How to transfer an embroidery design to fabric

We've teamed up with the The Daylight Company to show you exactly how to transfer an embroidery design onto fabric, so you can stitch your design easily!

transfer an embroidery design

Using a lightbox to transfer embroidery onto fabric is our favourite method! It is quick, simple and effective. There are a variety of different methods to transfer an embroidery design. In this article, we use a lightbox and a heat erasable pen.

We are using the Wafer Lightbox from Daylight which is A4 size.

A bit about the Wafer Lightbox from Daylight:

  • Ultra-bright adjustable light source
  • Lightweight and slim (8mm)
  • Dimmable light and memory function
  • Easy to use and set up
  • Ruler guides

The Wafer Lightbox from Daylight is a brilliant piece of kit and is ideal for tracing designs onto both fabric and paper. Thanks to its bright, adjustable light it is suitable to use on even thick and darker coloured fabrics and paper.

The Daylight Company 

‘We bring daylight indoors!’ The Daylight Company offers a whole host of lighting equipment that simulates natural light. It creates a mood-boosting environment which is fabulous for you crafters out there who find yourselves struggling to thread a needle without proper lighting! They offer lighting in the form of floor lamps, table lamps, desk lamps and much more. 

Visit The Daylight Company

Find out more about the Wafer Lightbox from Daylight

How to use a lightbox

Using the Wafer Lightbox from Daylight is so simple. Take it out of the box, plug it in, and press the power button. And you’re ready to trace!

Next, we will show you how to transfer an embroidery design onto fabric using the lightbox. There is an accompanying video below plus a simple guide with pictures if you prefer.

How to transfer an embroidery design video tutorial

Embroidery designs for beginners

We have a whole host of simple embroidery designs which are available to download for free. You can print these at home and then transfer them onto your chosen fabric using the lightbox.

For this tutorial, we have decided to use the mushroom embroidery designed by Maggie Magoo. This wonderful autumnal design features a variety of mushrooms. It can be transferred onto any fabric of your choice, we decided on natural linen fabric.

If you want to choose something else, browse our free embroidery patterns for lots of inspiration.


You Will Need

  • Wafer Lightbox from Daylight
  • Heat-erasable pen
  • Embroidery hoop
  • Fabric
  • Masking tape
  • Embroidery pattern

Total time:

Step 1

Put your fabric into your embroidery hoop and tighten so the fabric is taut.

Fabric in an embrodiery hoop

Step 2

Tape your printed design face up onto the lightbox to secure (we used masking tape).

Embroidery pattern on top of a lightbox

Step 3

Flip your hoop upside down and place it centrally over the design (if you can’t see the design this is a good point to switch your lightbox on). Secure into place with masking tape.

Taping an embroidery hoop to a lightbox

Step 4

Power up your lightbox! Take a heat-erasable pen and trace your design.

transfer an embroidery pattern step 4

Step 5

Once you are finished, power off your lightbox and remove your masking tape.

Removing masking tape from lightbox


Step 6

Remove your fabric from the embroidery hoop, flip and secure it back into the hoop ready for stitching.

transfer an embroidery pattern step 6

Begin stitching! For more advice on embroidery and how to get started, check out the embroidery for beginners guide and our stitch library.



We hoped you enjoyed our tutorial on how to transfer your embroidery designs. Now you’re equipped with this knowledge, it’s time to get stitching! We have hundreds of free embroidery designs for you to choose from, try the cactus embroidery, the deer embroidery, the mushroom embroidery pattern, the bee embroidery for a wildlife vibe. Or stitch up this lovely embroidered wall hanging. Looking for a relaxing project? We have this beautiful yet easy wildflower design or the plant embroidery. If you’re also looking to delve into machine embroidery or would like to find out more about it take a look at our guide to the best embroidery machine.