What kind of embroidery stabilizer should I use for plush like minky or fake fur?
For minky and fabrics with fur pile, use cut-away stabilizer underneath the fabric, and water-soluble film on top of the fabric. This technique will keep the fur fibers in place as you embroider.
Used for permanent support. Best for knits, loosely wovens, stretchy fabrics. Not removed after from underneath the embroidery area, but cut around close to the design. I cut about 2-3mm away.
Use on fabrics that cannot be hooped, such as velvet, Ultrasuede, and leather. Alternatively, just get a cut-away and some spray-on adhesive, and drape the fabric down over the hooped stabilizer.
Water-Soluble topping or film
A very thin film to be applied on top of hooped fabric. Good for holding down fur or pile of minky, so the fibers will not get caught inbetween embroidered threads. (Who has fur growing out of their eyes?)
Some artists use this for plush, but I have not had good luck with it. I find it does not provide enough support, as it can tear away during the embroidery process. Used for temporary support. Best for firmly woven, natural fiber fabrics (non-stretch). Torn away around edges, not always completely removable.
How much and what kind of stabilizer you use depends on:
Denser design, lighter fabric = heavier / more stabilizer.
Light design, heavy fabric = lighter / less stabilizer.
- If in doubt, use cut-away stabilizer.
- For tightly woven, medium-weight fabrics, use a light-weight cut-away stabilizer.
- For medium-weight fabric, use a medium-weight cut-away.
- For lightweight or looser weave medium fabric (with less of its’ own support) like jersey knit, use a heavy-weight cut-away. (For medium weight stretch fabrics, use a medium-weight cut-away.)
Backings not appropriate for plush fabrics, but could be used in outfit details or other fabrics:
Temporary support. Best for delicate, mesh like, and difficult to mark fabrics. For cutwork and embroidered appliques. Just tear it away from your completed design, and remove any remaining bits with a damp cloth. It’s completely removable with water.
Temporary support. Best for non-washable, delicate fabrics and off-the-edge stitching techniques. Completely removable with iron and caution. Do not use for fabrics that should not be ironed.