How To Add Embroidery To Your Printed Photos

Looking for a way to make your photos stand out? Learn how to add embroidery to your printed photos by following this easy step-by-step tutorial.

One of the things I’ve enjoyed most about decorating our home lately has been adding personal touches here and there. One goal I’ve really been focusing on has been to include more family photos in each space.

For my daughter Mirah’s room, I wanted to hang a small group of pictures with her and her parents and cousins, but with a little something special to make it more fun. I decided to add embroidery to the black + white pics for a pop of color and texture. The end result infused so much personality and quirkiness into her space.

This is a quick and easy project that’s budget-friendly (win-win-win)! I already had all of the materials on hand so it only cost me an afternoon to complete.


  1. Printed photo
  2. Cardstock
  3. Spray adhesive
  4. Embroidery thread + needle
  5. Scissors

A Few Tips:

  • When using your spray adhesive, wait for the glue to dry a bit and become tacky for better contact.
  • Pre-puncture your holes so you can have a clear idea of where you’re stitching and to allow your needle and thread to pass through easier.
  • Either stagger your holes or space them farther apart. Because you are sewing on paper, if your holes are too close together you could accidentally cut out a chunk of your photo (ask me how I know).

Step 1: Spray the back of your photo with the adhesive and stick it to the card stock to help stabilize the picture for embroidery.

Step 2: Start sewing! I chose to follow the patterns already in the photos. In this case, I stitched the criss-cross of my braid and the floral pattern on my daughter’s shirt.

Step 3: Play around with color, shape, and texture. I personally love the look of a french knot, which resembles a cute little bobble and is super easy to make! For this stitch, draw your needle through the photo. Re-insert your needle in the hole you just created, but before you go through the photo, wrap your thread around the needle two or three times, pulling it tightly (but not so tight you can’t get your thread through). Pull the needle all the way through the picture and you’re left with a french knot! This stitch worked great for the flowers and buttons on her shirt.

That’s it! All that’s left is to hang your photo and enjoy it in your space! I love that I was able to make these pictures coordinate with her room by choosing a thread that matched the colors and decor for a more cohesive look. It adds a creative, handmade touch, which is what making a home is all about. How do you like to decorate with your photos?

Happy making!



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