I had a unique project to work on this week. One of our friends purchased seat covers for their vehicle and they wanted patches sewn to the headrest portion.
Here are the patches sewn on and you can see what the covers looked like before. They were made of a stretchy material backed with foam on the front. The back was a thin polyester knit and the bottom had elastic. Once I looked at the construction, I knew that taking the side seam apart would make it much easier.
The patches were actually a gift I made for my friends. I sent them in the mail as a surprise to Texas and thought they would be able to have them installed there. Well, I recently made a trip to Texas and the patches travelled back with me along with the seat covers. Life is weird sometimes isn't it? NO worries. I really enjoyed doing the project because I got to see how good they looked with the bright blue color they chose.
When I was looking at the covers I did however notice that the foam material although stretchy was fragile. You can see it beginning to split in several areas. So I knew I needed to be extra gentle as I took the outer seam apart.
A Seam ripper was the best tool to use and after I started with the point, I switched to the ball so the material would not become more damaged.
I only opened the seam enough to fit under the foot of my sewing machine. Pins helped place the patches and I used a ruler to ensure even placement.
I used a 75/11 needle in my sewing machine and made sure to start with the needle down. The seam was sewn inside the satin edge with matching thread and bobbin all around the perimeter.
Here is a close up of the seam. It is barely visible as long as you use the matching thread colors.
Once I had the patch sewn to the cover, I used some clips to hold the fabric edges together so I could repair the opened seam.
I set my Serger up for a four thread overlock and stitched along the edge. I was very careful to keep the trimming to a minimum along the knife edge. My bamboo skewer helped me guide the fabric also.
I used a large needle to run the thread tails through the seam also. This will help it keep from raveling.
Here are the completed covers ready to be installed.
I had to try them out so I could send pictures along before they were shipped back to Texas. I think someone got a car ride as well.
I have a video you can watch below that shows all of the steps. Maybe it will inspire you to sew a patch to a seat cover as well. This method will work for just about anything as long as you can fit it under your sewing foot and your machine will sew it. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
This project has been on my mind for a long time. I have a small loveseat that sits at the end of my bed. Our household is VERY dog friendly. They are allowed to lay on the furniture and pretty much go anywhere they like. The only place that I want them to stay off is my bed. I am a person that makes her bed every morning. I love to wash my sheets and crawl in to sweet smelling linens. For me, it is very difficult to watch two boy dogs coming in and out of the house and jumping on the comforter. We also have a tick problem in our area this time of year. Even though we treat our dogs with medicine, I have found critters and that is not fun. So I have been using a baby gate with pillows stuffed around it to block their path from the loveseat. If I am not careful and the pillows are not tall enough to create a visual barrier, my dogs will walk right through them.
So, here is my new dog barrier. It was an easy project with all straight lines to sew. I just had to take some measurements.
I measured the space in between the posts and then around the bottom and top. I wanted to have a height that would allow TV viewing even when you were laying in bed but tall enough to keep the dogs from jumping across. So it is a rectangle panel with webbing that wraps around each post and secures with snaps. I did add one inch to my overall measurement of the panel to allow for a 1/2 inch hem around the perimeter. I also cut the webbing extra long so it would wrap around the posts and give me enough to pull it taut while I installed the snaps.
The fabric I chose is Screen mesh from Lowe's. I had some extra from a previous project where I sewed a Screen Door cover. I am still using that screen and it is one of my best home upgrades. The screen is very easy to see through and lightweight. Since my dogs are used to the baby gate, I figured they would understand this was just a "NEW" gate and would stay off as usual. If your dog isn't used to a gate, you might want to try something a little sturdier at first and then transition to the screen. If they push with their nails, they could puncture the screen.
I had a large spool of webbing in my stash. It is one of those materials I found at a local sale and I purchased it knowing one day inspiration would hit.
The snaps made installing the panel easy. If you are using heavy duty webbing, you may need stronger snaps.
I used polyester thread and matching bobbin as well as a 90/14 needle. This helped pierce the webbing. A zigzag stitch worked great. I did use a small amount of sewing glue on the reverse side of the webbing along with a few pins.
Here you can see three vertical pieces of webbing. They made the screen much easier to handle after attaching and gave structure. Using the cutting mats helped me mark everything nice and straight with my chalk marker.
I did fold over a 1/2 inch hem on both sides before I laid the webbing on top and then sewed it with the same zigzag stitch.
When I was ready to sew the horizontal pieces of webbing for the top and bottom with a 1/2 inch hem, I made sure to cut enough to wrap around the posts with some extra. My webbing was thick and I did have to do some hand stitching on the overlaps as I didn't want to damage my machine.
The snaps were installed with the panel on the bed. I used my clips to hold it in place. You will also notice I added a piece of webbing in the middle because I thought my dogs might try to push around the side of the panel. Once I had the snaps installed, I trimmed the extra web and heat sealed with a lighter.
Here is a close up of the snaps. They make installation very easy. If I need to take it down for cleaning or flipping the mattress, it shouldn't be a problem.
Someone has been blocked! Looks like a successful project! I have a video of the project as it was being sewn below to give you more inspiration. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
Laying Out Multiple Embroidery Designs can get frustrating if you have an item that is an odd size; or if you are like me and math and measuring don't always come easy. I have gotten so much better at using tape measures as I have practiced, but my latest project gave me an opportunity to figure out a simple way to work around using just measurements. You can see in the picture below that trying to get many designs placed just right when they are separate is very time consuming.
This baby blanket was the item that I wanted to work with. I found it in the clearance section of Hobby Lobby for a great price so of course I purchased it and stored in my stash until inspiration hit. One morning, I woke up and Gingham Embroidery Letters flashed in my head. I thought, I will digitize an entire alphabet to go on that little quilt and it will be so cute. Then I set to work in my software.
The Gingham Alphabet letters are stitched in a 4x4 hoop. Once I laid them on the blanket, I discovered it was wider in the middle and sloped toward the curved ends. When I tried to take measurements from any point, I couldn't get a good center mark to even begin with. The edges were not an option because my letters would rise up. In order to get a grid set up, I would need to do some figuring and each time I tried, I just couldn't get it right. The individual printed letters would slide on the quilt and move out of place when I bent over the surface. Then I noticed that each letter I had printed out would be really difficult to get straight. That would affect my ability to hoop them squarely. I knew this was going to be a wall hanging, so any skewed letters would show up prominently.
So I got several pieces of regular copy paper and I cut them out to a 4x4 size. That way they were the same size as each of the letters.
Then I used regular tape and put all of the letters and blank squares of paper together to form one large template.
Now this was so much easier to work with. I could place it anywhere on the blanket and slide it around without fear of the letters becoming skewed. Also since the center grids were printed on the designs, I had a ready made place to mark all of my letter placements. It was so much easier to be able to take just a few measurements now around the edges. I used a heat erase marker and my long ruler to mark lines and then I removed the template and connected all to create the grid.
Here is everything laid out.
To make it easier to keep up with the exact placement of each letter, I wrote in the center of each cross mark the name of the letter design that would be sewn. This helped tremendously. Embroidering 26 letters can get monotonous and I would have hated to sew the wrong one in the wrong place.
Another great simple tip is to use a check off list. I crossed off each letter as they completed. I also wrote the colors ahead of time and used this to double check I had the correct thread color sewing each one.
Once I had everything set up, I was able to work through them one by one with my Echidna Hooping station and Mighty Hoops. I have a small plastic template that I made to help me make sure the letters were placed well. I also did not use any stabilizer when these sewed out. The baby quilt was thick enough and the Gingham Embroidery Letters did just fine.
Here you can see how I arranged the quilt in my Multi Needle machine as it was stitching out.
I finished the blanket with a couple of quotes from the Alphabet song. Since I had my grid already laid out, their placement went really quickly.
All of the grid lines went away with a quick pressing.
Guess what? There are numbers in the Gingham Alphabet pack also. I stitched these on a different color background and thread so you can see that they are just as cute in baby color tones. These designs can go from the nursery all the way up to classroom. If you home school, you could add these to your home study area or even make a soft book. How about using the letters for monograms? Maybe add a name across the letter? Have I got you inspired yet? I have a video below that might help even more. It shows you how I laid the blanket grid out and shows some of the letters stitching.
I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
My latest embroidery design releases today. It is an In The Hoop Belt Bag Wrap. The bag completes in a 5x7 hoop. The entire project is done with one hooping and that includes the zipper. If you are a person that doesn't like to carry a purse, you will love this project.
The front has detail stitching around the zipper.
The back has a tab that allows you to pass a belt through. Snaps make it easy to take the bag on and off.
The size is large enough to hold credit cards, cash and lip balm. Other items you might want to use this for could be your car key fob, ear buds, or a USB stick. Perfect if you want to keep your hands free while walking or shopping. I think I will be using mine while I go to my local antique shops and trade days. Moms would love this also so they can hold their kids hands instead of worrying with a purse. This is slimmer than a fanny pack so much more discreet for a minimalist.
Here you see the 5x7 hoop with masking tape, a zipper and vinyl. When you download the design, you will receive all of the instructions.
Are you curious to see how this In The Hoop Belt Bag Wrap is completed? I have a video below that shows the entire process. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Custom Stethoscope IDs are perfect for anyone that uses a stethoscope in their daily jobs. I have designed an ID that snaps conveniently in place. There is an area on the front that designates the professional medical title and first name of the person. On the back, an area for a phone number in case it gets left behind. Medical clinics and hospitals are busy places. In a rush, a stethoscope can be put down and forgotten. An ID or tag will help identify who it belongs to. If you have shopped for stethoscopes, you will see that the prices can go into several hundred dollars so an ID would be a very helpful way to ensure an expensive tool isn't lost. Let me show you all of the different features.
The IDs are embroidered using a high quality pleather material. Here you see a choice of Tan thread and snaps or white thread and snaps.
There are 20 different designs available. This sample shows where your first name will be inserted and where the title will go. Of course your phone number will be inserted on the back like the sample below shows.
The material can be wiped clean and air dried. Let's look at all of the different design choices.
These Custom Stethoscope IDs would make a great gift especially for that new graduate. Visit my Made To Order page where you can link to either the Tan or white option. There are many different medical titles and I started with twenty. If you do not see yours, visit my contact page here and let me know. I can add new designs to my site. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
This project has been finished for a couple of months and I am excited to be able to share it. I was commissioned to create two Latch hook Pillows that would be gifted for Mother's Day this year. Needless to say, I couldn't show any pictures until the reveal happened. That day has passed and I am happy to say the pillows were well received.
This is where I started. I had a picture of the two latch hook rugs and the design process began. The client and I had several emails back and forth with color choices and possible embroidery designs that could be added to the pillow back.
At this point, I had not actually seen the Latch hooks but I did know the size and that they had been created over 20 years ago by my client's mother. When you insert Heirloom quality into a project, the anxiety level increases a couple of notches. These were one of a kind creations and if I made any mistakes, I could ruin them, but we decided to move forward and in a few days I received the rugs in the mail.
While I waited for the rugs to arrive, I did start working on the embroidery portion. My client decided on a quote and sentiment. She also had a picture of her children with their grandmother that she wanted to be included. I digitized all of the text for the cover first. Then I prepared an applique design in my software for the picture.
I used Duck Canvas fabric and embroidered all of the elements to the pillow back. Here is a finished view. The picture was sublimated onto 100% polyester fabric so it has great detail.
The latch hooks were bound around the edges and here you see me carefully taking it apart.
Here are the two finished pillows. The process is not hard and instead of making this a long blog post, I filmed a video that you can watch below. I really delve deeply into every step and give all of my machine settings. I show taking the binding off, preparing to sew, creating a pillow form, stuffing and finishing the pillow with hand stitching.
This... is why I do what I do. I love to see happy people using something I have created. I hope you enjoy this post and the video, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
My latest embroidery designs are being released today. They are In The Hoop Kennel Tags. There are eighteen in total and I have put them in my store individually as well as in a complete set. I think they would be very useful in a clinic setting like a Veterinarian office or Grooming Shop.
They are designed to snap over the wire on Kennel Crates. When you download the design you will be able to stitch two tags in a 4x4 hoop. The finished tags are 2 inches by 2 inches without the tab.
I used Pleather to stitch out my samples and I think they really look nice. You could also use vinyl or any fabric that doesn't fray.
The design is very simple and once all of the details and text have sewn, you put a piece of fabric on the back of the hoop so all of the bobbin threads are covered.
A small amount of masking tape will hold that fabric on while it gets tacked down.
Then using your scissors, you cut around each tag leaving a small allowance.
There is a template that shows you where to install your snaps as well.
These stitch up really quick and would be perfect to use remnants you might have in your stash. If you know a veterinarian or groomer, I bet they would love some of these for their clinic or shop. Let me show you all of the choices available.
These In The Hoop Kennel Tags are a useful tool that your veterinarian or groomer can use to make sure medical or other services are rendered to our furry friends. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
It is Gardening season in my area and if you have read other articles here you know that I am a fan of flags. I think they are one of the easiest and most rewarding projects you can create. Today I am releasing a new embroidery design that will sew an In The Hoop Water Me Garden Flag.
This design will sew a complete small flag in one hooping. I used polyester fabric but you could use canvas or duck as well. If your flag will not be exposed to the weather you could also use cotton fabric. I think these would be really cute on a front porch, in planters or even on a desk. I have seen the small flag holders at my local Dollar stores but most of the time, they sell out rather quickly. If you don't grab them when you can, they might not be re stocked. To avoid this problem, I have also included a template in the download you can use to create your own using a wire coat hanger.
Here is my flag holder once I finished it. I will advise you to wear eye protection and be careful because some hangers can be sharp. I used wire cutters and pliers to help me follow this template and bend the hanger. If you wanted to get extra fancy, you could spray paint yours also.
If you have some scrap fabric in your stash and end pieces of grosgrain ribbon, you can machine embroider one of these in under 30 minutes.
Then install your flag on your holder and decorate your flower beds or potted plants. If you have a gardener in your life stitch up several so they can use these to remind themselves which plants need to be watered. I have an instruction video that you can watch below to see how easy this In The Hoop Water Me Garden Flag will be. Don't forget Mother's Day is right around the corner. This would be a fantastic little gift to add to a seasonal plant.
I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Bicycles are perfect for springtime sewing projects. Today I have four brand new bicycle embroidery designs being released and a bonus pillow project to give you some inspiration. Links to each design are below.
The Bike With Balloons Embroidery Design has so much going on. There is a colorful bike with balloons and a puppy. Customize this one any way you like and it will be perfect.
The Bike With Floral Basket Embroidery is a standout design that would be so sweet on towels or linens.
The Bike With Heart Basket Embroidery is a whimsical design that could be used in Springtime or Valentine's Day.
The Bike With Ribbon Bow Embroidery Design has a basket and flowing ribbon Customize all of these designs by changing colors. An Interesting look might be using the same design with different colors for your project.
Or you can get all four bike designs and sew a patchwork pillow which is what I decided to do. I usually have many embroidery samples in my studio and I am always looking for easy quick projects that can incorporate them. I think you'll love this one.
Sewing a pillow is a great beginner project because you can determine how large or small you want it to be without a pattern. I even sewed my own pillow insert and made my project into a removable cover so I can launder it.
I cut my pre sewn embroidery designs into squares that were the same size. I left a nice one inch border around the designs. Then I used some scraps that were 2 1/2 inches wide. I cut those slightly longer than the embroidery squares. A 1/4 inch seam allowance was used and I attached them with right sides facing. I used my iron to press after piecing the seams together so everything stayed straight and crisp.
When I had the short pieces sewn together, I trimmed them with my rotary cutter and then added the center strip using a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Be careful here to line up the design squares so they are not skewed. A few pins helped hold them in place.
I sewed more strips to the top, bottom and then the sides. Then I found the center of the strips and embroidered a cute saying in the middle. You could use the built-in fonts in your embroidery machine for this part. Now you have a large piece of fabric with cute designs that can become more than a pillow. Another great idea would be a wall hanging or create more blocks for a quilt.
Using two pieces of fabric for the back, I folded the ends over and sewed to create a 1/4 inch hem on each. Then I made sure to over lap these hemmed ends by about two inches. Placing the two pieces right side down on the center of the embroidered fabric pieces with the hem running vertically, I lined up the sides and top. If you have to trim the sides of your front piece to accommodate the width, it will be just fine. I had to because I was using leftover scraps. Everything was right sides together at this point and all of the edges lined up. A seam all the way around the perimeter held everything in place. You could add a Velcro closure if you wanted to also. My center overlap was wide enough to keep my cover closed once the pillow insert was installed.
The cover was trimmed at the corners and turned right side out. I pressed it well and measured for my pillow insert using some left over fabric in my stash.
The pillow insert was pinned right sides together leaving an opening for turning. After stitching around the perimeter and clipping the corners, it was turned, stuffed and hand sewn closed. Then it was placed inside the pillow cover. So cute.
This project would be great for an outdoor space especially if you are using canvas or duck fabrics. Since my cover is removable, I can change my pillow seasonally. Or you may want to update a small space inside your house like I decided to do. Here is my new pillow on an entry chair.
Now when I come in my door, a fresh new look greets me. Amazing how something small can give you such a lift in spirit. This was a fun project and I enjoyed watching it unfold using my latest embroidery designs and leftover fabric materials that were in my stash. Are you inspired to try a project like this? I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
I love walking through my local Dollar Tree and searching for unique items I can upcycle. It is kind of thrilling to get that spark of inspiration and see it actually come to life. The price point makes it attractive also. My latest Embroidery design is called Coffee Time Pad and it is made using a Dollar Tree Microfiber product.
These are the microfiber pads that I found in the personal care section of my store. There were four different color selections available. I like the pads because they are made from a microfiber material on one side and that is perfect to catch any coffee drips and keep a cup stable on your surface. It is pretty sweet that they are already finished around the edges with binding also. The opposite side is a scrubby material but the design will cover that area with fabric.
It is a very easy project done in a 4x4 hoop and I was able to complete 12 of them in a few hours. If you have fabric scraps in your stash, this is a great way to use them up.
You can see here that I am trimming away the excess material while it is still in the hoop. This design will use a 4x4 piece of scrap fabric. If you are like me, you probably have many of those.
All of the edges get covered after that and you are ready to remove from the hoop. I did use wash away stabilizer and after trimming closely, I was able to remove the extra with warm water.
A little extra bonus in the design download is this graphic. If you print it out on card stock, you have a perfect gift card that the mug rug can be slipped into after some trimming.
Instead of sewing one at a time, I used my larger hoop and ganged them up to four in one hooping. This made my stabilizer go a little further.
Here is the removal of the extra stabilizer once they are out of the hoop. When they are dry, you can insert them into the cards.
I made the entire batch of colors I purchased and they will be going to one of my local senior citizen homes. I have brought other projects to them in the past and they love getting things they can use in Bingo or game days for prizes. These would be awesome for that.
So have I inspired you to look for those unique upcycling ideas at your Dollar Store? You never know what you might find browsing the shelves. I have filmed a tutorial video you can watch below to see how the Coffee Time Pads come together. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Time is surely passing quickly and Easter is upon us. In honor of holy week and springtime, I am releasing my latest design today for an In The Hoop Bible Cover. This project is designed to cover a small bible that measures 3 inches wide by 4 1/2 inches tall. I purchased mine from my local Dollar Tree
The entire cover is quilted and there is a cross stitched detail on the front of the cover. The back of the cover has a bible verse. The addition of a ribbon bookmark with a free standing lace cross and ribbon closure dresses up the cover nicely. The snaps allow the bible to close so you can place any small items inside the front or back pockets like an announcement from a newspaper.
My Dollar Tree has these small bibles in two colors. Look for them in the book section. They are usually stocked on the very top shelf. If your store doesn't have them, you may be able to locate a similar size at another big box location.
The project will have two separate parts so you need a 4x4 hoop to do the Free standing lace. Then you need a 5x7 hoop to sew the actual cover.
Free standing lace is a lot of fun to stitch out because it is done with wash away stabilizer. Here you see the small cross just after I have pulled it out of the hoop. Your best bet is to try to leave some of the stabilizer in the item so it gets stiff as it dries. I accomplish this by using a small spray of water and my iron with a pressing cloth.
I also use an additional spray of starch on the item while it is wet so that as it dries, it will get even crisper. Then if you wash the item later, you can always use starch again to retain the shape.
All of the design elements for the cover sew in the 5x7 hoop and that includes adding the ribbons for the snap closure and book mark. You can cut your bookmark ribbon short or long. I wanted mine to hang just outside of my bible when it was complete.
When it comes out of the hoop you will have trimming to do and then turning the entire book cover so you can close it up. I used a needle and thread but hem tape would work also.
When you are ready to attach the Free Standing Lace cross to the ribbon, you will need to set your machine to a zig zag stitch. The ribbon is simply threaded through the eye of the cross and then doubled over the back. This zig zag will sew both layers together. On a side note, the embroidery design for the free standing lace cross could be used on it's own. If you have a bible with a ribbon in it already, just stitch this out and add it to your favorite one or gift a Free standing lace cross to a friend or family member. Such a cute little treasure.
The final steps will be installing the snaps on the book cover itself and the ribbon. I like to fold the end of my ribbon on itself to create a double thickness before I install the snap. This will give it extra strength. I usually also seal the end of the ribbon with a lighter after I trim the extra length so it does not fray.
When you download the design, you will receive a set of full color instructions that take you step by step. This little bible cover has so many uses and it is inexpensive since I purchased mine at the Dollar Tree. Think Bridal parties for favors, Baptism or dedication ceremonies, gifts for shut ins, retirements centers or cancer treatment units, or just to carry along with you. This is a sweet item that will be a pleasure to open and read, mark your favorite passage or particular scripture you are studying, or hold when comfort is needed.
There is a full video tutorial you can watch below (JUST CLICK ON THE VIDEO PLAY BUTTON ICON) where I take you through an entire project. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Brand New Patch Embroidery designs are being released today! Who doesn't love Pizza? I have been trying a new diet and of course the first thing you want is exactly what you are not supposed to have. So I consoled myself by digitizing these new patch designs. Let's take a look at them and dream about our favorite toppings.
You are going to see a recurring theme with these patches. Usually I can pass up junk food, but the minute I think I can't have it, my brain gets stuck. So this First Pizza Embroidery Design really shows that when I was working, all I wanted to do was drop everything and call for delivery. Here are a few project ideas for you.
The next design Pizza Crust Embroidery is an homage to bread, which by the way is not on my diet. I could really go for a deep dish right about now. Check out some cute project ideas below
The next patch design, Rain Pizza Embroidery was my wish that the floodgates of heaven would open and Pizza would appear around me. It could happen...RIGHT? More cute ideas for you here.
My final design Stolen Heart Pizza Embroidery says it all. I had to just admit that Pizza is at the top of my list of loves in life. See just a few ways you can use this patch design.
So while you watch these patches and start to get hungry, let me tell you about what comes in each design download. You will receive multiple design files for various machines. If you check out each design, you can click on the graphics and there is a list attached. Also in the file, there will be a design sheet to follow along with while you stitch the patch, an SVG file in case you want to cut your fabric with an electronic cutter, a paper pattern to use instead and full color instructions. When you are done stitching and the patch is ready you can sew it on your project of choice or add your own fusible adhesive to make the patch iron on ready.
I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. If you aren't on a diet, eat a slice of PIZZA for me!
Brand New African Sunrise Embroidery Designs are releasing today. Wow! These have been FUN to stitch! Such beautiful colors and mesmerizing to watch all of the Light fills come together to create Blending. In my part of the world, we are about to move our clocks forward one hour this weekend. That means longer days and hopefully some beautiful sunrises and sunsets. I believe that has got to be the thing I miss the most when we are in our Winter. Our daylight is short and when we do get a sunny day, the light is very dim. I have never been to Africa, but when I think of beautiful sunrises and sunsets, it has to be the image that pops up in my mind.
The Elephant Sunrise Design has blended colors with a Yellow halo surround. The Elephant is simple and elegant.
The Giraffe Sunrise design holds your gaze with long eye lashes on the giraffe. Can't you just imagine her chewing leaves while she stands in the morning sun?
The Lion Sunrise Embroidery design is a perfect reminder of why they are the king of the African landscape. He's not smiling, unless he's thinking about his next meal?
The Rhino Sunrise embroidery design is simple yet tough. Just look at that stance. I would not want to confront this guy anywhere. Maybe he's just enjoying the morning? Maybe not?
How about doing a wall hanging with all of the designs?
A quilt would be another creative idea. Or how about placemats or table runners? I'm thinking animal prints? Have I inspired you to start a new project? I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Just released today is my In The Hoop Alphabet Pennant design. This set is going to provide so many fun projects and there is a backstory to it. Last year at this time (In fact this exact week), I had plans. We all know where we were and what we had going on the moment we realized everything had changed with the pandemic. This design has been ready to go for a year but I just didn't feel like it was a good time to put it out yet. My original thought was it would be perfect for retail spaces or classrooms. Since that was in my mind I didn't expand enough to realize it would be perfect for home offices, or kids' bedrooms. Maybe you would like to make signs for medical facilities, retirement centers, thank your local fire department or essential workers at the grocery store. So, a good lesson learned. Sometimes waiting a bit and looking at something in a different time will give you perspective. Let's take a look at what is in the set.
Each one of the pennants will complete in one 5x7 hooping. Customize them to your space with fabric and thread. You can use prints, solids, stripes, polka dots, you name it.
The hangers are created by using 5/8 inch grosgrain ribbon. Just another material that you can change up. How about a sports theme for a bedroom? Or dinosaurs? Maybe princesses? Unicorns? Once you get started, you may not stop. This one set could potentially keep you occupied for a while.
Here are all of the Letters, Numbers and Punctuation that come in the Pennant Set. That is a lot of embroidery design possibilities!
Here is a finished pennant so you can see the size.
For a different view next to my hand you can see that they are bright and cheerful. The text is large enough to see across the room.
Look at all of the different colors I used to make these pennants. If you have remnants in your stash like me, this is a great way too use them up. Those special life events are still happening even though we are social distancing. If you create pennants for someone you can celebrate via remote and hang your sign up. Have I got your creative ideas going yet? I have filmed a tutorial video you can watch below that will take you through the entire process.
I hope you are well in your corner of the world, have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
When you start doing machine embroidery, you find that there is an infinite supply of alternate stitches and materials to try. I have written about Mylar projects in the past,( You can see another blog post here. ) and I wanted to revisit it because I have really been having fun this week in my studio. My first design Pot of Gold is a nod to St. Patrick's day which is right around the corner.
In this design I wanted to see if I could incorporate regular stitching details as well as the fill for Mylar. I thought it would add more dimension and I was pleased with the results. The handles for the Pot sew first with a satin stitch and an outline for the pot itself. This tells you where the Mylar will be placed
Then a piece of Mylar is placed over the entire hoop surface. I used a small amount of adhesive spray to hold it down but you could also use masking tape. If you are not familiar with Mylar, look for it in the gift wrap section of your store. It comes in several different colors and will usually reflect the thread color used. So you can keep one color in your studio and depending on the project thread, you will still have versatility.
All of the Mylar details stich out and then the hoop is removed from the machine. At this time the Mylar should be easy to tear away because the needle perforates along the edges. I find that the best way to tear it is toward the design. This puts pressure on those edges. Any small pieces can be removed with tweezers.
Then you replace the hoop back in your machine so the last details can sew. The gold in this case is a really cute motif stitch that resembles coins.
That sparkle on the entire design is so satisfying and this picture doesn't do it justice. In person under the light or even in sunlight it is beautiful. I am always trying new materials and as of yet, metallic thread hasn't won me over. I am determined to find a brand that I like but each time I do some experimentation, I inevitably have to disassemble my machine because the thread flakes off in my check springs. This causes the sensor to stop my machine from sewing so I have not had great luck in the past with any brand of metallic thread. I will keep trying and when I find one, I will surely pass it on. If you have had similar problems with metallic thread, you may want to try Mylar because you will get that sparkle you love without metallic thread issues.
This Pot O Gold embroidery design would be perfect for St. Patrick's day stitched on a towel, pillow or added to a T Shirt
My next new design is really sparkly. You wouldn't think a design so simple could look dressy but this one definitely does.
I think it is the thread color combination that makes this look like tiny diamonds all over. I am in love with this Mylar Elephant.
Again, this design will show you exactly where to place the Mylar first.
Once the fill has completed you will remove the hoop from your machine. You can see I just used plain silver Mylar for this design. See how the thread color determines the finished result on this one versus the previous Pot O Gold Design.
Then the Mylar is torn away and instant sparkle. Replace the hoop in your machine.
Then all of the final details stitch out. Don't you love that check fabric?
Just a couple of cute project ideas for this design.
I did put the Mylar Elephant design on baby bib to see how it would look and I think it would be absolutely precious but let's talk about care of your garments with Mylar designs. A baby bib does get washed frequently and you can launder your Mylar projects with care. I would advise using a delicate cycle on your machine or hand washing. Maybe even use a laundry sack for undergarments. Then hang to dry or machine fluff/dry on low. If you need to press out a few wrinkles I would always use a press cloth on the reverse side of the Mylar so it doesn't come into direct contact. Remember, it is a synthetic material so it will need to be treated like you would any other delicate textile.
So are you inspired to try Mylar with your embroidery? I think you will really have fun watching the sparkle come to life. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
I recently was commissioned to do machine embroidery on several masks. When I begin any project, but especially embroidery on multiple items, there is a mental checklist that helps me work through any issues before I start. Of course the first thing I think about is the embroidery design and if it will be possible to place it on the item. If I need to do any digitizing to alter the stitch count or size that is usually what I do immediately and then stitch samples. The size matters and on this project I chose to use a 2 inch x 2 inch format which is a great size for adult masks. The next thing I think about is what fabric type I will be stitching on and stabilizer choices. Once I have these things determined, I start looking at logistics and how much time it will take to complete the individual items.
I am very fond of using templates to help assist with embroidery placement. I have written other articles and there is a very detailed one along with a video you might like to see here. For this particular mask, I created a template that could be used over and over. Templates help shorten the preparation time and assist with accurate design placement. I make these templates from chopping mats seen below.
When I am in my local Dollar Tree I tend to pick up several because I know eventually I will use them. They are easy to draw on with permanent markers and plain scissors can be used to cut them out.
I specifically wanted to reduce the number of times I would need to hoop a piece of stabilizer for these masks. Normally I use the smallest hoop possible for embroidery but in the case of masks the hoop can be just about any size as long as it is bigger than your design.. Since the masks are not an easy shape to place inside a hoop I knew they would require floating on top of the stabilizer with spray adhesive and masking tape. You could also use sticky back stabilizer but I had plans to use my magnetic hoop. I like to use the Dollar Tree brand of tape because it has a low adhesive quality and I have had good luck removing it without damaging fabric or stabilizer between sewing designs.
I used my 10x10 inch Mighty Hoop and with a Frixion pen, I drew a grid that would help me place each mask in a specific area. Any time you embroider something in a hoop, you will have an area around the perimeter that is a "No Sew" zone. Your machine can either read this with built in sensors or you may need to choose or program hoops in your machine and then tell it which one you are using. The machine can read the programmed Hoop Map which includes the measurements that are safe and leave room away from the edge of the hoop for your sewing foot. By creating a grid before I began stitching, I could see how many designs I could safely sew in each hooping. I used my cutting mat grid to help measure everything. Since I knew the design size, I could determine the number of times my machine could be re positioned safely. This might seem like a lot of work but a little planning in the beginning actually made my process go very smoothly.
I like to use a six inch Omnigrid ruler to draw my lines. First I make a square around the hoop. Then I make center marks vertically and horizontally. Small X's tell me exactly where to place the middle of each mask.
I use my template and mark the design placement with a chalk marker on the mask. The grid on the stabilizer helps line everything up so you know it will be straight. Small items like this are hard to judge especially with the curves and shapes of the masks. The temporary adhesive spray and masking tape are used to hold the mask in place. I also used a couple of straight pins on the left side so there would be even tension all around.
By starting in the top right side of the hoop, you can complete that design and then use tape to hold the mask out of the way for your next design. Move to the bottom right and complete that one. Then move to the left top and then left bottom. Each time, you can position the extra fabric out of the way with masking tape. Having the small X's marked on the stabilizer helps with placement each time and knowing that you will have room to sew the design. Remember to check that the mask is right side up or being sewn in the correct area. Your X's marked on the stabilizer will help keep that part simple as the longer you sew similar items, you might tend to get tired. It is easy to lose track or feel a monotonous relaxing of your senses while you watch each design so always double check your placement on the mask. These had a small tag on the right side so that helped me know each mask was correctly oriented before sewing.
Positioning your foot on the center where the design will start sewing will also ensure you are on the right spot. Here you see my foot ready to go and I am pointing to the straight pins holding the outer edge of the mask. I also stay close to my machine when I float items in a hoop. No walking away. I keep my mind on the machine and if I need to do trimming on other masks or preparation, I station myself near it.
Here are all four mask designs completed. The back shows that placement on the center and the front shows each mask held in place with masking tape.
Once done, you just need to trim away the stabilizer. These masks were 100% cotton but they had stretch and a lining. I used cutaway stabilizer to make sure they had good structure for the designs. They will be washed and dried a lot and the cutaway stabilizer will help keep the design for the life of each mask. It is also firm enough to withstand the pressure of multiple designs. I would not try this with tearaway stabilizer as the needle perforations might loosen the tension and registration would suffer.
I always like to use a lint roller after trimming away loose thread tails. These masks were provided by my client so I took extra care with his packaging and reused all of it.
Here they are boxed up and ready to go. I filmed a video that you can watch below. It shows my entire process and goes into a little more detail. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
This year's Christmas gifts for family were all about quilts. I finally feel safe writing about them because they have all received their gifts and I no longer have to worry they might see them online. I consider myself an experienced seamstress in that I have "experienced" sewing a lot of different projects. That is how I keep my creative mojo, but I wouldn't call myself an expert in quilting just yet. It fascinates me to see complex quilt designs and try to figure out how they were put together but I have found the designing and following patterns to be a little out of my reach. I have several quilting books and I absolutely love to read quilting magazines so the desire is strong. I purchase beautiful pre cut fabrics and wait for inspiration. In fact that is what happened with the three quilts above. I had purchased several 2 1/2 inch fabric rolls and stashed them in my studio for the spark of creativity that I knew would happen. For me that is the key. I always have a selection of materials in my reach so I can immediately move toward working on a project. Getting in the car and driving to shop only causes me to quickly lose interest so if you have similar feelings, you might want to buy your beautiful fabrics long before you have a project in mind and just wait. It will come to you.
This was the beginning fabric roll. It contained 40 pieces of fabric. They were cut 2 1/2 inches by 42 inches or the width of the fabric. If you are an experienced quilter you know this already, but I'm going to aim toward those beginners like me because just holding this little roll and trying to figure out how big it would wind up becoming, how much batting I would need, and back fabric to finish it was a huge problem for me. Think "Word Problem" and feel the headache begin.
I did have yardage in my stash that I thought would be perfect for the back. I purchased this piece from a second hand store. I love finding those pieces of fabric that are hidden and creating something lovely. It makes me feel like a treasure hunter. I always bring them home and immediately wash and dry so they are ready for me. It was a light cotton and I thought there should be enough to make a lap quilt. By this time, I had done some research on pre cut fabric quilts and found several blogs on 1600 or Race Quilts. Quilt guilds or groups use the pre cut rolls as a competition to quickly and easily piece quilt tops. This is a great way to sew many quilts for donation. There is very little preparation or cutting and within a short time you can have your top pieced. That was exactly what I was looking for because I had three quilts in mind and about two weeks to get them ready. Yes you read that right. I pieced, quilted and bound all three quilts within a two week period.
Here is my set up. I had my sewing machine of course with a regular sewing foot. I also put my folding table to my right. This little table is one from the camping section of Academy Sports. I love it because it folds away flat and I keep it out of the way unless I need it. I also had my wool pressing mat and a small travel iron just because it is easier to work with while sitting..
The first thing I did was unroll my fabric strips. I did not prewash them. When I did my research on the 1600 quilts, every blog stated not to think too much on laying out your different fabric strips. It is very difficult to plan or determine any kind of placement due to the construction. The whole point of this type of quilt is ease and speed. By the way if you are wondering why they call it a 1600 quilt, it is because by the time you have sewn all of the fabric lengths together, you should have roughly a 1600 inch length. So I just placed my similar strips together and put them on top of my table so I could reach for them as I sewed.
Piecing the strips together can be done two different ways. On my first quilt I placed the ends of the pieces right sides together and sewed a diagonal line just like I would for binding. As I worked, I did not cut any of the stitching. I chain pieced. This will create a quilt top that has a diagonal look to the sewn pieces. On the subsequent two quilts, I laid the ends of the fabric right on top of each other and pieced straight across. If you will look at the finished picture below, you can see the lavender quilt has diagonal seam lines. The other two quilts have straight seam lines. I think it is personal preference and it didn't make sewing any harder on either option. I did however have an extra step of trimming the diagonal fabric ends. The straight ends were just sewn with a 1/4 inch seam allowance with no trimming needed after.
All of those little triangles are trimmed and expect a lot of fluff to come away from the precut strips as you sew. My lap was covered along with my studio floor from manipulating the strips. A good sweeping was necessary several times. I also had to pull out my vacuum wand to clean around my machine.
As you continue to sew the strip ends together you will begin to have quite a pile of fabric, so make sure you have room around your sewing space to keep all of it out of the way.
After my chain piecing, I used my small scissors to clip the threads
What was a neat row of strips becomes a long pile of fabric. There is no rhyme or reason to the placement of color. That is the fun part. You just grab piece after piece and sew them together. It can get hypnotic to sew like this and my best advice would be to make sure you are placing your right sides together before you sew the ends. Also VERY IMPORTANT, go through these strips before you move to the next step one more time and make sure the right sides are sewn together and you don't have any flipped or a right and wrong side sewn together. Make your corrections as it is easier to pick out a short seam now before you begin to sew the top together. Ask me how I know?
You will cut 18 inches from one of the ends. This will ensure that your seams do not line up throughout the quilt.
Now that you have your long strip of fabric, you are going to find both ends. Take one end and place it on top of the other end right sides together. Then using a 1/4 inch seam, you will sew the sides of those strips until you can't sew any more. I changed from my regular sewing foot to a piecing foot here. Once you get to the end, you will cut the u shaped fabric piece straight across. I have to tell you that even though I had my pressing station all set up, I didn't make use of it much while piecing. I did once complete with the top, press all of the seams
The first length of sewing will seem like forever until you get to the end. Once you do you will see that you can't go any further and you have to use your scissors to release the ends and make them lay flat. It is difficult to do it exactly straight and you don't need to stress about that. There will be some fabric trimming and squaring before you do your quilting.
Now that you have finished your first long seam, you will find the two ends again and do another long seam the same way. This process will be done FIVE times in total. As you find the ends each time, the piece will get wider and wider and your seam will get shorter and shorter. I did read blogs that stated not to worry about un winding the long lengths of fabric between each long seam as this saves time. I will tell you that on my first quilt, I must have been doing something right because each time I got to the end of the seam and did my trimming and then picked up the two ends to begin sewing, I did not come to much of a fabric twist at the end of my seam. It was fairly easy to cut the U shape of the fabric. When I did my second quilt. I had some confidence and I just sewed really fast to see how long it would take to finish. I didn't even bother to make sure my long length of fabric wasn't twisted and I did have some repercussions from that. When I had the final seam to sew and I was ready to cut that final U shape at the end, the fabric was twisted so much, that I couldn't get a very straight cut. So my top was wider on one end when I squared it off. I lost about six inches of fabric. I had to piece the two ends with additional fabric to keep the size I wanted. So my second piece of advice to you is unless you are doing a race and you don't mind how big the finished quilt will be, make sure to unwind the long fabric piece and make sure there is no twist in it before you place the right sides together to begin sewing.
Here is the top on one of the final seams and you can see it is getting wider and wider and look at the bottom of the fabric where it forms a U Shape. This is what needs to be cut across to release the fabric so it will lay flat. As you can see if the fabric is twisted, cutting would be difficult. Again ask me how I know? I feel confident, I could have gotten these three quilts done sooner if that event had not happened. I lost about two days because I was so mad at myself for rushing through the second quilt and then knowing I was going to have to do some Quilt Math to figure out a solution.
Oh the beauty of a finished quilt top. Is there any site more beautiful to behold? Except a quilted and bound quilt top of course. Which by the time you get to this point you will begin to think about. Now you get to trim up any edges that are not straight and decide what kind of batting you want to use, what kind of quilting designs and how you want to finish the edges.
So I don't think there is an easy way to prepare one of these for quilting except dive right in and know that you will need to flip it a couple of times to make sure there are no areas that will cause puckers. Aggravating I know but worth it. The batting was larger than the top to ensure I would have enough for shrinkage while quilting. I used some adhesive spray and safety pins to layer my back fabric, batting and top. The batting I used is 100 % cotton which I chose because my recipients all live in climates with humidity. I envisioned them using their lap quilts to snuggle on the couch watching tv. Even in summer you can use a 100% cotton quilt and not get too hot. Polyester batting is wonderful for extra warmth in very cold climates. I have several different quilts that I swap on my bed each season and in the summer months, cotton is my favorite.
I did install my walking foot on my machine to help keep all of those layers together as I quilted along.
Once I had everything pinned and ready to go I rolled up one end and you can see that it went to the right side so I could begin my quilting in the center. I decided too keep it simple and just sewed in the ditch along each seam line. I worked from the center to the right side then rotated the quilt and did the same from the center to the left side.
I made my own binding for the quilt by cutting 2 1/2 inch strips on the bias. I only did bias binding on the first quilt. I did make my binding for the other two quilts but the binding was made with straight ends. If you are making a quilt with straight edges, there is no need to go around curves which is the purpose of bias binding. Try straight edge binding for your next quilt and you will see that it works great on those right edges. You will have less trimming of fabric on the straight seams. Once everything was sewn together I pressed the seams open and then I did press the binding in half with the wrong sides together. Some people do not press their binding but my finish seam worked better with a very crisp edge.
I sewed my binding to all three quilts along the back with a 1/4 inch seam allowance and then pulled the binding to the front of the quilt and held it in place with clips.
My finish stitch of choice was a serpentine. If you look online, you will see an infinity of ways to attach binding. I wanted something very quick and with a utilitarian quality. I wanted my recipients to use these quilts. The finish size makes that extremely likely because they are large enough to give lap coverage and small enough to clean in a standard washer and dryer. I wash my quilts regularly so very firm stitching is in order. This serpentine stitch also is VERY forgiving. If you go off a little, it is hard to detect but the coverage and grip of your binding width is a great choice for an everyday quilt.
I think it looks extra pretty. This is what you see from the front. I like to sew it from the front so I can see exactly where those stiches are landing.
Here is the back. Everything is attached with sound stitching and I know if they wash and dry their quilts, there will be no broken stitches or sad surprises. I also love this stitch to give myself a break from trying to get perfectly straight stitches in the ditch from one side and ensuring I have "captured" the binding from the other side that you don't see while sewing.
Pretty isn't it? Also notice the strips that touch may be the same due to the construction. Even though I picked up each color individually as I connected the fabric pieces, the long seams will cause similar strip colors to be side by side on your top.
Here are some roundabout measurements in case you are wondering how large it is. This will vary depending on your end cuts of course.
Here is the second quilt. Remember the difficult one? Look at the two sides and you will see a navy border. That is what I had to add to keep the finished size I wanted due to the fabric twisting. So if you do have a smaller finished top than you planned, you can add fabric to it. Not sure why I couldn't think of that when I lost those two days, but when you get deep into a project with a deadline in mind, tunnel vision can occur. Take a break and breath, It's ok.
By the time I got too my third one, I was very sure of myself which usually happens when you practice something. For this top, I wasn't sure what color to use for the back and I did have to make a shopping trip to purchase fabric. I bought a 4 yard fabric cut from Wall-Mart in this bright sunny yellow.
This is how I pieced that back from that fabric cut. It shows my top final measurement. The fabric is 44 inches wide so I cut two lengths 55 inches long and pieced them together with a 1/2 inch seam allowance for strength. The width needed to be cut off on either side at 10 inches. This gave me a extra fabric when creating my quilt sandwich. After everything was quilted, I did some squaring up. I had extra fabric left over for my binding and even some more for future projects. These fabric cuts from Walmart are usually a great price also. They are a polyester blend so if you want 100% cotton just make sure you look for that on the label. Or visit your local quilt shop for your fabric where you will have a great selection that is wide enough for quilt backs and 100% cotton.
Just a few more pictures of that serpentine stitch for you to see. Nice work on that binding corner don't you think? Very crisp. Using your iron to press that binding edge makes that happen.
I love that bright sunny back. I enjoyed making each one of these quilts because they were all straight seams and I was able to finish them within a short timeframe. If you are not in a rush, this project would be very easy to lay down and come back to at a later date without having to think too much on where you left off.
Here is the best part. A picture from my family member underneath his quilt with the caption "MY BLANKET IS PERFECT". Now THIS is the goal accomplished. Exactly what I envisioned coming to fruition. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
Embroidery Placement is one of those subjects that most people have questions about. I recently had a comment on one of my You tube videos that pointed to that subject. So I decided to look at some of the various tools I currently use or have in the past.
I think this might be the most important thing to learn when you are machine embroidering and I really struggled with it in the beginning. Knowing your machine capabilities with the hoop sizes available to you is the first step. If your machine came with one hoop, say a 4x4, you will be able to stitch embroidery designs no larger than 3.93 x3.93 inches. That 4x4 hoop is also known as a 100mm x 100mm hoop in metric conversion. Sometimes you may purchase designs that are denoted in inches but many will also have those metric numbers. I like to keep this chart handy near my machine so I can quickly glance at it before I begin any project. The size of your design will be constrained by not only your hoop size but the area you want to place it on your project. I have found exceptions to this chart with some designs. My Mighty Hoops have a "suggested" maximum that can vary between two measurements. Depending on the design shape, the rounded corners of the hoop will sometimes cause issues where I need to reduce the size. So always do a trace of your design on your machine before you begin to make sure it will fit inside the hoop and not strike the sides.
Templates are one of my favorite tools when doing machine embroidery. This picture shows a 4x4 hoop and the template that came with it. If you will look closely, you will see the template has a small purple square with a grid. This is the actual sewing field available in the hoop. Most of the time, these will be roughly 1/2 inches inside the hoop edge. That is a default determined by the machine manufacturer to make sure you will not damage anything. On my commercial machine, there are ways to extend this a little in the settings, but I would not suggest doing so without the assistance of your technical support. This template is helpful for placement because it has a cross hair in the center that lines up with the four markings on the hoop itself. The small circle in the top of the template allows you to remove it once you have your item hooped.
Although I like to use the templates that came with my hoops, I do have some that did not have any when I purchased them. So I make my own using these chopping mats purchased from Dollar Tree.
Here is one I made for my 5x5 Mighty Hoop. I used a permanent marker, hole punch and scissors to customize it exactly how I wanted.
You may not realize it, but you probably have a template in most of your embroidery designs that is easy to use. This is a printout of one of my free designs and as you can see there is a cross hair in the center. I like to use these to mark placement and also see how a design will look on my projects. I usually will cut the center cross and use a chalk marker to show me where I need to place my hoop.
Here is a closeup of my chalk marker. These can be purchased at most sewing and quilting stores. You can buy replacement cartridges or loose chalk to fill it. The chalk comes out when the small rolling teeth go across the fabric surface. I like chalk because in most cases it brushes off fabrics and won't leave any marks. Now I will warn you that if you mix that chalk with another marking pen like a disappearing one and then iron or place heat on it, you may set the color. So always test the fabric before you make your marks.
I also like to keep many different rulers and tape measures close by when I am placing my embroidery. Working with fabric can be tricky because it moves and distorts. This small six inch ruler is great to work in smaller areas.
Placement rulers can be a helpful way to get a measurement for apparel. I have a couple of different ones and I will say that they sometimes differ in their suggestions. Most commercial placement rulers have a disclaimer that the final area is determined by the person doing the embroidery. So just be aware that these are meant to assist but they are not always the final or perfect tool. If I am doing many shirts or garments, I will usually make my own templates so placement can be done quickly without guesswork.
Here you can see one that I use for shirts. This was made using one of the chopping mats. I usually make one for each size that I will be working with. I make notes on the template telling me where the design should go. I will draw buttons, collars, seams or any defining placement areas so I can lay it on top of the garment quickly. Then I have a cross hair cut out that I can mark with my chalk marker. This one has two cross hairs because depending on the design shape or customer preference, I may need to move it 1/2 inch on this particular shirt. There is not a perfect location. Each project may need to be tweaked a bit.
I do like to use my Echidna hooping station to assist in lining up the hoop. The magnets hold the stabilizer in place so it does not slide around. Then I can confidently place the garment or fabric and quickly secure the top hoop.
Before I purchased my hooping station, I did primarily use temporary adhesive spray. This holds your stabilizer in place until you can hoop the fabric. I have in the past had some shirts Pill when the stabilizer is removed after stitching so always do a test with a garment that I don't mind damaging. I try to have extras for this purpose. It saves some stress in the event you have a machine malfunction or if it's "Just One Of Those Days"
I find that the hardest part of hooping any project is knowing where the bottom hoop is located. You can't see it once you put your fabric on top. That is where the templates come in handy. Here you see I have a towel on top of my hoop and I am using my template to "feel" the bottom hoop location. If I have marked my placement with my chalk marker, I can also Line up that chalk inside of the cross hair of the template.
Then I can place the top hoop on and decide if that placement will be good. I will tell you that this doesn't always go as planned. No worries, just take it out and try again. Some fabrics are harder than others. The location of the embroidery can be tricky also if you are embellishing a ready made product. Don't get frustrated and sew it because you are tired. Take a break and come back to it later.
So templates are a great way to line up projects. They are also an inexpensive tool that you can print off or make yourself. I found that once I started getting the hang of using them, I enjoyed creating my own as it helped me understand the hooping process more. This blog post is just the tip of embroidery placement. I have more detailed information in my video below. I show you how I use all of these tools. If you are interested, scroll down and watch it. I bet you will pick up some new tricks of your own.
I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
The New Year is approaching and once again I have steered myself back into my studio. This project won't take too much time and it would make a wonderful gift for someone in your life.
I had this drying mat in my stash and I thought it would be perfect to upcycle into a wine bag. If you have a Dollar Tree in your town, they usually have a good selection of colors and for One Dollar you can create a personalized item. Maybe you aren't going to attend your normal New Year's Eve party but you still want to celebrate with family, friends or neighbors? How about delivering a bottle of wine to them as a surprise? Leave it on their front porch or hang the bag on their doorknob?
This project really is just a few seams. The padded material of the drying mat is great to protect the glass bottle. Maybe customize yours with embroidery. I used my latest New Year Balloons design that you can find here. Some pretty satin ribbon is an easy handle.
I used a 4x4 hoop with tear away stabilizer and floated my drying mat in the embroidery hoop with temporary adhesive spray.
After doing the embroidery, I placed right sides together with clips and sewed along the bottom and side of the mat. Make sure you lengthen your stitch and use a larger needle.
I created boxed corners with zig zag stitching on the bottom. This makes it flat once you turn it inside out. You can trim these away but I left mine as they give a little more structure to the bag.
The satin ribbon is folded under on each end and stitched to the outer sides. The box and cross stitching will give extra security to the wine bottle in the bag.
Now you are ready to add the wine or any other libation of your choosing. I filmed a short You tube video that you can watch below that will take you through the entire process. I hope you are well in your part of the world and that you have enjoyed this along with my other posts, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
This project is an oldie but goodie and I thought it needed to be brought back. I found it in one of my old sewing books from the eighties. Just looking at it reminds me of that Heirloom trend we were all decorating with back then. It can be sewn or if you have some fabric glue, you should be able to make one as long as you dry your glue in between steps.
Here is the secret ingredient that keeps the wreath shape. These book rings were purchased from Dollar Tree and they have a hinged side with a lock. A package of eight means you can make a lot of wreaths
Here is a view of the ring being opened. You can see that makes it easy to slide your fabric on and then close up to secure everything.
You will need a piece of fabric cut 18 inches long and 2 1/2 inches wide. Also, any kind of lace, ribbon or ric rac will dress up the wreath.
A tube turner really comes in handy also and if you have never used one of these tools, you might want to give it a try. A long narrow tube of fabric is sometimes difficult to turn right side out but one of these makes it effortless.
Here is an abbreviated version of how they go together. The lace or ribbon is pinned to the right side along one edge. I like to baste it on first. Then sew the edges together along that length. Use the tube turner and turn right side out. Then press flat so the lace is one one side and the fabric tube is on the other.
Then you take it back to your machine and sew a seam right in the middle down the length. This creates a smaller casing. If you are using fabric glue, this part won't be possible but you will already have a wide casing that will work just fine. Thread the material on the book ring and snap closed. I make a hanger with 1/4 inch ribbon and a simple bow. Both are attached with a needle or thread. If you are using glue, you should be able to attach both.
I made two versions so you could see by decreasing the fabric width to two inches, the ornament has a slightly different look. As a final creative idea, you could place a small picture behind each wreath with hot glue. This project would be easy for kids to design with their favorite fabric pieces. If you are like me, you probably have some remnants that would work great for this.
I have a complete video tutorial that you can watch below as you are sewing your wreath ornaments. Handmade projects are on my Christmas list this year. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work! Have A Merry Christmas!
Lagniappe Peddler believes that the process of working with our hands can be one of the best forms of healing the hurts in our lives and welcomes all who visit this safe little corner of the world.
What is a Lagniappe Peddler?
ˌlanˈyap,ˈlanˌyap - something given as a bonus or extra gift
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