How to Embroider an Adorable Customized DIY Terrycloth

-Brother Sews Blogger

The BES 4 Dream Edition Software program is something I use frequently when customizing and creating machine embroidery designs. Actually, I’ve been a huge fan of the program since the very first version was developed. The current version has even more possibilities, with the option of adding on Power Packs to expand the features and capabilities. Power Pack 1 has made it super quick and easy to tame the loops of terrycloth and toweling with a feature appropriately called Nap control. Here is a quick tip sheet to show you how terry can be tamed with the Nap Control feature. From beach towels to bath towels, and other fuzzy, fluffy fabrics with nap, you’ll find this a valuable feature in the software.

Materials and Supplies used in this example:

Brother embroidery machine.
SABESLET4 Brother BES 4 Dream Edition Embroidery Lettering Software.
SABES4UG1 Brother BES 4 Dream Edition Power Pack 1.
Brother Embroidery Threads to coordinate with fabric.
SA520 Brother lightweight water-soluble stabilizer.
SA5810 Brother medium-weight tear-away stabilizer.
SABESSA Brother Simply Appliqué – Creative Appliqué Software Program
Summer Fun Bear with Life Preserver No. 36002 Featured embroidery design used in this example is available for purchase on, the Brother exclusive embroidery design download website. See Figure #1a and Figure #1b.

Figure #1a: Original Colors

Figure #1b: Modified Colors

Steps to add Nap Control to a design using the Brother BES4 program with Power Pack 1

1. Open design in the software. You can select the hoop size you want to work with by clicking the drop-down arrow below hoop and selecting hoop size from the menu. See Figure #2.

Figure #2

2. Next, click on the bear to select it. Note that I have 3D feature selected. See Figure #3.

Figure #3

3. By clicking on individual colors in the sequence view you can change any of the bear colors now or later. In Figure #1b you saw my final color selections. Now we’ll add a base of stitches designed to cover the nap of the fluffy terrycloth fabric. This Nap Control feature makes a smooth surface for designs, keeping the nap or texture of the fabric from creeping up and covering the details in the embroidery design. Click on the Tools tab from the top menu and click on the Nap Control icon. See Figure #4.

Figure #4


I added a finishing run stitch and increased the size of the offset. I prefer a little additional base layer on plush terry, so it stays away from the design. Increasing the offset helps.  Remember, the whole point of this process is to keep the nap of the fabric from covering up the details in your design. See Figure #5.

Figure #5

Just like magic, the software creates the Nap Control and puts it as the number one thread color in the sequence so it will stitch before the design itself. See Figure #6.

Figure #6
My preference is to change the color of the Nap Control stiches to closely match the fabric. See Figure #7.

Figure #7

4. Hoop your fabric with stabilizer and stitch the design. Tips: For terry towels I usually hoop the towel with a layer of medium weight tear way on the back and water soluble on the top. And yes, I use the water-soluble even if I am stitching with Nap Control because I think it give a better finish to the design. I prefer to hoop all three of these layers together, making sure they are smooth in the hoop. Always make sure the hoop is fully seated so the inner ring does not come loose. In Figure #8 you can see the Nap Control stitching on my deep pink toweling fabric.

Figure #8


In Figure #9 you see the design before all stabilizer is removed and washed away.

Figure #9

Try this method next time you embroider on terrycloth, and you’ll be amazed at the results!