Our Favorite Embroidery Kits for Beginners
Pick up a new skill—in crewelwork, whitework, and other needlework techniques—and stitch your own one-of-a-kind design.
Any embroidery project starts with a design stitched in thread: a few lines, dashes, concentric circles, and knots can completely transform the fabric. For beginners, an embroidery kit will often come equipped with everything you need in a given project: sampler fabric, a needle or two, a few skeins of stranded cotton floss, and the instructions (called a "pattern") you need to get started. Some kits may include other notions like a wooden hoop, bobbin cards, or a note card of stitches. There's a whole set of stitches to utilize in such projects: the straight stitch, stem stitch, and back stitch all create clean lines. And all of them can be easily mastered with practice, a needle and floss.
By purchasing a kit, you can try your hand at a number of techniques: Whitework, for instance, refers to projects in which the stitching is the same color as the fabric (oftentimes, it will be white linen). Crewelwork, another type of embroidery, traditionally uses two-ply wool yarn in its stitchwork. Ribbon embroidery, another type of embroidery still, works its stitches in silk often depicted in floral designs. Projects come in all kinds of designs: beautiful profiles, flora and fauna, lunar cycles, and those of your own making. An introductory kit will teach you stitches in a sampler that can be displayed in your studio at home.
Pick one of these artisanal kits and they will teach you how to transfer a pattern, stitch, and display your own custom embroidery courtesy of, you, the artist.
The "Beginner Sampler Kit" booklet included in this kit will teach you a dozen ways to stitch. Inside you'll find skeins of cotton embroidery floss, linen-cotton woven fabric, an embroidery hoop, needles, and a dowel for hanging.
Shop Now: Purl Soho Beginner Sampler Kit, $65, purlsoho.com.
This kit, courtesy of Brynn & Co, comes with everything you need to create an embroidered silhouette. With instructions that guide you through the stitches on blush-hued linen, it leaves you with a beautiful piece of art for your walls.
Shop Now: Brynn & Co "Flora" Embroidery Kit, $40, anthropologie.com.
Once you've mastered the basics of stitching on a hoop, expand your repertoire: double hoop embroidery. This design is a hearkening of springtime—a trio of chickadees nestled in cherry blossoms.
Shop Now: Jessica Long Embroidery "Spring Wreath" Kit, $42, jessicalongembroidery.com.
Flora and Fauna
Take a closer look at this embroidery: the design is in its details. Flowers turn into wild rabbits, squirrels, foxes, and birds in flight. This kit is perfect for beginners who are trying perfect their technique in stitchwork.
Shop Now: Hoffelt and Hooper Co. Embroidery Kit, from $50, hoffeltandhooperco.etsy.com.
Learn sashiko—a traditional craft from Edo-era Japan developed to mend and strengthen garments—using a kit that results in a beautifully stitched pillow sham. It has all the tools you need to get started, including an instruction book and a complete digital workshop to guide you.
Shop Now: The Crafter's Box Sashiko Kit with Digital Video Workshop, $80, nordstrom.com.
Traditional crewel embroidery—otherwise known as crewelwork—is a specialty technique that dates back to medieval times. This kit is complete with top quality British materials like linen twill from Scotland and Appleton wool.
Shop Now: Melbury Hill The Galanthus Collector Crewelwork Embroidery Kit, $48.45, melburyhill.etsy.com.
Whitework embroidery refers to projects in which the stitching is the same color as the fabric (traditionally, white linen). Trish Burr, a self-taught artist, innovates in this specialty with her strategic stitchwork in limited color.
Shop Now: Trish Burr Embroidery Emperor Moth Needle-Painting Kit, $45, trishembroidery.com.
Simple in its elegance, this kit allows you to practice the precision of stitches. Its design is pre-printed on cotton fabric, so there's no need for transferring or tracing—simply bind it to the hoop, thread your needle, and start stitching.
Shop Now: Cozy Blue "Lunar Blossom" Embroidery Kit, $24, cozybluehandmade.com.
In Full Bloom
Evoke the beauty of nature with this embroidered design—fallen leaves, berries, mushrooms, and acorns. Once complete, it makes for excellent wall décor framed in a hoop, appliquéd to a pillow cover, or an otherwise beautiful addition to your home.
Shop Now: Tamar Nahir Yanai "Magical Autumn" Embroidery Kit, from $11.61, tamarnahiryanai.etsy.com.
Learn all about ribbon embroidery, a technique commonly used in floral designs due to the stitches made in silk. The result of this kit is an everlasting bouquet.
Shop Now: Konvalia Silk Ribbon Embroidery Kit, $30, konvaliacrafts.etsy.com.
Cute and Cuddly
Children can pick up this skill, too. Teach them how to stitch together a doll they'll treasure for playtime. These kits come in a menagerie of animals: a barn owl, raccoon, fox, and chipmunk, among others.
Shop Now: Kiriki Press Hedgehog Embroidery Kit, $20, kirikipress.com.