Mylar and Embroidery

Embroidery is always trying to do new and different things.  My mother's embroidery was limited essentially to linens, some decorating and clothing.  Now we embroider on screen doors, wood and just about anything that does not move or require food.  I wonder when someone will figure out how to embroider on spider webs. . . .

Mylar is actually a trademark name which is a polyester made in extremely thin sheets of great tensile strength and used for recording tapes, insulating film, fabrics.  Mylar can be purchased at art or craft stores.  It mostly comes in rolls and will be terrific for holiday projects.  Additionally, it reflects light, and if you have a houseplant that needs more light, you can (according to the ads I read) reflect extra light to it with the Mylar.

Mylar in embroidery is not new, but it does require some thought if it is to be successful.  The first issue is that Mylar designs look a lot like an appliqué but do have one difference.  That change is that the ‘field' stitching needs to be on the sparse side.  A field can be small like a quarter inch by a quarter inch or large like a significant portion of a design.  If the field stitching covers the Mylar, then the twinkle is gone.

The Download Designs area has so many excellent designs.  I saw about 5 good candidates for the mylar technique just in the florals category.  Do you remember my blog on The Bean Stitch?  I saw some patterns in the floral that were probably bean stitched as well.  It really pays to be an AnnTheGran embroiderer and member of her club as well.

Begin by doing the same thing as we would do for an applique; follow the directions and do the first 5 colors.



Next, we add the mylar.  Mine has a crinkle to it but is muted in the colors.  Next time, I am going for more color, but I love the irridescent too. 



After stitching the initial outline, I am pleased that the Mylar did not shred or tear.  And when I went to remove the excess from the design, it did tear away nicely.  I like that!  I did not have to carefully cut away the Mylar - less work for me.



The next stitching is the inside of the petals.  It is delicate.  I think the next time I will use a darker color for the same color, making an accent more visible.



The edging is a satin stitch applique.



At this point, I considered leaving the inside of the daisy unfinished.  But I did want to see the whole, completed design.  I was even happier with the finished project.  So much detail in the center!


Give it a try yourself.  In person, it really looks like you have used metallic thread.  Since we know what a challenge that metallic threads can be, this is an excellent option.  Just a few ideas where this would be really interesting:

I could just go on and on.   

Comments (6) -

carolvellacott 9/18/2010 7:17:08 AM

fantastic embroidery grand daughter loved it on her tee shirt thank you for the design Carol from the UK

Love the design.  Where can I buy mylar?  Thank you

Beautifuly done - will have to try this - thank you!

i would love to try this ,it looks beautiful.cheri

Very nice!

Mylar can also be purchased at Michaels Craft stores. I love the look this gives. I have other designs that I want to try mylar on, but alas, it is one of many projects waiting to be done.

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