How to Embroider on a Baseball Hatâ��When You Don't Have a Cap Hoop!comments (5) October 25th, 2008
With all the Go Pink, Think Pink, and Pink Fundraisers going on this month, the ones that really stand out for me are the ones that also bring a lighthearted message. I was chatting on the phone with my friend Gail, and she told me about a woman she saw wearing a baseball cap that proclaimed "No Hair Day!". I thought that was a really clever—and inspirational—message. Let me show you how easy it is to embroider your own statement...whether it's to support your favorite cause or your favorite sports team! When you are picking out a cap to embroider on, make sure it's one that does not have any hard stabilizers or support built into it. These are hard to manipulate into the hoop.
It's interesting to note that one of the most popular questions asked by customers considering the purchase of a embroidery machine is "Can you embroider baseball caps?". At the time, I was working in a sewing store and the major brands of sewing machines we sold had cap hoop accessories. I was happy to show customers how to use these hoops if they were interested. Let me explain what a "cap hoop" is. Depending on the brand of machine, it's either a hoop with a built-in clip to hold the brim of a cap down, or it's an insert that fits into a hoop that can hold the brim down. I discovered that you can embroider on a soft-constructed cap without one of these hoops or inserts.
Here's what you'll need:
- A softly constructed baseball cap
- Embroidery design of your choice—I customized a message in my embroidery software
- Heavy cut-away stabilizer
- Embroidery threads of your choice
- Small, sharp scissors to trim threads and stabilizer
I wanted to re-create the cap with the "No hair day" message, so I used my embroidery software to do it on the computer. Then I imported the design into my embroidery machine.
Hoop a piece of heavy cut-away stabilizer. There are lots of different kinds of cut-away stabilizer available. Make sure you pick one with some heft; that way your cap will be firmly anchored in the hoop. Draw some guidelines directly onto the stabilizer—they will help you get the cap into the hoop straight.
Decide where you would like to position your embroidery. I am going to put mine along the side, between the brim and the opening in the back. Pull the facing out of the way, and position the cap into the center of the hoop. Use the guidelines to keep the cap straight. I compared the horizontal line with the seam along the bottom edge of the cap. It's easiest to position the cap in the hoop with the brim pointing away from the machine, either to the left or to the back. That way it won't get in the way of the moving embroidery unit as the design stitches. Check to be sure the orientation of the design on the screen corresponds with the direction that you positioned the cap in the hoop.
Sew the cap to the stabilizer. Remove the presser foot so you can get the hoop under the shank easily. Once you have the cap under the needle, set your machine for a long straight stitch. (I used a 6.0mm stitch.)
Put the presser foot back on and stitch around the area that you are going to embroider. This stitching will hold the cap securely into the hoop so you can embroider your design.
If you have a baste-in-the-hoop feature, you can use it to check if your design will stitch out straight.
Stitch your design. This technique will also work in the center front or back of a soft-construction cap.