Machine embroidery is an intricate technique that you can use to create amazing art on fabric using beautiful threads.
Getting the best results with any design demands more than just a great machine like a Melco Bravo embroidery machine; a good stabilizer is a critical part of the equation!
What Does Stabilizer Do in Machine Embroidery?
Embroidery stabilizer is a fabric designed to support the main fabric on which machine embroidery is being done.
Available in many different types, weights, and colors, it supports different fabrics in a number of ways by:
- Preventing fabric stretch or warping.
- Providing a sturdier fabric to hold the embroidery stitches.
- Preventing the embroidery needle from damaging lighter-weight, delicate fabrics.
It can also be used to keep small pieces or delicate fabrics secure in the embroidery hoop; it is an indispensable part of successful stitching with any embroidery machine.
Preventing Embroidery Problems with Stabilizer
The two main issues you may face when embroidering with a machine such as the Melco Amaya Bravo 16 Needle are tension and stabilizer issues.
If everything is hooped correctly and you experience problems like fabric puckering, stretching, or warping; the needle cutting through fabric where there is a high concentration of stitches; or fabric shifting in the hoop away from the stabilizer, you are likely using the wrong stabilizer for that specific project.
Since every combination of fabric, thread, and design is different, it can sometimes take a little trial and error to find the appropriate stabilizer to use with a particular project.
What Are Different Types of Stabilizer and Their Uses?
There are three standard types of stabilizer used when embroidering with a Melco Bravo or any other embroidery machine, plus a few specialty types:
Cutaway - This fabric is available in both woven and non-woven varieties for use with many different standard and specialty fabrics, especially those that are likely to stretch. It is a durable type of stabilizer that gets stitched under the embroidery design, after which the excess edges are cut away with scissors.
Tearaway - This stabilizer version is a finer, non-woven type of stabilizer that feels almost like paper and is recommended for fabrics that don’t stretch because they tear away from the stitched design easily. This type is recommended for outline designs, lettering, and similar designs where removing all of the stabilizer is necessary.
Washaway - Available in either a plastic or mesh form, wash-away stabilizer sticks to the fabric and can then be completely removed in a washing machine. It’s an ideal choice when you need to remove all traces of stabilizer and find the other two types unsuitable.
Specialty - In addition to the above commonly used stabilizers, there are also specialty types that solve multiple issues at one time and include: heataway stabilizers for delicate fabrics or when facing hooping issues with non-washable fabric; adhesive stabilizers that can be stuck or sprayed onto hard-to-hoop fabrics; water-activated stabilizers that stick; and more.
Stabilizer - Needed for Effective Machine Embroidery
To ensure every design finishes up as designed, it’s essential that you know your stabilizers and choose the right one for each project.
Trying different stabilizers may take some extra time; however, the results you get will make any extra effort worthwhile!