Fun Ways To Celebrate National Embroidery Month

February is recognised for different things, Valentines Day, Black History Month or if you’re into food, Nutella Day (the 5th if you’re interested). However, did you know, it’s also National Embroidery Month?

So just for fun, here are 20 ideas to help you celebrate National Embroidery Month!

1.  Work in Progress:  Select one embroidery project that you have in progress and finish it by the end of the month.

2.  What about trying stitching on something other than fabric – have a go on paper.

3.  Re-organise all your threads, needles and notions.                      

4.  Make something new with your embroidery, if you normally frame your work, what about stitching on a pillow or tote bag.

5.  Treat yourself.  Buy a new tool you’ve been wanting.  A new pair of scissors or needle minder.  The Hemline Gold range is created with environmental consciousness in mind.  No plastic and fully recyclable packaging.

6.  Set yourself a time just for you to stitch.  Don’t be distracted.  Make it a quiet moment for you.  Listen to your favourite music, have a glass of your favourite tipple.

7.  Challenge yourself to learn about different types of embroidery.  Have a go at counted, gold work, blackwork, traditional embroidery or sashiko.

8.  What about experimenting with some freehand embroidery.

9.  Invest in a sit-on embroidery frame – perfect to free up your hands.

10. Maybe present your work in a different way.  If you always display your stitchery in a hoop, maybe frame it or stretch it over a canvas frame.

11.  Have a go with different threads, have a go with silk ribbons or tapestry wool.

12.  Embellish a garment or bag.  Or cover a stain or tear.

13.  Enhance a project with sequins, beads or crystals.

14. If you have time, what about setting yourself a challenge – stitch a new project each month.

15.  Join an embroidery class.  Learn new stitches and meet new people.

16. Have a crafting evening at home and invite over a few friends for a get together.

17.  Create an embroidered gift for someone.

18. If you’re travelling, carry a small project with you and have the pleasure of stitching anywhere.

19.  Experiment turning your work into mixed media by adding painted details to your project. 

20.  Choose a new pattern to stitch from our shop.

Finally, come and visit us in store, admire our display celebrating National Embroidery Month.  Find a new kit or even a new skill and have a go!

Stitching on a New Medium

Ever considered stitching onto something other than fabric?  What about stitching on card?  In fact, you could stitch onto anything that you can make holes in – plastic, wood, even metal.

You will need:

  • Your design drawn or printed on paper.
  • A Sharp needle
  • Card in your choice of colour, 190gsm is ideal.  Thicker card is more difficult to pierce holes in, paper is too thin,
  • Scissors
  • DMC Floss
  • Craft or Masking tape
  • Pencil and rubber (optional)

Step 1:  Stick your design onto your card with masking tape.

Step 2:  Use the sharp needle to pierce holes evenly along the lines of the design.  Don’t get them too close together or the card may rip when you’re stitching and of course, keep your finger’s out of the way.

Alternatively, you could draw your design onto the card with a pencil, pierce the holes then rub out your pencil lines.

Step 3:   Thread your needle and sew.  Don’t pull your thread to tightly as the card may rip.

Use evenly spaced running stitch for lettering from start to finish and then back again to fill in the gaps.

Send your creation in a card mount as a birthday card or as a gift tag.  Even pop it in a frame.

Star Buys 28 Jan – 11 Feb 2020

Just in time for all your Valentine’s projects – Lewis & Irene’s Threaded With Love has 30% off!! A lovely collection of romantic crafty themed fabrics, plus you can find two wonderful FREE patterns using them over on the Lewis & Irene website.

Shop for Threaded With Love at £7.70 per metre

Plus 30% off this selected range of 100% craft cotton – 5 fabrics chosen to enhance your patchwork projects.

Buy them all here

Two adorable cross stitch kits from DMC’s Me To You range featuring hearts, a narwhal and a unicorn – 30% off means that for £11.80 you get everything you need to create these lovely projects.

And finally, how about some Raffia to wrap your special gifts in, or just to enhance a wonderful bouquet? Now just 75p per bundle.

Shop all our Raffia colours

All offers end 11th February 2020 and are subject to availability.

New Products For January

Amazing new products on our website for January, including DMC kits, Prym haberdashery, and the now classic book ‘Edward’s Menagerie’ by Kerry Lord.

4 wonderful kits added to our huge selection – blackwork butterfly, poppy Flower Fairy, The Kiss, and the whimsical ‘You Make My Heart Smile’

Find all our DMC kits here

Everyone still seems to be slightly bee crazy, so we’ve added two new applique trims – cheerful Bumblebees and stylish gold Honey Bees.

All our trim

The cute animals in Edward’s Menagerie are made using simple crochet techniques and the step-by-step instructions enable a complete beginner to get hooking straight away. Each animal also has a universal pattern where you can change your hook and yarn to create four different sizes, making 160 different animal possibilities.

Purchase a copy

And don’t forget our large selection of ever-growing quality Prym haberdashery!

Star Buys 23 April – 7 May

If you are thinking of buying a sewing machine make sure you talk to us first, we have some Amazing Janome Offers
with savings of up to £500 plus FREE Quilting Kits available on selected Janome models.  All machines purchased from us include 1hr FREE tuition tailored specifically for you.
Don’t delay all offers are subject to stock availability 

Janome Atelier 9 
Sewing and Embroidery Machine 
SAVE £500
Plus FREE Digitizer JR Software worth £249
Now Only £1,999 while stocks last

Pfaff Creative 1.5 
Sewing & Embroidery Machine 

SAVE £400
Now Only £999

30% off Heritage Craft Kits


Sashiko is a form of Japanese folk embroidery which uses running stitch to create a beautiful textured patterned background. Originally used to create strong repairs and produce hard-wearing home textiles, the designs are now mostly used for decorative quilting.

I’ve become slightly obsessed with Sashiko stitching after purchasing some pre-printed fabric last year. It requires a minimal amount of equipment – you just need a long sashiko needle, cotton embroidery thread, and some indigo fabric. Something hard wearing, such as a linen, seems to work best. You can use a tradition white embroidery thread, but I’ve also had good results using pale coloured variegated threads. Anything that provides a contrast to the dark background looks amazing.

The simplicity of loading the needle with running stitches and then pulling through becomes almost like a form of meditation. I’ve yet to finish my completed panels into anything worthwhile, although bags, purses and cushions are quite appealing! Perhaps eventually I’ll complete enough to make into a quilt. Simple Sashiko by Susan Briscoe has some inspirational ideas, plus instructions and tips to make your first project a success.

Susan Briscoe recommends marking out your designs using tailors chalk, although this idea can be a little nerve-racking. Templates are available to make the process easier, and work just like a stencil. Sew Easy have a great value starter kit available which contains fabric, templates, thread, needles, and a fabric pencil to mark it all out with, which seems a much simpler option.

You can find it here, along with many other Sashiko options and tools –

Star Buys 16th January 2019

10% OFF 
City Nights Collection by Lewis & Irene
With inspiration from all cities but specifically a city close to home, London. Lights twinkling from tall buildings and the bustling roads with their shiny black cabs. When the day comes to an end the city sparkles with lights thus the glimmering metallics in this collection.

NOW £12.16 per metre Offer ends 29.1.2019
Shop Star Buy Fabric

15% OFF 
Stylecraft Jeanie Aran

Stylecraft Jeanie is an exciting yarn that captures the spirit and heritage of the denim trend. Inspired by the timeless and classic hues of denim, with colours ranging from rich deep vintage indigos to lighter blues plus the addition of a pastel range including white.  Jeanie is an aran weight yarn, its cotton acrylic blend means that it is soft to the touch and it can be machine washed and tumble dried. NOW £3.44 per 100g Ball Offer ends 29.1.2019

15% OFF 
Stylecraft Jeanie Aran Patterns

Stylecraft Jeanie patterns featuring a collection of stylish ladies garments. Use the Denim shades for Winter Warmers and the pastels for early Spring Warm. NOW £2.34 each Offer ends 29.1.2019

Shop Star Buy Yarn & Patterns

10% OFF 
DMC Printed Cross Stitch Kits
NEW….. From the DMC Fashion Illustration Range
No need to stitch the black brushwork just cross stitch the pretty dresses.
All materials and needle included.NOW £14.14 each 
Offer ends 29.1.2019
Shop Star Buy DMC Kits

PLUS DKS30SE and DKS100SE models come with a FREE JQ6 Quilters Kit worth £129 and ATELIER 7 model comes with a FREE JQ7 Quilters Kit worth £185. OFFERS AVAILABLE UNTIL 31ST JANUARY 2019. All offers strictly subject to stock availability.

National Needlecraft Awards 2019

Last year was the first year for the National Needlecraft Awards, and it was such a success that it’s being presenting in 2019! The awards celebrate the most talented needlecrafters and designers, and entries are now open for next year. Awards are presented at the Knitting & Stitching Show, Kensington Olympia on 28th February 2019.

There is over a £1000 worth of prizes up for grabs including products from DMC, Purelite, Immediate Media, SewandSo, and the Royal School of Needlework. All shortlisted entries will receive a ticket to the Knitting & Stitching show.

Entries close at midnight on 4th January 2019. There are 11 categories – 9 for needlecrafters to enter themselves or nominate an entrant, and 2 Designer of the Year categories. You can enter here:

How about nominating your favourite hand embroidery tutor?

Crafting Holiday at Home

Every now and then I get asked to write the blog for Tudor Rose Patchwork.  I’m not a great blogger, my daughter knows more than I do and she’s only 14.  But then you expect a 14 year old to be a technological wizard.

I might not be a technological wiz, but I can craft.  In fact I love to create and make.  So much so that I decided to treat myself to a week off work.  The children were still and school and the husband was out at work and I had the luxury of 5 days to please myself crafting.  The washing machine did go on but there was not one garment ironed – apart from the quilt I was working on.

As well as having my sewing machine out to work on my quilt, I had yarn on the coffee table to crochet, my Pfaff Creative 1.5 embroidery machine was running 1400 stitches per minute and I finished a beaded parure.

According to Wikipedia, a parure typically consists of a combination of a matching necklace, earrings, brooch, bracelet and often a diadem or tiara.  Well mine was a mini or demiparure:  necklace, earrings and bracelet.  It was a huge project but the feeling of joy when I completed the last beaded toggle was immense.


So you have an idea of what my living space looked like.  The dining table, which when extended seats 14, was piled high.  It was so nice being able to leave everything out ready for the next day, knowing that I was coming straight back to it and not having to put things away until who knew when.

I loved being able to leave the embroidery machine set up.  It does take up quite a bit of room and I don’t have a dedicated crafting space so leaving it on the dining table for a week was marvellous.  Christmas is coming and I treated myself to a few Christmas designs.  I now have a set of 8 pristine, white napkins, each with a different design and in a different colour. 

My daughter chose purple as the colour scheme for our Christmas tree this year so we now have 5 white and purple embroidered felt decorations.  And finally, I nearly burnt out the engine creating lace bookmarks and a lace lantern.

It was a really wonderful week.  The downside, all the house work to catch up on.

Joy’s March Update

What’s been happening since my last update?

I mentioned I was crocheting mad – still am, nothing has changed there. I’ve lost count of the WIPs. There are presents for family and friends, tasks to encourage my mum back into crochet and of course, things that I just must do for me. And there’s a blanket CAL starting soon that I’ve got my eye on too. Never enough hours in the day. And I’m sure that’s the same for all of us.

My mum’s been unwell and needed to get her groove back. She tried to teach me to crochet when I was 8, then as a teenager. I was 43 before I asked her to show me again. I’ve come on leaps and bounds since then but she needed a helping hand. So I found us a lovely blanket of squares we could work on together and I’m pleased to say she’s enjoying herself again. And it’s been great that I could give her something back.

Since my last post, I attended the first beading class with our new tutor and that was a huge success. A lovely group of ladies just having a lovely time together, like minded but from so many different backgrounds and walks of life. I’m very much looking forward to our next class at the end of March. Sue Stallard proved to be a super tutor, our group is a mix of complete beginners, some of us with a bit of experience and a couple of ladies who have been beading for donkey’s years. I’ve already been shopping for our next two projects. It does help that I know what’s coming next and what we have in stock. Come and see our new beads and crystals all the way from Czechoslovakia.

I do enjoy sewing and quilting but as a busy mum I spend a great deal of time driving and waiting for children. The portability of crochet and beading just lend themselves to being picked up and put down. I sit in the back of the car sometimes, with my laptop on the seat next to me, watching the latest drama or documentary, a pile of wool around me, a pattern fastened on to the headrest in front of me and a flask of tea. It’s actually not a bad way to spend a few hours really, truth be told. However, roll on the longer nights, because beading to the illumination of a car light is quite hard work on the eyes.

At work, I’ve been working on a sample embroidery. It’s a stitched and stump-worked kit that we may stock in the future. But I have needed a magnifying lens and lights, as the piece and stitches were so tiny. And that was in broad daylight. Keep an eye out on our social media and website for the kits.