Emma Nani, a junior at Leesville, picked up a new hobby during quarantine — embroidering designs onto her sweatshirts. Embroidery is the craft of decorating fabric using a needle and thread, similar to sewing.
At the start of quarantine, there wasn’t much to do. People were repeating the same activities every day which got very boring. As a result, Nani gained interest in embroidery.
“I was really tired of doing the same things each day so it was a new thing to learn to break up the monotony,” she wrote.
Nani considers herself a beginner. Her process starts off with finding patterns that she does not know how to do. Then, she goes to either YouTube or Pinterest for a tutorial. She outlines her design in pencil before starting with her needle and thread. Her favorite design to stitch are flowers.
“Sometimes it hurts my shoulders and neck if I’m doing it for a long time,” she wrote.
Due to those effects, Nani doesn’t finish her designs in one sitting.
Nani credits social media for her interests in embroidery because that’s where she gets most of her fashion style. Her inspiration came from seeing clothes on Pinterest and Instagram with embroidered designs on them. “Through the app I can see different styles and outfits which I can then use to inspire what I wear,” she wrote.
“I like how simple it is to do once you get the hang of it,” wrote Nani. “It’s also really relaxing to embroider while listening to music.”
Along with social media, Nani credits the generation, Gen Z, for impacting her fashion style to include embroidery. According to Nani, Gen Z categorizes styles into “aesthetics” which determines which styles are trending.
“Seeing and being surrounded by different styles kind of helps me gravitate towards what I like,” she wrote.
Trending doesn’t mean that all of the styles are new. Gen Z has brought back clothing from other generations: mom jeans, bucket hats, chokers, or doc martens.
Embroidery gave Nani a chance to support smaller businesses that sell embroidered designs because those are where most of the designs are found. “I think a lot of small businesses are experimenting with embroidery because people are willing to pay a lot of money for a sweatshirt embroidered with a logo like Nike,” Nani wrote.
Major clothing brands like Nike, American Eagle and many others have not joined the awakening of embroidery, but smaller businesses are booming from embroidering designs onto any sweatshirts.
Also, inputting unique designs onto sweatshirts is convenient for consumers because they have the chance to choose their design without having a limited selection. “You can get anything customized or anything designed,” Nani wrote. “Whether it’s a music artist, tv show, or brand.”
Nani recommends others try embroidery, especially since fashion design is so prevalent in Gen Z. “It’s cool to see stitching and embroidery being used by younger generations because it’s usually seen as an older thing to do,” she wrote.