an embroidery design: from start to finish (almost!)

I’ve never really shared my process for coming up with a custom embroidery design. I’ve gotten a handful of requests via etsy and thought now was the time to share what really goes into a daisyeyes embroidery.

First, the design.

Steps of an Embroidery Design #1

I am a novice graphic designer and honestly just work in Mac’s Pages. It does what I need it to and that’s really all that matters. In the case of this embroidery, I designed it onto an 8×10 and had my husband enlarge a pdf of the design at work.

Second, the applique letters.

Steps of an Embroidery #2

No fancy cutting machines in this house. Just my handy-dandy pencil and tiny scissors powered by yours truly. Always remember to trace your applique letters backwards. Not that I know this from personal experience (haha).

Third, time to trace.

Steps to an embroidery design #3

I think this design took around 30 minutes total to trace. Not too bad. Although it would have gone quicker, except I was tracing onto linen which is a pain in the hiney. I prefer to use a fine point water soluble pen. I’ve tried a bunch of different pens and other methods of transfer and this is really my favorite.

Fourth, time to finish the applique.

Steps of an embroidery design #4

and again cut out by hand by yours truly. It’s really best to do the final cutting of the letters after you have ironed them on. It’s just much simpler and gives you a better looking applique in the end.

Fifth, carefully lay out the applique, iron and get ready to stitch!

Steps to an embroidery design #5

And there you have it. It’s truly handmade from beginning to end!

I can’t wait to show the final result!! (in a few weeks!)

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Martha of the Month: intro & January edition

I have a love-hate relationship with Martha Stewart. I completely respect her crafting, sewing and general creating abilities. She has an incredible eye and has created an amazing team with which to build her brand and company. Her books have always been beautiful to look at and walking through the aisles of Michael’s Arts & Crafts I want to have that whole wall of crafting stuff mainly because of how pretty it is.

I was introduced to these Encyclopedias of… books a year or so ago. I ended up buying the craft one first (oh Borders and your 40% off coupons…how I miss you!) and quickly realized that the one I had really wanted was the sewing/fabric version. My sweet hubbie got it for me this past Christmas. It’s awesome (you can tell by all the tagged pages!). But, once I started working on a project I realized that this is a Martha Stewart project and it requires some sort of special crafting/creating fairy godmother to appear. Ha!


But, this is the year I’m going to tackle my fear, anxiety and frustration with the Queen of Craft. I’m committing myself to choose one project each month to create or learn from one of these Encyclopedias and post the results here. We will call them my “Martha of the Month” entries. I can’t promise these will come on any specific day of the month, but if you haven’t become a subscriber to daisyeyes, maybe this will be your incentive!


January’s project comes from the Sewing and Fabric Encyclopedia. It is a cloth doll and honestly was a booger to make. I can’t blame this solely on Martha though. Every time I go to create some sort of stuffed doll or softie, I become more and more amazed at the talent of so many on the www. Hillary Lang probably being my favorite. That said, this was for a precious friend who is bringing home a sweet baby girl from Africa and was requested by her. How could I resist?

I pretty much only changed a few things from the pattern instructions. I actually used my machine to make a stitch around the arms, legs and neck to pull tightly (she says to hand stitch). I ended up cutting the squares for her feet and hands about 3×3″ instead of her recommended 1×1″. Overall, she came together pretty well. There is really only one snafu on her, but I’m not going to tell you where! It is a ton of hand stitching (which for as much as I love to embroider; hand sewing and sewing on buttons are my least favorite!) but sometimes that is more forgiving than a machine.

MoM: doll

The best thing about this doll though is her hair. I found this tutorial and it was AWESOME! Super easy, made perfect sense and came together just like the tutorial said! The only thing different that I did was I actually stitched down the middle of the hair-line/part to add some extra oomf.

Here is the complete gift. Sweet little doll baby and a onesie made just for her.

MoM: doll & onesie

Here are links to all of my projects:

February: a dress for a little girl from a man’s dress shirt
March: ribbon trimmed bulletin board
April: the beginnings of a school memory book (making the pages)
May: sweet embroidered napkins with vintage buttons

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There are days when my sewing table is pretty sparse and there isn’t much on my needle beyond what I want to sew.
There are days when I wonder if I’m crazy to even think I could start a business.
Then there are days when an order comes in and it’s all I can do to get it done.
And yet I still become frustrated with the way things are moving.
Then I remind myself that the Lord doesn’t give us more than we can handle. Wise words to remember.
Especially for days when my table and needle are overflowing and it’s all I can do to stitch speedily enough.

This week was a week filled with an order still undone, “fun” sewing for a sweet friend and her daughter soon to be and even for my chickadee, a fun bag to add to the school’s silent auction baskets, designing for Valentine’s Day (please don’t tell me it’s next month) and now another huge order that makes me realize that He is good and He’s got me under His wings.
Wise words.

a few glimpses into my week…

MoM: doll & onesie

AG leopard print dress

OYW: car trash bagOYW: car trash bag





irishblessingversion2 (1-12)

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pinterest inspired pj’s

I pinned this dress a while back knowing that it would be superb for the chick’s traditional Christmas PJ’s.

Source: via aimee on Pinterest



After buying the softest flannel you could dream of (I think it’s Michael Miller), doing a little type design and machine applique…here we are.

2011 christmas jammies

The pattern is Butterick 6659 and it’s pretty simple to sew. It does use a TON of fabric and honestly had me a little freaked out that I was making a nightgown for myself and not my five year old daughter (ack!!! hate typing “five year old”…how can my baby be five???) but in the end it turned out ok. I did have to cut off about 5 inches of excess hem and still hemmed it up and least 1.5 inches. Needless to say, measure your child with the pattern before you cut it out, you might save yourself a bunch of yardage in the end! I do wish this would have been long sleeve. The pattern is short sleeve, would have been easy to lengthen it, but I was short enough fabric to do that. Oh well. My only complaint was how the back facings were put together with the gathered waist. Maybe it’s just something I’ve not figure out how to do yet, but it didn’t really come together well there.

My favorite part are the mis-matched buttons on the back. Wanting to use what I had on hand, this is what I dug from the button jar. Pretty fun in my book!

happy mismatched buttons (christmas 2011 jammies)


This was the last of the Christmas sewing. I can’t say I’m not ready for a little break. I’ve got one more embroidery project/gift I need to finish (please don’t remind me that I’ve only got like 4 days!) and then it’s time for some family fun and then some planning for the blog, the shop and just everything else for 2012.

Merry Christmas to all my readers, followers and friends. You’ve made 2011 a great year for daisyeyes handmade and I’m beyond blessed with how the Lord has encouraged me to keep creating and sewing. That has been the best gift I could have gotten for Christmas.

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