If it weren’t for the last minute I’d never get anything done.

Well, this is a first for me. I’ve frequently thought that if I didn’t get something finished before leaving on a trip I could do it in the airport or on the plane, but I’ve never actually done it. Until today.  As we were leaving for the airport I turned to Bill and said, &ld... [More]

The Spool Mini-Series Part 2, The Condensed Edition!

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Gift-Giving Journey #2 - Something For the Neighbor

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Next on Your Safari - Gorgeous Giraffes

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June from Brother - More Quattro Magic

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Create special Christmas Treasures with our 9 Santas Quik Quilt Book and CD!

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My First Christmas Project - Stylish Cocktail Napkins

Hello everyone! I’m Susan from AllAboutBlanks.com and we work with the folks here at AnnTheGran.com to offer you some of our best-selling embroidery blanks right here on Ann's website.  What a nice surprise it was to be asked to participate in the world of blogging here at AnnThe... [More]

A Fall From Grace

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The Spool Mini-Series

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MONKEYS AND OTHER ANIMALS YOU CAN EXPECT TO SEE ON SAFARI

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Calling All Experts! - Help Us Expand the Magic Bookshelf

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June From Brother - One other thing...

Not sure where someone got the idea that we are already making an upgrade for the new Quattro....not true!  Trust me, I would know.....I still reeling from what it took to get this one done.  Nite all!

June From Brother - This and That

Well ladies, there certainiy has been lots of discussion about what to pay for a machine.  I have to say once Brother sells the product to the dealer, it is up to the dealer to set a reasonable price. They do that based on many things.  The most important thing for all of you to remember w... [More]

The Thrill of Digitry and the Agony of the Foot

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Gizmos, Squissors, And Feed Dogs

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New Dream Machine From Brother

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Embroidered Pillowcases with Fancy Jumbles

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You Are Invited To Go Crazy Quilting!

You Are Invited To Go Crazy Quilting!

We are excited to have Eileen Roche, Editor of Designs in Machine Embroidery share this content with you, which was originally posted on Eileen’s Machine Embroidery Blog :

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

Sam Solomon, our Creative Director at Designs in Machine Embroidery has been telling me to experiment with crazy quilting.  I’ve admired Eileen’s projects in her book, Today’s Crazy Quilting with Your Embroidery Machine but I didn’t think I had the skill level to understand what fabric to fold, where and when.  I remember taking a test in the 6th grade on spatial skills and paper folding and I struggled.  So clearly, crazy quilting isn’t for me.  But Sam assured me I could do it.  I intended to prove him wrong.
I decided to experiment with the 5 inch version of Quilt Block 1 from Today’s Crazy Quilting with Your Embroidery Machine.  I kept it simple by creating an unadorned quilt block using the embroidery techniques highlighted in the book.  I was shocked by how easy it was to do the flip and stitch method described in the book.
Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

About the block:
Since the block was plain (and boring) I decided it was the ideal canvas for ribbons and other embellishments.  I never thought I’d get to use the spades and clubs embellishments on a project.  Victory!

Next I made the same block but added embroidery designs from the book.  Blissful success!

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

About the block:
It was important to me I set some rules during this entire crazy quilt block making process.  I only wanted to use 3 thread colors.  I embraced the concept of white and pink birds and am quite pleased with the results.  I added a decorative zig-zag stitch to attach the gray ribbon.

Two successes in one afternoon proved a confidence builder. Why stop now?  I decided to incorporate embroidery designs from Perfect Embroidery Pro. I used the mini fonts and the circle path for text. More success!

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

About the block:
The bicycle is a built-in design in Perfect Embroidery Pro.  I arched the word “Create” around the wheel.  What a simple, yet fun way to display text!

The hot air balloon is also a built-in design in Perfect Embroidery Pro.  I arched the text, “up, up and away we go!”  It wasn’t until the machine started stitching did I realize I had trapped myself.  What color do I stitch the word “go”?  I had to get creative on the fly—so I stopped the machine and stitched the “o” in white.  Not ideal but it’s a crazy quilt!

The footprints are also a built-in design in Perfect Embroidery Pro.  You can add as few or as many footprints as you want.  Just remember to mirror image them!

Next I used the bee, flower border and hearts from Today’s Crazy Quilting with Your Embroidery Machine.  I like crazy quilting as a style because it’s like doodling on a textbook book cover or an acceptable way to add graffiti. It seemed fitting to add text, “Denise was here!”

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

About the block:
I used Perfect Embroidery Pro to add “Bee-utiful” and arched it around the bee.

Start thinking of favorite phrases, important dates like birthdays or anniversaries— and add them to your crazy quilt blocks.  Since I was stitching these blocks in March, I figured why not add the date.  It’s a momentous month, the month I tried my hand at crazy quilting with an embroidery machine.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

About the block:
The eye is a built-in design from Perfect Embroidery Pro.  It was quirky and fun—the ideal addition to my crazy quilt blocks.  The large flower button covers a mistake.  No one but me… and you know!  That’s the joy of crazy quilting.  You can easily cover up mistakes.  Tiny baby buttons adorn the polka dot pink fabric.

 Next, I did a Google search on crazy quilting and noticed a recurring theme:  spiders and spider webs.  It turns out they are considered a sign of good luck.  I don’t believe in luck but I do like spiders and spider webs.  Finally, I get to incorporate a creepy crawly spider into my embroidery!

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog

About the block:
I used Perfect Embroidery Pro to draw one strand of the spider web, then I copied, pasted and enlarged the strand as the arch got wider and wider.  Next I converted the artwork to a running stitch with a 2.5 mm stitch length.  I hand stitched my Halloween spider.  (I tried my faithful hot glue gun, but the rubber spider wouldn’t stay.)  I think this block makes a statement!

The other embroidery designs on this block are free design downloads courtesy of our friends from Embroidery Online.  You can find these designs (and more!) by visiting the Designs Plus Newsletter. All embroidery designs are archived for your convenience and creative whim!

My lessons to you:

  1. If you want to improve your embroidery skills you need to practice. A great way to practice is by stitching a crazy quilt block!  Look at each block as a canvas to decorate.  Use it as your own small and manageable art piece.  Once you experience success, who knows how many blocks you might stitch!
  2. I only used Block 1 to keep my variation to a minimum—but imagine the possibilities! They are endless.  Use the embroidery designs included in the book to embellish the blocks.  But don’t stop there.  Get creative and resourceful.  Use your embroidery software.  Use the free embroidery designs we offer on our website.  Use built-in embroidery designs on your machine.  Get scrappy.  Get creative.  Go crazy!
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