Brain stem! Brain stem!

05/02/2012 at 12:45 pm 1 comment


I embroidered a brain!

Why, you ask? Because I can.

Honestly, it was craft night and I felt like embroidering something. (Craft night being the usually once monthly get-together with a bunch of girls who are either in or somehow involved with someone in physics.  It’s branched out from there, but that was the common thread at first.)

Embroidery is rather new to me, and while I’ve tried a few practice stitches, I find it’s better if I just go for it and make a designdo something.  (A few weeks ago I did a practice bird skull with little swirly things…I should take a picture of that, because I’m pretty sure no one else will ever see it otherwise) When I saw this brain, being a psychology major and all, I knew I had to make it.

I got the design from Urban Threads,which is an awesome embroidery site.  They have awesome designs for really cheap when you buy them individually, and even cheaper if you buy a design pack of a bunch.  They have goth, punk, steam punk, cutesy, nerdy…all kinds of awesome designs.  Plus, they allow you to sell things you make from their designs which is doubly awesome. (How many times can I use the word “awesome” in one paragraph? 5 counting this.)

The brain was part of an anatomy pack. (I might do the skull, but I really just wanted the brain.) If you see any blue on there, it’s because I haven’t washed of the fabric pen yet. And that one black line going off to the right side is a loose thread that I haven’t yet bothered to fix. Really I was just excited to share.

Now, looking at that picture of mine, you’re probably saying to yourself, “Uh, I can’t actually read any of those words…How bad are you at embroidery?” Well, I did more or less freehand those words, which is part of the reason they look so strange.  The other part is this:


You can’t read them on the original design either, so I figured, why bother trying? Because it’s so intricate and detailed, I wanted a thinner thread, so I used only half the thickness.  Embroidery is a bunch of little threads wound together, in this case six, so I just pulled it apart, and used only three.  Obviously I still have some embroidery skills to  pick up, but I’m not that bad.

I think I need to buy a lightbox for tracing.  The hardest part of this was getting the brain image onto the fabric so I could embroider over it.  I ended up taping them both to my bathroom window during ideal sunny-time.  It worked pretty well, but I’m sure I’ll eventually have something I can’t tape.  They make pattern transfer paper for this as well, but that sounds complicated, because I think you need to reverse the image? I don’t know, I haven’t really looked into it yet, mostly because I’m trying to avoid buying more stuff, hence the window taping.

Incidentally, in the process of doing this, my dog has eaten 2 rolls of tape. She usually leaves stuff alone, but for some reason she really likes Scotch tape.

I’ve been asked several times what I’m going to do with the brain. I think want to hang it up in my office at work.  My walls are rather naked right now. I’ll need to affix it in such a way that it looks nicer than an unevenly cut piece of fabric, but that’s a problem for future me.

PS: If you don’t get the title of this post, please enlighten yourself.


Entry filed under: Uncategorized. Tags: , .

You are all visually illiterate The first of probably many wedding posts.

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. ./Steven  |  05/03/2012 at 1:30 pm

    Nicely done!


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