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Epic Embroidery Fail

February 5, 2013

Filed under: Judi,Sewing — admin @ 3:56 am

Well, it’s true what they say – the more of a hurry you’re in, the more mess you’ll make! I thought you might like to hear about my epic embroidery FAIL!!

You may remember that I’ve written that Keith and I are going to be grandparents again – our #3 child is pregnant with our #3 grandson! We’re pretty excited, and were even more excited when we found out that our daughter and her husband were coming to visit us a couple of weeks ago – she lives across the country in North Bay, Ontario! It was a perfect time to throw a baby shower for her and I thought that I would add a few embroidered bibs and onsies to her gift from me. I found some plain bibs and onsies to embroider with only a few days to spare before she arrived, and spent some time creating the perfect embroideries – you know, sayings like: “When Mummy says No, Go Ask Grandma!” and “If You Think I’m Cute, You Should See My Grandpa!”  The bibs embroidered up beautifully and when I finished the last bib, I also ran out of bobbin thread. As usual, I was racing against the clock to finish these embroideries before she arrived so I quickly grabbed my spool of bobbin thread and wound a full bobbin to keep stitching with.


Except that it wasn’t my bobbin thread! I had been working on a new HoopSisters Embroid-a-Block Quilt. If you haven’t stitched one of these before, you may not know that in several different steps of an Embroid-a-Block design, you stitch with a water-soluble thread for basting fabrics in place. I think you can probably tell already what happened. My YLI Washaway thread is on exactly the same kind of spool as my YLI Lingerie and Bobbin thread that I like to use as embroidery bobbin thread and I grabbed the wrong spool. I embroidered all three of the onesies that I had and they looked beautiful when I finished. I got them stitched just before she arrived, so I tucked them away until she wasn’t going to be around so that I could wash out the blue markings and the stabilizers from them – the key words here being “wash out!”. She went to visit friends and I pulled out these onsies and decided to put them through a wash cycle so that they would be ready to use when the baby arrived. You can imagine my surprise and disappointment when I pulled them out of the wash to see the stitches falling out of the fabric.  I couldn’t figure out what went wrong until I showed them to my other daughter and she said, “It looks like the thread on the bobbin must have dissolved in the water.”  That was when the light bulb went on and I went to check my thread spools.  What a let-down!  I had been so pleased with how they looked when I finished stitching them and now they were ruined – and the shower was only 2 days away and I wasn’t going to have enough time to buy more onesies and stitch them!  The end of the story is that I’ve stitched one replacement onsie now and have a couple more to do – and they’ll be done and will look great when we travel to North Bay in time for baby’s arrival this coming May. I learned a valuable lesson – always put the water-soluble thread away when you are finished with it so that you don’t sew with it by mistake! Imagine how embarrassing it would have been if I used it to sew a bathing suit together! At least my embroidery fail wasn’t as bad as that would have been!

All in all, we still had a great shower and a wonderful visit with them. Like all visits, it was over too quickly and they are back in the land of ice and snow in North Bay while we are here, far away from them in the land of rain and cloud. When we see them again, spring will have arrived and we’ll be snuggling a beautiful new grandbaby – can life get any better!

Until next time,




  1. Comment by Cecil Higgybottom — March 31, 2013 @ 10:04 pm

    I loved to hear that I’m not the only one who has made this mistake with wash away thread. I’m a vet working on an ocean going research vessel. We often have to do surgery on injured fish that we save from rusty fishing hooks. We one of my research assistants often fills her off hours with a little quilting and embroidery. Well one day when we had a particularly busy day is the FOR (that’s fishy operating room) we were starting to run low on fish thread for stitches and my partner quickly ran to her quilting supplies and got some more thread. Only when we released the fish into the recovery tank did we then realize our mistake and all of our stitches began to dissolve. Well let me tell you our faces were red. luckily we had some fish tape close at hand and none of the little fishy guys were any the worse for wear.


    P.S. I love you wearable arf book.. I’ve adapted the design for fish and believe me they look very sharp all dressed up!

  2. Comment by admin — April 1, 2013 @ 2:59 am

    Cecil I sense this is a bit tongue in cheek – is it a day early for April Fool’s Day?

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