Taming Metallic Threads

  Metallic embroidery threads adds a touch of class to any project—if you can stand to use them that long! Here are some tips for avoiding pitfalls typically associated with metallic threads.   Although this design is beautiful stitched in rayon, the metallic snowflake is exquis... [More]

Choosing the Right Stabilizer

With the multitude of choices now available, choosing a stabilizer can be daunting. Cut away. Tear away. Fusible. Melt away. Wash away. Which do you use? There is no iron-clad, 100 percent, always-work option. It depends on the stitch count, fabric used, and sometimes the thread, machine, or stabil... [More]

Quick Gift Bags

Create quick and easy gift bags with fabric scraps and a wonderful fusible by Allstitch. This is a fun activity for kids, doesn't involve any sewing, and can be adapted for any occasion. I've made matching gift tags and you could use the same techniques to create cards. Fuse-n-Bond is ... [More]

Quilting with Embroidery

My eldest favorite daughter (I also have a youngest favorite daughter) decided she wanted to make a rag quilt. They are shabby chic, typically created with muted colors, fringed all around and stitched with ragged edges showing on one side. The more they are washed, the more comfortable they become.... [More]

Adding Sparkle to Embroidery

In the words of the late Andy Williams, "It's the most wonderful time of the year," and it's never been easier to add sparkle to embroidery designs than with hot-fix crystals. Christmas embroidery begs for embellishment. Crystals are easy to apply with a heat tool like the DalWan... [More]

Learn Basic Applique

Applique has become one of my favorite techniques in machine embroidery. Designs are now so inclusive, that even the least experienced among us can easily create beautiful applique their first time out. I created a Basic Applique video showing just how easy it is using the Applique Quilting Hearts ... [More]

Get Variegated!

Much like pigments of the master painters, threads create pallettes for machine embro [More]

Design Organizing Basics

  With so many embroidery designs available digitally, and countless free designs offered online, it helps to have a plan when it comes to organizing them all. The task can seem daunting, but getting started is really the hardest part.  Make a Structure Remember when you had to create a... [More]

Faith, Hope, Love Hanger

If you are attending a wedding any time soon, chances are this scripture will be included. And now abides faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.Corinthians, 13:13 So what better gift for the new bride and groom than a testament to their love? Certainly, they will not re... [More]

Applique Santa Ornament

It's easy to create unique freestanding ornaments using applique designs. Much like freestanding lace is constructed on water-soluble stabilizer, freestanding applique is made stable from the applique base. With satin stitching all around, they can stand alone. Thi... [More]

Unique Uses for Test Stitchouts

Ever wonder what to do with all of those test stitchouts? Bonnie Welsh from SewInspiredbyBonnie.com has put hers to some of the most uniquely versatile uses I've ever seen and, fortunately, has given me permission to share them with you. I just adore this tote bag. It uses mylar in the de... [More]

Hot Iron Carrier

I originally created this project for my daughter, a cosmetologist, so that she could take her curling irons and flat iron home before they were cool enough to handle. Then, I decided it would be perfect for transporting mini irons when traveling or taking classes.It is very simple, particularl... [More]

Journaling for Embroidery

When I first started embroidering, one tip I often read was to keep a record of details as they relate to embroidery design stitch outs. I thought this was supposed to be fun. A lab manual; what's the use? You just press a button and stitch, right? I didn't see the importance then, but ha... [More]

Needle Knowledge

Here's something I didn't know. Quality needles are made to break. Really. Klassé needles, an industry standard for a century and a quarter, are designed to break in the event of a problem. Why? A bent needle does a lot of damage to expensive equipment and hooped fabrics. Normally,... [More]

Avoiding a Major Stabilizer Malfunction

 My name is Debbie and I was a victim of a stabilizer malfunction. I have been doing this long enough to know better. Remember this reversible applique project? It's one I won't forget any time soon. At the time, I didn't tell you about the huge blunder on my part. What I thoug... [More]

Tips for Applique Using AccuQuilt for Machine Embroidery

Hopefully, you took advantage of the AccuQuilt sale. These tips were written for embroidering applique shapes cut with AccuQuilt dies, but are just as valuable if you tack and trim your applique designs by hand. New Addition, Just in Time for Wedding Season Great news- Ann has added the AccuQuilt ... [More]

Back Side Up

Sometimes, the best side of the fabric is the back. I found that out while making a throw quilt for my daughter. It was based around a Catkin panel by Julie Paschkis. I love her folk/carved block-style approach to her fabric designs. My daughter loves cats so it was perfect. The surroun... [More]

Stabilizer Tips and Tricks

Stabilizers are the workhorse of the embroidery industry. Since they are used literally every time we stitch, it helps to share tricks of the trade. Keeping Waste to a Minimum I have found that keeping the stabilizer width intact, rather than trimming it to the hoop size, eliminates unnecessary ... [More]

Using a Stabilizer Window

When embroidering several of the same sized designs using adhesive tear-away stabilizer, you can save time and supplies by creating a stabilizer window. Hoop the adhesive tear-away like you normally would. Score the paper backing inside the hoop and peel it away. Embroider the design and ... [More]

Avoid Sinking Stitches

This week, I thought I would share some problems I had with stitches sinking into the design while creating the Scalloped Valentine project. I love to use wool felt in many of my projects. The cream-colored wool I used in the Scalloped Valentine projects was felted, meaning it had been washed in hot... [More]

Scalloped Valentine Hearts

Ann's readers can share the love. Last week, Pat shared links to three great free valentine designs in her blog. This week, I have another one I've been working on. Actually, two. This valentine heart is another of Ann's free designs. I particularly liked it because of the scalloped edg... [More]

Memory Hearts - Valentine Special

Valentine's Day is less than a month away, so here is a project with heart! Memory Hearts can be created for any special occasion: births, baptisms, engagements, marriages. These were made for a baby girl and baby boy. Actually, I made two sets of each so that the grandmothers, both first ... [More]

Snowflakes for Sandy Hook

Like many of you, my heart ached for families affected by the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut. So, after reading Pattiann’s post about making snowflakes for Sandy Hook, I deciced to stitch up a few. They were being collected by the Connecticut PTA and forwarded to Sandy Hook elementary for cr... [More]

Cold Hands, Warm Heart: Cutwork as Applique

This project combines two designs, applique and cutwork used as applique, and is created in the hoop. Add some wording with Alphabet Express and it becomes a unique decoration you can leave up through snow season. Start with Dakota Collectibles MI2021 heart applique as the base. I resized it to fit ... [More]

Cutwork Snowman Gift Bag

I've had the idea for this design since this time last year, so it's well overdue! The design is part of the Christmas Cutwork Collection by Dakota Collectibles. I added two variations on this design. Originally, the thread colors were shades of blue and plum, but I had a piece of... [More]

Snowflake Window Ornament

Applique designs are so versatile. They can be used as a traditional applique on apparel or a quilt and they can also be used as a stand-alone piece, much like freestanding lace. The Window with Snowflakes ornament (XM1791) from the Merry Christmas Ornaments set by Dakota Collectibles features ... [More]

Happy Haunting October Fest

Don't be afraid to change up the colors in your embroidery designs. Just because it shows up as an o [More]