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How To Remove Embroidery

Although you never want to get rid of your embroidery, there are times when you need to fully erase it. It might be due to several causes such as due to uneven stitches, or you might have embroidered in the wrong place. It might also be because you have got your design completely wrong. This often happens when you are a beginner while you try to learn embroidery from scratch. Whatever the reason may be, you should always know how to remove embroidery.

There are many ways to expunge and delete the embroidery from the fabric. In this post, I’ll show you the most simple ways to remove the embroidery without having to indulge in the delicacies and technicalities of embroidery. However, you need to keep calm and remove the design with utmost tolerance.

Get Everything Ready

Before you initiate the operation of removing the embroidery from its roots, you must get everything ready in one place. This would make everything simple and time-saving. So, here is the list of tools you need to purchase before you begin:

Seam Ripper

Seam Ripper

This tool which has a metalhead and a plastic handle is used for expunging the embroidery entirely. It is more like a sharp knife that doesn’t have a blade. There are many types, styles, and sizes of seam rippers that are available in the market. Plus, they also come with every sewing and embroidery box. The primary use of this tool is to get rid of the stitches by invading the threads and cutting them in half.  What cuts the strands of threads in the upper part of the metalhead which is called the tip or the sharp point that goes underneath them to cut or tear them. 



You might not necessarily need this tool, but it should be with you in case you need to pull out delicate threads. This is something that you’ll find in a kitchen or in the toilet. It can sometimes be used for removing undue nose hairs too. Nonetheless, it is also called metal pinchers and it is an excellent object for pulling the combined sums of threads. They force out the threads from the fabric without damaging your garment. This tool is also used for pulling and carrying other items such as screws as well. 

A Magnifying Glass

A Magnifying Glass

This might not be an essential tool for removing embroidery; however, if you have it in your pocket then it could be a great help especially if you have to get rid of thin, delicate, and small threads while removing the design. You can cut or pull the most delicate threads by zooming into the fabric with these magnifying glasses.

Stitch Eraser

Stitch Eraser

If you don’t want to use the seam ripper, you can use the stitch or embroidery eraser. The stitch eraser is much more expensive than the seam ripper. In this article, we’ll learn how to remove the embroidery with a seam ripper. 

The stitch eraser has sharp blades with a shape resembling a razor but completely different from it. It doesn’t work manually, you have to charge it as it has a rechargeable battery, meaning that it is an electronic device. It also has the same process of removing the threads as the seam ripper but instead of cutting them, it clips them to break the threads.



If you don’t have all the above-mentioned objects then grab a razor and start removing the embroidery by shaving off the thread. You can use a double or a single-blade razor to cut the threads. However, using the razor to remove the embroidery isn’t as easy as using the seam ripper or stitch eraser. We’ll also learn how to remove embroidery by using a razor.

Pair of Scissor

Pair of Scissor

A pair of sharp scissors will be needed in the end to cut the stray threads that lurk out after you completely remove the stitches. 

Types of Embroidery

There are two types of embroidery. One is hand embroidery and another is machine embroidery. I’ll first show you how to erase hand embroidery with a step-by-step guide.

How to Expunge Hand Embroidery 

In case you have created a logo design or done some lettering on a hat, shirt, or on any other fabric and you want to get rid of it, follow my directions, you’ll be able to cleanly delete them from your garment! However, you need to be a bit careful while removing the design. If anything goes here and there, it could ruin your whole fabric. So, here is my step-by-step guideline. 

Step 1: Flip the fabric

Initially flip your fabric upside down so that the back of the fabric is exposed in front of you. When the back is completely exposed, you can easily work on tearing the strands of the threads. Put your hand on the design or in simple words, keep your hand on the stitches so that the threads remain stable while you do the removing work. 

Step 2: Use Seam Ripper

Now is the time to use the seam ripper if your design is not too dense. Use its pointed head under the bobbin threads and start turning its head to create the to and fro motion for cutting the threads. Don’t try to cut a whole bunch of threads, take a few threads every single time and start cutting them. Be patient, don’t try to very fast in trying to cut the stitches or it could damage your fabric. 

Step 3: Use Tweezer To Get Rid Of The Remaining Stitches

Now that you have cut most of the design stitches, take your fabric in hand and examine it in order to check if you have not cut the fabric threads. You can use the magnifying tool to check which threads have been cut and which threads have become loose. Ensure that you don’t have pulled or cut the fabric threads or it could degrade the shape of the fabric. Now use the pointed ends of the tweezer to remove the threads. You can also use scissors to cut the tiny and minute threads.

Step 4: Use Cloth Brush and Complete The Process

Now that every stitch is done and dusted from the fabric. You can use the cloth brush or the lint brush or duct tape on the fabric. It will help to remove those small hindering stray threads. When you remove them then you are done. 

Now move on to remove the embroidery through the embroidery machines.

How To Remove and Undo The Machine Embroidery

Removing the machine embroidery isn’t as easy as hand embroidery. This is quite a burdensome process that takes time, and energy and tests patience because it’s a complex process. Mostly the process will remain similar but this time we’ll not use the seam ripper. Instead, we’ll use some other object. Having said that, if you follow our steps, you’ll be able to easily finish the process. 

Step 1: Repeat the Previous Step 1

Turn the fabric on the other side– upside down– so that the backside of the garment is in the front of you. Now, you can rip off the threads and start undoing the embroidery. Keep in mind that the bobbin thread will be smaller in machine embroidery than in hand embroidering. However, this time you can use the razor or the stitch eraser instead of the seam ripper in case you don’t have the seam ripper. This might be a time-consuming job if you don’t have a seam ripper. You can also use hoops to keep the fabric tight.

Step 2: Use the Razor 

This time we’ll use a razor to remove embroidery, and therefore, try to be as cautious as possible as it can also cut your skin too. Look out for the fine bobbin threads at the backside. Use the razor over these stitches gently in a back and forth motion until the threads are damaged. Once they are damaged, you will have to pull them from the front.

Warning: Sometimes there is a stabilizer in between the embroidery pattern and the fabric to protect the fabric. In any case, never cut the thread of the stabilizer or remove the stabilizer entirely or your fabric will be permanently damaged.

Step 3: Plug-Out the Stubborn Threads and Complete the Process

Is time to pull out the fabric from the hoops and put it in front of you and investigate if there are any unwanted threads remaining and also check whether the threads are properly broken. Now use the tweezer to force the threads out from the design. Use the lint brush to completely clear the stitches. That’s it, you are done! 

Related Article: How To Remove Embroidery


It may seem to you that removing embroidery is a difficult job to crack, it isn’t! Although you have to be a bit cautious while doing the process, the main point of concern is how patient you are! It sometimes takes hours and hours to undo the embroidery. Therefore, you’ll have to learn to be patient in order to follow the above procedures.

Related Article: How to remove logo from t-shirt
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