Thrift Store Remake: Film Holder Embroidery


I've had this vintage film holder in my collection for a few years just waiting for the perfect project.  Film holders are used to hold sheet film in large format cameras (picture the kind where the photographer is behind the lens covered in a black cloth).  Two sheets of film fit in each holder and the panel is removed from the side that is going to be exposed.  You can find these holders fairly inexpensively at flea markets, antique stores and on Etsy.  I love finding a new purpose for old things ... especially ones that would otherwise end up in a box in the attic or tossed out because they no longer serve a function.  For this project, I designed an embroidery pattern based on a simplified version of the vintage Rolleiflex camera.  I've always loved its shape and its dimensions lend itself well to our reinvented frame.  Stitch one up and snap a picture for us ... we'd love to see what you come up with!

xoxo Karen June

P.S.  DIY or BUY it in our Shop!


  • Linen Fabric
  • Pattern
  • Transfer Paper
  • Embroidery Hoop
  • Embroidery Floss
  • Embroidery Needle
  • Scissors
  • Vintage Film Holder


  1. Gather your materials.
  2. Transfer your pattern onto linen.
  3. Embroider design.  (We used two strands of embroidery floss and a stem stitch.  We used the back stitch for the font.)  Cut a piece of matt board slightly smaller than the opening of the film holder.
  4. Fold your linen around the matt board and stitch taught.  
  5. Cut off excess fabric on both ends (we only showed one end here) to reduce bulk.
  6. Fold in ends as when wrapping a present and stitch taught in this direction.

To frame, we removed one of the panels from the photo holder and glued our embroidery in place.