Playing with the Embroidery machine


first attempt today; all the colors lined up; ready to go



first layer going on; brown basket


First project; a pale blue napkin with a basket of flowers. Made two of them.


second project; only 6 colors on a pink napkin


managed to get this on the point where I wanted it.

So; I have learned a few things about the machine etc while I worked on these test projects…..

These cheap little napkins are very thin, and the stabalizer did not want to “tear away” like it did when I practiced on some nice quilt quality cotten.  Note to self; invest in quality material…..

Secondly; I learned how to “go back” and find my place when the thread doesn’t lock, or pulls out of the stitch.  Learned a little about going back to the previous color etc; backing up 10 stitches at a time etc.

And lastly; those lovely spools of thread have a color number on top….the sticker has to be removed before you can put it on the thread holder.  My solution was to “stick the sticker” on the edge of the machine, and to use a sharpie (ultra fine point) and write the color # and NAME (which I had to look up in the charts) on the plastic portion of the spool.  Even tho I replaced the sticker when I finished, I know it won’t last too long.

I need to think about building a thread rack now!!




13 thoughts on “Playing with the Embroidery machine

  1. Exciting stuff. One question – I’m assuming it has a 4″ hoop. I know the next machine up has a 7″ work space and am wondering if 4″ is sufficient for most projects. It seems like it would be but never having used one I’m wondering. Thanks.


  2. Yes, it is a 4″ x 4″ embroidery space (the hoop is really a bit larger tho). I saw a program on-line “Sewing with Nancy” on PBS and she recommends the 4×7 hoop as a minimum size… The challenge if you want to do something larger than 4×4 is connecting the designs together. If I was to BUY the machine, I would chose the larger hoop size. Since I didn’t buy this machine, I am going to use it as a learning tool.
    Here is a link to the video – This is part one in a series; lasts about 25 mins.


  3. Wow! Would it work on a sweater knit? I have a white sweater with a stain that I keep thinking I could embroider over, if only I knew how. Cab the stitches be made longer, like on a sewing machine?


    • The answer is YES, it can be done on a knit like a sweater, uses a different needle and we would need a stabalizer for the front too. (A clear, wash away….) I think it has to be a fine guage sweater, not a bulky cable knit.

      About the size of the design; determined by who ever wrote the program for the design, and with this machine, little modification other than color choices.

      I am going to play with taking a free design from the internet today and loading in the sewing machine….try out the “data transfer” end of the process. If that works, well, maybe we can play with your sweater!


    • I figure this is a base-line machine for the novice, and should be simple to operate. It is…my only trouble at first was not winding the bobbin properly and getting a foot of thread wrapped around the post UNDER the bobbin. I’ve been keeping the instruction manual close by since that happened. 🙂
      If it was a high end machine, I would hope there would be some classes included with the purchase.


      • It is a brother PE 500; strictly embroidery. It has a 4″ x 4″ area available in the hoop. Since I just got this machine, I am trying to teach myself how to use it. I find that BROTHER is pretty user friendly; my Sewing and Quilting machine is a brother 6000i; and they use the same bobbin and threading format, so that part was easy to get through.


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