Saturday, February 9, 2013

Lolita Hobbies: Embroidery

Momoko from Kamikaze Girls Embroidering
Embroidery can be as simple as cross stitches a few dozen "x"s on an old skirt to make a little flower or as complicated as using a bunch of french knots with a stab stitch to create a border of sheep. The fact is embroidery is nothing more than some fancy sewing that has been designed to be decorative.

Many, many people enter the Lolita fashion through finding things like anime and manga or watching a copy of Kamikaze Girls. One of the main hobbies for the Lolita character is embroidery. I had a faint memory of trying to cross stitch long, long ago and even I was re-introduced to embroidery only after seeing it done on movies. There is just something about imagining a young lady sitting in a room patiently working on her embroidery that makes us feel comfortable. At first glance, she is being lazy and not doing anything too important. But, with a closer look, we see that her needle glides deftly in and out of the fabric to create these designs that look like paintings or pictures. So, it is only natural that embroidery should be picked up by Lolitas and glamorized as the "ultimate craft for Lolitas".

Cross Stitch Sample
While I don't believe that there is any one craft that is better than the others, I do have a growing love for embroidery. You can embroider on any fabric that you would like as long as you have a few simple tools: an embroidery hoop, different colored embroidery thread, and a sharp embroidery needle.

One of the easiest forms of embroidery is cross stitching because it only deals with one stitch. Now, you may not think that making a ton of little crosses on fabric would be interesting, but it is very soothing and a very good way of making complicated pictures with complex shading. That is why most cross stitching kits are designed for you to frame and hang on the wall as a type of art. But don't let that make you think that there is only that one type of embroidery. You can embroider anything you can imagine and a little stroll through the internet will also lead you to several interesting embroidery designs (including a few My Little Pony patterns)

Most cross stitchers do use a special fabric called Aidia fabric because you can easily see the weave of the fabric. This means that you will be able to make your crosses will be even and uniform throughout the piece easier than if you were using a fabric that you couldn't see the weave on very well. But that doesn't mean that you have to limit yourself to only using that fabric. Once you get the hang of it, you could make simple designs on just about any fabric you want. The only trouble would be is that you would have to be patient and make sure that every cross was the same size.

A Crewel Embroidered Pomegranate Motif
What most people think of when they think of embroidery is often referred to as crewel embroidery. This is the embroidery that uses multiple types of stitches to create different blends of texture and color to make the motifs. Even though there are a lot of different embroidery stitches, they are simple to remember how to do them once you have mastered the stitches.

This embroidery style can be done on any piece of fabric because it does not rely on the grid to help you do it perfectly. You will have to draw the design on the fabric first to help you create the design you want to do. Or you can through caution to the wind and start stitching your design without drawing it on first. This is a lot like painting with thread and is really fun to do once you let yourself do it.

There are many different types of embroidery that you can do, but there are too many types to try to explain them all in detail right now. What is important is that this is an elegant and simple hobby that you can enjoy to do anything to make decor for your living area to embellishing headbands and ribbons.


  1. Hello. Nice to meet you. I'm Kota from Japan. ^^/ Wooow, nice and informative blog you have! I'm a member of The Fountain Pen Network. And I have my own YouTube channel about fountain pens, organizers, film cameras, and so on. If you have time, please take a look at the videos. I hope you'll enjoy watching them! I'm looking forward to your new post!! Have a good day.

    1. Thank you for finding me. I'm glad that you like my little blog. I'll have to check out your videos because that sounds fascinating!