One Animal Crossing: New Horizons player has been creating beautiful embroideries of various Animal Crossing villagers.
Vivien, who goes by honeylavendarxo on Reddit, has been making Animal Crossing-themed embroideries ever since she picked it up as a quarantine hobby. “I first started embroidery only a few months ago around May or June,” she tells me. “I was inspired by other Animal Crossing embroideries I saw on Etsy and Instagram. It made me want to create my own so I purchased an entire kit and self-taught myself by watching Youtube tutorials.”
On average, an embroidery takes Vivien about eight to 10 hours to complete. If it’s a particularly detailed design, it may even take her up to 12 hours. Since she spreads a project between two to three days, she enjoys watching videos while embroidering so that it doesn’t feel like time is passing by so slowly.
“The most satisfying thing about embroidery is the entire process—drawing out the design, filling out the smaller parts, then moving on to the bigger parts,” she shares. “I started to find embroidery very calming, yet a fun hobby.”
She says the process itself isn’t as complicated as it may seem since she uses an iPad. “I start by searching online for a photo of the villager’s pose I want. Then, I increase my brightness to the highest setting to trace the design on the fabric. Afterward, I choose the colors that match with the villager and start embroidering.”
To make the decorative leaves, stems, and flowers, she watches videos for help and uses woven wheel stitch. When it comes to the characters embroidered in the middle, it’s mainly back and forward satin stitching. In order to fill things in, she uses one strand.
She starts with embroidering the smaller details then moves onto the larger ones. “I also make sure to have a good starting point to create smooth and parallel stitches. This leaves the embroidery looking nice and clean. After completing the piece, I finish it off by ironing the front of the design to make it look even smoother.”
She’s been gradually sharing her creations on the Animal Crossing subreddit. Her earliest post is of Celeste, but over time she’s shared embroideries of Coco and Fauna. She’s created many more of villagers like Dom, Marshal, Merengue, Diana, Sherb, and Chevre, which she has posted on her Etsy shop. Naturally, her cute embroideries have caught the attention of members of the community, who have been commissioning her to embroider their favorite villagers.
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Vivien first started playing Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp when it came out for mobile devices, but she wasn’t into the series as much as she loves it now. “At the beginning of the pandemic, Animal Crossing: New Horizons was released, and I knew I had to get my hands on the game,” she states. “I started playing it every day and would be excited to wake up the next day so I could resume terraforming my island to the way I liked it. I’ve been hooked to the game ever since.”
Out of all her beautiful embroideries, she’s most proud of the one she made of Celeste. “I really like how the design turned out nicely, as well as the smaller details around the border. This one took the longest to make since it included more intricate details, but it was worth it.”
As for those who are thinking of taking up embroidery as she has, she recommends to definitely just dive in. “It’s a hobby that I never expected myself to pick up, but thanks to the pandemic, it’s allowed me to discover another part of myself that I didn’t believe I would take on. Embroidery is not as difficult as it seems and there are many resources online that can help people get started.”
Ultimately, she hopes her artwork inspires others to also take on a new hobby. “Whether it is embroidery or something else, sometimes your favorite hobbies may come along when you least expect it!”
You can look at Vivien’s many Animal Crossing: New Horizons embroideries, and even buy them, at her Etsy shop.