9 Highest Quality Embroidery Stabilizers to Embody Your Creativity On Fabric

  • Last updatedLast updated: Oct 20, 2020
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With a surge in the popularity of machine embroidery, there are many sewing projects that would benefit from the use of an embroidery stabilizer. With the aim of relieving the stress performed by the machine itself, the best embroidery stabilizer will do precisely what it claims – stabilize your fabric. This means it will not move, stretch, or crease as you embroider. Embroidery stabilizers are a vital piece of kit used by all levels of embroiders. These products are used on anything from mainstream clothing to decorative household items. They’re also useful for those embroidering manually.

Considered one of the foundations for a most successful of embroidery projects here we target no less than nine of the best embroidery stabilizers currently retailing on the market. Reviewing them regarding their most important elements, we look at issues such as the stabilizer type, the sizes available, and what fabric is more suitable. We also highlight why these stabilizers are so important alongside their product specifications, and other essential features worth mentioning. Also, we check out the many customer, and indeed expert, reviews for each model, gathering the opinions from those who matter!

Top 9 Embroidery Stabilizers Review 2020

Searching the markets for you, we’ve compiled our findings into one easy to access table offering a score for each one. Providing a detailed review of each product, we’ve also included an extensive buying guide, giving you all you need to know about embroidery stabilizers. Concluding with our top three, our goal is to ensure you get that best embroidery stabilizer to suit your individual sewing needs.

Editor’s Choice

This 1.5-ounce cut away stabilizer is sheer but stable and applies the translucent Polymesh Plus for the best results

Read Our Review
9.9
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Best for Towels

His eco-friendly wash away stabilizer is available in multiple sizes and great for towels, lace, fleece, and pashmina

Read Our Review
9.8
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Best Cut Away Stabilizer

A 2.5-ounce cut away stabilizer, this product is claimed to be used by all national and global apparel brands

Read Our Review
9.6
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Budget Pick

This straightforward and easy-to-use stabilizer is targeted more at manual embroidery projects and can be printed on

Read Our Review
9.5
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Best for Dish Towels

This wash away stabilizer intended for freestanding lace is ideal for tougher fabrics and available at an attractive price

Read Our Review
9.3
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Best for Baby Clothes

Great for many projects, this precut tear-away stabilizer comes in 100 individual sheets ideal for a standard hoop

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9.1
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Best Tear Away Stabilizer

A fantastically priced 1.8-ounce stabilizer, this product is ideal for smaller embroidery projects

Read Our Review
9.0
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Best for Knits

This adhesive tear-away stabilizer is great for smaller and delicate items

Read Our Review
8.9
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Best for Bathrobe

This adhesive tear-away stabilizer with a super solid formula is ideal for a hoopless application

Read Our Review
8.7
SewScoreTM
?
SewScore is a unique scoring system designed by our editors and experts. With the help of it, we can combine all the rankings based on product’s characteristics, statistics, and even feedback about the manufacturer’s customer service into one, all-encompassing score.
Features
  • Type: cut away
  • Size: 20″x 10

More features: 1.5 oz. medium-weight stabilizer, soft sheer and translucent Polymesh Plus; suitable for lightweight and sheer fabrics

Our Editor’s Choice embroidery stabilizer is World Weidner’s Poly Mesh Plus machine pick which claims to offer no show throughout your completed projects. A cut away type, this is available on a ten-yard roll and extends 20 inches in total. A medium weight type of solution, it weighs just 1.5 ounces, therefore making it ideal for that lightweight of projects and indeed sheer fabrics which need that little more care when it comes to the machine.

Soft, sheer, and stable, this is a high-quality stabilizer product which is available in white coloring. A single layer application, its inclusion of poly mesh in this cut away product ensures it’s one of the more stable of solutions on the current market.

Customers of the World Weidner Embroidery Stabilizer find this a most successful choice which works exactly as described, leaving no show while not being obvious when used on clothing items.

Pros
  • Use of proprietary polymesh
  • Top quality premium product
  • Sheer but stable
Cons
  • Some claim this is a little overpriced
Features
  • Type: wash away
  • Size: 12″ x 10 yd., 12″ x 25 yd., 15″ x 25 yd., 15″ x 100 yd., 19.25″ x 25 yd.

More features: made from 100% PVA; good for freestanding lace

The SuperPunch Wash Away Stabilizer gets our vote here for the best stabilizer for embroidery on towels. This is available in a wide selection of sizes and is a thoroughly wash away product, leaving no residue in the aftermath.

Ready for use on a convenient roll, this is made from a fantastic 100% PV. Not only great for using to embroider on towels, equally this does very well for freestanding lace, fleece, and pashmina. When dissolved, it offers a tighter definition. It’s also claimed to be less messy than other film stabilizers while keeping the definition of the material and holding the stitches exceptionally well.

Customers of the SuperPunch Wash Away Stabilizer highly rate this as the most perfect of dissolving stabilizers which is not just durable but completely easy to use. It’s also claimed to offer the highest quality of results, even on those harder to embroider items.

Pros
  • Eco-friendly choice
  • Many sizes available
  • Super stable and high definition
Cons
  • Some find it a little too thin and double up
3.

H.B.I. Cut Away Embroidery StabilizerBest Cut Away Stabilizer

Features
  • Type: cut away
  • Size: 12″ x 50 yd.

More features: 2.5 oz medium-weight stabilizer

Our vote for the Best Cut Away Stabilizer goes to this product from H.B.I. This is considered a good stable choice and is also available at a great low price. Coming as a roll, this is 12 inches by 50 yards in size and weighs a mere 2.5 ounces.

Designed primarily for machine embroidery, the concept of this stabilizer is to add a great deal of stability to whatever project you’re working on. Best of all, this is the choice of stabilizer claimed to be used by all national and global apparel brands. What’s more, a cut away type, this is the more practical and more straightforward to use, cutting off the exact amount you need in an instant.

Customers of the H.B.I Cut Away Stabilizer find this so simple to use and thoroughly effective on so many applications. It’s also considered a great value choice which makes stitching on larger areas easier.

Pros
  • 2.5-ounce weight
  • Globally used brand
  • Stable
Cons
  • Weight may be slightly heavier for some
4.

Sulky Stick N Stitch StabilizerBudget Pick

Features
  • Type: wash away, adhesive
  • Size: 12″ x 9″

More features: slight grid pattern; can be printed on

Our Budget Pick of embroidery stabilizers comes from the makers at Sulky. Referred to as a stick and stitch, this is perhaps the simpler of stabilizers which claims to be a swift and straightforward process. Firstly, you place your design on the stabilizer, using print or copy, then you remove the backing, stick on the stabilizer, then just rinse it away when you’ve finished.

Targeted more at those manual embroidery projects, it’s ideal for quilting, punch needling, hand embroidery, and cross-stitching. Available in white and of a medium weight, this is 12 x 9 inches in size and offers a slight grid pattern for ease of use. Full instructions for this self-adhesive stabilizer type are also included.

Customers of the Sulky Adhesive claim this is fantastic for manual projects, and really is quick to apply, while dissolving and rinsing away completely.

Pros
  • Quick solution
  • Great for intricate manual projects
  • Dissolves away instantly
Cons
  • More for hand embroidery than machine embroidery
5.

Vilene Water Soluble Embroidery StabilizerBest for Dish Towels

Features
  • Type: wash away
  • Size: 12″x 10″, 12″ x 25″

More features: intended for freestanding lace; washes away with cold or warm water

The Vilene Stabilizer gets our vote for the Best Embroidery Stabilizer for Dish Towels. This is primarily so due to its water-soluble properties, ensuring that it remains durable when used on those tougher of materials.

A wash away type, it comes ready for use in a practical roll which measures 12 inches by ten yards, or you can opt for the 12 inches by 50 yards if you prefer. Claiming to both look and feel like fabric, it utilizes a wet and gone application. Available at an excellent low price, this is also suggested as an ideal solution for lace items as well as those free-standing embroidery designs.

Customers of the Vilene Stabilizer highly rate this product as holding up immensely well to more intense stitching and machine sessions while disappearing with just a touch of water to leave behind some of the most perfect results each time.

Pros
  • Water soluble solution
  • Ideal for tougher fabrics
  • Good low price
Cons
  • Some suggest it’s a little too thin
6.

World Weidner Tear Away StabilizerBest for Baby Clothes

Features
  • Type: tear away
  • Size: 100 12″ x 10″ precut sheets

More features: 1.8 oz. medium-weight stabilizer

World Weidner’s Stabilizer gains our vote for the Best Embroidery Stabilizer for Baby Clothes. A precut stabilizer type, this purchase offers no less than 100 individual stabilizer sheets which are tear away for the easiest of uses.

Smaller sheets are ideal for many projects, including those more delicate and reduced material requirements of baby clothes. A medium-weight stabilizer, these are a mere 1.8 ounces each sheet and all measure 12 inches by 10 inches in size. This means they are the ideal solution for all those 5 inches by 7 inches hoops. Primarily designed for use on an embroidery machine, this is a high-quality stabilizer which can tear easily in either direction. World Weidner is known throughout the industry as a premium brand.

Customers of the World Weidner Stabilizer find this works exceptionally well on the machine but more so highly rate its sheer practicality of fitting standard 5-by-7-inch hoops with ease.

Pros
  • Precut sheets for convenience
  • Medium weight
  • Ideal for hoops
Cons
  • Some claim it’s a little too heavy
7.

H.B.I. Tear Away Embroidery StabilizerBest Tear Away Stabilizer

Features
  • Type: tear away
  • Size: 12″x 50

More features: 1.8 oz. medium-weight stabilizer

This H.B.I product is our choice for the Best Tear Away Stabilizer. A value stabilizer, this is fantastically low priced. With the ability to be removed easily from the material it’s stuck to, this is ideal for those tear away projects. Complete on a roll for ease of access, this is a medium weight which offers a mere 1.8 ounces. It also comes in a size of 12 inches by 50 yards.

The design of a tear away stabilizer ensures that no matter what size of your intended project, you are assured of no waste when it comes to selecting this stabilizer. You simply pull the amount needed off the roll and tear off where necessary when completing your design. Therefore, these types are great for smaller and mini-projects, and you can eliminate any waste.

Customers of the H.B.I Embroidery Stabilizer find this ideal for those smaller of projects, claiming it tears away neatly and efficiently.

Pros
  • Fantastically priced
  • Medium weight
  • No wastage
Cons
  • Some claims it’s not overly sturdy
Features
  • Type: tear away, adhesive
  • Size: 8.25″x 6 yd.

More features: firm medium-weight stabilizer

The Sulky Sticky Self-adhesive and Tearaway Stabilizer makes our list for the Best Embroidery Stabilizer for Knits. This is the ideal solution for those more delicate of items that are embroidered on the machines as well as those smaller, more intricate items. This product is designed for allowing easier and better looking embroider action on smaller areas of clothing. This includes that such as edges, button rows, pockets, collars, cuffs, and ribbon. The idea here is to prevent any basting to the stabilizer itself.

This stabilizer is available to purchase as one pack, two-packs or three-packs, and each pack measures 8.25 inches by six yards. A tear away type which is self-adhesive, this can be placed in or under your hoop and is perfect for computerized machine embroidery.

Customers of the Sulky Sticky Stabilizer find it thoroughly easy to use and an excellent buy for some of the more specialized of projects.

Pros
  • Ideal for hooped and computerized machine embroidery
  • Effective for delicate and smaller items
  • Choices of packs
Cons
  • Some claims of a sticky residue left behind
Features
  • Type: tear away, adhesive
  • Size: 8″ x 25 yd. and 12″ x 10 yd.

More features: made from recycled polyester and cellulose; 1.5 oz. medium-weight stabilizer

Our choice for the Best Embroidery Stabilizer for Bathrobe Projects is SuperPunch’s Peel and Stick Stabilizer. It’s available to purchase in two size rolls of either eight inches by 25 yards or 12 inches by 10 yards. At just 2.0 ounces in weight, this is also an eco-friendly choice of stabilizer due to its make-up of recycled cellulose and polyester.

This super solid product works wonders with its needle friendly formula and serves many a hoopless and clamp-type application. Ideal for those projects such as socks and towels, this will not leave any residue and offers the highest of quality for all application types. It’s also the swifter of choices due to its simple tear away design.

Customers of the SuperPunch Peel and Stick Stabilizer find this the ideal solution for those more robust and difficult of embroidered items, claiming it works well and doesn’t gunk up the machine’s needle.

Pros
  • Needle friendly formula
  • Eco-friendly choice
  • Two sized rolls available
Cons
  • Slightly higher priced than other types

Buying Guide

Now that you’ve had time to read through our most highly recommended embroidery stabilizer choices, you may have a better idea of the best one for your sewing needs. But, before you make your decision, why not take a few minutes to read through our short but useful buying guide? This is where we expand a little more on some of the features mentioned above, detailing those most important of elements a little more. We also suggest here what we feel you should ideally be looking for in your purchase. This, alongside with our ratings and reviews, should help you select the correct embroidery stabilizer for all your sewing projects.

Deciding on what stabilizer you need

Before making your purchase, it’s advisable to know what type of stabilizer you need for your current project. There are many factors to consider here to ensure the correct choice. These include whether you’re manually embroidering or using a machine, your fabric type, and the size required for the project.

Do you need different stabilizers for manual and machine embroidery?

9 Highest Quality Embroidery Stabilizers to Embody Your Creativity On FabricThough most embroidery stabilizers are aimed at using on the embroidery machine, you can of course use and indeed select the best stabilizer for hand embroidery. An excellent example of this is the Sulky Stick N Stitch Stabilizer.

Stabilizers are however designed in mind for machines to take the brunt of the force when machine stitching. This is when the fabric is the most vulnerable, and therefore the correct stabilizers will release the stress of the action while holding the material as flat but also as inflexibly as it can.

What fabric do you want to stabilize?

You may be working on one specific fabric or a whole range of fabric types. However, certain stabilizer types work better on particular materials. Thus, consider what fabric you’re going to be using before purchasing your stabilizer. As guidance:

  • Cut Away Stabilizers – Best for those stretchy fabric types
  • Tear Away Stabilizers – Best for those more stable fabrics
  • Wash Away Stabilizers – Better for freestanding laces and napped fabric types
  • Adhesive Backed Stabilizers – Ideal for those harder to hoop items

More on stabilizer types

9 Highest Quality Embroidery Stabilizers to Embody Your Creativity On FabricIn general, there are four types of stabilizers, making it that little bit easier when it comes to making the right selection! This includes cut away stabilizers, tear away stabilizers, wash away stabilizers, and finally adhesive stabilizers. Each one has its own unique offerings and works to provide those best results on a range of different fabric types.

Cut away

One of the more common types of stabilizers, the cut away tends to be used on those fabric types that have a stretch to them. The best stabilizer for embroidery on t-shirts, it’s also ideal for those items that are perhaps lightly woven or have a stretch to them such as denim, twill, knit fabrics, polo shirts and jerseys. It’s also ideal for those fabric types such as spandex and lycra, which are often the harder to sew on accurately and neatly due to their increased stretch.

Even if your fabric is very dense, cut away stabilizers will do a good job here, effectively stabilizing sweatshirts, sweaters, fleece, and swimwear.

Furthermore, you may find variations from this type, including heavy, medium, poly mesh and fusible cut away stabilizer products. The H.B.I. Cut Away and the World Weidner No-Show Poly-Mesh Plus embroidery stabilizers are good examples of this stabilizer type.

Tear away

Another popular choice tear away stabilizers are ideal for those woven fabrics which have no stretch and are once again available as several product types including heavy, medium and light as well as ultra-clean and tear and fusible stabilizers products. Ideal fabrics for this include canvas, linen, vinyl, towels, leather, poly/cotton fabric, and quilt fabrics. The idea here is to gently tear away from the stitches – but not into them. It also easily tears in any direction. This means no need for crisscrossing your stabilizer when you use multiple layers. The H.B.I Tear Away is an excellent example of this stabilizer type.

Wash away

As simple as the name suggests these stabilizers will wash away instantly from the fabric, leaving no residue. This makes them ideal for those fabric types that need the stabilizer completely removing, including cutwork, freestanding lace, and freestanding applique design. They’re also the best leave-in embroidery stabilizer for cotton choices. The Vilene Water Soluble Stabilizer is an excellent example of this type.

Adhesive

Another simple concept, adhesive stabilizers are also easy to use and can be treated as those regular stabilizer types. All adhesive types are coated with pressure-sensitive adhesives that offer a protective paper backing. Most sewers like to use these types for hoopless embroidery. Both the Sulky Sticky Self-Adhesive Tear-Away Stabilizer and SuperPunch Adhesive Peel and Stick Tear Away Stabilizer are good examples of this stabilizer type.

Check out this video explaining the types of stabilizers that can be used for machine embroidery.

How to choose the size?

Most stabilizers are available to purchase on a roll, so you may need to gage an estimate of your projects to ensure you have enough stabilizer to cover your fabric in full before buying these. Some stabilizers also come in pre-cut sheets, such as the World Weidner Tear Away Stabilizer. These are ideal if you have projects that will fit perfectly on such sheet types.

Simply make sure to measure your intended fabric to ensure that there’s enough of your stabilizer to go around.

How to use a stabilizer?

9 Highest Quality Embroidery Stabilizers to Embody Your Creativity On FabricDepending on the type of stabilizer selected, these are relatively easy products to use. For all types, place the stabilizer over the fabric you intend to sew on, ensuring a smooth, taut and wrinkle-free finishing after placing the hoop on top. Then proceed to embroider your design onto it. Each type of stabilizer will need handling differently when you’ve finished the embroidery stage:

Cut away

Use the scissors to cut the stabilizer away from your design. Aim to cut away around a quarter of an inch from the design itself, taking care not to cut the fabric!

Tear away

Use your hands to tear the stabilizer off gently from the design, carefully picking and pulling in-between the more intricate of stitches.

Wash away

Remove as in the same ways as you would with a tear away stabilizer, and then once your fabric has been washed, this should disappear completely.

Adhesive

Simply peel away the stabilizer from your fabric once you’ve finished embroidering it.

FAQ

For best practices, ensure you store your stabilizer in the original packaging. If not, place it in a clearly marked bag which is solely used for your stabilizer. Some stabilizer types don’t cope well or perform their best when regularly exposed to the air, so keep them in sealed bags and try to handle them as little as possible in between projects.

Stabilizers can also be used for other project types and allow for many varied creations. These include fabric and paper flowers, tote bags and different bag types such as shopping bags, handbags, beach bags, and even purses, to name but a few.

Stabilizers should not be referred to a backing because they have an essential job to do in stabilizing the garment not just when the job is complete – but more so during the process. Backing is a form of topping material and though a great help with many fabric types, can’t offer the support throughout the embroidering process. Therefore, the two are entirely different types.

Our Verdict

In concluding, we hope that we’ve been able to highlight the need for using a good quality and correct type of stabilizer for all your embroidery projects.

Our top pick here and Editors Choice is the World Weidner No-Show Poly-Mesh Plus Embroidery Stabilizer. We believe this is the highest quality product on the list which leaves no residue and works well with even those finer of fabric types.

Second place is the SuperPunch H2O Wash Away Embroidery Stabilizer. We like that this is a less mess product which holds well, and is completely easy to use, giving fantastic end results every time. Our third place goes to the H.B.I. Cut Away Embroidery Stabilizer. This is an ideal cut away product at a very low price and one which is hugely popular in the embroidering industry.

In concluding, we believe these are some of the very best embroidery stabilizers available, and all of which are effective at offering the best support both during and after the embroidering process.

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