Setting Up Your 2023 Embroidery Journal – A New Years Project

What is an Embroidery Journal?

An Embroidery Journal is comprised of 365 unique icons. Every day, you’ll dedicate one icon to your day, whether this be a cinnamon stick because you made a cinnamon roll or even a plant because you visited a botanic garden. This project starts on January 1st 2023 and lasts for one year.

You’ll notice in the below photo that this is one blank triangle on my 2022 embroidery journal remaining. This blank section is for December. An embroidery journal is divided like a clock with each hour representing one month.


  • A 10 or 12 inch embroidery hoop
  • A square of fabric
  • A water soluble fabric marker
  • An embroidery needle
  • Embroidery floss (a neutral colour & a bold colour)
  • A clear ruler
  • A 2023 embroidery journal pattern, printed

Step 1

Fold your square of fabric into quarters and mark the centre using your water soluble marker.

Step 2

Slide your printed pattern underneath your fabric and align ‘2023’ with the centre dot from your water soluble marker. Align your ruler with the lines from your pattern. Now, using your water soluble marker, trace these lines onto your fabric. Next, trace over ‘2023’.

Step 3

Remove the pattern and place your fabric into your embroidery hoop. Tighten both the hoop and the fabric until the fabric is taught and the lines are straight. Place your ruler on top of the pre-drawn lines and extend the lines to the edge of your embroidery hoop.

Step 4

Next, stitch over ‘2023’. You can use a variety of embroidery stitches like backstitch, whipped backstitch, outline, stem, split, etc. There are an endless amount of options. Personally, I like using a whipped backstitch.

Step 5

After washing away the water soluble marker, you’ll be left without dividing lines between each month. In order to circumvent this, you’ll want to make markings that show where each month starts and ends.

While some like to use a running stitch to divide each month, I prefer something a little bit more hidden. I make a small french knot where each dividing line touches the embroidery hoop.

Step 6 – Optional

Since an embroidery journal is an ongoing work in progress for an entire year, you’ll want to find a way to protect the edges of your fabric. I like using a blanket stitch along the edge of my fabric, but you could also use pinking shears or tape. If you are using a piece of fabric that is barely larger than your embroidery hoop, you should definitely follow this step.

Best of luck in 2023!

Enjoyed this post? Then check out some of my other blog posts or purchase the in-depth embroidery journal guide. You can also join the free Embroidery Journaling Facebook group to chat with others working on Embroidery Journals. Follow me on any of the following social media websites:

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