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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Fall Machine Embroidery Blog Hop and Giveaway

NOTE:  Even if you are not into Machine may want to scroll down and see the amazing little Turtles below.  The giveaway is open to everyone who is an IHAN ® blog follower....I'll have two for Marjorie's Machine Embroidery Designs and one for 5 Spools of Floriani Embroidery Thread.

Today is my day to share what I made for the Fall Machine Embroidery Blog Hop!  Marjorie, Trish and SewCalGal are extremely hard acts to follow.

Before I began this post, I have to share with you that  I did not make the project.  I had intended on making it when I returned from Quilt Market but you all know what happened there!  Thank God for friends!  My dear friend Karin did the Machine Embroidery for me and I sooooo appreciate her help!!

Those of us whoare participating  in this blog hop,  were able to select the design we wanted to make from "". Marjorie, the owner, digitizes tons of the applique shapes that are made by the modern day fabric cutting machines (Slice Fabrique,Silhouette, Big Shot Pro (Sizzix) and AccuQuilt)  I chose Marjorie's Turtle because I thought it was adorable and I just knew my boys would like it too.  My intentions were to make a mug rug for each boy to keep their water on next to their beds.  After Karin agreed to help me....the project morphed into 7 Turtles!  Funny how those things happen.

Starting with Floriani Embroidery Thread and some beautiful batik can you go wrong?

Karin stitched  the outline of the she would have proper placement of those wonderful little feet and head.
She used Floriani Heat N Stay Fusible Tearaway on the body, head and feet to prevent puckers (you will notice below...there is not one pucker in the design :).    Both Sizzix and AccuQuilt offer circle fabric cutting dies to cut the parts of the Turtle and body.  Karin does not have a need for a fabric cutting machine so she traced the design on the Floriani Heat N Stay Fusible Tearaway Stabilizer and cut them out by hand.  You may want to keep that in mind.  You don't need the dies to make your own Machine Embroidery Applique Shapes....Marjorie provides the template so you can cut them out by hand.    I would have used my Sizzix Vagabond to cut the circles had I been the one to make the Turtles.  
Each Turtle has one 3  inch circular body, four 1 inch circular feet and one 2 inch circular head.  Don't add gums up the machine needle.  Just eat it before you do your Machine Embroidery...and having some coffee with the caramel provides a great sugar buzz (all this talk of Turtles just takes my brain to places it shouldn't be going...sorry!).

Karin is a saint...who hand cuts out all these little circles for a friend?  I guess she must know I'd do the same for her....after my hand heals :)
In the hoop, Karin used Floriani Perfect Stick.  I would have used the very same thing.  Why?  I absolutely love Floriani Perfect Stick because all I have to do is press my fabric down and very simple.  I also prefer it over other products that do the same thing because it does not gum up my needle.  I've used others and I have to change the needle frequently because the adhesive sticks to the needle and pulls up my stitches.

I was going to make mug rugs....Karin decided to use one of "those purple kitchen towels" (her comment to me was, "who uses purple in the kitchen?"  I wonder?)  She marked the places where she wanted the can see the white marks.
The outline of the applique shape stitches out so you know where to place the fabric.

Here is a screen shot of Karin's embroidery machine.  I'm not exactly why she took this photo...but hey...I'm using it :)  My guess is she wanted everyone to see all the different stitches this beautiful design offers....but who really knows?  I'm guessing she is asleep and I'm not about to wake her just to inquire....just go with it :)

She placed the head, tail and feet first and then the body as you can see in this photo.

The design tacks down the fabric and then.....

the tacking stitches are covered by the beautiful satin stitching.  Karin is using the Floriani Embroidery Thread.  The thread never once broke and the sheen is absolutely beautiful. 

Marjorie's Machine Embroidery Designs provide options of the type of edge stitching you like so you can change up the look of each Turtle/design.  Her designs are digitized for various machines so you don't need any special software to convert the just transfer the one your machine requires.  How is that for easy? 

Now you can see why I choose the sweet is this Turtle?  (I know....would be sweeter with caramel!)

Even the back looks nice :)

She repeated the process 4 more times.....before taking an afternoon break.
 Karin's design idea was to put 6 Turtles heading up the towel and one headed down the towel and it would read, "Follow your heart."  I just love that....isn't that a great idea?

You can see the variety of stitch options Marjorie offers for her designs.  Each Turtle is unique :)

Then what happened?  You happens to all of us.  LIFE!  Karin's husband had kidney stones so she spent the next few days taking care of him and the project didn't get finished....Yet!  Isn't that the way things go sometimes?  It is so important to be flexible and just go with what "IS" because there isn't any changing it.

My Machine Embroidery Tips:

  • Use the best stabilizers and thread you can does seem to me to make a big difference in reduction of frustration and the lasting beauty of your finished product.  I began using Floriani Machine Embroidery products because two friends (over 30 years of ME experience combined) told me about Floriani and showed me the difference....again...Thank God for friends!
  • Keep a list of every one of your Machine Embroidery Friends next to your Embroidery Machine.  Why?  Because it is often faster to ask a friend a question or problem solve than it is  to search through those manuals (Babylock are the only manuals I know of that are written by users.  I only use my Bernina manual as an absolute last resort.)  Besides, it is more fun to stitch with friends....even if only by phone...than to stitch my opinion :)
  • Bookmark your favorite Machine Embroidery Design websites as they seem to have some of the best tips.
  • Join a Machine Embroidery Chat Group.
  • Don't agree to participate in a Blog Hop and then break your hand.....from personal experience...LOL.
The GIVEAWAY....oh yeah baby!
There are two prizes being given away.  The first is only for those with an Embroidery Machine or a friend with one.  The winner will be chosen at random and they will win a design of their choice from Marjorie's website:

The second prize....5 spools of Floriani Embroidery Thread of the winners choice.  The Floriani Embroidery Thread is not exclusively used for Machine Embroidery.  It is absolutely beautiful used in other projects as well. 

How to win?  Just leave a comment below telling us that you have a friend who would be there to help you if you needed them or that you are the type of friend who would cut out 42 circles for another stitching friend.  You can also just leave any comment you feel is appropriate : )

Please, please, please go visit the other ladies in the Fall Machine Embroidery Blog'll be glad you did.  Here is the line up:

Monday, November 5th 
Tuesday, November 6th 
All Things Crafty
Wednesday, November 7th 
Thursday, November 8th 
I Have A Notion
Friday, November 9th 
Smiles and Giggles,

PS...keep in mind I have a Blog Disclaimer at the bottom of my post.....more giggles.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Nov. 7th- A Wonderful Day

November 7th  will always be a wonderful day, because 18 years ago today Nicholas Anthony was born.  He's my sisters youngest son.  I helped deliver him and cut the cord.  I will never forget the joy on his brother's face when he came into the hospital room to see his new little brother.  Aaron was the same way when Zachary was born.  I would like to know why now all they do is fight! 

I wish I could have posted yesterday but I was in so much pain and found it difficult to type.  The cast on my right hand was digging into my wrist.  By 8:00 last night, I could take no more, so I cut into the cast around my wrist to relieve the pressure.  I wrapped my wrist in pink fleece just  at the wrist.  Now my dilemma is, what to embroider on the fleece before a visit the Dr. again.  I was thinking it should say something like, "I don't know anything about this- talk to the monkey."  After all, I don't want to get in trouble and I felt like a little kid being naughty when I did it.  Would you think it should say? 

If I had posted yesterday, you would have  seen these pictures.
I absolutely love the little top hats on the flamingos. 
Yesterday the  Toledo Blade had an article about  "our" flamingos.  Click HERE to see the article. It is nice to see that other people appreciate the flamingo family too.

I hope all of you have been following the"Fall Theme Machine Embroidery Blog Hop" hosted by SewCalGal. . This particular blog hop features both machine embroidery  and applique made from fabric die cutting machines.  Tomorrow is my day to post, you know I'll be up late tonight writing!

I've been doing my best to use as voice activated typing devise and I'm telling you, it is so much easier to type with my hands. For a really humorous post, I should just let the voice dictation interpret what I'm saying and leave the typing, as  is,  for all of you to see what this computer thinks  I'm saying.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Coin Purse Blog Hop and Giveaway

Today is November 5th......which brings the start of the UR Priceless coin purse blog hop and IHAN® is also doing a giveaway.  I had not planned on breaking my hand and being on painkillers when I wrote this post....but that is my reality today.   I'm going to show the some coin purses I made and some that  friends helped me make as well. 

 These were made using the pattern we were provided for this hop.  The one in front is a re-purposed Brighton jewelry bag.  
 I really like the fabric used in this bag so I saved it thinking I would use them to make some of MJ's Bag Tags.  Instead I decided to make a coin purse.  

When the coin purse is opened there is a little message for the person I'm giving this one to;
 a little note inside :)

 I found a tutorial that taught me how to make coin purses in any shape I wanted HERE.  I then made the coin purses below:

 "Coin purses are not just for girls" according to my co-workers...LOL.  I made one that would attach to their backpacks.

Creepy ay?
Bugs on the inside too....yuck!

Naturally I made a hexagon shaped coin purse....I love this fabric too.
Flowers inside too.

This was made from upholstery fabric.

I didn't get as far as putting a frame on this one yet and I really like the fabric for this one too.

The next coin purses were a collaboration with  Textile Artists, Ruth Chandler , Jean Overmeyer and myself.  Ruth sketched the pattern and Jean made them come to life.
Phillip Jacobs Chrysanthemum fabric....oh you know I love this fabric.
Didn't Jean do a wonderful job of making these coin purses?  Yes...she fussy cut my  fabric and it is a good thing I love her...LOL.

Giveaway....oh yeah!  

Hoffman Batiks are beautiful and these will make more than a few coin purse.  Also included are these two coin purse frames.  Just be a follower of the IHAN® blog and leave a comment on this post for your chance to win.  A winner will be drawn at random on November 13th, the last day of the blog hop.

If you would like to make some coin purses too....IHAN® has a nice inventory ready to ship :)

Make sure you visit the other blogs who are participating in the blog hop:

To see the entire blog hop schedule, visit Katherine at Sew Me Something Good blog.


Saturday, November 3, 2012

Being Prepared Makes ALL the Difference :)

It is so important to be prepared and I had planned for almost everything........

I was not prepared for Lady Eleanor to greet me in pre-op.....I.m the luckiest person earth!!!!
It was my understanding that the doctor was planning on putting some screws in my hand and all I need is more loose I opted for a few "Embellished Wonderments" instead :)

Trust Issues? Who me?

Just in case, I brought everything I thought the doctor might need:
  • excellent scissors
  • micro-fine tweezers
  • excellent thread
  • air erasable marking pen
  • instruction manual - just in case
  • last but definitely not least .... my Beam N Read - just in case the lights go out

It took some convincing, but the doctor understood that I wasn't taking NO for an answer... giggles.
The doctor refused my Air Erasable Sewline Marker and used this wimpy pen instead. Can you believe the nerve of him?
I bet his is not air erasable!
 Mr. McSteamy was there by my side and then the lights went out......

I won the argument with the doctor. No loose screws.... just "Embellished Wonderments" holding those bones together.

Thank you for all the well wishes and prayers. I have read all of them but my sister refuses to answer them while I dictate....go figure!!!!


Friday, November 2, 2012

She's Alive & Kickin'

Hey y'all!  It's Friday night and Kelly's hand surgery has gone very well!  She's out of the hospital and on her way home, and I hear she's ready to party hearty!  Knowing her though, she'll probably just go home and vacuum, wash dishes and sew a block or two.


She appreciates all your well wishes and she hopes you'll understand if she doesn't get a reply to your comments right back to you.  She reads every single one of 'em tho, so keep your cards and letters comin, and let's see who can make her laugh the hardest.


Thursday, November 1, 2012


I apologize for the delay in writing this post.  Tomorrow, I will get a few pins put in my hand and soon I'll be as good as new.  I will have some help with my posts....they'll probably be sparse while my hand heals.
The winner of Ebony Love's new book, "Fabric Die Cutting Tips" is

Congratulations Kathie!  
 Please send me your full name and address and I'll get your book in the mail to you :)

Thank you to everyone who left their guesses on the "Name That Face at Quilt Market."   I'll identify everyone and then name the winner of the first Quilt Market 2012 Giveaway :)
The Queen of Wonderments, Cecile McPeak, owner of Just Another Button Company

Edyta Sitar, Author, Teacher and Fabric Designer at Laundry Basket Quilts
Daniela Stout, Designer and owner of Cozy Quilt Shop.

Lady Eleanor, author, teacher, fabric designer and most recent inductee to the Quilt Hall of Fame and owner of Quilt In A Day.

Beth Ferrier, Author and Teacher- Applewood Farms
Ty Pennington,  Designer who else?  :)
Kevin Head, Judith Baker Montano, Author, Fiber Artist and  Teacher, and Brian Haggard Author, Fabric Designer and Teacher.
Rose Hughes, Fiber Artist and Quilt Designer with Barb Vlack  from Electric Quilt Company
Sandi Blackwell, Author and Teacher
Me with Alicia IHAN blog follower.  I teared up when we lucky am I...Very :)
Donna Babylon, Author and Teacher from More Splash Than Cash

The prize?

 5 Patterns from Brookshier Design Studio

The winner?

Congratulations Jeanne!
Please send me your full name and address and I'll get the patterns in the mail to you :)

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