Learn How to Embroider Autumn Leaves

diy Oct 17, 2019


I believe strongly in being creative and finding accomplishment and enjoyment that comes with making something yourself. With the pressures of modern day life and the mad dash to get things done it is easy to forget to take time for yourself. Embroidering encourages you to sit down and spend some quiet time with yourself and the rhythmic ‘pffft’ of the needle going in and out of the fabric. Sounds pretty good to me! 

With autumn just around the corner this autumn leaves tutorial will get you in the mood for cosy evenings and as many cups of tea as you can handle. Perfect for adorning any item of clothing or for some simple wall décor.

Essential Supplies:


Step 1: Prepare your hoop

To prepare your hoop gather your fabric and ensure that it is at least 2” larger than your hoop size.

  1. Unscrew your embroidery hoop and place fabric between both sides. Push hoop sides together to sandwich your fabric between.
  2. Start screwing together your embroidery hoop whilst gently stretching your fabric.
  3. Pull the outer edges of your fabric until it is taught and smooth.
  4. Tighten the screw a bit more so the fabric doesn’t lose tension whilst stitching.
  5. Gather your pattern and you’re ready to transfer your design!


Step 2: Transfer the pattern

There are lots of different ways to transfer a pattern to fabric, however my preferred method is the Light Box Method:

  1. Tape a pre-printed pattern onto a window or lightbox (there are tutorials online on how to make a light box from household items).
  2. Place your hoop with the inside facing you over the pattern positioning the pattern in the centre of the hoop.
  3. Using a soft pencil or soluble pen, trace the design onto the fabric.
  4. Your embroidery hoop will now have the pattern transferred onto the inside of the hoop. 

Step 3: Stitch guide

Stem Stitch

Stem stitch is my favourite stitch for straight lines. 

  1. Bring your needle and thread up through the fabric and back down about 5mm away. Pull until flat. 
  2. Bring your needle back up again about 5mm away then back down just underneath your first stitch and pull flat.
  3. And repeat! 

The aim of this stitch is to go through the holes already provided from your previous stitch to hide the ends of each individual stitch.


Satin Stitch

This isn’t your traditional satin stitch but is so similar I don’t know what else to call it. 

  1. Bring your needle and thread up through the bottom of the leaf (attached to the stem) and through the top of the leaf. Pull until flat. 
  2. Slightly to the left and down from your stitch at the top of your leaf bring your needle up then back down through your original stitch at the bottom of your leaf. Pull until flat. 
  3. Same again but other side, bring your needle up slightly to the right and down from your stitch at the top of your leaf then again back down through your original stitch at the bottom of the leaf. Pull until flat. 
  4. Repeat this alternating from left to right and each time going slightly lower to create a downwards curve.

Step 4: Time to get your stitch on!

Now for the fun part, get settled and put your favourite show on it’s time to start stitching!

I have started with the middle leaf using DMC colour 3371. I have listed the colours used in this tutorial but you can use whatever colour/brand thread you fancy!

First off, using Stem Stitch I stitched the stem of the leaf. Then using Satin Stitch I completed all the leaves. And it’s that simple! Follow these two steps to complete the rest of the leaves.  

Congratulations, you have now completed the Autumn Leaves tutorial. Hopefully you enjoyed this mini tutorial and you are pleased with the results, I bet it looks great! You can use this pattern on any fabric you choose, you could always add some embellishments to a favourite T-Shirt or scarf. Embroidery is such a versatile craft and hopefully you’ve now got the embroidery bug!

Thanks so much for reading!

t u s k  + t w i n e

Kate Beardmore

For more patterns and kits go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/tuskandtwine
For embroidery inspiration follow @tuskandtwine