Digitizing and Embroidery with my Favorite Things

Hi everyone.  As you probably have noticed, I have not posted in quite some time.  Life can sometimes take over and you have to choose your priorities.

I have been working hard though, so I have lots of information to share with you over the next few weeks.  I have been busy digitizing  a lot of machine embroidered appliques which can be purchased on my website soon.  I wanted to share with you my favorite notions and products and the stitching process of my machine embroidered appliques.  Some posts on digitizing with Bernina’s Designer Plus Software are in the works for posting as well.

Since I digitize my own designs, I have my computer close by with my all time favorite software,  Bernina Designer Plus Version 6.  This software is so powerful and gives you creative capabilities that are amazing.  This software is not just for Berninas and is used by many who own other brands of machines.  In my opinion,  it is the very best.  By the way, if you own or plan to own Designer Plus, the very best book that you can purchase to help you learn the abilities of this software can by found on http://www.creativesewing.com.

And, of course, my Bernina 830 sewing and embroidery machine which by itself,  will knock your socks off.  This particular weekend, my friend Gina trusted me with her 830 so I could get a lot of blocks finished for the quilt I am doing.  You might think that was a good thing,  but now,  after having two 830’s running, I am obsessed with having two of my own.

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I am in love with my Koala Quilt Pro IV sewing center.  The drawers and storage of this center are to die for.  The swing outs are perfect for my computer on one side and tools and such on the other.  I love having my computer close by the machine for making corrections to the designs I have created while I stitch them out.  I stitch my designs many times to make sure they are as close to perfect as I can get them.

Add a nice cup of hot tea on my mug rug and a few bites of candy and I’m sitting pretty.  My friend Belvalee made the mug rug and also the tea carrier which holds several tea bags .  Perfect for your purse.  I think it was made for charge cards, but it”s also handy for tea or coffee packs.

I have two cutting tools that are a must when machine embroidering my applique designs.  My Gingher Double Curved 6 inch embroidery scissors and my Side Hopper Jump Stitch Scissors.

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Those little Jump Stitch Scissors are amazing.  In my future posts,  you will see how I position them to get the perfect snipping of tiny thread tails.  They snip threads so close to your fabric you will be amazed.

I use my Gingher scissors for trimming the excess applique fabric away after the machine tacks it in place.  They cut close to the stitching which is so important in achieving neat and good results to your applique.  Leaving too much fabric extending from the tacking stitch will cause frayed fabric edges in your final stitching because the stitch cannot cover the edges of the fabric.  If you cannot find the scissors in your area, visit my friend Gina on her website http://www.ginasbernina.com and contact her for purchase and shipping.

I also love my Jumbo Hoop for creating large embroidery designs for my quilt blocks.  This embroidery measures 10.5 inches square.  Perfect for a twelve inch block, or a larger block with room for decorative quilting.  I also have embroidered quilting designs available on my site, http://www.kathydrewquiltingandembroidery.com.

That’s it for today’s post.  Future posts will include more of  the tools and products I use,  but more importantly, the stitching process of my embroidered appliques.

Let me know if  these planned future posts are going to be of interest to you and feel to ask any questions you may have or things you would like me to include.

See you at my next post.

A Quick Update!

Sew Beautiful Magazine has given me permission to post the picture they used in their magazine article featuring designs from my “Baby Chicks and Bows” Embroidery Design CD.   The only thing I can add, is a special thank you to Sew Beautiful and the beautiful model that wore the dress.  She is so adorable.  You can read more about the article in my previous post, Easter Is on It’s Way.

To view these and all the designs I have available for purchase, visit my website at www.kathydrewquiltingandembroidery.com

Little Girl and Little Boy Quacker Quilts

Finally, after all this time, I have taken some pics of the quilts I finished from my two design CDs , Little Boy Quackers and Little Girl Quackers.  These were so much fun to do.  Things for children are always such a pleasure and seem to bring a smile to your face.

I have added the appliques to my website, www.kathydrewquiltingandembroidery.com and you can purchase them as a downloadable set or purchase the indivicual designs as you wish.

The background white fabric on both quilts was cotton peti-pointe pique, which you can purchase from Ginas Bernina here in Knoxville if you can’t find it in your area.  I love the texture of the fabric and the appliques stitched out  beautifully on it.

The appliques are digitized for the embroidery machine and are sewn in the hoop.  On the Little Girl Quacker Quilt, I used some hand dyed fabrics for the appliques and I had a batik that worked beautifully for the sashing and binding.    I like to add So Sheer Interfacing to the wrong side of my applique fabrics to give them some extra body and also to prevent shadowing if parts are positioned over others.  I used Isacord Thread in a size 75 embroidery needle and 60 wt cotton bobbin thread.  You could substitute 60 wt cotton in colors for the needle if you prefer and I digitized the designs with those two thread weights in mind.  When embroidering on woven fabrics, I prefer to use a lightweight tear away stabilizer.  I always use two layers and increase the number of layers according to the thread count of the fabric and the design.  As those factors increase, I add more layers of stabilizer to prevent puckering.

Each design was embroidered on fabric then cut to the block size.  The quilt top was then assembled and quilted free form on my Bernina 830 sewing machine.

The Little Boy Quacker Quilt was done in the same way using various different types of fabric.  I just love my Little Sailor Duck.  He is one of my favorites although I think they are all really kinda special.

 

Don’t hesitate to use these appliques on knits for clothing and they are also adorable on baby blankets.  Be careful though. These Little Quackers are addictive!