September 27, 2013
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What's "Tall and Skinny"? It's the name of my new embroidery alphabet! I created
it for those times when I need to fit many letters across the width of an embroidery hoop.
I designed this new alphabet to solve the following problem: When I have only a few
lines of text to arrange, I would typically end up with a LOT of empty space, as in this
sample design that I arranged with one of the alphabets built into my embroidery software.
My solution was to produce an alphabet that is three times the normal height for the
characters. This makes the characters very skinny in comparison, thus the name. I digitized
the alphabets with one of my motif fills for an open and interesting look. Because the fill
is light, designs created with the alphabets require less stabilization and also leave the
fabric soft and flexible. Here is how the same text looks in Tall and Skinny. I think this
looks a lot bolder, don't you?
I digitized the alphabet in five sizes, ranging from 70 mm to 140 mm high for the sizing
boxes that surround the characters. (You have seen these boxes in most of my other alphabets;
they ensure that all the characters in a given size will be proportional to each other and also
make it easier to align the characters on a grid line in software.) The capital A in each size
is just about one half of the height of the box. You can read more about the alphabets in my
Guide to Tall and Skinny and Stitch Counts for Tall and Skinny. The alphabets are available
as single characters here (sort by Newest First), and as complete alphabets (including the
complete set of all sizes) here (sort by Newest First).
I've found that these new alphabets also work well for arranging monograms. I used size 140
for the H and and size 100 for the S and J in this design. (By the way, the pouch is for the
power cord for a cousin's tablet computer. You can find the instructions for making such pouches
in my Fancy Swirls on Fancy Pouches blog. Three subsequent blogs offer additional pouch sizes.)
You can also combine alphabet sizes in order to make a saying or motto fit in an embroidery
hoop. I used size 140 for the top line, 100 for the middle line, and 80 for the bottom. The
bottom two lines are about the same width, as I wanted, and the top line is nearly as wide.
Won't this make a cute sign for my sewing room?
Download my Fancy Name Plaque instructions to make your own sign. Create your design
first and then use the dimensions of the design to determine the sizes of the fabrics you need
for the plaque. There is a sleeve on the back of the fabric frame to hold a dowel or decorative