If you have a garment or item featuring a monogram that you no longer want, it is possible to remove the monogram without damaging the fabric beneath.
Things You'll Need
- Seam ripper
- Small scissors
- Sticky tape that won't leave a residue (duct tape or packing tape)
- Magnifying glass (optional)
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Step 1: Work from the Inside
Most monograms are made using many layers of overlapping and interlocking threads, often with a second piece of stabilizing fabric placed behind them. Working from the inside of a garment or piece of fabric will help you remove these threads without damaging the primary fabric beneath. If possible, turn the garment or item completely inside out to begin working. If you can't turn the item completely inside out, work from the reverse side of the fabric as much as possible.
The type of fabric you are removing a monogram from will determine how successful you are. Densely woven fabrics may retain puncture holes from the original needle, regardless of how carefully you remove the monogram. Napped fabrics, such as towels, must be worked on with extra care to avoid accidentally cutting the looped threads of the fabric beneath the monogram.
Step 2: Cut and Remove Threads
Using your seam ripper, carefully cut down the middle of a small section of the monogram threads on the inside of the item or garment. Take care to only catch the stitches with your seam ripper, and not the fabric beneath. Turn the fabric right side out, and use tweezers to carefully pull out the stitches that you have just cut. Repeat, cutting a few stitches at a time from the inside of the fabric, and pulling them out from the wrong side. Work slowly and carefully to avoid accidentally cutting or ripping the fabric beneath. If you’re having trouble seeing small stitches, try using a magnifying glass.
If you plan on removing many monograms or other embroidery, you may want to purchase a tool called a stitch remover or stitch eraser that is designed specifically for removing stitches.
Step 3: Final Thread Removal
Once you have completely removed a monogram, you may find that there are small pieces of thread remaining on both sides of the fabric. Smooth a piece of packing or duct tape over the fabric and gently pull it off –- it will catch and remove all the remaining threads. Do not use this technique on terry cloth or other napped fabrics, as they can be damaged. Instead, remove any remaining threads with your fingers or tweezers.
Step 4: Launder
Washing and drying your item or garment will help remove any stretched threads from the area where the monogram was located, and help return your item or garment to its original condition. Make sure to follow the care instructions for your specific type of fabric.
If you are unable to launder your item, such as luggage, gently rub the formerly monogrammed area with a damp cloth to help smooth out any stretched threads.
Depending on the age and use of your item, you may find that the fabric beneath the monogram is darker than the surrounding fabric. This is likely due to fading from the sun. If laundering does not remove these differences in coloration, your options include re-dying the entire item or garment using fabric dye, or placing a new monogram over the non-faded area.