not heard of that format.

Digitizing takes a little practice but is not really difficult.  One of the best ways to learn is to watch good designs stitch out.  You can see the choices made and try to figure out what makes those choices work.


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