What is an Embroidery Tool?

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  • Written By: Katharine Swan
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 04 November 2019
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There are several different kinds of embroidery. The more common form of embroidery produces a smooth pattern of thread that is stitched so that it completely covers the material in order to form designs. The most important embroidery tool in this form is an embroidery hoop or a Gripper frame to hold the fabric taut while the work is done. Special embroidery needles are also used, which come in different sizes to accommodate the varying sizes of embroidery floss and ribbon.

Another kind of embroidery is punch embroidery. Also known as Russian embroidery, punch embroidery is an old form of embroidery that has been revived and is gaining in popularity. This type of embroidery is similar to latch hooking, in that it creates a thick pile on the finished side of the work. As with the first form of embroidery, an embroidery hoop or a Gripper frame is used to keep the fabric in place. An embroidery tool called a punch needle is then used to insert tiny loops by pushing the thread through from the backside of the fabric.


An embroidery punch tool comes in different sizes, and some have interchangeable needles of varying sizes. This makes it possible to use just one strand of embroidery floss, many at the same time, or even something thicker such as ribbon. The floss is threaded through the punch tool with the long end coming out the top, so that it feeds into the punch with each stitch. After each punch, the user moves the embroidery tool over several threads in the fabric, and makes another stitch. To avoid pulling the loops back out, the needle is allowed to graze the fabric as it is moved from one stitch to the next.

Each embroidery tool must be chosen carefully. For instance, any type of needle must be the right size for the floss or ribbon that is being used. An embroidery punch tool that has several different size needle attachments is a popular choice among embroidery punch artists. Another important thing to consider is what kind of embroidery hoop is to be used. A special hoop called a Gripper frame is often preferred because it does a better job of holding the fabric to be embroidered. In addition, many experts suggest that novices use smaller embroidery hoops because they are so much easier to work with.

Other tools that may be used in embroidery include embroidery scissors, rubber stamps for inking patterns, or an iron transferring patterns to the fabric from special paper or ironing a fusible iron-on stabilizer onto the back of your fabric.


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