Got a Little Rowdy With Your Work Uniform? – How to Fix Embroidery

Embroidery is the go-to option for customizing work uniforms because it lasts and looks fantastic. However, uniform embroidery may be damaged if the wearer pulls on loose threads, snags the embroidery with a sharp object, or accidentally burns it. Fortunately, such damages are usually repairable.

For a quick fix, here are a few ways to stop embroidery from unraveling further:

  • Use a dab of fabric glue or clear nail polish to secure the threads
  • Add a fabric stabilizer patch to the back of the embroidery
  • Use a sewing needle to weave the loose threads back into the fabric, then secure them at the back

Read on to learn how to fix embroidery that’s coming loose, from the experts at Thread Logic.

Can You Even Fix Embroidery?

Yes, you can fix embroidery. However, the correct way to fix embroidery will depend on the damage. For instance, if you accidentally burn the embroidery with a hot iron, you could cover the mistake by painting over the burnt part with a marker.

How do you fix unraveling embroidery? Snagging your embroidery can lead to the snagged portion pulling outwards in an unsightly loop. You can fix the problem by inserting a threaded needle under the snag’s loop and knotting the thread around the loop.

You will then insert the needle into the space beneath the snagged embroidery and pull the needle and thread out behind the embroidery. Pull the whole thread through the opposite side of the embroidery to force the loop back in and prevent it from sticking out.

Here's How You Can Minimize the Damage

Knowing how to prevent embroidery damage is just as crucial as learning how to fix embroidery. Below are some of the best tips for keeping embroidered clothing safe and looking good for as long as possible.

Clean the Item

If you wash your embroidered clothing like regular clothing, you may damage the embroidery. For instance, do not throw embroidered clothing into the washer with clothes that have zippers or other metal or plastic bits. The metal or plastic components may snag the embroidery and pull it apart in the washer.

The safest way to clean embroidered apparel is by hand. Hand washing is gentle on fabric, reducing the risk of your embroidered cloth’s stitching coming apart. You should use cold water when hand washing and avoid scrubbing the embroidered area or wringing the outfit.

If you prefer machine washing, never wash embroidered clothing with other clothes. Always use the delicate wash cycle setting, a mild detergent, and cold water, and avoid chlorine bleaches and brightening agents. Also, turn the clothing inside out before placing it in the washer. Doing this will prevent the inside of the washer from touching and damaging the embroidery.

Lastly, air dry your embroidered clothing or use your dryer's normal setting. If you place your dryer on high heat, it may pucker the embroidery.

Cut Loose Ends and Any Ends that Look like They Might Come Loose

Never pull thread ends that are sticking out of embroidery. Pulling such threads can damage your embroidery by unraveling it. Instead of pulling on such threads, fix them by cutting them with a sharp blade or scissors. Cut the loose thread as close to its base as possible to prevent it from sticking out from the embroidery.

However, do not cut loose threads sticking out of your embroidery in a loop. Instead, push the loop in with a threaded needle, as explained above. If you cut the loop, it will leave a hole in your embroidery and may create a starting point for the stitching to unravel.

Tie-Off Any Loose Ends that You Can't Cut Short

If loose thread ends sticking out of your embroidery cannot be cut, tie them off. Should a thread be too short for a tie-off, you can fix it by using a lighter or candle flame to melt the tip of the thread and press it back in place. While melting the thread is effective, it requires great care. Otherwise, you could accidentally burn other parts of your embroidery and ruin it.

Iron Your Item If Possible to Tamp Down Any Loose Ends

Before ironing an embroidered outfit, we recommend turning the clothing inside out. Doing this will ensure that you do not place a hot iron directly on the embroidery. A hot iron may melt the embroidery and ruin its aesthetics. Also, do not use a steam iron on embroidered clothing or iron a wet embroidered outfit.

However, if you have several loose threads sticking out of your embroidery, a hot iron can be helpful. You can iron a machine embroidered outfit to tamp down loose threads. Start by putting your iron on the lowest temperature and turning the outfit inside out. Place the clothing on a towel or padded surface and place the iron on the reverse side of the embroidery for ten to fifteen seconds.

Alternatively, don’t turn the outfit inside out. Instead, place it on a padded surface and set a clean cloth over the embroidery before putting your low heat iron over it for ten seconds. Using the iron will soften loose ends and help them melt back into the rest of the embroidery.

Fill It In With Embroidery If You Are So Inclined

If you pulled on a loose embroidery thread before discovering that you were not supposed to, you probably now have a hole in your embroidery. Fortunately, the embroidery is still salvageable. You can fix it by filling in the missing embroidery with a few hand stitches. You will need a needle and thread, and your thread should be the same color as the missing stitching.

Keep Your Embroidered Uniform Looking Sharp

Your embroidered work uniform should be durable, good-looking, and comfortable. Otherwise, you and your employees won’t be proud or eager to wear them. Even worse, employees dressed in poorly embroidered work uniforms may leave customers feeling that your company is undependable.

Use our how-to-fix embroidery tips to keep your embroidered uniforms looking sharp. If your current uniforms are beyond repair, get better quality workwear for your entire team by contacting us at Thread Logic. We have over two decades of experience delivering high-quality embroidered clothing to workers in different industries.

Check out samples of our work and contact us to discuss your project and get a quote.


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About Jeff Taxdahl

With over 20 years’ experience in embroidery and business ownership, Thread Logic owners Jeff and Wenda Taxdahl, and the Thread Logic team, know what it takes to make custom logo embroidered apparel that people are proud to wear.