Category Archives: Machine Embroidery FYI

Designs by Marje on Etsy

Hi all!

Tomorrow is our big day for part one of the T-shirt Quilt Sew Along!  I’ll likely be able to publish the post about prepping your t-shirts sometime in the afternoon so there’s still time to go and get your supplies.  Supply List

I’m looking forward to helping you make a nice T-shirt Quilt over the next several days!

In the meantime, I wanted to give a shout out for some new embroidery fonts that are available on Etsy.  These are created by Marje Agostini a fellow instructor and blogger here on the SewVac Outlet blog.   She did a great job!  Take a minute to visit her Etsy Shop.

Etsy is a great place to showcase and sell your hand crafted items and your embroidery designs as well.  For those of you who recently  attended the Machine Embroidery Business Seminar, Etsy is a good way to get your name out there and let others know about your new business.

Here’s a picture of Marje’s Fancy Monogram available on Etsy in letters A-Z:

The letters fit in the 4×4 hoop and are about 2 1/2 inches tall.  To see more and/or to get yours, just click on the image…

Fancy Monogram

Here is a picture of a letter from her Applique Heart Monogram set – just in time to stitch out a sweet Valentine’s momento:

Each of these letters will fit the 4×4 hoop and is about 3 inches tall.

To see more and/or to get yours, just click on the image….

Applique "Heart" Monogram Set

Way to go Marje!

If you’d like to learn how to create/digitize your own alphabets etc., you should attend one of Marje’s upcoming classes.

That’s all for now!

Let’s get Sewing!

Jenny Gabriel – alter ego:  StitchinJenny

Adventures in Machine Embroidery: Cut Work

Ok all you adventurous machine embroidery ladies!  It’s time to take our hobby to the next level!!!

Yes!  We are doing some Cut Work!

What is cutwork?

Well, for some reason, looking at cut work reminds me of stained glass windows.  But that’s really not what it is at all.

Cut work is embroidery on fabric that is literally CUT OUT during the embroidery process.  So, your finished project has artistic and deliberate “holes” that are surrounded by beautiful embroidery stitches.

Here are some pictures of cut work designs by Anita Goodesign and also one by Dakota Collectibles.  You can get these and other designs from Humble Sewing Center or order them online.

Check out the pictures and then take a look at my step-by-step adventure in Cut Work on a shirt….

[FL1520]

Dakota Collectibles File # FL1520

Cut Work Shirt Tutorial

Supplies:

  • one shirt
  • one cut work embroidery design
  • embroidery machine and embroidery thread
  • curved, fine tip embroidery scissors for precision cutting
  • No Show Fusible Stabilizer
  • Self-Adhesive Wash Away Stabilizer

Step One: Choose a shirt

Step Two: If you have embroidery software, print out a design template to help you with design placement on your shirt.

Don’t have software?  If you aren’t ready to invest in a full blown digitizing software, I like to recommend 2 smaller software packages, depending on what machine you own.

If you have a Janome Machine, I like Digitizer Jr.  (You can get this at Humble Sewing Center or your local dealer.)

If you have a Babylock or other brand of machine, I like to recommend: Embrilliance Essentials  (This is a smaller package that was created by the same man who created all of the Designer’s Gallery software. He’s amazing!)  He even let’s you download a free trial to see if you like it:  Free Trial    I don’t know if the trial lets you print or stitch anything, but at least you can click around and see if you like the way the software works…

Moving right along….

Step Three: Peel the paper backing off of the self-adhesive stabilizer and hoop it with the sticky side face up.

Step Four: Place your design template on your shirt and mark the cross hairs with a sticker or pins to help you with hooping.

Step Five:

Once you know where the design will be, you can fuse a piece of the No-Show fusible stabilizer to the wrong side of the shirt.  Make sure you are fusing this stabilizer in the area that the shirt will be embroidered.  This stabilizer helps keep your stretchy shirt fabric from becoming distorted during hooping and embroidering.

Step Six: Turn your shirt inside out and place it right side up on top of the hoop's sticky surface. I used the plastic grid that came with my hoop to help me align my shirt in the hoop. If my way is totally confusing you, see below to find out how Nancy Zieman does it.

(For the next two photos, I’m quoting the shirt hooping step from one of Nancy’s blog posts.  Here’s the link to the entire post:  Knit Shirt Makeovers)

“Place the embroidery hoop at the narrow end of an ironing board.  Next, position the T-shirt over the end of the ironing board. (See picture below.)  Match the neckline and center front to one of the Perfect-Placement Stitching lines and center front marking on the stabilizer. Gently finger press the shirt to the sticky stabilizer.”

Photo from Nancy Zieman Blog Post - Knit Shirt Makeovers

“Lift the back of the T-shirt to the top of the hoop, creating a nest shape. Reattach the hoop to the embroidery unit.”

Photo from Nancy Zieman Blog Post - Knit Shirt Makeovers

Ok, now we’re back to my instructions for the cut work shirt tutorial:

Step Seven: Once the shirt is hooped, make sure the needle is aligned with your target sticker or pins.

Step Eight: Stitch the first step of your cut work design and remove the hoop from the machine. Do not un-hoop the shirt!

Step Nine: Using your fine tipped embroidery scissors, cut out the fabric inside of the stitch outlines. Even cut through the stabilizers.

Step Ten: Turn the hoop over and use a piece of the self-adhesive stabilizer to patch the holes you cut. This is a very important step! Don't forget to patch those holes!!!

Step Eleven: Place the hoop onto the machine and finish stitching out the embroidery design.

Step Twelve:  Remove the hoop from the machine and un-hoop your shirt.  Trim away the excess stabilizers and use warm water to rinse away all of the wash away stabilizer.  Tumble dry your wet shirt.

Note:  If the embroidered area is stiff, you may need to rinse out the shirt again to remove the rest of the wash away stabilizer.  Once your shirt is dry, use a pressing cloth and press if necessary.

Look at my new shirt! By the way, this design is from Anita Goodesign Butterfly Cut Work Collection. I Love it!

My dog, Rilie, is very happy with the way my shirt turned out!

She's giving me her high five! What a sweet girl!

Thanks for reading!

I hope this helps you with your first try at Cut Work!

Let’s get sewing!

Jenny Gabriel – alter ego:  StitchinJenny

Onesie Conversion!

Look at what I made!

Today I refashioned a ready-to-wear onesie that I had purchased at Walmart for about $2.  I used my handy dandy embroidery machine and added an applique to the front of it.  I also bursted a few brain cells and created my own pattern so I could add a mock-wrap skirt to it.  The picture above is the fruit of my experimentation.  I’m looking forward to seeing this on my niece!

Here’s a close-up of the applique that I found for FREE online.  I’m sharing a link to the website where you can download this and other free designs as well as purchase tons of very cute ABC’s etc.  PlanetApplique.com

Note:   To be sure you like the results, you may want to stitch out a test one on scrap fabric first.

New Video Tutorial Coming Soon:  My hubby filmed me going through the steps of stabilizing, hooping, and stitching out this applique on a onesie.  I’ll be able to share the video as soon as he’s done editing etc.  Yay!

After I embroidered my onesie, I fused a stabilizer called Fuse So Soft to the back of the embroidery design.  It’s like a tricot fabric, but it’s fusible and this keeps the rough threads from scratching or irritating a baby’s delicate skin.  You can get it at Humble Sewing Center or order something similar online.

After the embroidery was all done, I used my self-drafted miniature skirt pattern and went to town putting this cute little frock together.  My skirt pattern is basically a trapezoid shape with a rounded bottom edge.

See?  My onesie has a mock-wrap skirt.  The overlapping flap is sewn in place near my contrasting chocolate band and there are no waist ties.

I assembled and hemmed the skirt before attaching it to the onesie.

I marked center front and center back and placed some alignment dots across the onesie’s front and back so I’d be able to pin the skirt in place and sew without too much fuss.

Can you see the placement dots?

To sew the skirt to the onesie, I turned the skirt inside out and inserted the onesie into the skirt so that center fronts, center backs, and side seams were aligned and fabrics were right sides together.  Then I pinned it to death and sewed all the way around.

       My friend’s Beautiful Daughter, Marian! I get to be Auntie Jenny! Yay!!!!

I know I didn’t share a complete step by step tutorial for this project this time, but I am sharing a link to a pattern by Vanilla House that is very similar to what I have done here.  See?  Just click the images to go to the Vanilla House website and order your pattern!

 

P163 One-zee conversions162frontcoveronly

That’s all for now!

Let’s get Sewing!

Jenny Gabriel – alter ego:  StitchinJenny

In-the-Hoop Project: Square Coasters – Free Design from StitchinJenny!

Design Option 1:Plain Square 4×4 In-the-Hoop Coaster

Hello!  

I’ve been kind of quiet for a few days because I’ve been busy behind the scenes with creating and testing a new embroidery design that I am giving away….

If you are new to machine embroidery, I just want to take a minute to let you know that no matter what make & model embroidery machine you have, it can sew out this project as long as you have a 4×4 hoop and you download the correct design format for your machine.  (more on design formats later)

Read on to see more pictures, how to make these, and to access the link for your free download….

I recently posted a blog tutorial for a Round In-the-Hoop Coaster.  Since then, a member of my StitchinJenny Yahoo Group has inquired about a Square 4×4 In-the-Hoop Coaster.  Now, she was just seeking a plain square coaster as seen in the photo to the left.  I was able to digitize and create this one in short order and I’m pretty happy with the results.

Design Option 2: Square Deco 4×4 In-the-Hoop Coaster

If you know me, you know that once I get started on something creative, it’s hard for me to stop.  So, I decided to make a few more options for this project.

Here is option #2:  A lovely coaster that is nice as is or would look great with a monogram in the middle.

There are so many fonts to choose from that I’m not including letters a-z this time, but I do provide instructions later in this post so you can know at which step to import your own monogram into this design.

Next is option #3:  If you follow this blog, you may recognize this fun fabric from my Pot Holder Tutorial.

Anyway, option 3 happens to be my personal favorite of the square coasters.  You can use this design to add a diamond applique to middle of your coaster or, you can leave out the applique fabric and just have the nice geometric shape as an accent stitch.

Design Option 3:  Diamond Applique 4×4 In-the-Hoop Coaster

So, I’ve shared the pictures of the three versions of this project along with my happy little roosters…

Now, I get to show you the steps to make yours!

If you are in a hurry and want to skip to the designs download link, just click the link to join my StitchinJenny yahoo group.

Joining is free and once you are a member, you can access and download these free designs!  If you do not see your machine’s format in the designs folder, please email me your machine’s make and model and I will upload the coaster designs in your needed format.

(NOTE: Different brands of machines require embroidery designs in their specified format.  For instance, Janome machines use JEF files. Babylock and Brother machines use PES files and so on and so forth…)

In-the-Hoop Square Coasters Tutorials For Options 2 & 3

Supplies:  

  • Self-adhesive wash-away stabilizer -or- Self-adhesive tear away stabilizer
  • 1 can of temporary spray adhesive
  • for all coaster design options, you will need two 5″x5″ fabric remnants per coaster,  one for coaster front and one for coaster back
  • for all coaster design options, you will need one 5″x5″ scrap of cotton, low-loft batting
  • for the applique option, you will need a 4″x4″ scrap of fabric for the diamond
  • 1 spool of embroidery thread (be sure to use matching embroidery thread in your bobbin)

The first tutorial is for the Option 2 Coaster:  Square Deco Coaster

NOTE:  This design is broken down into 6 thread colors to allow the machine to stop in between steps.  You can stick with one color of thread for the entire project.  (Be sure to use matching thread in your bobbin.)

Step 1: Peel away the protective paper and hoop your self-adhesive stabilizer so that it’s tight like a tambourine and the sticky side is face up in the hoop.

Step2:  Place the hoop on your embroidery machine and stitch color #1.  (This is the coaster outline.)

Step 3:  Place your coaster front fabric right side up on top of the coaster outline stitches.  Smooth out your fabric so there are no wrinkles and stitch color #2.  (This stitch will tack down your coaster front fabric.)

Step 4:  Remove the hoop from the machine, but do not un-hoop your fabrics.  Using applique scissors or your preferred scissors, trim away the excess fabric, cutting close to the tack down stitches.

Picture of Step 4

Step 5:  Spritz one side of your low-loft cotton batting with temporary spray adhesive. (When spraying, hold the can about 8″ away from your fabric.  The fumes are strong so you may want to do the spraying outdoors.)

Picture of Step 5

Step 6:  Turn your hoop over so that you are looking at the back of the hoop.  Lay the sticky side of your spritzed batting on the back of your hoop.

Step 7:  Place your hoop onto your embroidery machine.  Stitch color #3.  This stitch will tack your batting in place.

Step 8:  Remove your hoop from the machine.  Using applique scissors or your preferred scissors, trim away the excess batting, cutting close to the tack down stitches.

Picture of Step 8

Step 9:  Place the hoop onto your machine.  Stitch color #4.  This is the decorative stitch.  After this stitch is sewn, you could also import a monogram and stitch your preferred letter before moving on to the next step.

Picture of Step 9

Step 10:  Spritz the wrong side of your coaster backing  fabric with temporary spray adhesive.

Step 11:   Remove the hoop from the machine and turn it over so you are looking at the back of the hoop.  Lay the sticky side of your spritzed backing fabric on the back of your hoop.

Picture of Step 11

Step 12:  Place your hoop onto your embroidery machine.  Stitch color #5.  This stitch will tack your coaster’s backing fabric in place.

Step 13:  Remove your hoop from the machine.  Using applique scissors or your preferred scissors, trim away the excess backing fabric, cutting close to the tack down stitches.

Picture of Step 13

Step 14:  Place the hoop on your machine.  Stitch color #6.  This stitch is the border of your coaster.  Once you’ve stitched your coaster’s border, you can remove the hoop from the machine and you can un-hoop your project.

Picture of Step 14

Step 15:  If you used wash away stabilizer, trim away the excess stabilizer and lightly rinse the edges with warm water to dissolve any leftover stabilizer.  -or- If you used the tear away stabilizer, just tear away the excess stabilizer and you are done.

Back View of Deco Coaster

Option 3 Tutorial:  Applique Coaster

See supplies list at the beginning of the option 2 tutorial.

NOTE:  The applique coaster design is broken down into 8 thread colors to allow the machine to stop in between steps.  You can stick with one color of thread for the entire project.  (Be sure to use matching thread in your bobbin.)

Follow steps 1 through 8  from the option 2 tutorial above.

Step 9:  Place the hoop onto your machine.  Stitch color #4 of the applique coaster design.  This is the outline stitch for the diamond applique.

Step 10:  Spritz the wrong side of your coaster applique fabric with temporary spray adhesive.

Picture of Step 10 – Applique Coaster

Step 11:   Lay the sticky side of your spritzed applique fabric on the diamond outline stitch.  Smooth the fabric to remove any wrinkles.

Step 12:  Place the hoop on the machine.  Stitch color #5.  This stitch tacks down your applique fabric.

Step 13:  Remove the hoop from the machine.  Using applique scissors or your preferred scissors, trim away the excess applique fabric, cutting close to the tack down stitches.

Picture of Step 13 – Applique Coaster

Step 14:  Place the hoop on the machine.  Stitch color #6.  This is the satin stitch border around your applique.

Picture of Step 14 – Applique Coaster

Step 15:  Spritz the wrong side of your coaster backing  fabric with temporary spray adhesive.

Picture of Step 15 – Applique Coaster

Step 16:   Remove the hoop from the machine and turn it over so you are looking at the back of the hoop.  Lay the sticky side of your spritzed backing fabric on the back of your hoop.

Step 17:  Place your hoop onto your embroidery machine.  Stitch color #7.  This stitch will tack your coaster’s backing fabric in place.

Step 18:  Remove your hoop from the machine.  Using applique scissors or your preferred scissors, trim away the excess backing fabric, cutting close to the tack down stitches.

Step 19:  Place the hoop on your machine.  Stitch color #8.  This stitch is the border of your coaster.  Once you’ve stitched your coaster’s border, you can remove the hoop from the machine and you can un-hoop your project.

Step 20:  If you used wash away stabilizer, trim away the excess stabilizer and lightly rinse the edges with warm water to dissolve any leftover stabilizer.  -or- If you used the tear away stabilizer, just tear away the excess stabilizer and you are done.

Back View of Applique Coaster

Thanks for reading!  If you would like to download these free embroidery designs, just click the link to join my StitchinJenny yahoo group.  My group is a place where members can download my free designs, share their creations, and network with other crafty people.

Blessings!

Jenny Gabriel alter ego:  StitchinJenny

Ruffled & Embroidered Burp Cloth Tutorial

Ruffled & Embroidered Burp Cloth

I’m hoping I will get to see my beautiful sister and her new baby girl over the Christmas holidays.  If so, I’ll have this sweet little burp cloth ready just for her.

Here is a tutorial for making the Ruffled & Embroidered Burp Cloth:

For anyone who is new to machine embroidery, let me take a moment to say that any embroidery machine with a hoop size of 4×4 or larger can do this project.  You will need:  your sewing machine, your embroidery machine, some fabric, self -adhesive tear-away stabilizer, embroidery thread, regular sewing thread, a burp cloth, and an embroidery design that you want to put on the burp cloth.  I chose to do an applique, so you’ll get to see how that works if you read this tutorial.

By the way, feel free to post any questions you have about projects of all kinds.  I’ll do my best to answer you in short order!

#1 Making Ruffles: Cut 2 strips of fabric, 20"x5". Fold one of them with right sides together lengthwise and stitch a 1/2" seam along the short ends. Clip the corners. Repeat for the other strip.

#2 Turn the long strips of fabric right side out and press.

#3 Set your machine for a 4mm stitch length to baste 2 parallel lines next to the long raw edge of your fabric strip. Leave long thread tails at both ends of the strip.

#4 Anchor one end of the thread tails by winding them around a pin in a figure 8.

#5 Pick up the 2 thread tails on the front of your fabric strip and pull the threads to gather. Ease in the fullness of the ruffle to match the width of your burp cloth.

#6 Pin ruffle to bottom edge of burp cloth, adjusting gathers as needed.

#7 Stitch a 1/2" seam along the raw edge of the ruffle. Remove pins as you go. Then, zig zag the raw edge to prevent unraveling.

#8 Press your ruffle away from the burp cloth. Repeat steps 3-8 for the other strip of fabric at the other end of your burp cloth.

Next, comes the embroidery!  I chose to create a monogrammed applique for this project.  I got to use my new Monogram Works software for this and it was very easy to do!  You can get this software online or locally at Humble Sewing Center.  (Locally tends to cost a little less since most shops will meet or beat online pricing.)

First, find and mark center front of the burp cloth.

Decide where you want the design. I used a placement template from The Perfect Placement Kit. It's an easy way to get things just where you want them.

Once you know where you want the design to end up, you can use the grid template that came with your machine to help you with centering your project in the hoop.

I hooped a piece of self-adhesive, tear-away stabilizer and laid the burp cloth on top of it, placing as needed. Then, I stitched the outline of the circle applique with my embroidery machine.

Next, I laid a piece of fabric on top of the circle outline that I had just stitched and my embroidery machine stitched the circle again. This step tacks down my applique fabric.

Then I used my applique scissors to trim away the excess fabric around the circle. I was careful not to cut the burp cloth.

Lastly, I snapped the hoop back onto my Janome 350E and finished the satin stitch around the circle and stitched the monogram onto the fabric.

I hope my sister likes it!

The baby's name is Mikaelah. This is a font that comes with Monogram Works. LOVE IT!!!

Well, that’s all for now.  Except that since you hung in there and read the whole post, I’ll show you a picture of the 2nd thing I made with my new software…..

A monogrammed towel for my mommy! This font also comes with Monogram Works.... I hope she likes this!

Thanks for reading!

If you haven’t signed up to follow us via email yet, go ahead and do it!  This way you will be the first to know when we launch our next gift give-aways and contests!

Let’s get sewing!

Jenny Gabriel – alter ego: StitchinJenny

In the Hoop Wallet & Nifty Gift Wrap Idea

Janome 350E Stitching Out In-the-Hoop Wallet

As I mentioned in an earlier post, in my family, December is a time for back-to-back birthdays.  I have an uncle who’s birthday I just missed, so I stitched out this quick project for his belated gift.  This is the in-the-hoop wallet design collection that we just held a prize drawing for a few days ago.  You can get your own copy of this collection at Humble Sewing Center.

In the Hoop Wallet Close-Up

The wallet collection comes with a blank wallet and also wallets with the alphabet featuring the Curlz font from A-Z.  As you may have noticed, the G I’m using is not the Curlz font.  Since this wallet is for a man, I decided to use the blank wallet and imported a font from my Digitizer Jr software.  Note:  This project requires a 5×7 hoop.

Once, I had his wallet all stitched out, I removed it from the hoop, trimmed and rinsed away the remaining wash-away stabilizer.

Then, I decided to package it up for his gift….

I used a can opener to open the bottom end of a pop-top can of soup. After I ate the soup (LUNCH!), I washed the can and lid. I peeled off the original paper and re-wrapped the can with gift wrap.

I inserted the wallet into the can....

What a nice fit!

I put the bottom of the can back. (You can use a hot glue gun for this.)

All done! It's fun to see the person's reaction when they open the pop-top and your special creation is inside. "How did you get it in the can?" That's for me to know & you to find out!

Thanks for reading!

Let’s get sewing!

Jenny Gabriel – alter ego: StitchinJenny

In the Hoop Coasters

Coaster Front (Matches those Place Mats from the video tutorial…)

Coaster Back 

If some of you are new to machine embroidery and the term “In-the-Hoop” is a mystery to you, here’s a brief explanation and a photographic tutorial/demo of an “in-the-hoop” project.

“In the hoop” is a phrase that usually means the entire project is done within the embroidery hoop and does not require any sewing machine steps at all.  However, sometimes, the majority of an “in the hoop” project will be done in the hoop and just the last steps will be done with your sewing machine.  Either way, I think these types of projects are FUN!

Coaster Tutorial:

Supplies:

  • front & back coaster fabrics
  • embroidery thread (use matching embroidery thread in bobbin, too)
  • Fusible Stabilizer
  • Self-Adhesive Wash Away Stabilizer
  • 1 Can of Temporary Spray Adhesive

Cut a piece of fusible stabilizer to fit your hoop and fuse it to the wrong side of front coaster fabric.

Hoop the stabilized fabric. Attach hoop to embroidery machine. Stitch the coaster outline onto fabric.

Un-hoop the fabric and cut out the circle. Use this template to cut our your remaining coaster pieces – fronts & backs.

Peel off paper backing and then hoop the adhesive sew & wash stabilizer with the sticky side face up. Attach the hoop to the machine and stitch the coaster outline just as you did before.

Place your pre-cut coaster front onto the coaster outline that you just stitched. Press gently with fingertips to stick in place.

Stitch the next step of your coaster. It will be a zigzag outline around the coaster. Next it will stitch your monogram or any design you choose to insert in the coaster.

I chose to stitch out our family monogram for this one.

Spray the wrong side of your coaster backing fabric with temporary spray adhesive. Remove the hoop from the machine.

Don’t un-hoop your coaster! Turn the hoop over and lay your sprayed coaster backing onto the back of your hooped coaster.

Make sure the coaster backing is aligned with coaster’s front and gently finger press into place.

Then, you’ll put the hoop onto your machine again and finish stitching out the design.

First it will be a zig zag outline.  Last it will be a satin stitch border around the entire coaster.

Once the stitching is completed, remove coaster from the hoop. Trim away excess stabilizer. Lightly rinse the edges of the coaster to dissolve the wash away stabilizer. Let dry and enjoy!

If you would like to try this project, I have digitized the coasters with a single letter from A-Z on each.  I have uploaded the files to my StitchinJenny Yahoo group.  All you have to do to access the designs is click the link and  join the group.  Once you’ve joined the group you will be able to access and download the files.

Thanks for reading!

Let’s get Sewing!

Jenny Gabriel – alter ego:  StitchinJenny