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Toilet Paper Embroidery

Tutorial, Designs, and Coupon Code

A copy of this tutorial is included with each of my digitized designs, for your convenience.

Please scroll down for TUTORIAL.

These designs, and more, are available through my ETSY shop,

Cool Threads Digital.


Use Code Ellie518VP1 in my Cool Threads Digital shop for 50% off the Elephant design! This is a cute design that stitches out quickly and perfect for beginners to try (but you don't have to be a beginner to use the coupon!).  

Toilet Paper Tutorial

Roberta Varney’s Cool Threads Digital

 There are different methods for embroidering fabric and toilet paper. However, this tutorial is written based on the method/products I use to get consistently great results on toilet paper. This is by no means the only way and there are many great tutorials online-many Facebook groups, YouTube, and other digitizers offer tutorials for Toilet Paper Embroidery.


Resizing the design is not recommended.I get the best results using Dollar Tree store, inexpensive paper that is 2 ply and quilted. TP that is ‘fluffy’ tends to be more linty than I care for, and does not stitch out as nicely.I only use medium weight cutaway stabilizer for toilet paper embroidery. Tear away stabilizer is quickly weakened by the needle perforations of embroidery. Many of my designs have small details, which will not stitch out properly if you use tear away stabilizer.I use 75/11 embroidery needles and slow my machine down.Pre-wound, micro-weight bobbin thread. I typically use white.I use pins to secure my TP. If you use pins, select the thinnest, sharpest ones you can find. A thicker, dull pin can damage the TP as you prep it for embroidery. Remember that TP tears easier than fabric, so handle and pin with care.The flatter you can keep the TP the better. Avoid creasing the unrolled TP; the end result will look nicer.Some people use the clear, filmy Water Soluble Stabilizer (wss) on top of the TP. Personally, I don’t use it for embroidering on TP. Use what works for you.If at first you don’t succeed, no sweat! Just remove the end of the TP roll and start over!Toilet paper is linty. Be sure to clean your machine when you are done!Packaging tips are at the end of this tutorial.

Let’s get started!

1. Hoop cut away stabilizer. Do not hoop the TP, or it will tear.

This method is called floating-when the fabric or TP is not hooped with the stabilizer. 

NOTE: When floating fabric, the fabric must be pinned on all 4 sides, and with LOTS and lots of pins.

2. Double the toilet paper.

Fold the first 3 sheets of TP under the next 3 sheets on the roll.   

I like to embroider on the middle (or second) sheet. This leaves the ‘end of the roll’ to wrap around to the back of the finished product. 

Consider how to orient the TP in your hoop--landscape or portrait. How will you place the end product-on a TP holder, on the back of the toilet...etc.

3. Float TP, double thick, on top of stabilizer and pin in place making sure they are even-you should barely see the sheets that are folded underneath. 

Photo shows 2 layers of TP pinned onto the stabilizer. Notice how you can't see the underneath layer.

Floating Tips:  

Pin the TP to the stabilizer outside of the embroidery field. I use a total of 4 straight pins-2 on either side. Gently smooth as you go.  

Check alignment and center the TP as much as possible as you pin. Many TP designs fill the work field, so there is very little ‘wiggle room’ to adjust the design by using your machine. To make this job easier, I have Sharpie markings (not shown) on my hoop to show the actual work field. 

I don’t pin the top or bottom center at all. I use the TP’s perforations to guide alignment (L to R). If you look closely, you may see my pencil marks on the stabilizer to show where the perforations are located. This helps me to see them easily when the hoop is attached to my machine so I can 'tweak' the alignment a bit, if needed.

Make sure the embroidery arm and hooped TP can move freely; unroll extra TP from the roll. The embroidery arm should not strain or twist the TP. Clear any TP from under the work field.

4. Run the TRACE feature on your machine to double check alignment, and embroider. If your machine does not have the TRACE feature, all of my designs are centered in the file. So as long as your TP is centered in the hoop, it will have proper placement.


1. When finished embroidering, I remove pins first, then trim any jump threads on the front side. I find if I bump pins while trimming, it can damage the TP. Also, be very aware of your scissors. TP cuts very easily and is a little more fragile than regular fabrics.

2. I trim the stabilizer almost the same height as the toilet paper (see photo*), and leave the width intact. I find this makes a nice backing for the embroidery, and eliminates any stabilizer shadow. Be careful not to cut any embroidery threads while trimming off excess stabilizer. *Due to the angle of photo and curl of the stabilizer, the stabilizer looks wider than the TP, but it isn't.

3. Carefully re-roll the toilet paper onto the roll and secure with ribbon or a small piece of tape (my preference).

4. Bags: I am based in the USA, and use party bags from the Dollar Tree store. They are a nice clear cellophane, and just the right size. 25 for $1.00 and they are approx 11" high x 5" wide in size; and gusseted so they have a flat, wide bottom. Be sure to get the right size, as there are 2 sizes available. I find them in the aisle with the party paper plates/napkins. They are usually available on their website too.

I cut 2 lengths of tulle (netting) about 2" wide, and 18" long to tie for a bow. Curling ribbon also looks nice. Both come in many colors. If I use tulle, I 'fan out' the tulle once I tie the bow.  

Since I sell these, I also attach my business card. Use a paper punch on the business card, and lace the tulle or curling ribbon through before tying into a bow. 

ENJOY your new addiction!  

Once you master this technique, it can also be used for 

embroidering paper towels! EXACT same method.

I use 5" x 7" designs, rotate if necessary. 

Tutorial written by Roberta Varney

Owner/Seamstress of Roberta Varney’s Cool Threads Shop


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