Thursday, May 17, 2012

Capri Embroidery Upcycle ~ Tutorial

~ Update ~  As I was linking this post to the many parties "I may or may not contribute to" ( as seen on the right sidebar ) I realized that I am linking up a clothing project to a lot of decor websites. This tutorial is also relevant for tablecloths, slip covers, towels, blankets and quilts, pretty much anything that needs a punch. You are only limited by your own imagination!

As promised ~

I have this cute, colorful pair of capris that I picked up at a garage sale a few weeks ago. The capris look new and colorful bottoms are in style right now. I figured, why not decorate them a bit, right?


Remember seeing this dress? I used some of this fabric for the trim.


Super awesome 70s dress!



Use whatever trim you want, at any width you want. Really, its your project :)  My pieces began as two inches wide. I cut them long and trimmed the excess after it was stitched on. You can, and probably should, pin the edges under but this fabric folded and stayed pretty well. And, I always stab my fingers. So I left the pins out and simply folded the fabric as I went along. 

Embroidered capris

I did a split stitch all the way around on the top and the bottom. As a southpaw, I do my split stitch a bit different. Do you see the position of the needle in the photo below? I stabbed the needle halfway back into the previous stitch. I included a video on the right handed way of doing a split stitch. Do whatever is most comfortable for you and gives you the best results.




Embroidered capris


Once I was finished and ready to cut the thread, I cut it several inches long, split the six threads in half so I had three threads on each side I tied the strings, looping the threads double instead of single and pulled it until the knot was just even to the fabric. Any tighter and the stitches will pucker. Tie again twice (regular) for a nice, tight knot and cut.

Embroidered capris


 Nice and close so as to reduce tickles to the wearer.

Embroidered capris

I made some french knots randomly through the middle of the fabric. Maybe 8 to 10 knots on each leg. Begin by wrapping the thread twice around the bottom half of the needle. Keep it fairly taught.

Embroidered capris


Poke your needle into the fabric. Using your other hand (mine was holding the camera here), keep some tension on the thread to keep the loops in place on the needle.

Embroidered capris


Carefully pull the thread all the way through and you will have a pretty french knot.

Embroidered capris


There are lots of great tutorials on how to do a french knot. Here is one, the technique is the same whether you are right or left handed. Southpaws just have to switch sides . . . . .






I did think that the upper half of the capris needed to be tied in to the bottom now, for balance. I used the same thread and did a back stitch under the opening of the front pockets. Stab your fabric with the needle like shown, all the way through. Pull your thread through . . . .

Embroidered capris


Then stab the needle into the hole where the last stitch completed. Similar to my southpaw split stitches except you are not going into the last stitch. They're just sharing holes.

Embroidered capris


Here is the finished product. 

Embroidered capris

Embroidered capris

Embroidered capris

Embroidered capris

Embroidered capris


My Kodak shoot spot is going through its seasonal changes. Off in the distance are hay bales. The foreground shows rows of hay drying, before being baled. Its hard to imagine why hay prices remain so high when there is such a bounty here in my town.

Hay field




3 comments:

  1. These look great. What a terrific idea.

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  2. Those turned out cute. Thanks for the tips! I would love for you to link these up to "I Made This" at Grits & Giggles! http://www.gritsandgiggles.blogspot.com/2012/05/i-made-this-5.html

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  3. Absolutely adorable! Love the French knots...it's all in the details ~ and these capris certainly have it!!

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