C is for Candlewick

A to Z of Machine Embroidery and Quilting

C is for Candlewick

Candlewicking is one of my favorite embroidery stitches found in the BERNINA Embroidery Software. Traditionally, the term comes from the use of cotton candle wicks used as embroidery threads (rather than being dipped in wax to make candles). As thread was in short supply, candle wicks were used to create decorative embroidery stitches, usually including French or Colonial Knots.

The candlewicking stitch created by an embroidery machine tends to be quite thread intensive, basically creating “knots” on the surface of the background fabric by overlapping multiple stitches in a circle. The time it takes to create these stitches is definitely worthwhile as the results can be spectacular.

Alternating Candlewicking

Stitched on a BERNINA 830
featuring AURIfil Cotton Mako 50 wt thread
and the Silk Hearts Silk Collection

One of my favorite ways to use candlewicking stitches is as an outline to an embroidered appliqué shape – especially when using two different thread colors and alternating the colors around the shape. Variegated threads can also give spectacular results when used for candlewicking stitches.

Heather Feather Border Candlewicking

Stitched on a BERNINA 880
featuring AURIfil Cotton Mako 50wt thread
from the Heather Feather Border Collection

Daily Deal

From 12:01am on June 25, 2017 until 11:59pm on June 27, 2017, the Hearts Collection is 25% off!

Enter the promo code “A2Z-C” at the checkout.

Add to CartHearts, 60.00
(Delivered as a digital download. Optional CD available at the checkout)


What I love about this collection… The Hearts collection was the 3rd design collection published by Sarah Vedeler Designs. The original Hearts quilt featured batiks in blues, purples, greens and splashes of red. The Silk Hearts Quilt was a huge learning experience for me and gave me the opportunity to create a silk fabric collection and a coordinating AURIfil thread collection. In the past when I was traveling to teach, it was always such a joy to walk into a store and see a Silk Hearts Quilt hanging on the wall, saying “We’re so excited that Sarah is coming to visit!”

Original Hearts Quilt

Stitched on a BERNINA 830
featuring AURIfil Cotton Mako 50 wt thread

Silk Hearts Quilt

Stitched on a BERNINA 830
featuring the AURIfil Silk Hearts Thread Collection
and the Silk Hearts Silk Collection


  1. I am really enjoying learning and reading all of your tips. Thank you!

  2. Your Hearts collection was the first collection I bought and I have used them in a quilt for my granddaughter. I loved the way they were digitized giving lots of texture to the fabric

  3. The Silk Hearts Quilts are so beautiful and vibrant. I bet it was true joy to see them turn out.

  4. I also have your Hearts collection and the silk Hearts collection. It is beautiful. Thank you Sarah.

  5. I also have and love the heats collection. I think it is the reason i moved up to my 830.

  6. That is really beautiful. Still have to find time to use your designs I have purchased. Love them and thank you

  7. I love your hearts collection!

  8. Jeannine Spencer

    I used the hearts collection to make pins.

  9. So far I have all of the collections being offered…bummer!! 🙂

  10. I just finished the silk hearts using your fabric collection too. It turned out so beautifully! I receive so many compliments when I complete a project designed by you! Thank you!

  11. Love the hearts… I love candlewicking too..

  12. Your heart collection led me to everything else you design. I was awed when I saw it done on silk.

  13. Beautiful, love the hearts collection!

  14. I bought the fabric collection to use in crazy quilts, years later it is still sitting there so I think it’s time for me to buy the designs and actually make this quilt!

  15. This A to Z idea is so fun! I have always loved your hearts.

  16. I have this design and it stitches out beautifully. Great digitizing Sarah.

  17. This was my first CD purchase along with the tin of silk.
    Would that also have the svg files on the cd?
    By any chance are you offering a discount on the thread kit for this collection?
    Thank you for all your hard work!
    Sara , I love your designs and hopefully you’re staying cool in AZ .

    • Hi Jeri, The most recent version of the Hearts CD has SVG files. Send me an email (use the Contact button in the menu bar) and I’ll be happy to send them to you 🙂

  18. While learning embroidery on an 830, I tackeled this. Love hearts and stars and enjoyed teaching students.

  19. Such a beautiful design… I love hearts!

  20. Love the hearts ♥️ collection

  21. I love this collection and have made this quilt.

  22. Question: Can the largest heart be stitched on a BERNINA 790 with the Maxi/Mega hoop? I will only purchase patterns in which ALL the designs can be stitched on the 790 with maxi or mega hoops. Otherwise I’d like to be able to purchase patterns individually.

  23. The Hearts Collection and the silk combo were special items that I purchased at the Bernina Center where you taught us the 880 with the Sterling designs. What a great few days that was meeting you and learning so much about my wonderful new 880. Thanks for all that you do.

  24. I also own the Hearts collection and the fabrics. I have to make this beautiful quilt!

  25. I love all of the candlewicking …such beautiful stitching!

  26. Love your hearts collection. I think it was the first one I purchased.

  27. Really enjoying this! Your work is outstanding.

  28. Candlewicking adds so much to the designs.

  29. Sarah, can most of these designs that say 50 wt cotton also be done with 40 wt regular embroidery thread without any adjustments?

  30. This collection was my introduction to your designs. I bought both the hearts collection and the silk fabric.

  31. Jennifer Swenson

    I love how you combine all the different decorative stitches in your designs!

  32. Still love the Silk Hearts Collection. It was the first of your collections that I made.

  33. I wouldn’t recognize a design as yours without the lovely candewicking stitch! I’m also a fan.

  34. I love your candlewicking stitches, Sarah. They add so much texture to a quilt block. So nice to learn the history behind the stitches. The Heart Quilts are beautiful. I especially love the silk one. Betsy

  35. Your Hearts collection was the first one I ever stitched; it’s been a go to collection for other uses

  36. I have always loved the candlewicking stitches. Nice to have the machine do it for you! Thanks.

  37. My first exposure to machine embroidered candlewick stitches was in the Heather Feather collection (many years ago I’d done them by hand & can attest how time-consuming they are). I fell totally in love w/ the texture! All the stitches work to make all the others shine!

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