Mackenzie Orrock
Mackenzie Orrock
@mackenzie.orrock
Staff Plus
Craft

4 Sites to Download 1,000s of Free Hand Embroidery Patterns

  • by Mackenzie Orrock @mackenzie.orrock

Browse these online libraries to access a wide range of free downloadable PDF patterns for beginner, intermediate, and advanced embroidery

If you’re looking for inspiration to start your next embroidery project, patterns are an invaluable resource. Used by embroidery artists of all levels, they make it easy to embroider complex compositions and recreate tried-and-tested designs made by other creatives.

Whether you prefer to embroider clothing or decorative home accessories, whether you are looking for embroidery designs, embroidery material or embroidery kits, the websites below offer thousands of embroidery patterns for all kinds of techniques—including backstitch, cross-stitch, punch needle, and beyond.

Read on to discover seasonal hand embroidery patterns for holidays like Halloween or Christmas, modern and vintage floral motifs, motivational slogans, and lots more!

Wildflower hand embroidery pattern by DMC. Credit: @dmc_embroidery via Instagram.
Wildflower hand embroidery pattern by DMC. Credit: @dmc_embroidery via Instagram.

1. DMC

If you’re interested in embroidery, chances are you’ve heard of DMC. Founded over 250 years ago, it manufactures and exports threads and yarns all over the world—but there’s also a huge collection of free patterns available to download via the website.

You can choose from all kinds of animals (corgis to cockatoos), floral motifs, cityscapes, tarot card designs, seasonal patterns like snowflakes, and everything in between.

Good for beginners and experienced embroidery artists alike, each pattern is categorized by difficulty and lists all of the colors needed to recreate it (with the option to buy ready-made kits available). You can also zoom in on the patterns to see their stitches in more detail and find out more about the artist who created them. To access the patterns, you will need to create an account on the website.

Dog hand embroidery design by DMC, with free downloadable PDF pattern. Image credit: DMC.
Dog hand embroidery design by DMC, with free downloadable PDF pattern. Image credit: DMC.

2. Antique Pattern Library

As its name suggests, the Antique Pattern Library (APL) offers an impressive collection of vintage hand embroidery patterns, some of which date back as far as the 18th century! There are various options suited to all kinds of materials and techniques from beads and knots to macramé, and are all available to download as PDFs.

The patterns belong to various craft pattern publications and are scanned by the APL as part of their ongoing commitment to the preservation of craft heritage. Some of the entries also come with previews and information about the publications they belong to.

Collections include Rijksmuseum, the Museum of New Zealand, Te Papa Tongarewa, as well as the work of individual artists. Many of the works also fall under the creative commons license, meaning they can be adapted and personalized according to your artistic style.

Vintage Art Deco embroidery pattern from the collection of Annemarie van der Peut, via Antique Pattern Library.
Vintage Art Deco embroidery pattern from the collection of Annemarie van der Peut, via Antique Pattern Library.

3. Love Crafts

A community dedicated to fiber arts and other handicrafts, Love Crafts is home to 100,000 free patterns for embroidery, crochet, paper crafts, and beyond. It was established a decade ago to bring like-minded creatives from a variety of disciplines together to connect over their shared passions.

The platform shares free embroidery and cross-stitch patterns from leading brands in the industry (like DMC) and independent artists, featuring everything from flowers and plants to star constellations and motivational quotes.

Fall bloom hand embroidery pattern designed by Paintbox Crafts, via Love Crafts. Image credit: Paintbox / Love Crafts.
Fall bloom hand embroidery pattern designed by Paintbox Crafts, via Love Crafts. Image credit: Paintbox / Love Crafts.

4. Cozyblue Handmade

Cozyblue helps you start one stitch at a time by giving you the tools, encouragement, and inspiration you need to create beautiful (and totally do-able!) hand embroidery. Not only will you love the end result, you'll love how you got there: with mindfulness, patience, and inspiration. Cozyblue have a wonderful freebies section of their website.

Explore more online embroidery resources

- Want to learn embroidery techniques to bring these patterns to life? Discover creative online hand embroidery courses.

- If you want to design your own patterns, discover six free hand embroidery pattern makers online.

- Follow this floral embroidery tutorial using simple techniques.

- Explore advanced embroidery with our course Advanced Embroidery with Color-Image Transfers.

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