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Common Machine Embroidery Problems and their Practical Solutions


Machine embroidery is a fascinating and creative craft that allows enthusiasts to personalise clothing, accessories, and home decor with intricate designs. However, like any craft, it comes with its share of challenges. In this blog post, we'll explore some common machine embroidery problems and provide practical solutions to help you achieve flawless results.

1. Thread Breaks:

One of the most common issues with machine embroidery is frequent thread breaks which leads to disrupted designs.


  • Ensure proper threading: Make sure that the thread is placed correctly.
  • Quality thread: Always make it a point to invest in high-quality embroidery thread in order to minimise breakage.
  • Check tension: Unless you adjust the tension of the thread according to your machine and thread specifications, it will keep being problematic.

2. Puckering Fabric:

Puckering occurs when the fabric bunches up around the embroidered design, leading to an unprofessional finish.


  • Stabilise properly: It is advised to use the appropriate stabiliser for your fabric type and weight to prevent puckering.
  • Hooping technique: The fabric should be placed such that it is taut but not stretched in the hoop, and avoid over-tightening.
  • Test stitch: You can perform a test stitch on a scrap piece of fabric before starting the actual embroidery to know if everything is ok.

3. Skipped stitches:

Sometimes, the machines may skip a few stitches, resulting in an incomplete and messy look.


  • Needle quality: Using a sharp needle as per the fabric and design may help avoid this.
  • Needle size: Consider the needle size that matches the thread thickness and fabric type.
  • Slow down: While stitching intricate designs, you must reduce the machine speed.

4. Bird’s Nests on the bobbin side:

A tangled mess of thread, known as a bird’s nest may appear on the underside of the embroidery.


  • Bobbin tension: Adjust the bobbin tension to match the upper thread tension.
  • Clean the bobbin area: Regularly clean out any lint or debris from the bobbin case and surrounding areas.
  • Quality bobbin thread: Use a good quality bobbin thread compatible with your embroidery machine.

5. Slow speed of the machine:

Your embroidery machine is running at a snail's pace, testing your patience.


  • Machine Settings: Check and adjust the machine settings to ensure optimal speed for your embroidery project.
  • Routine Maintenance: Regularly oil and maintain your machine to keep it running smoothly.

So, these are some of the problems with embroidery machines, along with their solutions. We hope that the next time you face any of these issues, you can sort them using the solutions described above. Keep reading our blogs and scrolling through our pages to dive deeper into the world of embroidery. Until then, happy stitching!

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