Introduction: How to Cover Up a Stained T-shirt With Embroidery

We all have a stained t-shirt lying in our closet, that no matter how many times one wash it, never gets clean. The result is that you go out and buy a new one. Not only is it a waste of money, it is also bad for the environment. Instead of throwing it away, cover up the stains using embroidery.

There will be two different stitching techniques used; back stitches and a french knot stitch. Each stain will be covered up by a knot, and there will go a line through each knot to connect them all together. Note: you can use this technique for any kind of textile, like a dress or maybe a cloth?

Step 1: What You Will Need

  • stained t-shirt
  • scissors
  • embroidery thread (I used two for this project)
  • embroidery needle
  • pencil

Step 2: Draw a Pattern

Start by drawing a pattern on the t-shirt. The pattern depends on the placement of the stains. Make sure that it goes a line through each stain. The picture below is a digital drawing to better show the pattern of this project. Remember that all the lines are supposed to follow around on the other side of the t-shirt.

Step 3: Put the Thread Through the Needle

Cut a piece of thread off and thread the needle. Make a knot on the other end.

Step 4: Start to Embroidery

Decide where you want the pattern to start. (I had a stain on the lower part of the t-shirt and started to embroidery here) Stick the needle through the inside of the t-shirt. You can either start with covering up a stain, or embroidery a line. The next two steps will explain how to make lines and knots.

Step 5: Cover the Stain

Use the french knot stitch to cover the stain.

  • Bend the thread over the needle.
  • spin it around the needle minimum two times, depending on how big you want the knot to be.
  • drag the thread to tighten the knot around the needle. This is important to get a nice looking knot.
  • stick the needle through the fabric and drag it until a knot is visible on the front.

Step 6: Embroidery the Line

Use back stitches to follow the pattern you have drawn.

  • stick the needle through the inside of the fabric to make it come up on the front. The space between where you last embroidered and the needle determines how long each stitch will be.
  • stick the needle close to the last stitch you made. Now you have one back stitch. Do not pull the stitches to tightly or too loose. To get a good result, it is important to make each stitch the same length.

Step 7: Transfer the Pattern to the Other Side

Make each line follow around to the other side of the t-shirt. Start by drawing the pattern before embroidering. You can also add more knots, even if there are no more stains.

Step 8: The Finished Result

Remember to secure all the loose threads on the inside of the t-shirt. The t-shirt is now ready to be worn again!