Jilly Hollmann sells personalized gifts and other creations in her shop. She showed us how to make Embroidered Portraits and now she has a free embroidery pattern for you to turn into custom wall art. Jilly thinks these “words to live by” are just right for kid rooms!

Jilly is giving away a handmade double eyeglass case for men embroidered with the recipient’s initials. Just comment below with your thoughts on the tutorial (Who will you make this for?!) or tell us about your favorite item in Jilly’s shop. (U.S. addresses only, please, and comment by Sunday 6/13 for a chance to win.)

Now for embroidery as instant wall art!


I’ve heard the name “hoopla” used for embroidered fabric in a hoop as wall art, and I love it! I’m all for making a big hoopla over this easy, inexpensive craft.

I made the hoopla featured here to serve as a loving reminder to my 9-year-old son as well as to add a splash of color to his room. I think it could go in any room in the house though. The colors aren’t gender-specific and the look certainly doesn’t scream “nursery.”

It looks really good on my son’s wall and he loves it, which got me thinking I should share it with others. It’s kind of amazing how little you need to spend to make what could be a great addition to your home, or even a thoughtful graduation gift! All you need are these tools and materials:

Tools + Materials:

  • 7” Wooden embroidery hoop
  • Bright orange quilting cotton, measuring at least 11” x 11”
  • Embroidery floss in navy, green, purple, yellow and teal
  • Embroidery needle
  • Embroidery scissors
  • Dressmakers Carbon Paper 23 x 28cm“>Dressmaker’s carbon paper (optional)
  • Pattern, printed out

Yes that’s really it! So if you’ve already got basic embroidery tools and supplies around, like a needle and scissors and floss, you’re looking at spending around $3 for a half-yard of fabric and a hoop!

The carbon paper is optional; uou can use any method you like to transfer the pattern to the fabric, including the “tape it to the window” method I explained in Step 3 of my last Sew Mama Sew tutorial. I just like using carbon paper to transfer simple patterns because it’s so fast and easy and you don’t need a window or daylight for it.

Step 1: Transfer the Pattern
Place the pattern so it’s centered over the piece of fabric.

Place a piece of carbon paper in between.

Trace over the lines of the pattern with a pen, pressing firmly.

That’s it! Your pattern is transferred to your fabric.

Step 2: Embroider the Pattern
Place your fabric in your embroidery hoop, making sure the pattern is centered.

Start stitching! (If you’re like me, this is the fun part… It’s as relaxing as meditation and as satisfying as a delicious meal.)

Follow the color guide on the pattern and use a simple backstitch.

Step 3: Tidy Things Up
Once you’ve finished embroidering, re-tighten the fabric in the hoop so that it’s evenly taut and smooth and the embroidery is centered and straight (with the screw at 12 o’clock).

Trim the fabric about 1.5 to 2 inches beyond the hoop edge, so it forms a larger circle.

Using your needle and some floss or thread, sew a basting (running) stitch about 0.5 to 1 inch within the fabric edge.

Once you’ve stitched all the way around, pull the thread ends to gather the fabric.

Tie the thread ends in a knot.

That’s it. For reals. You’ve got some awesome art that’s ready to hang, and you didn’t even have to buy a frame.

Enjoy! Make a bunch for all your kids, friends and friends’ kids! And tell me how it goes!