The Swatch of the Month for November highlights one of my all time favorite designs, Climbing Daisy. The technique uses ribbon embroidery, which beautifully adds dimension and detail to projects and garments. The concept is simple: we use cotton ribbon rather than thread or embroidery floss to stitch the design. This technique can be applied to almost any of our stencil designs and combined with any of our stitching practices.

To create the swatch, begin by stenciling the design to the top layer of fabric using your transfer method of choice. (The Climbing Daisy stencil is available for download from our Maker Supplies + Stencils page.)

Stitch the larger petal shapes using 100% cotton tape and a large-eyed embroidery needle. (Note: over the years, we’ve found that upholstery needles with a large eye also work quite well with this technique.)

After the larger petals are stitched, create French knots (see page 75 of Alabama Studio Sewing + Design) with the cotton tape at the center of the petal shapes, as well as along the stems.

Next, stem-stitch (see page 85 of Alabama Studio Sewing + Design) long, curving stems using the embroidery floss. Repeat this process until you have stitched each of your stenciled shapes.

See detailed instructions, photographs, fabric maps, and variations beginning on page 130 of Alabama Studio Sewing + Design for reference.

The hi-resolution photograph of the swatch, for use as your computer desktop background, is available for download from our Maker Supplies + Stencils.


2 – 10” x 16” cotton jersey fabric swatches (a double layer adds stability for the heavier ribbon embroidery technique)
Embroidery floss
Cotton tape

Basic sewing supplies: needles, embroidery scissors, Alabama Studio Sewing + Design for instruction on embroidery


Fabric – 100% organic medium-weight cotton jersey
Fabric color – Navy
Stencil – Climbing Daisy
Embroidery Floss – Navy
Cotton tape – Black
Textile paint – Pearl Slate

Visit our Journal for instructions on past months’ swatch techniques. You can also opt to purchase a membership to our Swatch of the Month Club. Each month of 2014, you will receive a package with the supplies necessary to complete a unique swatch, each demonstrating one of our favorite embroidery techniques.

Join at any point in the 2014 calendar year and receive swatches from all prior months…and stay tuned for updates about our 2015 Swatch of the Month Club.

Follow along on social media and on our Journal with the hashtags:

0 comments on “SWATCH OF THE MONTH: NOVEMBER 2014

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *