Shadow Embroidery by Embroidery Machine

Catching up with my must-do’s so that I can write a new post has been nearly impossible.  I won’t bore you with ALLL the details, but one obstacle is time spent supervising 7 year old grandson Robert as he works the book he has written, Football Frenzy (soon I HOPE to be for sale @ $7, at least until Amazon or BooksAMillion pick it up ;-)). After I printed up two copies for his perusal, he decided that it is too short. So he is back to composing, adding a chapter on recipes for football watching snacks and more.


Roberts book cover

Additionally, I have been substitute teaching Sunday School for 1st-5th graders, a satisfying but time consuming task.

So until I finish the little popover pinafore (Pini-4) which is almost done, I resort yet again to putting up a post from the past.

Shadow embroidery by machine continues to be of great interest.  Though you probably have a greater chance of winning the lottery than of laying hands on any one of Suzanne Hinshaw’s to-die-for collections, you just might get lucky.  There are other designers mentioned below with sets or individual designs.

So here is the old post, with a few photos of projects done since putting this one up.  A  real, new, fresh post should be up very soon.


grandson's Easter outfit with shadow embroidery from Southern Stitches’ Shadow Work Baby Collection

grandson’s Easter outfit with shadow embroidery from Southern Stitches’ Shadow Work Baby Collection


pillowcase mad hem

pillowcase hem with shadow embroidery from Suzanne Hinshaw’s Shadowed Bows, Madeira applique scalloped hem and pinwheel roses from Fil tire’ and Fancywork by Suzanne Sawko and me.


Again and again, I have sung the praises of Suzanne Hinshaw’s shadow embroidery designs for embroidery machines.  Suzanne’s artistic hand has drawn the beautiful designs and her digitizing is impeccable.  But, sadly, her designs are almost impossible to purchase now.  A few collections are still for sale at Allbrands.


baby pc emb hem

another Suzanne Hinshaw design on baby pillowcase hemline

Suzanne and I have roomed together while teaching at Martha Pullen’s school in Huntsville and have enjoyed other good times tailgating and visiting when we got the chance.

Now, I cannot reach her.  When I first started this blog, she posted an encouraging comment but since then, she has not answered e-mail and her web site is down.  I know she is an incredible grandmother and dotes on those children.  So perhaps she has given up designing and is just sewing and enjoying the grandbabies.  I hope so. Does anyone know anything about where she is or what she is doing?

teddy bear emb

shadow embroidered bear from Hinshaw’s Teddies and Toys


Meanwhile, her designs continue to charm me.  This pillowcase is the project for a class I have taught all over the country.  The shadow work design is from Suzanne Hinshaw’s collection Shadowed Bows 2.  The web roses between the feather stitching and at the peak of the Madeira applique’ hem are from Fil Tire’ and Fancywork Elements by Suzanne Sawko and me.  I think it shows very well how much  this machine technique looks like hand work.  For details fo the technique, check earlier posts featuring shadow work.

Visit this site which gives some background and details of  Suzanne’s design career and techniques.


granddaughter's Christmas collar with shadow embroidery by machine from Suzanne Hinshaw's Charming Embellishments collection

my granddaughter’s Christmas collar with shadow embroidery by machine from Suzanne Hinshaw’s Charming Embellishments collection

Other designers are now marketing machine embroidery designs for shadow work, though I have not tried any of them.  Upon close inspection, many are actually shadow applique’, a technique in which colored fabric is applique’d beneath a sheer fabric and held in place with a pin stitch or even a satin stitch.

Laurie Anderson of Southern Stitches has a new web site for machine embroidery featuring shadow embroidery and bullion knot designs.

I’m really saddened by Suzanne Hinshaw’s absence from the machine embroidery design world.  If anyone knows anything about her, please let me know.  And if you have found more shadow work designs, let us know that, too.

26 responses to “Shadow Embroidery by Embroidery Machine

  1. I would also love to hear from Suzanne. I think of her whenever I use the little silver pin holder she gave us. They are made from antique salt shakers. I think she gave them to us at MP School. I also miss seeing you. Sue

  2. We did have a good time, didn’t we, Sue? I love that little salt shaker pin holder, too. It’s so unique–so Suzanne. I wish we could get in touch with her. I wish I could SEE YOU! We haven’t spent any time together since we taught in San Juan. Come to Florida and visit me, okay?

  3. Janice,
    I am sure you think I fell off the face of the earth but I haven’t and think of you and Suzanne frequently.

    Still doing lots of Heirloom and loving every minute that I get to sew. Life has been different for me these last 3 years since my sister died and we moved my mom up here from Miami. Allis well with the family, NOBODY married yet!!!
    I tried reaching Suzanne Hinshaw several times it seems over the last 3 years maybe and never got a response to either email or phone calls. I was sorting some designs tonight and putting them in order and came across all of hers. Last time I saw her was at a workshop at Louise Cuttings store before that closed.
    Take care, love you lots, same old Cherry Palma

  4. Hey, Cherry! It’s great to hear from you and to know that you are still making your beautiful heirloom creations. You are wonderful to be looking after your mother, and all the while you are probably tapping your toe wondering just when one of those boys will settle down and get married. What a fabulous grandmother you will be!
    I just can’t imagine where Suzanne Hinshaw has gone or, if she hasn’t relocated, why she isn’t in touch. I do hope all is well with her—and glad that all is well with you.
    Hugs to you!

  5. Hinshaw Friend

    I was looking to show a friend the shadow work that I knew Mrs. Hinshaw had shown me and I came across this blog. I was actually a very close friends with Mrs. Suzanne’s daughter and have spent last several years visiting with all their family and getting to know them all. She def has an amazing talent and beautiful work. They are all doing well and living around the Orlando, FL area. I hope you can get in touch again a couple emails I know of are and God Bless and Happy Holidays!

  6. Thank you so much for the update and addresses! I’ll be dropping Suzanne a note today! I hope you will visit this blog again.

  7. Fawzia Sardiwalla

    Have read all of the posts about Shadow Work Embroidery.I too am looking for Shadow Work designs to buy but have come up with nothing.Sad to know that Suzanne Hinshaw cannot be located.From this blog it seems sad that such talent is no longer available.If any shadow work designs are avalable from any reliable source I would love to hear about it.

  8. I’m looking for Suzanne Hinshaw also. I have the “Shadowed bows #2 Machine embroidery design. It’s in .Arr format and I need it in SHV format. Can anybody help me????

  9. Mary, I’m sorry that I cannot help you, but perhaps another reader can. Are there any willing volunteers who can convert .art to .shv?

  10. Hi my Name is Christina and I also am looking for Shadowed Bows Two in Jef or pes formats. Can anyone help please?

  11. Hi Mary, do you have embird? This program changes from one format to another. May I ask please where you brought the Shadowed bows #2 from please?
    ta Christina

  12. Hi Christina, No I do not have Embird, but I have heard very good things about it. I use Buzztools programs for conversion, both BuzzXplore and BuzzEdit. I bought Shadowed Bows 2 from Suzanne Hinshaw when we were teaching together at Martha Pullen’s school in Huntsville. I don’t know of any place where this is available now but I hope you can find it. The designs are exquisite. By the way, Mary is a nice name, but it is not mine. This is Janice at janicefergusonsews.

  13. Sorry Janice, about the name mix up. If anyone finds these designs, I would love to buy them. thank you

  14. I have been searching for the Suzanne Hinshaw Shadow work by Machine CD’s for some time. I did find one left at AllBrands, but that is the only one I have been able to find.

    I would gladly pay for these designs if I could find them anywhere. Does anybody have any idea where I might could find some copies of these designs?

    Thanks in advance

  15. Mary, so many people are looking for these designs! It’s such a shame that they are not readily available. My only suggestion is eBay. Please let me know if you find a source.

  16. Janice I’m still looking for help getting my Suzanne Hinshaw Shadowed Bows Two floppy disk from .Arr format to shv format. Someone asked where I bought it. In Santa Rose Ca at “The Place That Sells Sewing Machines” on Mendocino Ave. Yes, that is really the name of the store. On my disk it reads .Arr format but the package says in all embroidery machine formats. Pam the lady at the Place now said she bought them for a class to use with special elna machine that she no longer carries. Anyhow if you have any great ideas of how to get this floppy into shv Please help me. Thank you so much

  17. Carolyn, there are two pieces of hand embroidered bouquets left. One piece is 22″ x 6″ and has 7 bouquets. The other is 14″ x 6″ and has 4 bouquets. They really are lovely. My daughter once made a sundress with the bouquets for the yoke which was lined in batiste. The rectangular yoke was edged with entredeux beading laced with blue ribbon. Gathered lace was joined to that and blue satin ribbons were attached for shoulder ties. The skirt was blue batiste. She was 10 and won first place at the central Florida fair. But I’ve never had (or seen) rabbits in the hand embroideries.

  18. Hi.

    Where would the shadow work cd be available for purchase?


  19. Clare, Suzanne Hinshaw’s design cd’s are as scarce as hen’s teeth. I’ve looked over the internet and could find not a single one. Ebay is probably your best chance. It’s such a shame that these are no longer available.


    I have the Bernina version 6 embroidery software, and I do believe I can convert those designs for you. You can contact me at

  21. Hi Mary, Thanks for your kind offer, but I think the only request for conversion has been answered.

  22. Janet Handwork Spencer

    Hello All ~ Although I am not looking for Suzanne’s most exquisite designs…(my machine will not comply) I would like to send a message to her once again, thanking this lovely, quick-thinking lady for saving my life! Literally! I volunteered in her booth many moons ago at a Martha Pullen Sewing Market in Arlington, TX. We all went to dinner afterward, and I suddenly began choking! Suzanne took one look at me, lept to her feet and literally flew around the table to me and did the Heimlich maneuver and I breathed again! My only thoughts in the tiny instant before Suzanne reached me were that my sweet husband Gary would miss me, and I was about to see Jesus! So, Suzanne, if you ever read this, Thank You! I’m still on Earth to know and sew for my five year old Great Granddaughter, Kierstin! God Bless You, Dear One! I hope someone will be able to contact Suzanne and that she is well and happy! Janet Handwork-Spencer Dallas, TX {P.S. Suzanne shared with me one time that the idea for the method to accomplish her beautiful Shadow Work Embroidery by machine, came to her from The Lord, one day in the shower!}

  23. What a story! Suzanne is such a caring, thoughtful person that her response to your emergency is no surprise. I hope she reads this.

  24. Well, tons of searching and I have still never been able to find any of these designs available anywhere. It is sad that they are become virtually extinct. At this point, I would just love to have copies of any of the Booklets that came with the software, and maybe I could figure out how to digitize some of my own creations using some of the instructions. If anyone has any of the booklets that came with her designs, I would gladly reimburse any expense of getting copies of them to me.

    Thanks in advance.


  25. Wow! Thanks so much for the heads up, Jan. I’ll post this for blog readers. Suzanne’s shadow work designs by machine are as scarce as hen’s teeth.

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