Saving your Embroidery Project with a Fabric Pen

Sewing machines are mechanical and mechanical things occasionally malfunction. Sometimes the fabric will slip or stretch leaving a “blank spot” between the embroidery and the outline. When a bobbin runs out it can pull the fabric and leave white thread on top where color should be. When an embroidery spool is running low, it can catch on a rough spot on the plastic and leave large blank areas without color and ruin your project.

As an example, below is the result of using that last tiny bit of embroidery thread on the spool As you can see, the thread caught, leaving blank spots in the test pattern. If this had been a shirt, napkin or any other project, it would have become a cleaning rag.

Since I already had a pack of Tulip permanent fabric pens, I set out to see what the result would be in using a fabric pen on the problem areas. As you can see in the sample below, with a touch of the red fabric pen, the problem practically disappeared. If this would have been a clothing item, the fabric pen fix would save an otherwise “ruined” project. While we would rather not have a sewing error at all, it certainly beats the alternative of throwing away the item. As well, on stretchy fabrics, there are bound to be “blank spots” due to the stretching of the fabric. A touch of a fabric pen can quickly fill that “gap”.

DO NOT use “Ink” permanent markers. Bic and Sharpie use “ink” and are “paper permanent” only…..not fabric permanent. If you use them on fabric, when washed they will bleed and ruin your project. Fortunately I tested this on a sample pattern. Fabric pens utilize dye, not ink, and therefore, will not run. I was only able to find a packet of six (6) Permanent primary colors at Walmart but in searching the net, at, I was able to find a larger set with more colors for $13.99. As you can see from the sample pictures, this is a good investment in order to save a project.