Heirloom treasures are one of the most precious things that can be passed down the family line, especially when family members are represented through the years. This embroidered tablecloth can be made and used at the holidays, and will serve as a precious memory of past holiday gatherings.
Handmade Holidays has pretty much been my theme for 2020, and I have really been enjoying it. Handmade gifts are filling our holiday gift closet, and I’ve even worked on handmade gift wrap ideas! (Want help with either of these topics? I have a free handmade gift wrap course, as well as a handmade holidays masterclass that might interest you!)
I’ve sort of been on a “handmade” kick, and so I started our family’s heirloom embroidered tablecloth that I’ve been wanting to make for years. Last time I collected names, I messed up and had people use a sharpie on an old bedsheet, which didn’t go well at all. This year, I decided to truly commit and buy quality items to make it, and I couldn’t be happier with how it’s turning out. Isn’t it cute?
Of course, this year won’t be the best year for me to collect family member’s names on my tablecloth, but as the years progress, each family member that enters our house during the holiday season will have an opportunity to sign their name for me to embroider later.
So far, we have four names on our cloth:
Since our holiday gatherings will be small this year due to the pandemic, our embroidered tablecloth will yield only 4 more names in 2020.
How to Embroider the Tablecloth
Embroidering this tablecloth is super easy! If you are a beginner, have no fear! Freehand embroidery is really forgiving, because it’s supposed to have the embroiderer’s personality built into each stitch!
The style of embroidery stitch used most in this project is called ‘backstitch’, but there are many types of embroidery stitches. I love the backstitch because it is super easy, and enables me to keep a relatively straight line for embroidering names. Since you will use this stitch primarily, I’ve made a little video demonstration of how I do it.
The second stitch I used in this project is the ‘satin stitch’. This is a good stitch to use when you need to fill in with a singular color, like I did with the heart over the “i” in Abi’s name (above, bottom left).
What You Need for This Project
Not much is needed for this project, but if you’ve never embroidered before, you will need to collect the following items:
embroidery thread in the color of your choice
large eye sewing needles
needle threaders (optional)
water soluble pen
embroidery hoop (make sure you purchase a large enough hoop to accommodate your signatures)
How to Make Your Embroidered Tablecloth
- To make this tablecloth, have family members write or sign their names on the tablecloth.
- For the first handwritten name, center it in the embroidery hoop and choose a thread color. Embroider with the backstitch. Cut thread and weave in ends.
- Repeat with all other handwritten names.
- Every holiday season, collect new family members’ handwritten signatures (first names only) to embroider.
- Once it’s time to pass the “hosting torch” to the next family member, pass the heirloom embroidered tablecloth as well so that the tradition can continue through the generations!