Recharge Your Embroidery With Some Electronic Additions

Are you ready to take your embroidery to the next level? Traditional embroidery projects – samplers, pillowcases, and trimwork – can get boring after a while. Adding a bit of electricity to your work can make it interesting to pick up a needle and thread again. The following ideas can give you some new inspiration.


One of the simplest things to make with a bit of embroidery is a clock. You can buy electronic clock components at any craft or hobby store. These usually consist of the hands, the movement, and a battery pack, although corded versions are also available.

As for the embroidery, the sky is the limit. You can use any design you like, or you can purposely build a design to resemble the face of the clock. Mount it in a frame or hoop, along with a sturdy cardboard backing to support the clock movement. Then, poke a hole in the center to attach the clock arms and mount the movement to the framed piece.

Let There Be Light

Small LED craft lights can turn a boring sampler into an eye-catching display. Imagine sewing a holiday tree that actually lights up, or adding some glowing fireflies to an outdoor scene.

You can purchase short strings of LED lights for craft project use. These lights are powered by small button batteries. You simply frame your work, and then cut small holes to slip the LEDs through. The cords are neatly hidden on the back of the work.

If you're feeling brave, you can create your own custom string of LED lights. You will need LED lights, conductive thread, and a combination switch and battery case. Insert the legs of LED bulbs through the embroidery, then twist the ends into a small loop. Sew the negative side of the loops together with conductive thread, connecting these to the negative terminal on switch. Repeat for the positive loops. You may also need a resistor to control the amount of power, depending on the battery size and the amount of lights. Your hobby store or electronic component provider can help you pick the right components for your specific project.

Be Heard

Is it noise you want? Perhaps a pillow that snores when it's laid upon, or a small doll that says "I Love You" in mommy's voice. The secret to these projects is the sound box. These boxes are available with either pre-recorded sounds, or they are made so you can record your own. You simple sew them into you project in the desired location, with the activation button facing the exterior. When pressed, it will make the sound.

Most sound boxes include batteries. You may need to create a zippered access pouch so you can change out these batteries when needed.