Up until last week when I was pondering how to embroider my Doll Baby's face, I always embroidered free hand. In fact, I had tried water-soluble and air-soluble pens before, but the felt and knitted faces were too bumpy and didn't really take to be written on top of ... so I just winged it. Most of the time I had to re-stitch the face again and again because it wasn't the face I saw in my head. Well, when it came to Doll Baby, her face was so large I knew I'd never be able to just wing it, so I tried my fabric-like embroidery stabilizer ... the kind you need boiling water to remove. (I have a HUGE roll of it that I needed for a different project.) Well, it worked. Not only did it work, but the stabilizer actually added some kind of stiffness to the embroidery that makes it much stronger and sturdier and not as apt to get pulled or snagged. I really love it!
So, last night, as I was doing a face on one of my smaller toys, I thought, "Hey, why can't I use the stabilizer for this, too??" So, I drew the face I saw in my head right onto the stabilizer, then I positioned the piece on the doll's face and embroidered right over my drawing. I melted it off with boiling water and VOILA! The face is PERFECT, if I do say so, myself!!! And the colors didn't bleed ... which is what I was really worried about. The black, the red ... why, they just stayed there all in one piece!
So, this proves that, no matter what size face you're working on, go ... GO NOW ... and get a big sheet of embroidery stabilizer and give it a try! It's wonderful stuff!