How to embroider on a baseball cap

By on November 11th, 2019
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how to embroider on a baseball cap
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Are you an owner of a single needle embroidery machine who wonders if it is even possible to embroider on a baseball cap? I, too, at one point, had my doubts. And I waited a long time before I was brave enough to tried to embroidery on a baseball cap using my single needle embroidery machine.

Baseball caps are intimidating to embroidery on a single needle embroidery machine for a few reasons.  One, baseball caps are curved and the surface of an embroidery hoop is flat. For successful embroidery, you will need to flatten out this curve. Secondly, the area on which you will stitch is tough to access.  But, despite these challenges, it is possible to achieve good results

If you were in the business of embroidering a lot of hats, I would definitely recommend investing in a multi-needle embroidery machine. These machines have special attachments specifically for embroidering on baseball caps.  But until you make an investment in a multi-needle embroidery machine, you can still embroider on a baseball cap on your single needle.

Why embroider on a baseball cap?

Embroidered baseball cap
“Beach Baby” embroidered hat created by Dina Criscio Mccarthy who has granted me permission to use this image.

Baseball caps make great gifts for almost anyone: men, women and children. Blank baseball caps are cheap and come in a variety of styles and colors. They are also easy to size. Most baseball caps have an adjustable strap in the back, allowing them to fit snugly on almost any head. 

By adding some embroidery, like a monogram, a fun design, a saying or even a nickname, you can create a truly one-of-a-kind gift. The possibilities are endless.  If you are looking for some monogram inspiration, check out my post on the 10 best monogram designs.

I once had a woman reach out to me via my Etsy store, wondering if I could digitize a silly hand gesture and embroider it on baseball caps for her girl friends.  Ok – this sounds obscene, but the hand gesture was not – just weird.  It was just a private joke among these women. My point is – baseball caps, specifically custom embroidered caps are always a winner.

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Precautions to take when you embroider on a baseball cap

  1. Don’t try to embroider on a hat that is very stiff.  Baseball caps that are more akin to trucker caps are stiff and won’t lay flat on your hooped stabilizer.
  2. Don’t try to stitch out a design on a baseball cap that extends to the extents of your hoop.  You will want some room between the border of the design and the edges of your hoop so that you can pin your hat in place on your hooped stabilizer.
  3. Get the inside flap of the hat out of the way of the stitching by stapling it onto the the brim. You can easily remove the staples when you are done.

How to embroider on a baseball cap

  1. Hoop a piece of adhesive-backed stabilizer.
  2. Score the inside edges of the hoop and peel back the paper to expose the adhesive.
  3. Mark the center of the hoop and extend lines from the center point horizontally and vertically, drawing on the sticky, hooped stabilizer.
  4. Mark the center of the design on the hat using a pin. Consider the size of your design.  How tall is it? Where will the top and bottom of the design land?  You should make sure that the bottom of the design is at least 1″ from the intersection of the hat and the brim.
  5. Turn the hat inside out, and push away the inside ban of the hat, stapling it to the brim, if necessary.
  6. Stick the hat onto the hooped stabilizer, lining up the center point of the design on the hat to the center point of the hooped stabilizer.  Pin it in place, making sure that the pins are out of the way of the stitching.
  7. Carefully start stitching on your design.

A variety of baseball caps suitable for embroidery and applique

I have actually purchased baseball cap from a few different sources including and  However, Amazon has a great selection and competitive prices.  Amazon Prime it and be done. Here are some options.

Want to see me embroider on a baseball cap on my single needle embroidery machine?

Check out the video I made of me making a STL (St. Louis) baseball cap for my friend.

Happy stitching, everyone!


P.S. I would love to learn more about your machine embroidery interests! Please take a minute to answer a few questions so I can better tailor this blog to your needs.

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