Hand Embroidery on Tulle: Stitch a Layered Desert Landscape | Amanda Neely | Skillshare

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Hand Embroidery on Tulle: Stitch a Layered Desert Landscape

teacher avatar Amanda Neely, Hand Embroidery Artist and Maker

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

12 Lessons (47m)
    • 1. Class Trailer

    • 2. Supplies You'll Need

    • 3. Transfer the Pattern

    • 4. Setting Up the Project

    • 5. Background: Stitch the Mountains

    • 6. Background: Stitch the Cactus

    • 7. Foreground: Stitch the Round Cactus

    • 8. Foreground: Stitch the Saguaro

    • 9. Foreground: Stitch the Small Cactus

    • 10. Putting Everything Together

    • 11. Finishing Touches

    • 12. Finished Piece

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About This Class

Tulle is such an interesting fabric to use for embroidery, and it's even cooler when you layer it! Learn some tips and tricks on working with this fabric, as well as some layering techniques to really make your embroidery interesting. This class is for all levels, but some experience would be helpful, as tulle can be somewhat challenging to work with. All stitches and techniques are explained in detail, so if you're up for the challenge, let's do it



Meet Your Teacher

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Amanda Neely

Hand Embroidery Artist and Maker


Amanda is a self-taught hand and chain stitch embroidery artist. She started embroidering in nursing school as a creative outlet and since then has a shop where she sells embroidery patterns, custom pet portraits, and chain stitch embroidery. You can follow her on her Instagram and her embroidery blog.

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1. Class Trailer: have you ever wanted to learn how to embroider on tool but gave up in frustration because of how complicated and finicky tool can be? Sometimes this class will go over all the basic tips and tricks that I've learned to effectively inverter on Tool. The class project is a layered desert landscape that will be using three layers of fabric for you'll come out of this class way more confident and comfortable and also with a beautiful project. I hope you join me in this class season. 2. Supplies You'll Need: So for this project, you're going to need a couple of different things than what you normally need. Just for a regular hand embroidery piece, you're going to need some tool fabric. I have this, like, kind of peachy color tool. It's not going to translate super well once. I'm only using two layers of it. But, um, the color really doesn't matter. This was just kind of something that I had on hand that I thought would look nice. The biggest thing with the tool fabric is I would get some that the holes are relatively small. That way you can add detail into your piece a little bit more. You can use one with larger holes, but I find that this is easier to work with. Um, this fabric. I'm not entirely sure if it's polyester rayon, but it's a synthetic tool. Um, I have heard that cotton tool is a good fabric to use as well. Um, so you could look into using that if you want. It's a little bit sturdier than those fabric. Um, this synthetic tool can is It's very stretchy, so it can be a little bit finicky to work with, but it is doable. Ah, the other thing you'll need. If you're following along with the pattern, you'll need a five inch inbred ary hoop, and I have the patterns listed in an attachment below. Um, you'll want to make sure that with this hoop, the inner and the outer rings seal completely. Sometimes when you order embroidery hoops especially, I found the bamboo ones can be kind of like this where the rings aren't completely. Even so, there's like gaps in between the inner and outer hoops, and that is going to be really hard to work with because 12 fabric is so thin. Um, so I would just make sure that you're using a hoop that once you screw it tight, Um, there is no, um, gaps like there's a little one right here, but it's not major, so this one should be fine. The other thing you'll need. I like to use an assortment of needles. You'll want to use needles that are gonna have a ni big enough for your embroidery thread. So she Neil needles a really good with the other thing. You can use this tapestry needles because there are holes in this fabric that you can just go right through. You don't really have to pierce through the fabric. I like to work with a blunt needle, which is a tapestry needle. And then I also like to use one that has a sharp tip. If I'm working with something where I'm like doing a split stitch or something, that's splitting thread because these blunt needles air really hard toe work with when you're doing certain stitches. So I like to use both, um, the show, Neil Needles and a blunt needle. The other thing you'll need that's different than what I normally use in my classes are is a Sharpie marker. I would recommend using one that's got the thick tip, which I know is kind of weird, but you're basically going to transfer your fabric. Transfer your pattern onto your fabric with this, um, marker, and I'll show you how it's gonna be easier to follow than just using a fine tip marker, because the tool fabric is going to be kind of hard to transfer onto the other thing you'll need. If you'd like to do what I'm doing, you'll need a piece of fabric, and I'm just gonna be using it for the, um, ground in the in the, um, desert landscape. So it just needs to be wide enough that it hooks into the hoop, Um, the entire way across. Um, the other thing you'll need is an assortment of embroidery thread colors. And I will put all of the colors that I end up using in, um, the video as we go along and also in the pdf pattern that I'm going Teoh link in the tutorial, and I think that's about it. You'll need scissors as well, like normal. And yeah, I think that's about it. 3. Transfer the Pattern: So this pattern were actually going to be using two layers of tulle for this? Um, so I've cut out me to pieces of tool here, and I'm going to be using the pdf pattern that I created. It comes in two parts for each layer, and this should be the exact same size as your five and shoop, so you can easily trace it. Um, so you're going to be tracing the each pattern onto each piece of the tool on just one on each, and you're going to be using that Sharpie marker to do it. The biggest thing when you are working with this tool, if you're using the synthetic kind or even the cotton kind because they're both pretty fragile and very stretchy, that is like the one annoying thing about working with tool. It's so rewarding and beautiful once you do it because it's cool that you have like a transparent background. So it looks like your murder is kind of floating, but it stretches a lot, so it's not as easy to work with. So when you're putting your tool fabric into your hoop, my natural inclination is like really tightened down the fabric But with this, you really don't want to do that. So you want it to be a little bit looser and you're not gonna be Pulling your stitches is tight either, so you don't really have to worry about it being like super super tight. So I'm just going to keep it toe where it's secure in the hoop. There's no like ripples. It's not baggy, but as you can see, it's not super super tight. If you make it too tight, you're just gonna end up stretching the fabric out. And it's just gonna be not as easy to work with. And I won't have as nice of a in effect in the end. So this is how you will want to hope it. I know it's kind of hard to see because it's see through, Um, but I'm gonna take my pattern and I'm going to place my hoop, um, with the the, um, top part down over my fabric here. And I'm gonna take this marker and I'm just going Teoh, draw the pattern onto the fabric and I've found with this like, the thicker lines are good. Um, this is not gonna come off your fabric those to keep that in mind. When you're doing this, you don't want it to be, um, super sloppy toe worry like your stitches are going to cover up the marker. But, ah, it's going to be easier if you make like, fatter lines with it. And again, it's a little bit finicky. Your fabric is going to stretch a little bit while you do this because you don't have it super, super tight in the hoop. So I'm just going to go over the stencil here, and he might have to go over certain areas a little bit more. Or sometimes, like you can just fill in that whole area. If it's easier to see for you for this cactus, I'm just gonna fill it in that way. I can really see, and this is just marking out the bottom here. Try not to get too much on the hoop, but it's on the inside ring. If you do get it, um, messy, it's not gonna be showing, so that is the way it's gonna look once you do it. So like I said, it is kind of faint. It's a little bit harder to see than like a normal stencil. But that is what it will look like. And that's why I like to use the thicker marker, because then you can see a little bit easier. Um, I would recommend working on, like, a lighter surface with this just so that you can see a little bit better. So, like, ah, white background is definitely beneficial when you're working with this fabric. So I'm going to go ahead and transfer the other pattern onto the hoop as well, and I will meet you back here. 4. Setting Up the Project: All right, So I have transferred thesis, second part of the pattern over. And I just wanted to kind of show you with a plan here. So I'm going Teoh, Um, first gonna start out with the background. This is going to be the back piece of fabric. This going to be your background. This is gonna be the foreground of your piece, and we're going to end up layering them both over top of one another like this. Um, and I think it gives it a really cool effect because the tool makes it kind of mutes the background and gives it more of a three dimensional look. Um, so when we're doing this one, I know this cactus is going to cover a part of the background, but I'm going to stitch the entire thing. I'm not gonna leave a gap where the cactuses. I think this is easier then trying to wind this up perfectly because it's just not gonna end up winding up perfectly or just taking a lot of time to figure out like where the cactus is going. Um, and I think it just looks again more three dimensional. If you actually have something in the background. That's kind of popping out, and then you have the cactus on top of it. So we're going Teoh first. Start with this the background, and I'll show you the Citrus and some like techniques that I use when working with tool, and then we'll go on and work on the top part of this piece. 5. Background: Stitch the Mountains: All right, So this is the first layer that will be working on, which is the background. I'm gonna be using all six strands in a blunt needle for this part. The biggest thing when you're first starting a stitch on tool from for my experience, this is just an opinion. You conduce it, I'm sure different ways. But I have found this works the best if you start and normally, sometimes all tired, not at the end to, like, catch the tail on the back of fabric. But I don't like to do that when I'm working with tools because I like to end up kind of tucking the tail underneath the stitches toe. Hide it because the tools obviously see through and your tail could potentially stick out from the back. So I like to keep a tail, and then I like to just hold it with my hand, and I like to just start stitching that way. So I'm gonna be using this like, dark, reddish like, kind of like a mafia color. I think, um, and I will put on the screen colored color DMC threat amusing, and I'm just going to be doing the red in all of this background here, the front pieces were here of these cliffs. I'm gonna be blending with a couple of different colors. So all of the, um, the stuff in the back right here, I'm going to be using a darker color. So this is going to be something that's kind of more in the distance and more in the shadows, and then these are going to be a little bit more prominent, so I'm using lighter colors to help them pop. So I'm just going to be using a bunch of satin stitches and short and long stitches. Um, for this, So I'm gonna be working them vertically, so I'm just gonna be making some straight stitches. And when you make these stitches, they it's gonna feel kind of weird because everything's kind of loose and stretchy, so I don't like to pull super tight. Your stitches might look kind of loose on the tool, and that's totally fine. And I'm just kind of holding the thread with my finger as I'm going. And as you can see, they're relatively loose. If you start to pull too tight, it's gonna distort the fabric. And it could potentially tear the holes. So the biggest thing is just kind of making sure they're secure, but not super tight. The other thing that you're gonna want to dio it's kind of hard to see and I haven't quite gone over the central yet, but you want to make your stitches over the black in the stencil because that black Sharpie is not gonna wash off. So you want to make your stitches above that. So right now I'm just making satin stitches. So I wanted to show you how Mina and the stitch now. So I'm going to go in the back here, and I'm just going Teoh, pull the stitch through the back of the stitches. And if you really need that wanted to be super secure. You can go through a couple different directions and then you're going to snip it at the very base, and then I'm gonna do the same with the tail. So I'm just gonna thread my needle and pull it through the back of these stitches. And this should be enough to keep your, um, steps secure. And that's all you need to dio to you secure. And as you can see on the front. You can't see any of the tail or any such of that you're not supposed to see. All right, so I have made all of the satin stitches for the back of the homes, and it's all just simple satin stitches. All of my thread is secured in the back and trimmed off, so nothing is sticking out. And so now I'm going to go in with, um, some lighter colors, and I'm going to embroider the prominent features in the mountains. And I'm using a little bit of a lighter pink color for this, and I'm going to be doing the same thing. Just making some vertical stitches. And I'm also going Teoh kind of blend in some orange into them as well. So this is going to be basically the same. I'm just gonna be going in. I'm catching the tail like before, and I'm just making some satin stitches. Try not to pull too tight. And I'm basically just making stitches butting up against the border of the other dark red stitches that I made to fill in these mountains. So I'm just gonna go along and do that and kind of keep track of your stitches. If you have any holes that you need a filling, go back and fill those in. If you still feel like you're making stitches right against those stitches and there is a whole, like incumbency right here, right there. I'm just going to come to make a stitch up in between those stitches to fill it in. I make a couple of those. You can also, um, kind of fill in some of those stitches. Want to go back through with some some of that orange color as well? It's whatever you'd like to dio So all of that later, pink color is all done. I am going to go in with kind of a loader orange color. And I'm just gonna do some short, long stitches on top of some of the later pink, um, stitches. This background is going to be pretty muted because you're gonna have a piece of tool on top of it. So the more contrast you put into it, the more um it will show up in the background. So that's why I was going to go in with a little bit of this orange just to kind of give it a little bit more color. So I'm just going just right on top of these stitches. And I'm just making, like, short and long stitches kind of blend together some of these colors. And you can do this if you'd like. This is up to you how you'd like to approach this, but this just gives a little bit more color and highlights and texture to some of the mountains here. And as you can see, this is like kind of one of those stitches where if you want Teoh, you can, um, use your Giniel needle with the point on it, since you're kind of going through some of these other stitches you previously stitched because you can get kind of snagged on some of these stitches that you've already made. I'm still using the blunt needle, but it can be a little bit tricky here and there, too. Get it right. And I think I'm happy with that. 6. Background: Stitch the Cactus: All right, So we're moving on to the last piece of the bottom piece of fabric, and that is just this little cactus. I'm gonna just stitch it like it's a silhouette. So I'm using this, like, super dark brown color. It's like a grayish brown color. Um, and I'm going to use a split stitch for this. I think it's easier to use a split such than, say, like a back stitch. You could use a satin stitch for this, but I think with these tiny little, um, arms right here, it's going to be kind of a challenge to make them look smooth. So the splits it just easier to control so that your stitches don't show from the back. I've noticed that when I use, like a back stitch or a stem stitch that you can see the stitches on the back of the fabric . So I'm using the Chanel needle with more of a point, and I'll show you how I do this split stitch. If you're not familiar, so you'll come through the fabric again. I'm just gonna leave a tale like we've been doing, and I'm just gonna make a straight stitch, and I'm going to come back up through this stitch that I just made, essentially splitting the stitch, Hence the name and you're just gonna work your way. So I'm gonna start working my way up this side. And as you can see, you can kind of control where the thread goes because you're basically securing it around itself. And you might want to make these like, relatively small. I think when you make him too big, they are a little bit harder to control. And I think one line of them is pretty good for this. And then I'm gonna just kind of go back down to the base and try to kind of hide that stitch. So I'm just making, like, a little straight stepped right there that I'm going to split and I'm gonna basically work this straight. Such is back down. You kind of have to be a little bit like creative with the way you're doing these stitches . Sometimes you could start and stop each leg line, but I think it's a little bit easier to kind of keep working. - So to end this one, it's a little bit more of a challenge to, like, keep this around the back. But I'm basically just gonna anchor this around a couple of these stitches, just like wrap it around, and that should be like, plenty of hold, and then you just trim it and there's that. 7. Foreground: Stitch the Round Cactus: So I have set aside the back piece of fabric and I have hooped my top piece of fabric here , and I'm going to start on this round cactus. I'm gonna use a couple of different green colors for this, and I'm gonna be doing split stitches. A gun. Um, and I'm just going to follow the direction of the ribs in the cactus here. I'm going to keep ah line. So I'm gonna keep these open. He's like lines right here. These were going to be, like the ridges of the cactus, and I'm gonna do those in a lighter green color. So I'm gonna start with the dark green color in between those lines, we're going to start like we have been starting, and I'm going to keep a tail and on the start, working these stitches here, and I'm just gonna go the direction that the lines are going. So I'm just gonna follow the curve, and I'm gonna leave this, um, outer line exposed, Said Aiken, use the lighter green color on the outer outline of the, um cactuses. Well, you can kind of see how it's like You can see the, um, stitches on the back. That's okay. Uh, you're gonna want to be a little more careful around the outline, but I'm gonna be putting so many layers of stitches in here that it's going to end up being covered up. And I'm just gonna go back down. No, leave enough space to wear a can. Penna leave reference to where I want the stripes to be on the cactus. - I did not do the greatest job leaving the lines in here if you are like me, and you kind of got lost like the lines lost a little bit, you can kind of see them, but you can always refer back to the lines on the pattern. Uhm to just kind of make sure that you've got everything right. So now I'm gonna use this light green color and I'm going to stem stitch the lines in the cactus. And now that we have everything filled in, you won't have to worry as much about the, um, back of the stitches showing through the only, um, stitches. That might be a challenge or the ones on the outline, so we'll start with that first, so I'm gonna start from the top of the cactus here and I'm gonna leave a tale and I'm gonna take my thread and hold it in my thumb. I'm gonna go down through the fabric and then back up halfway through, and I'm just going to continue doing that. So go down and then go back up. Great. Where that last attended and I find if you keep it, you want to keep the thread on one side while you're working this the back is going to stay in the back and not show through as much. There's one I'm just gonna go back up through and starter at the next one. He's might be a little bit harder to see. So if you're having trouble doing it this way, you can always go all the way down through and then back up through where that last ditch was. If that's easier and your needle, you know your needle could be getting caught on the stitches. You knew it that way as well. And you always work those around the cactus. So this cactus is all done. Um, if you have any gaps, I might go back in and filling this little gap right here. But you can fill in any gaps you have. Um, and then I'm going to do some french knots for this little flower shape right here. And I'm just gonna fill that flower shape in with the French knots. But I'm just using a pink color. The one consideration that you have to, um, take into account is, um, depending on the size of the holes of your tool, you want to make sure that you're not going up and down through the exact same hole with the French knots because it might just run through because these holes are a lot bigger than normal embroidery fabric. So when you come through, if you haven't done a French, not before you will come back, come up through the back of the fabric and you're going to hold the thread in your non working hand between your index finger and your thumb, and you're gonna take your needle and you're gonna twist around and depending on how large you want the French not to be, that's how many times you will twist around. I'm just gonna do, like, two or three times. So again, you don't want to go down through the exact same hole. So you want to go like right beside it in this tool fabric, so it doesn't just like fall right through and you'll pull through. And that's a French, not. And the biggest things with thing with the's is just keeping tension, but not too much tension on your thread as you're going through the fabric. So you're keeping ahold of the thread as you're pulling your needle through, and then you can let go. If you don't, you'll end up with a loop that's nodded. Before, um, you wanted to not basically. So you'll have like, ah, loop with, like, a long they're a loop instead of a Not basically, so you just don't be careful with that. So I'm just filling in the's French knots, just a couple of flower buds on the cactus, and then this cactus will be all done 8. Foreground: Stitch the Saguaro: So next we're going to do this cactus. Um I'm going to be using a couple of different shades of green for this, and I'm basically gonna pretend like light is hitting it from the left hand side. So I'm gonna make Thea arms on the left hand side right here, here and here and down on all the way down here. Uhm, I'm going, Teoh, Make it a little bit later on that side. So I'm going Teoh do a couple of lines of split stitches here, and I'm just gonna do this whole side. - So I have done the lighter color on the left hand side of all arms, and I have a couple of tales of thread I'm going to keep these long until I have enough of the rest of the embroidery to kind of tuck them underneath. So they're just going to stay there while I embroider. Um, next, I'm going to use this medium green color. I'm just going to work it right beside where I worked the other stitches. So I just want to give you a little progress shot so far, So I have stitched, um, the medium color, the medium green color down along this armory here, This arm right here and at the base and then us a couple of lines right here. And then I started going in with this darker green color. Um, on the right, I'm going to do it on the right side of the middle arm, all the way down this arm, and then I'm just gonna do like a small line on this arm. Um, I just wanted to show you the stitch direction that I'm using. So instead of just going up and down with this dark green color and then making these stitches just stop like perpendicular to the cactus, I kind of stitched along the curve of the cactus. I think it looks a little bit better that way. And it blends a little bit better than if you were to just, like, create perpendicular stitches with this arm. If you see what I'm saying. Um so I think it looks a little bit better that way. So I started at the base and worked my way up along this arm, and then I'm going to start to work my way up this cactus. So as you can see, I have a couple of splits Sitges down the side of the arm down this half and then underneath here to kind of give it a little bit of highlights and shadows. And I left this blank. I didn't stitch all the way down it. You can if you want, but we're gonna fill that in later. So the last thing that we want to do before we're going to put everything together is thes cactuses right here. We're going to stitch this grass once we put the fabric altogether. 9. Foreground: Stitch the Small Cactus: So now I'm just gonna use satin stitches for this little cactus? - No . 10. Putting Everything Together: we're all done with that part. So now I have both of my pieces of fabric out of the hoop, and we're going to join them together. So you'll take your fabric that you had on hand and make sure that it's, um, straight across, um, and even, and you're going to place it on the fabric, um, the background fabric. And I like to place it a little bit over top of the design because once you hoop it, it's gonna slide down a little bit. After that, we will put our other piece of fabric on top, and you can place it. However, you want it to look basically so you can kind of play around with it. If you have a little bit extra fabric to, like, move it left and right, you can do that. I think that looks pretty good, so you can stitch this fabric onto the back piece of tool if you want to, but I think it is fine without doing that. And, um, it also you know you won't have a you'll have a stitch line of you stitch it. So once I have the layout that I want, I have loosened up this hoop, and I'm just going to place it over top of the fabric. I don't want it to, like, pull at all or as little as possible. So I'm just gonna place it over top like so. And I'm going to take it up a little bit enoughto where it's gripping the fabric. But I can still kind of move the fabric around, and then you can kind of adjust it the way you want it. So pull this a little bit more and you can go and pull individual layers as you see fit. I'm not taking it up a little bit, and I think that's pretty good. Um, just making sure that my fabric is all laying flat and nothing is like worked. I think that looks pretty good. I think I like that. Awesome. All right, so the last thing that we have to do is stitch the grass and for the he's in the front, I'm gonna use this lighter green color, this yellow green color, and now you can do whatever stitches you want, Um, because it's not gonna be you see through. So I'm just gonna do some simple back stitches for those. And obviously now you'll definitely want to use that needle. That's sharp for this part. Um, and I'm just going to stitch this grass if you want, Like, a finer line you can use, um, last rams of thief loss. Since I used that thick sharpie for my stencil, I think I'm just going to stick with the six strands to cover up the black lines. But if you want to add some, like, finer minds and there you can do a couple that aren't six strands, you can kind of get created, but that so I used the same color for in front of this cactus here. And then I'm just gonna use, um, a dark green color, the darker in color for, um, that little patch in the d background there. 11. Finishing Touches: So the one last thing that I wanted to show you is how Teoh um, finish everything off. So what you can dio is trim all of this fabric down Teoh, Like, I guess, like, half an inch or so. Um, I am just going Teoh, um, trim this middle fabric completely off. But I am going to leave the two layers of tulle, um, a little bit longer. So, like, I'm gonna trim this down to the hoop. All right, so for this part, I'm just gonna be using a hot glue gun and just ah, pencil that you can trash. Um, basically, I'm just gonna be running some glue along the inner hoop here and then just like pushing this down with the pencil so you don't burn your fingers. Um, you can do this in layers, but you can also kind of do it together, since the fabric is so porous. So I'm basically dressed, making a line of blue and slowly working my way around 12. Finished Piece: Thank you so much for joining in on this class. I really hope that you enjoyed it. I would love to see your project, So please post it in the project section below. Thank you.