How to Embroider a Necktie

comments (2) June 14th, 2013     

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erika_kern Erika Kern, contributor
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A little embroidery goes a long way in making this tie super-special. I decided I wanted a subtler effect, so I stitched the image using the blue from the tie.
A simple, inexpensive, store-bought tie serves as the base for this project.
Open the back of the tie, about one-third of the way, and remove the tag and the loop.
A little embroidery goes a long way in making this tie super-special. I decided I wanted a subtler effect, so I stitched the image using the blue from the tie.

A little embroidery goes a long way in making this tie super-special. I decided I wanted a subtler effect, so I stitched the image using the blue from the tie.

Photo: Erika Kern
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I don't know about you, but I always have a hard time crafting for guys. Most of my craft ideas spring from things that I want or need and, not being a man, I have a hard time relating. I've made ties from scratch before, but they've all turned out a bit too, shall we say, flamboyant for your average Joe. This project might be a little over the top too, but if you have a fella in your life who loves a unique tie, I think that this would make him smile from ear to ear come Christmas morning.

Here's what you'll need:

  • A tie (look in your favorite thrift or bargain store; you'd be surprised what you find)
  • A design to stitch (I found mine in a book of clip art)
  • Tracing paper
  • Ballpoint pen
  • Transfer paper (if you're working on a dark fabric, white or yellow works best; if your tie is light, use black or blue)
  • Embroidery floss
  • Needle
  • Pins
  • Optional: ribbon (for custom tag)
  Open the back of the tie, about one-third of the way, and remove the tag and the loop.
  With a blunt tool like a ballpoint pen, use a light color transfer paper to transfer your pattern image to the tie. I picked this image of an old-timey phone in a book of clip art. You can also find images in magazines, books, and online. For this project, a small, simple image works best.
  Here's the transferred image.

Next, stitch your image.

  I stitched the phone using a split stitch for the outline, French knots for the dial, and a chain stitch for the cord. You can find tutorials for these stitches here and here.

Now that your image is stitched, press the tie shut using an iron set to steam and a press cloth. I use a thick piece of felt as a press cloth.

  Sew the tie back up, making sure you don't let your stitches show through the exterior fabric. Attach the loop to the tie about 6 inches above the fold overlap. Don't sew the tie fully closed. Leave the last 4 inches open; this will be closed using the French tack.

Now it's time to add a tag if you want. Cut the ribbon about 3 inches long and fold each end in 1/2 inch. If your ribbon looks like it's going to fray, seal the ends with a bit of fabric glue.

  Use a bit of ribbon to make a personalized tag. You can put your loved one's name on it or some sweet personal message or, like me, just put a "heart" Erika (this works best when your name is Erika, of course!).

To add the final bit of pizzazz, here's how you do the oh-so-fancy French tack.

  Most high-end ties are closed using a French tack. To make this closure, you want to first make two or three long stitches across the area you want to close.
  Slide your needle under the long stitches, making sure you don't catch the fabric.
  Making the French tack is a lot like making a blanket stitch. Bring your needle down and over your floss, pulling it tight around the long stitches. Push your stitches close together to make the tack loop.
  Here are finished French tacks on both ends of the tie. Super cool! Super chic!
  Your finished tie, all stitched up and ready to go!

 

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posted in: embroidery, tie, guy gift, necktie

Comments (2)

erika_kern writes: That's wonderful!
Posted: 11:22 pm on January 9th
beinred writes: Good job on the how-to. I used it and made a great birthday gift. You can see it here: http://beinred.blogspot.com/2009/01/embroidered-necktie.html
Posted: 10:05 pm on January 6th
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