Whether it is blankets or clothing, fleece is a wonderful comfort fabric and a fun base for machine embroidery.
My granddaughter has a cherished fleece blanket that she took to preschool for quiet time. I decided to get her an identical blanket and embroider her name on it for school so she could keep the other one at home.
It is a super soft fleece and that means it has a nap. Fabrics with a nap can be embroidered with a little care.
How to Embroider on Fleece\
Since hooping may damage the fleece by leaving hoop burn, I floated it. I hooped Piece & Stitch, a 1.5 oz. tear away that washes away, from DIME. Spray the back of the blanket with a temporary adhesive and position it in the hoop so that the name will be centered.
Choose a font with thick satin-stitched letters for fabrics like fleece that contain a nap. Thinner fonts will disappear, even when using a topper.
Because of the nap, a wash-away film-type topper must be used. It holds the nap down so that embroidery thread sits on the top and doesn’t sink out of sight into the blanket fibers. Heat-away toppers can be used for the same purpose but, since the blanket is polyester, heat should not be used.
You can use a temporary spray adhesive, glue stick, or tape to hold the topper in place. I like to use a basting stitch for two reasons. One is that it helps to hold the topper in place. The other is that it shows me whether the position will work on the item that I am embroidering.
You can see how the topper supports the thread. When embroidery is finished, clip the basting stitches and jump stitches and tear away the stabilizer and topper.
Piece & Stitch tore away very cleanly and was not stiff. It will eventually wash out of the blanket with future laundering. Since the back of the blanket will be seen from time to time, I opted to use the same thread color in the bobbin.
Blankets make nice gifts and you can easily personalize them using these tips.
Sew Inspired by Bonnie
Bonnie Welsh - September 27, 2021
Elaine—You’re most welcome! So glad you find all our tips helpful. =)
Elaine - September 27, 2021
Always love these concise very helpful tips. Thank you.