Quick and Easy Sample Book

   Wouldn't it be great if you could turn your sew-outs into a well-presented sample book? One that you could use to seel from, or just to show off your workmanship? You can! It's easy, inexpensive and quick to use some of your existing stitch-outs that had been relegated to ... [More]

Teaching African Folklore Embroidery to children

The past four weeks of summer have flown.  For the sixth year in a row I have been teaching children African Folklore Embroidery at a summer art camp. The children from ages 7-11 have from over thirty different arts related classes from which to choose. It is an honor that African Folklore E... [More]

Keeping It simple - Bandanas - Perfect for Summer and No Need to Tie

Our girls have longer hair but it is so fine.  Pony tails and pig tails seem to last about 20 minutes before the hair starts creeping out and looks messy.  We saw the teens at the park wearing bandanas  to keep their hair back and the oldest commented that she thought they w... [More]

Holding the Slippery Stuff

Slippage and marring are the two biggest challenges when hooping satin. Because of its soft hand, it is necessary to hold it securely without damaging the delicate surface yarns. Hoops may have nicks, splinters or burrs that can catch and damage these long delicate warp threads. I prefer that the ho... [More]

Embroidering for Pets

  Identify your pet and add fun sayings to pet bandanas. Make a patriotic one for the 4th of July - and then keep it rolling, making a new one for each holiday or mood. Rather than regular tie-style bandanas, you might want to make a slip-ver-the-collar bandana. This type of ban... [More]

Reusable Grocery Bags

USING CREATIVITY TO HELP THE ENVIRONMENT In the next few weeks many cities are enacting a law that will allow grocery stores to charge for plastic bags. Some of you have already been using reusable tote bags; some purchase these bland reusable bags from the store at which they are shopping. Howe... [More]

An Easy Way to Keep the Dust Away!

My cousin just came to visit and helped me do some Spring cleaning (yes...it's Summer already).  I was forced to face the dust that has been finding it's home on my sewing machines over time.  It's really not fair to the machines and I'm sure machine repairmen would tell me... [More]

Pucker-Free Quilt Squares

Because quilt fabric is usually lightweight, embroidered quilt squares are often puckered. To avoid puckers on your squares, fuse a piece of ShirtTailorÒ by PellonÒ to cover the entire back of your square. It will not be removed after embroidery. Rather, it adds body to the quilt squar... [More]

Embroidery Advisor Presents "Sweet Dreams"

Good Night! SleepTight!  Now that is something we all hope to do each night.  Whenever we don’t get enough sleep, there is usually something we can do about getting more and sounder sleep so we can stay in dream land longer each night.  Some people prefer to have it totally da... [More]

A Quick Gift for Father's Day

At our house we always seem to be slightly behind and end up cramming to get our father's day gifts done the night before that special day.  Sometimes they don't go as planned and we spend a frustrating time figuring out what to do.  This year we decided to change this (maybe the r... [More]

Would you like to win $500 Cash?

Would you like to win $500 Cash? YOU are invited to enter your completed African Folklore Embroidery in the upcoming challenge. Entry forms are on online at www.aflembroidery.com. THE GRAND PRIZE is $500 cash, 2nd prize $50 and 3rd prize $25.00. All entrants will receive certificate of part... [More]

Loosely Woven Fabrics ? Control Them with Ease

  Fear No Pashmina! One of my favorite newer stabilizers is the self-adhesive wash-away mesh type. This stabilizer can be pricey, but it stands alone when you need the unique advantages offered by this highly evolved specialty product.The item being embroidered must be compatible with wate... [More]

Look Mom! No Zippers!

     Individual characters (letters, numbers and punctuation marks) from my alph [More]

Embroidery Advisor Presents Sew Story Books

Remember as a young child and one of your parents, or grandparents, would cuddle up next to you and read you a story before bedtime.  You would listen to your favorite story until your eyes slowly closed and you drifted into fairy-tale dreams.  Now that you have grown up and have children ... [More]

Leftover Minky and those Elusive Binks

A friend gave me some leftover 5" squares of minky fabric the other day.  There were not enough to make a quilt so I pondered what to do with them.  In the meantime someone stepped on the clip that held the baby's pacifier so it didn't get lost.  She really only gets it w... [More]

Junk in my trunk - African Folklore Embroidery Elephants

 JUNK IN MY TRUNK and the African Folklore Embroidery Elephants One of my favorite animals to observe while on safari is the elephants. I love watching the baby elephant walk in between his mom and dad and seeing how protective the moms are toward their babies. The elephant is the largest... [More]

Keeping It Simple - Owls Are In

I know that I have told you about all the babies that are on their way.  And their mother's are now doing the decorating.  Many of our daughter's friends have seen her baby's room and when she asked them what they would like as a shower gift several requested the fram... [More]
The Avid Embroiderer Presents - 95% of my blogs originate from my mistakes. My Freebie is fun

The Avid Embroiderer Presents - 95% of my blogs originate from my mistakes. My Freebie is fun

The green writings are always tips or tricks I have learned. You might consider copying and pasting them into a document so you can search for keywords to find and refresh your memory for your project. 

Last week I needed to create an order from my Etsy site. It was for Bride and Groom Spa wraps. 

They are really great, dense, and of excellent quality. Since I don't do them often, the first one I did got ruined at my machine. Paying for another wrap with an $18.00 shipping fee was enough to get me to think about what I should do to prevent distortion again. 

The first thing I knew the fabric was too heavy for normal methods of keeping it steady. I don't hoop the fabric because one side is velour and the other is terrycloth. Additionally, if I used binder clips, it could leave an impression on the garment. So, this is how I secured my project. 
  1. For the bulk portion, I used accordion-style folds secured with safety pins. I ended up with 4 folds which I secured with a larger rubber band. 
  2. For the elastic area, I taped an 18" ruler just below the gathers. Those draw areas need to be contained too. 
  3. I placed a box the same size as the work area of my machine. Those pinned folds were very heavy, but the elevated box kept it steady. I did keep an eye on it but there was little or no movement.
  4. I pinned the embroidery area to my stabilizer. I considered using a cut-away stabilizer, but then I had a better idea. . . 
My project was Navy blue and I had a left-over piece of cotton in just the right color. That is the easiest stabilizer I ever used. The cotton held tight, didn't add weight to the garment, and best of all, it essentially disappeared into the project. I did trim around the stabilizer, but it was quick and painless! 

Of course, I will still use my Badgemaster, water-soluble, tearaway, and other stabilizers, but I have a new weapon in my arsenal and my thinking is to use on fabrics that will be on someone's body, a blanket, pillowcase, and many other items! 

Here is the configuration for the fabric stabilizer. First I hooped the stabilizer, then pinned the backside of the wrap to create a single hoop and project.


When flipped over, be sure to pin the fabric to the stabilizer. You can also hand stitch a basting line for holding. I did not use a machine baste because it might leave an impression on the velour.

I trimmed the stabilizer, and you may notice, this is how stabilizer is trimmed in professional items.

The proof is in the pudding, here is the finished product, lovely work even if it had a few issues along the way.'

For this time's Freebie, I am looking forward to 2022, but not doing 'belly dancing. . .' 


Thank you for joining me, I know how busy you are! Remember - Joy that isn't shared dies young. Ann Sexton. 
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