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Embroidery Tips & Techniques

Has This Ever Happened to You?

If your summer travels take you through the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport, schedule a little more time to explore the terminals. You’ll find local fresh food, lovely shops and interesting artwork.  On a recent trip, I had ample time to browse in some of the shops.   Intrigued by this gorgeously-embroidered pillow, I stepped in take a closer look.   The pillow was at the top of a pile of pillows in a handsome wicker basket.

My first thought was of my sister Liz – an avid bicyclist. And the message, ‘life is a beautiful ride’ rang true with me.

I lifted the pillow to see if there was the same embroidery in a different colorway and slightly gasped when I saw this:


I quickly snapped a photo of each pillow and dodged out of the store not wanting to bring attention to the flawed merchandise.  I figured that wasn’t my job in the store on that day!

I know how this can happen because it’s happened to me.  I once stitched three aprons for a friend and didn’t notice that one of the aprons was missing the ‘u’ in Beauties.  I stitched and gifted all three aprons before noticing the misspelling! Talk about embarrassed – not only am I an embroiderer but I’m also an editor!  We sure had some laughs about the snafu. 

I learned to always double check the spelling in the software before sending the design to the machine AND check it again on the machine screen.  That process has served me well over the years.

How about you? Have you ever made such a glaring stitched typo?Leave a comment and one lucky winner will receive a copy of Hoop It Up, the Stitching Sisters’ Guide to Hooping.




  • Kim

    Oh yes, I was making a framed quote, a goofy one. It was supposed to say, “If you met My Family, you would understand.” I got it all done, matted and framed when I caught the mistake, UNDERSTAN. My kids thought it was hilarious and told me to leave it but I redid the whole thing…dang!

    • eileenroche

      I think you could have left that one as is!

      • Kim

        That comment makes me think we may be related…lol.

  • Kay

    Oh yes!. My sis and I make graduation quilts for our nieces and nephews when they graduate from college. We always add a unique label. We were all done and ready to wrap one when I spotted that we had spelled University wrong–left off the “v”. Since I am a university professor, there was no way we were going to let that pass. We did lots of ripping, redid the label, and stitched and quilted that spot again!. Learned a good lesson!. Argh!!

  • Karen

    Oh gosh yes, I misspelled “Stitches”, left out the 2nd “T”, hated to have to redo all.

  • Lorraine

    I created a wall art entitled ‘Our Story’ which had my husband’s name & his birthdate. Underneath that was my name and my birthdate. Under that was the date we met and the word Met under it. Next came our wedding date with the words ‘Wedding Date’ under it. It hung on the wall for 6 months before my husband asked when we got married. Instead of 09-22-09 I embroidered 09-22-10 – A whole year later that what it should have been. I smiled and said, “Well you know dear, math was never my friend!” Needless to say, I redid it correctly – LOL

  • Lynda

    I guess we have all made these kinds of errors, that’s how I get my dishtowels, I keep the errors.

    • Patricia

      I with you, and my bath towels that are crooked or misspelled, haha

  • Shirley Clark

    Oh yes! At least I caught it before giving it to the customer. She’d asked me to put a name on a beautiful beach towel for a graduate. I know the girl, and I know how her name is spelled – Ronni. I cannot figure out how I got it halfway embroidered, and I’d spelled it “Ronnie”. My heart sunk, but I finished it and left off the “e”. Luckily, it was a font that you could not tell it should be connected to another letter – but what about centering? I’m a little OCD with that so I quickly found a tiny daisy and edited it into the machine right at the end of the name. My friend thought it was perfect! LOL

    • eileenroche

      Great solution!

  • Cindy

    I am a beginner and started stitching. Looking at the screen, not only did I misspell but had the pattern upside down on the piece. Quickly stopped!!

  • Chris

    Made a gorgeous quilt for my granddaughter, and stitched a label. Finished it only to find I had put the wrong birth date!. Unplugged the one wrong letter, and wa able to save by putting in my software, change the letter and then align using the camera on my machine – Whew!

    • eileenroche

      Oh that camera comes in handy!

  • Carolyn H

    I misspelled my married daughter’s last name on a quilt I made for her and her husband. She never told me about it until years later. I wanted to make a new label, but she refused.

  • Sharon R

    My niece had a baby last October and I made a birth announcement pillow. About a week after sending it off, my sister-in-law called and she was laughing so hard it took a minute to understand. Turns out the baby’s father doesn’t use his real name on Facebook, so the name read Harley Rose Milla instead of Harley Rose Miller. I redid the pillow, but my SIL said it sits next to the incorrect one. Next time I will verify all pertinent information even if it does spoil a surprise.

  • Liz

    I just did some golf towels and I put tournament on them I double checked my spelling then even looked it up in the dictionary to be sure!

  • Samantha Kauffman

    Yep! Made a vinyl saying with paper flowers for my mom. Said my mom my friend….. Oops! I re did it

  • Judy graczyk

    Oh, yes, misspelling, upside down, you name it. My stitch ripper and erasers are my friends!

  • Karin Callander

    Yup, sure did. I mistook an I for an L, and sent it out to the customer without checking with her first. Now, anytime I see something that *might* be a typo, I always ask the customer before I embroider it!

  • Susan

    My faux pas was spelling Angel. Spelled it angle. My sister spotted the error and I was able to fix it before the gift was given. Phew!

  • Elle

    I was very proud of my Fourth of July banner until I realized I left out the r in country. It read, “My County Tis of Thee”

  • Tee

    I recently embroidered 50 tote bags for our “Women’s Day Choir” …my mistake on the first 15 was that I embroidered “Women’s Choir”—leaving out the Day…they are distinctly different choirs. Thanks to the Peggy’s Stitch Eraser I was able to correct my mistake. Talk about sweating!!!!!!

  • Brenda Melahn

    Have to admit, my very first embroidered piece (a hand towel for our guest bath room). I checked on the screen and I watched every stitch that was stitched. So proud — used the proper stabilizers and the brown just popped off the cream towels. Took a picture to share on Facebook — oh my — one of my friends noticed that I had spelled my name wrong. Instead of MELAHN I had embroidered MELAKN …. hahaha …. it’s made me much more aware since it hung in our guest bath for years and the picture is still in my FB album.

    • eileenroche

      Why don’t we see it until it’s stitched? And sometimes until someone else points it out!

  • Jane Jarvis

    OH yes. The worst was misspell in my grandsons name on his daycare blanket.
    I was new to using machine and software so I removed the wrong letter. My daughter in law still reminds me from time to time.

  • Lou Ann

    I was doing a church project-28 kitchen towels-and one of the designs was a stitch-out of the church building that I digitized from a picture. I thought it looked pretty good (still need to work on trees-my leaves were too dense) until about the 4th one when I noticed that when I flipped the design upside down, it reversed the image. I flipped the design in order to have it placed on the towels where I liked it best. Don’t know how it happened, but it did. The covered drive was on the right side instead of the left side which is where it appears from the angle used in the photo. Hopefully none of the ladies will notice while we’re in the kitchen cleaning up after a Sunday meal:)

  • J Curtis

    I am definitely among the many that have made mistakes. I had the design all set up to stitch and kept looking at it on screen and something just didn’t look right. I had mispelled the word among. Luckily it was before I had stitched it out, but there have been a few times when I have caught mispellings when the pattern is stitching out and I was able to correct before it got to the word that was misspelled. What a pain to change the spacing when it is on the machine.

  • Cathy

    I was monograming a set of towels for a wedding gift and realized I’d put the last initial first then the two first initials. Oops. Luckily I realized it on the first towel, but I had to tear all of that out…oh well.

  • Pattie Otto

    My husband is an adamant about correct spelling so everything i do runs by him. PS. I do rent him out. LOL

  • Patricia

    Did some burpies and a blanket for a baby shower. I asked the grandmother how to spell the baby’s name. She texted me back and she spelled it incorrectly. At the shower when the present was opened the grandmother yells out “you spelled the baby’s name wrong” in front of everyone. Tell you I was so embarrassed. Since she was the one to tell me how to spell it I pulled out my phone and said well you are the one that told me how to spell it here is your text. Now she had egg on her face and I had to redo the present.

  • Karen L Sopjes

    I had to change a letter on a knit Christmas stocking. The customer had given me the name wrong. She used part of the real name part nick name.

  • Karen Poole

    Yes, I’ve done this! It’s really embarrassing! It was one of those times when I was making a last minute gift and noticed it about 30 minutes before I had to leave for the party! I couldn’t bring the gift like that and took the gifted aside and explained that her gift would be coming later! I explained what happened, she was totally surprised, we laughed and I showed her a picture of what I would be giving!! It turned out good because I got to come back for a one on one girl time and the second time I was so much more careful!!

  • Sara Redner

    I misspelled a baby’s name on a bib. I left out a letter and caught it during the stitch out. I was able to put it in but it threw off the centering. I have put names on cup cozies so they end up upside down. And once I made a whole set of bibs and burp pads with the name the mom said she was going to use. I misspelled it but it didn’t matter because she named the baby something else.

  • Teresa Rizzo

    I was doing a baby announcement and spelled out “It’s a Girl” only to have someone point out that I had put “It’s a Gril”. My neice and I still laugh about it and have affectionately named our get togethers “Grils Day”.

  • Donna G.

    “Glad” to know others have made similar mistakes! I once spelled Maximum as Maxium! And worse, I once was asked to embroider “Our Town Public Pool” but oops, I left the “l” out of public. Good thing I had an extra shirt to use!

  • Carolyn

    I just did! I was Embroidering an order of three t-shirts for a billiards team. Each has their name on them. I embroidered one with the name upside down. I didn’t notice until I was spraying away the WSS!

  • Jane King

    My husband is an avid bird watcher and seeing my new embroidery sewing machine asked me to embroider my first design, A quail. the photo looked small and my exclamations were oh no! how large is this going to be on his wind breaker. So on the breast of his jacket is a very large Quail. I laugh and nod my head, with can’t believe that I did that. I mended the seat of his levis
    with lady bug and it was large too and Master Gardener, volunteer job he had, lots of comments and laughs. He wore jacket and levis. (tee hee)

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  • Ramiro Thall

    I really like this.