Fleece is a fantastic fabric! It was originally created to mimic wool. Fleece insulates even when wet and dries quickly. Athletic clothing is often made from fleece because perspiration passes through it and it’s stretchy and moves with the body. Fleece comes in various weights from micro to 300, with 300 being the heaviest and least flexible. Due to the stretch factor and the pile of fleece, it can be a bit tricky to embroider, here are 5 tips to get you started:
1. Give it a stretch test. Before purchasing any form of fleece, stretch the fabric lengthwise, crosswise and on the bias. Make sure the fibers snap back into place. If the fabric stretches out of shape and doesn’t snap back, leave that fleece behind and find one that does.
2. Back it up! Choose a stabilizer for the fabric wrong side based on the weight of the fleece and the use of the finished project.
Weight of the fleece: a micro fleece will need only a light to medium weight cut away stabilizer for the fabric wrong side. Whereas a heavy weight fleece will require medium weight or heavy weight cut away stabilizer.
Finished project usage: for designs that will be visible on both sides once complete, such as on a blanket or scarf use wash away stabilizer on both the wrong side and right side of the project.
3. Stick it to it! Use spray adhesive to attach the backing stabilizer to the fabric wrong side. The adhesive will keep the fleece for stretching out of shape and causing ripples in the finished project.
4. Top it off! Use a topper for high pile fleece. Water soluble stabilizers work best.
5. Wash away hoop marks. If after embroidering on the fleece you notice a hoop mark remains, throw the project in the washing machine to remove it. If you prefer to not wash the project rub the hoop mark away with a little water, allow to dry and then the pile of the fleece will puff up again.
Now put these tips to use while making one of these fun projects: