Embroidered purse

6 Embroidery Creatives You Should Follow On Instagram

Embroidery is fast becoming another medium for the modern creative. While I am not an embroidery creative myself, I love looking for inspiration for my own work through creatives who practice other mediums. I find that it really broadens my creativity, allowing me to see different ideas from a different lens.

Embroidered purse

From beautiful patterns to lovely images, sassy sayings or as a means for activism, here are a few embroidery creatives you should check out on Instagram to get inspired!


1. Kelly Ryan (@kellryan)

Kelly Ryan Embroidery

Source: @kellryan on Instagram


New York artist Kelly Ryan wears many hats: she is a fibre artist, an illustrator, and a designer. She started embroidery in her senior year of college to de-stress from writing her senior year thesis. After graduating from art school in 2015, she began to use her free time to embroider more hoops and has never stopped ever since.


Kelly’s work is always inspired by either nature, patterns or childhood memories. I love her work for how colourful it is. That, combined with plant motifs, cute animals, and little confetti patterns, her work never fails to bring me joy!


Her work has also pushed me to be more personal in my own work, to not be afraid to put whatever ideas I may have onto the page. There’s something beautiful about putting yourself into an artwork; it becomes a lot more personal and unique. If I could stop my self-doubt or imposter syndrome from holding me back, I may be able to unlock creativity that has never been seen before.


2. Jojo Giltsoff (@jojogiltsoff)

Jojo Giltsoff Embroidery

Source: @jojogiltsoff on Instagram


If you are the book-loving, writing-down-quotes-in-your-notebook type of person, Jojo Giltsoff’s embroidery work is for you. She is a British who moved to New York and started embroidery as a creative outlet from her day job. The idea of using your hands to put your ideas out into the world is something that attracted her to embroidery. 


Her work is sassy and humorous, featuring thoughts of an introvert, book lover, and the occasional pun. I find myself laughing out loud when scrolling through her feed, or cooing at her adorable dog, Cooper. I also got to see how one can put their own spin on any medium. Somehow, I always had this perception that embroidery only consisted of hoops of flowers, beautiful scenery or various patterns. Through Jojo’s work, I saw how wrong I was. It is not the medium that should dictate what kind of work is created…it should be the artist that determines what ideas will be put into the work. 


3. Ciara LeRoy (@prettystrangedesign)

PrettyStrangeDesign Embroidery

Source: @prettystrangedesign on Instagram


Ciara LeRoy is a multidisciplinary handicraft artist and designer living in Lexington, Kentucky. She was introduced to fibre art as a child by her grandmother and later learned modern embroidery from a friend.


Her work is bright, bold and beautiful. She also incorporates her lettering into the work, stitching out messages and words of encouragement. They explore themes of human emotion, mental health, social justice, and activism. She has stitched on jackets, t-shirts, pants and varying patterned fabric. Scrolling through her feed is definitely a feast for the eyes. 


While I am not one to use my art to communicate my beliefs, Ciara’s work has shown me how powerful art like this can be. I saw how art like this can resonate with others, to really touch their hearts and share the message clearly. 


Art can be powerful, as long as it comes from within.


4. Smeldridge (@smeldridge)

Smeldridge Embroidery

Source: @smeldridge on Instagram


A self-proclaimed “very chill grandma type”, Sam Elridge adds her own flair to thrifted clothing through her embroidery. Based in Canada, the botanicals she stitches into the clothing almost seems like they are blooming right out of the fabric. She does animals and occasional tarot card designs, too!


Sam’s work is vibrant and detailed, with most of them being wearable art; embroidery is not just limited to being decorative! This approach towards art inspires me to strive to develop confidence in my own art. The idea of wearing something featuring my own art is scary. However, if I could ever reach that stage, I know that I would have made something that is truly me and something that I am proud of.


5. Happy Cactus Designs (@happycactusdesigns)

Happy Cactus Designs Embroidery

Source: @happycactusdesigns on Instagram


Texas native Brannon Addison began getting into hand embroidery at the end of 2014. This was when she was facing an ankle injury and taught herself the craft for fun. What is unique about her embroidery work is that each piece is one of a kind, all done freehand. There is no template, only the general concept Brannon wants to achieve with each piece. From monochrome to black and white, beaded to rainbow hues, each hoop is done with love, care and the utmost attention.


Why Happy Cactus, you ask? When Brannon was living outside of her native Texas, she bought a small cactus to remind her of home. The cactus eventually thrived and grew, fitting for a “happy cactus”. It reflects her hopes for her design studio, to take a small seed of an idea for the company and grow it into one that provides products that bring joy.  


Brannon’s work was what spurred me to incorporate more florals into my own work. I have always admired how each hoop seems to come alive in her hands. Nothing quite brings me as much joy as drawing different blooms and plant life, allowing them to take over the page. I also love the whimsy and carefree vibe each hoop of hers gives off, a reflection of her creative process. It has definitely inspired me to take a more relaxed approach to my art.


6. Bysyaeezaaa (@bysyaeezaaa)

Bysyaeezaaa Embroidery Portrait

Source: @bysyaeezaaa on Instagram


Lastly, we’re getting local. Syaeeza Liana is an embroidery artist from Miri, Sarawak. After trying it out on a whim, she went on to join an embroidery workshop and she has been hooked ever since. Her embroidery is intricate and beautiful, and if one were to scroll through her instagram feed, almost every piece is an almost perfect reconstruction of a picture. Syaeeza is good at embroidering people, something that she started when her friend requested an embroidery of her and her husband. 


Since then, Syaeeza has been taking commissions to capture a person’s special moments in threads. From graduations to birthdays, weddings to family portraits, Syaeeza is able to create a special memento for any occasion. She even does custom embroidery for clothing too! I love how each work is done with such sincerity and care. It makes it all the more special to commemorate cherished memories. Her work has inspired me to be more intentional with my own special moments. While cherished memories will live on in my head, it is also good to preserve it through something physical. Doing this by creating something to commemorate the occasion makes it even more unique and personal.


Syaeeza opens commissions for her unique work every few months, so you should definitely check her out if you are interested!



I hope you have enjoyed the work of these creatives as much as I do. The embroidery community on instagram is a thriving one, so go forth and discover more if it interests you! If you’d like to read more, check out this article on shows and movies that inspire us to be creative. If you want to get started and curate your own creative space, you can also try reading this article!

Erica is a hand lettering artist, math nerd and educator in the making. She loves the magic that words have, whether it is writing them or reading them.

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