How to Stitch Simple Embroidery Neck Designs

Written by judy filarecki
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How to Stitch Simple Embroidery Neck Designs
Embellish your clothing with simple embroidery designs. (ethnic embroidery image by GeoM from

A little bit of simple embroidery around the neck of a plain piece of clothing can give it that extra touch that turns it into a designer garment. Most sewing machines include built-in decorative stitches that can be used alone or in combination to create simple embroidery designs.

Add designs to bring elegance to the neckline of your favourite "going-out" dress. Put some fun into a child's outfit. Dress up that plain T-shirt with an eye-catching design. You can do all of this simply by combining the built-in stitches with your own creativity.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Sewing machine with built-in decorative designs
  • Water-erasable fabric marker
  • Fabric

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  1. 1

    Stitch out each built-in decorative design that your machine has on a test piece of plain fabric. Pick out two or three that could be combined to create a design.

  2. 2

    Test the combination of stitches you have chosen using different thread colours and an assortment of background colours. Save all of these test pieces for reference. Once you have determined the exact design, make a trial design that mirrors the size to be used on the garment.

  3. 3

    Lay the trial design on the garment. Position it where you want it to be. Make adjustments to the size, position or angle until you have exactly the right size and design you are going to use.

  4. 4

    Mark the centre front of the neckline on the outer side of the fabric with a water-erasable fabric marker. Draw a line where you want to place the design. The line may follow the curve of the neckline, or it may curve down to a point in the front. The design may also go all the way around the neckline. Mark the beginning and end points of the design exactly where you are to start and stop sewing. They should be evenly spaced on either side of the centre front mark. If you are going all the way around the neckline, start in the centre of the back so the finish point also ends in the back..

  5. 5

    Turn the garment inside-out so the outer side of the fabric is now on the inside. This will make it easier for sewing. Position the start point you marked on the outer side of the fabric under the sewing foot. Follow the line to the end point. Repeat this with each of the stitches you selected until finished.

  6. 6

    Dab a small amount of water on the line you originally drew. Use a clean cloth or paper towel. This will erase the mark and leave only the design.

Tips and warnings

  • Some machines allow you to do mirror images so you can reverse the direction of the pattern on either side of the centre.
  • Test your design thoroughly before sewing it onto the neck of your garment. Once it is sewn, it is almost impossible to correct or remove.

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