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Designing Lovely Little Hand Embroidery

Posted by Shirley Hudson on Mar 9th 2020

I’m Shirley Hudson of Hudson’s Holidays Designs and author of Lovely Little Hand Embroidery.

 I have been a doodler ever since I was first bored in class, who knew it would come to serve me well. My book covers and folders were covered in design. Sewing, creating and crafting were always something that filled my time. It was a pleasure to create! All my designs for sewing, embroidery and quilting come from an idea and a drawing. Let me show you some of the process when I design.

The little witch shown above is the finished quilt in Lovely Little Hand Embroidery for the month of October. But before it could get to that stage, I had to draw out my idea. I have a few sketch books that I doodle in or draw my ideas down in. Sometimes I draw them with shading and other times I just do a basic sketch. When I like an idea I take a picture of it with my phone camera and then I place that photo into my computer on a program called adobe illustrator and redraw it so that the lines are clean and if anything is out of proportion then I can fix it. I used to use a sharpie pen and redraw it all on paper, but things go way faster and looks better on the computer. I also use a Wacom tablet which is a handy way of drawing with a computer stylist. After I have fixed the design and maybe added what I like to it, I print it out, use a light box to trace the design to muslin and then get stitching. I choose colors carefully so that they can be very visible on muslin. When stitching, I write down all my color choices for later reference.

I also brainstorm to see what I want from this embroidery design… do I want a wall hanging, banner, pillow, etc. I draw out design ideas and choose fabric that matches my embroidery color choices. The month of July is featured above. I love drawing little girls, so I made her a patriotic uncle Sam. I decided a couple quilted pinwheels in the wall hanging would be like fireworks. Adding a little blush to cheeks really makes her come alive. 

Most of the time I use a back stitch, French knots and satin stitches. I like simple, quick & easy to do embroidery. This “Old glory” embroidery design is now a mug rug. I added a little patchwork in patriotic fabrics and did some light quilting. This is one of 16 sweet celebrations in the book. 

This Robin has some variegated floss, which I love using. Stitching with it is a breeze since you don’t have to change floss as often and the colors are amazing. There are 30 projects in my book, something for everyone.


These designs above are just some of my many patterns in my line. Celebrating holidays is a passion to me. Embroidering is my favorite sewing form because you can literally do it anywhere and anytime. Decorating the home and gift giving are easy when stitching something special.

About Me:

I have been designing Craft & Quiltpatterns for over 20 years. I have always loved sewing & crafting, so when my daughter was born, I quit my job to be with her, but I needed to have an income. I decided to submit my own designs for all the major Craft magazines out there. It was very thrilling to see projects in print. Currently I have been in over 90 magazines. I then decided to make my own patterns and create my own line, Hudson's Holidays.

I currently have over 400 patterns for quilts, embroidery, wool projects, needle punch, and projects to decorate the home for all the holidays throughout the year and every day. My designs, generally, are easy and quick for the busy women of today.

I have been selling wholesale to quilt stores for years through distributors and retail all over the World via the internet and online stores.

My website:







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