Embroidery Machines

The biggest challenge that sewists encounter when working with embroidery machines like the Janome MB-4S is hooping. Before you can stitch a design on your fabric using Janome embroidery machines, you must first hoop the fabric to stabilize it.

Different fabrics require different hooping methods. Some even need special care to prevent “hoop burn” and other fabric damage. If you are working with delicate or bulky fabrics or some other type of specialty fabric, you will need to use an alternative hooping method for the best results.

Organza and Other Sheers

Some sheers can be hooped without stretching or other damage during stitching on embroidery machines, while others cannot. Test a scrap piece to see if the fabric slips in the hoop. If it does, try hooping two layers of washable stabilizer on the underside, or a heat-removable stabilizer for fabrics that are dry-clean only. If necessary, pin the stabilizer to the fabric around the design for added support.  

Taffeta and Silk

To prevent hoop burn on delicate fabrics like taffeta and silk, try hooping a piece of adhesive tear or cut-away stabilizer with the paper side up. Carefully cut the paper away from the inside of the hoop area, lay the fabric down, then carefully stitch the design.

You can also try making a muslin support for the fabric by hooping cutaway stabilizer and muslin, then cutting an opening in the muslin. Spray the stabilizer with adhesive and then lay the fabric down.


There are two techniques you can use to prevent hoop burn when working with satin on your Janome MB-4S. Try wrapping the parts of the hoop in soft cotton fabric strips, then hooping normally. You can also use the method mentioned above for taffeta and silk and hooping the stabilizer, then sticking the fabric to it using spray adhesive. Pin the perimeter of the design for extra support if needed. Stitch slowly and carefully to prevent thread pulls.

Tissue Lamé

Tissue Lamé is very easily damaged by hooping. It is best to try both of the above-mentioned methods on scraps first and see which way works best. Secure for embroidering with Janome embroidery machines by first applying a fusible mesh interfacing to the back of the fabric, wrapping the hoop parts in cotton fabric strips, then hooping normally. You can also use the stabilizer hooping and spray adhesive method.  

Velvet and Velour

Velvet and velour can easily be crushed by the hoop or from the threads sinking too deeply into the fabric nap. The best way to secure these fabrics for embroidering is to hoop a mesh cutaway stabilizer first, then stick the velvet to the stabilizer using spray adhesive.

To prevent the stitching from getting too tight and sinking into the nap, add a piece of clear tear-away stabilizer onto the front of the fabric and stitch over it. If you have done a test and know there will be no needle marks, you can baste the top stabilizer on to help secure it.  

Leather, Vinyl, Leatherette, Suede, Etc.

Hooping almost always leaves a permanent mark on these types of fabrics, so it should be avoided. The only reliable way to secure these fabrics is by hooping a mesh or cutaway stabilizer first and then laying the fabric down with spray adhesive. Avoid using pins or basting to stabilize since this will leave needle holes.  

When using Janome embroidery machines like the Janome MB-4S to make beautiful thread designs on a wide variety of fabrics, it is essential that material be secured to the hoop. To prevent hoop burn, thread pulls, and other damage when working with delicate and specialty fabrics, try one of the methods referenced above. Always try hooping and stitching a sample first before putting your final project onto the machine.

Take the time to determine the best way to hoop each fabric on your embroidery machine and you will not see unintentional fabric damage!

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