MAGAZINE GRAFFITI: A SUPER FUN WAY TO PRACTICE YOUR EMBROIDERY!!

This post is actually a throwback to my childhood. Not too long ago, before we had cell phones and video games, we were forced to find ways to entertain ourselves. It got me thinking of a fun game my sister and I used to play to pass the time. We didn't have a name for it back then, it was something we just did to amuse ourselves but for today's purposes I named it "magazine graffiti". 

We used markers, pens and pencils to doodle on magazine photos and add mischievous details. I thought this would be a really fun way to practice your beginner embroidery skills and I had such a blast making these. 

Want to give it a try?

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You only need a few simple items:

1. OLD MAGAZINES - My favorite magazines for this purpose are fashion magazines since there are lots of close-up portraits but I found some great pictures in fitness magazines too. I particularly love the pictures of people whose faces were straining. There is a lot of fun to be had with those!

2. EMBROIDERY STABILIZER: This is the kind of stabilizer with a paper backing that your can peel off and stick to the back of the magazine photo you have chosen. This really helped to prevent the paper from tearing.

I used this kind pictured above. It comes in smaller sizes too. Mine was a sheet of 22.5 x 91.4 inches.

3. SCISSORS - For thread cutting and also a separate pair for cutting out your magazine pictures. I don't recommend using your thread scissors for anything but thread so that they stay nice and sharp.

4. EMBROIDERY FLOSS - I prefer DMC cotton embroidery floss. It is easy to find, has a great range of colors,  and is a good quality.

5. EMBROIDERY NEEDLE - I used a needle with a thin shaft. I wanted to make as small of a hole as possible in the paper.  Normally I use a size 8 on average so go with a higher size for a thinner needle like a 9 or 10.

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Choose some pictures that you would like to graffiti. Be creative and let your imagination take over. I like to work on portraits which are perfect for adding make up, hair, glasses and other accessories!

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 Peel the paper backing off the stabilizer.

Peel the paper backing off the stabilizer.

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Center your photo on the stabilizer and adhere it, allowing the edges of the stabilizer to overlap slightly.

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Use your scissors to trim all the edges.

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 Take a look at the picture you have chosen. I like to create the unexpected. This usually translates to me as the opposite intent of the original photo.

Take a look at the picture you have chosen. I like to create the unexpected. This usually translates to me as the opposite intent of the original photo.

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I used a gold sharpie to sketch some lines as a stitch guide. As I got further in, I just started using free hand stitches. Do what feels comfortable. This is just pure fun!

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I used three of the six embroidery strands for this design. I used CHAIN STITCH for the eyeglasses with a lovely variegated thread and BACK STITCH for the mustache and goatee as well as the zombie eyes. Wholesome turned diabolical!

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For this lovely wholesome gal, I added some unfortunate stubble, bad tattoos and daring make-up choices!

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Above I practice my SATIN STITCH to make some over-the-top cosmetic choices. Also, the hand placement made the perfect fit for a pacifier. Weird and wonderful and oddly addicting!

 Some backstitch tattoo art....

Some backstitch tattoo art....

 "Regret Nothing" except maybe these unfortunate tattoo choices.

"Regret Nothing" except maybe these unfortunate tattoo choices.

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This was my favorite one by far. There was only one thing to do with the most masculine image I have ever seen......add some delightful feminine touches!

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A teeny bikini in satin stitch.......

 A flower using the  LAZY DAISY  stitch and  FRENCH KNOTS !!!

A flower using the LAZY DAISY stitch and FRENCH KNOTS!!!

 Who doesn't love a classic Mom tattoo made in  SATIN STITCH ?

Who doesn't love a classic Mom tattoo made in SATIN STITCH?

 Some pink rouge, eyeliner, elf ears, and a flower headband really complete the look.

Some pink rouge, eyeliner, elf ears, and a flower headband really complete the look.

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 I hope this hunk doesn't mind some good natured fun:)

I hope this hunk doesn't mind some good natured fun:)

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This serious thinker could use some "lightening up".  Some silly clown hair and make-up ought to do it! The hair was created using BACKSTITCH and SATIN STITCH for the pom-poms!

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Seriously SO. MUCH. FUN!!!!!

I would do this on photos as gift ideas! Think of the glorious possibilities.  

If you are interested in learning and practicing beginning embroidery, I have a sampler available at my shop HERE. It is a PDF you can print instantly from your home computer and has a pattern and detailed stitch instructions.

Thank you kindly for stopping by!

Warmly,

Pam