Children's Hospital Gown - How to Sew the Gown

These are instructions on how to sew a hospital gown for a child.  The hospital gown has an opening at the back that completely overlaps to give full coverage.  The back has two 14" tie closures on each side - one is on the outside and one is on the inside. There is also a 14" tie closure at the neck. It has a square neckline and butterfly sleeves. The short butterfly sleeves allow for full access to the arm for ease in medical procedures.

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The pattern is a very simple pattern to sew and is designed for beginner sewers. There are no complicated bias trims or rounded edges. A traditional sewing machine or serger can be used. It is helpful if the sewing machine has a zigzag stitch, but this is not necessary. 

Butterfly Sleeve Completely Opened

Butterfly Sleeve Completely Opened

Another View of the Butterfly Sleeve

Another View of the Butterfly Sleeve

Please note that you may want to buy grosgrain ribbon instead of making your own ties as this will save considerable construction time; in which case, please omit the instructions below on cutting the ties. Each gown will require three yards of grosgrain. 

Child's Hospital Gown with Ties on the Inside

Child's Hospital Gown with Ties on the Inside

Child's Hospital Gown with Ties on the Outside

Child's Hospital Gown with Ties on the Outside

View of All Three Ties in the Gown

View of All Three Ties in the Gown

The pattern includes five sizes: small (sizes 3-4); medium (sizes 5-6); large (sizes 7-8); extra large (sizes 10-12); and XX-large (sizes 14-16). Yardage ranges from one yard to two and a quarter yards. A good quality cotton/polyester blend is recommended. This blend will allow for the garment to be laundered with minimal or no wrinkling. 

Back View of the Gown

Back View of the Gown

Please see the blog post on how to make the pattern and cut the fabric by clicking here.  This blog post is merely on how to sew the hospital gown. Please read both before starting the gown. Both posts are available as a PDF to download without pictures at the end of each post and by clicking here. 

All fabric should be washed and dried on the hottest temperatures possible before cutting. 

TIME FRAMES

  • The pattern will take about an hour to create.
  • It takes about 20 minutes to cut the fabric.
  • The gown takes about an hour and a half to sew. 

FABRIC YARDAGE BY GOWN SIZE

  • Size Small (3-4) - 1 yard
  • Size Medium (5-6) - 1 yard
  • Size Large (7-8) - 1 1/4 yards
  • Size Extra Large (10-12) - 2 yards
  • Size XX-Large (14-16) - 2 1/4 yards

MATERIALS to Sew the Pattern

  • Traditional sewing machine (with a zigzag stitch if possible) or a serger
  • Universal or standard sewing machine needle
  • The patterns for the gown - CLICK HERE for the pattern
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Seam ripper (optional)
  • OPTIONAL: 3 yards of grosgrain ribbon to substitute sewing the ties for the closures. Cut it into 6 equal pieces (or 16" each tie) and finish the ends with fray check, a zig zag stitch or tie a knot. Skip the instructions on how to sew the ties. Add them to the gown like the sewn ties.
  • You will also need a good quality polyester thread in white or matching color. If you are not sure about your thread quality please try this test:
    • Cut off about 12” of the thread
    • Knot the thread in the middle
    • With your hands gripping about 3” on each side of the knot, pull on the thread hard.
    • Did it break? If it did, please do not use this thread.

INSTRUCTIONS on How to Sew the Gown

NOTES: 

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  1. All seams are 1/2" (the edge of the foot). This is usually the width of the foot and makes it an easy gauge.
  2. Start sewing 1/8" to 1/4" from the edge so the fabric does not bunch up under the feed dogs.
  3. All sewing should begin and end with a backstitch or a tack down stitch to secur the stitches.
  4. Most seams do not need to be pinned as they are straight and the fabric is not slippery. If this is a new concept to you, try it. It is very fast and this easy project is a great one to try new skills. Plus it is a lot faster. 
  5. While garments should be pressed, this fabric is so nice and the pattern so simple that no pressing is necessary. 
  6. If you do not have a zig zag stitch, please double stitch instead. The second stitch should be close to the edge of the opposite seam stitch. 

STEP 1

Make the pattern and cut the fabric. CLICK HERE for the pattern and instructions on how to make it and cut the fabric.

STEP 2 - Edge Hem (Reference Only)

Edge hemming will be used on most of the edges of this garment. Edge hemming is a three step process of sewing the edge of the garment so the woven fabric does not unravel. Most garments use a 1/2" edge hem, but since this is for beginners, we will use a 1" edge hem. Please refer to this step when "Edge Hem" is mentioned. It is as follows:

  • Fold the edge of the garment 1/2"
  • Fold the edge of the garment a second time 1/2" (this will encase the raw edge)
  • Topstitch or stitch close to the edge that is not on the fold. 

STEP 3 - Making the Ties

Skip this step if you are using grosgrain ribbon instead of making the ties with the same fabric. 

  • Fold in the short ends of the fabric 1/4" and then 1/4" again (this will encase the raw edge of the ends). 
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  • Fold the fabric in half lengthwise. It will now be 15" by 1".
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  • Finger press along the crease.
  • Open the fabric and fold one long edge up to meet the center fold line.
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  • Do this for the other side as well.
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  • Now fold it closed. The raw pieces will be encased inside. 
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  • Topstitch or stitch close to the edge that is not on the fold. 
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  • Repeat this for all 6 ties. 
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  • Set the ties aside. 

STEP 4 - Sleeve

  • Edge Hem (see step 2 above) the top edge of the sleeve.
  • Edge Hem (see step 2 above) the straight side that has both corners a right angle (the butterfly opening).
  • Edge Hem (see step 2 above) the bottom of the sleeve.
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  • Do not hem the diagonal or the straight seam below the diagonal as these are the sleeve and side seams.
  • With wrong sides together, place two of the opposite sleeves on top of each other leaving 5/8" that is not overlapping on each end. The sleeves should have the two hemmed straight edges overlapping in the middle and the two diagonal edges should be on the sides. 
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  • Zig zag the top edge where it is overlapping. Widen the stitch width if necessary.
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  • You should now have 2 sleeves with a butterfly opening. Set the sleeve aside.
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STEP 5 - Front & Back

ON THE FRONT PIECE: Edge Hem (see step 2 above) the top edge.

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ON THE BACK PIECE:

  • Edge Hem (see step 2 above) the large diagonal that is 3" less than the other. CAUTION: This edge is on the bias. It will stretch. You may want to pin this to avoid stretching. 
  • Edge Hem (see step 2 above) the top edge.
  • Edge Hem (see step 2 above) straight edge that extends from the above sewn diagonal edge.

 

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  • Do not hem the little diagonal,  the straight seam below the little diagonal diagonal, or the bottom.
  • Do this for the second back piece.
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STEP 6 - Adding the Ties

  • On the back piece, pin one tie to the wrong side of the corner of the diagonal and the straight edge that have been hemmed. This is where the long diagonal meets the long hemmed side. It should be about 3/4" from the edge with the length of the tie extending past the garment.
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  • Zig zag the tie to the back. 
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  • Do this for both back pieces. These will be the side ties.
  • On the back piece, pin one tie to the wrong side of the corner of the diagonal and the straight edge that have been hemmed. This is the top edge and the diagonal. It should be about 3/4" from the edge with the length of the tie extending past the garment.
  • Zig zag the tie to the back. 
  • Do this for both back pieces. These will be the neck ties.
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  • Lay the front of the garment with the right side down and the top up.
  • Lay the back piece on top of it. Match the hem lines and the side seams. Where does the tie on the back meet on the side seam of the front? Mark it with a pin on both side seams on the front. For the size Large it was 6" from the diagonal. 
  • Remove the back piece.
  • On the front piece pin one of the ties on the edge of side seam on the right side where you marked the spot with a pin.
  • Do this for the other side, but on this time on the wrong side of the fabric
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  • Zig zag the tie to each side seam. 
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NOTE: On the front piece, one tie will be sewn to the wrong side and one to the right side. It does not matter which side is which.

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  • Pin all the ties to the main pieces so they do not get in the way when sewing the remining seams. 
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STEP 7 - Sewing the Sleeves to the Body

  • With the tops of the front and one sleeve matching at the top, and right sides together, sew along the edge with a straight stitch.
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  • Finish the edge with a zig zag sttich. 
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  • Do this for all four sleeve seams.
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STEP 8 - Sewing the Side Seams

  • With right sides together, match the edge of the sleeves and the sleeve seams.
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  • Sew the seam together with a straight stitch.
  • Finish the edge with a zig zag sttich. 
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  • Do this for both side seams.

STEP 9 - Hem the Bottom Edge

  • Edge Hem (see step 2 above) the bottom of the garment. 
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This completes the child's hospital gown.

Please download the PDF of these instructions here. They do not contain pictures.

If you have any questions, or there are any errors, please contact Colleen Bell. 

 

 

 

Children's Hospital Gown - How to Make the Pattern & Cut the Fabric

These are instructions on how to make the pattern and cut the fabric for a hospital gown for a child.  The hospital gown has an opening at the back that completely overlaps to give full coverage.  The back has two 14" tie closures on each side - one is on the outside and one is on the inside. There is also a 14" tie closure at the neck. It has a square neckline and butterfly sleeves. The short butterfly sleeves allow for full access to the arm for ease in medical procedures. 

IMG_3950.JPG

The pattern is a very simple pattern to sew and is designed for beginner sewers. There are no complicated bias trims or rounded edges. A traditional sewing machine or serger can be used. It is helpful if the sewing machine has a zigzag stitch, but this is not necessary. 

Butterfly sleeve completely opened

Butterfly sleeve completely opened

Please note that you may want to buy grosgrain ribbon instead of making your own ties as this will save considerable construction time; in which case, please omit the instructions below on cutting the ties. Each gown will require three yards of grosgrain. 

The pattern includes five sizes: small (sizes 3-4); medium (sizes 5-6); large (sizes 7-8); extra large (sizes 10-12); and XX-large (sizes 14-16). Yardage ranges from one yard to two and a quarter yards. A good quality cotton/ polyester blend is recommended. This blend will allow for the garment to be laundered with minimal or no wrinkling. 

Please see the blog post on how to sew the pattern by clicking here. That blog post also includes the full list of materials to construct the gown. This blog post is merely on how to make the pattern for the gown and how to cut the fabric. Please read both before starting the gown. Both posts are available as a PDF to download without pictures at the end of each pos and by clicking hers. 

All fabric should be washed and dried on the hottest temperatures possible before cutting. 

TIME FRAMES

  • The pattern will take about an hour to create.
  • It takes about 20 minutes to cut the fabric.
  • The gown takes about an hour and a half to sew. 

FABRIC YARDAGE BY GOWN SIZE

  • Size Small (3-4) - 1 yard
  • Size Medium (5-6) - 1 yard
  • Size Large (7-8) - 1 1/4 yards
  • Size Extra Large (10-12) - 2 yards
  • Size XX-Large (14-16) - 2 1/4 yards

MATERIALS to Make the Pattern and Cut the Fabric

  • Access to a computer & a printer to download and print the patterns
  • Paper wide as the gown width - minimum 7" and maximum 12" (brown paper bag, tissue paper, medical table paper, craft paper, printer paper, etc.)
  • Pencil or pen
  • Tape
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
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PATTERNS - Click on the size to download the pattern to your computer. There are two pattern downloads for each size. There is a body and a sleeve pattern for each size. 

SMALL

MEDIUM

LARGE

EXTRA LARGE

XX-LARGE

The sample pattern shown in the pictures is a size XX-Large and a size Large. Please make adjustments for the pattern you are making. 

STEP 1 - PREPARATION

  • At the computer download the pattern and print it.
  • Cut out both patterns on the inside of the dark line. 
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STEP 3 - CONSTRUCTING the Body of the Pattern

  • FInd the body pattern. Place the edge of the body pattern that says "CENTER" on the edge of the paper. Trace this on the paper. 
  • EXCEPTION for size 16 - Size 16 needs to have an additional 2" added to the left side of the pattern. Place the pattern two inches from the edge of the fabric and then follow the directions below. 
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  • Each body pattern has inches to be added to the length. This measurement can be found at the bottom edge of the body pattern. 
  • Using the ruler measure this amount below the bottom of the pattern. To keep the same distance from the edge of the paper to the other edge that you are drawing, mark the width of the pattern at several places along the length of the paper.
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  • Connect the lines so that there is a continuous line from the bottom of the pattern to the amount to be added to the pattern.
  • Connect the line from edge to edge.
  • Cut the body pattern.

STEP 4 

Trace and cut the body of this pattern two more times.

NOTE: If you are making a pattern from the smaller sizes, you can trace the body pattern on the fold and cut one pattern. This will be for the back. 

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You will now have 3 full-length body patterns. [Or a front and back, if you took the shortcut above, in which case, disregard the tapping instructions below.]

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STEP 5 - PATTERN FRONT

  • Label one of the patterns "FRONT".
  • Write the size on line 2.
  • Add the words "Cut one on the Fold" to line 3
  • On the longest left line - CENTER - add the words "FOLD" with an arrow.
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STEP 6 - PATTERN BACK

  • Tape two of the body pieces together at the "CENTER." [Disregard if you took the shortcut in the cutting instructions above.]
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  • On the right side where there is a diagonal, measure 3" and mark.
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  • Cut this 3" off just the right side. You will now have a trapezoid with a short diagonal on the left and a long diagonal on the right. 
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  • Label the pattern "BACK."
  • Write the size on line 2.
  • Add the words "Cut two" to line 3
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STEP 7 - PATTERN SLEEVE

  • Trace the sleeve pattern onto the paper.
  • Each sleeve pattern has inches to be added to the length. This measurement can be found at the bottom edge of the sleeve pattern. 
  • Using the ruler measure this amount below the bottom of the pattern. To keep the same distance from the edge of the paper to the other edge that you are drawing, mark the width of the pattern at several places along the length of the paper.
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  • Connect the lines so that there is a continuous line from the bottom of the pattern to the amount to be added to the pattern.
  • Connect the line from edge to edge. 
  • Cut the sleeve pattern.
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  • Label the pattern "SLEEVE."
  • Write the size on line 2.
  • Add the words "Cut four" to line 3
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STEP - CUTTING THE FABRIC

  • Fold the fabric in half with the wrong sides together (colorful on the outside).
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Match the selvages (the finished side of the fabric). The raw/cut ends should be at the top and bottom.

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  • Each pattern will require a different placement due to the size. The pictures show size XX-Large; however, size Small can fit more pieces next to each other. Please play with the pieces to make the most of the pattern on the pieces.
  • Align all the pieces on the fabric before cutting. Pin in place then cut as follows.
  • Place the "Front" of the pattern on the fold. Cut one on the 3 sides. 
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  • Place the "Back" next to the "Front" or below it, depending on the size. Cut one on all 4 sides. This will give you 2 pieces facing opposite directions. NOTE: For some sizes you can place this on the selevage and it will save you the step of edge hemming this piece here.
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  • Place the "Sleeve" where it will fit twice. Cut this pattern 2 times. This will give you 4 pieces with 2 facing opposite directions. NOTE: For some sizes you can place this on the selevage and it will save you the step of edge hemming this piece here.
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  • Measure and cut 6 pieces of fabric (for the ties) that are 16" by 2". 

Please download the PDF of these instructions here.  They do not contain pictures.

Please CLICK HERE for the instructions on how to construct the gown

If you have any questions, or there are any errors, please contact Colleen Bell. 

 

 

Entertaining Tray with Temperature Control

Most of us entertain during the holidays and serving food is always on the entertaining list. It does not matter if the food is to be served is cold or hot, it is always a challenge to keep it the correct temperature. Make this serving tray to help control the temperature of the food. The key to the tray is the "Aluminor", which is a thermal insulating barrier. It will keep hot things hot and cold things cold. This reversible serving tray is to not for lifting and serving, but for sitting and maintaining the food’s temperature within the upright sides. It is also just beautiful by itself as a decorating piece as seen in this picture.

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Hope you enjoy using this double-sided serving tray all year round - New Year's, Birthdays, Thanksgiving, Super Bowl - any entertaining occasion. It is even perfect for just for decoration as in the picture above. You can embroider on one or both sides for a particular season or even embroider your family’s monogram. You can leave one side blank so that it can be used in the summer for entertaining as well as during all those winter festive occasions. The possibilities are endless. Make yours to fit a specific space just like I did.

Thank you to Fairfield World for providing the Aluminor for this project. 

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MATERIALS

1 1/2 Yards of Gold Aluminor

1 1/2 Yards of Silver Aluminor

1 Yard Oly-Fun™ Metallic Gold or prepared piping

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5 Yards 3/8” cording for piping or prepared piping

Coordinating Good Quality Polyester Thread

SUPPLIES

Sewing machine and related supplies 

Piping foot (optional or use a zipper foot)

Zipper foot

Small sharp sewing machine needle (I used 75/11)

Rotary cutter, ruler, and self-healing mat, are preferred, but not necessary 

Wonder Clips

FOR MACHINE EMBROIDERY:

Embroidery Machine

Sharp 75/11 embroidery needle

Embroidery design of choice (the center design is “The Harvest” by Sonia Showalter http://www.soniashowalterdesigns.com/for-the-harvest/the-harvest/) with built-in fonts

Floriani Embroidery Threads

Prewound bobbin in white

Floriani Medium Cutaway Stabilizer

“Snap Hoop Monst

er” by Designs in Machine Embroidery  (Magnetic Hoop)

Snips by Famore Cutlery

 

STEP 1

NOTES:

1.    This project uses 1/4” seam allowances, except where noted.

2.    Finger press the seams open. Do not use an iron.

3.    Do not bend, fold, or crease any of the materials as a permanent mark will remain.

4.    Spot clean only.

5.    A “Snap Hoop Monster” is strongly recommended for machine embroidering on Aluminor as the back of Aluminor does not stick effectively onto tacky stabilizer.

6.    The edges of this tray were cut at a 60 degree angle so that the sides stood up slightly; however, a 90 degree angle would make the sides stand up completely and a 45 degree angle would leave the sides laying flat.

7.    When sewing Aluminor for such a large project, roll it up as you go along so it does crease or get in your way.

 

PREPARATION:

Please read the instructions below before beginning. Gather the materials and supplies.

For instructions on how to make piping with Oly-Fun™ Metallic Gold and cording, please visit my blog post at http://www.the-embroiderist.com/blog/2017/11/20/oly-fun-metallic.

STEP 2

Cut the fabric as follows -

From the Silver Aluminor:

1 piece measuring 48” by 14.5”

2 pieces measuring 52” by 3.5”

2 pieces measuring 20.5” by 3.5”

From the Gold Aluminor:

1 piece measuring 48” by 14.5”

2 pieces measuring 52” by 3.5”

2 pieces measuring 20.5” by 3.5”

Trim the ends of the four the 3.5” strips to a 60 degree angle as follows:

On each end measure 2” from the end and mark.

Draw a diagonal line from top corner of the strip to the bottom corner where you just drew the line.

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Cut along this diagonal line.

Do this for all the corners making sure that the longest point is the top of each strip. It will look like a trapezoid.

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STEP 3

MACHINE EMBROIDERY: Download the machine embroidery design and load it into the embroidery machine.

STEP 4

Open the magnetic hoop and place the cutaway stabilizer on the bottom.  Place large piece of the silver Aluminor right side up into the hoop and center it – verifying the correct orientation of the design.

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STEP 5

Machine embroider the design.

STEP 6

Take the Aluminor out of the hoop. Trim the threads and stabilizer to about ¼” from the design.

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STEP 7

Follow step 4 again, if more than one hooping is desired (my design was 3 hoopings).

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STEP 8

CONSTRUCTION:

Sew the four gold Aluminor strips together to form a continuous loop.

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Begin sewing at the widest part and sew down to the shortest part. STOP sewing a stitch away from ¼” mark from the edge.

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The two short ends and the two long ends will meet at a 60 degree angle with the largest part at the top and the shortest at the bottom. It should form a rectangle with the two shorter sides on each end and the longer strips on the opposite sides.

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STEP 9

Sew the four silver Aluminor strips in the same manner as the gold ones in step 8.

STEP 10

Clip the silver Aluminor loop to the large piece of Aluminor.

STEP 11

Sew the loop to the large piece of the Aluminor, pivoting at the corners and being careful not to bend the material.

STEP 12

Finger press the seams towards the large piece of Aluminor.

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STEP 13

Follow steps 10-12 for the gold Aluminor.

STEP 14

ADDING BINDING:

Using a piping foot with the needle adjusted accordingly, sew the piping to the edge of the gold Aluminor with right sides together and using a ½” seam allowance.

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Clip the corners just before pivoting to make the turn easier.

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You may need to use a stiletto to push the binding back under the foot and into the groove.

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Splice the ends together to form a seamless edge.

Stop stitching 2" from the matching point and trim the excess binding to about 2" longer than the other side.

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Open the free end.

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Trim about 1" of the cording.

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Slip the two pieces together to form one piece of binding.

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Continue sewing to complete the loop.

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Trim corners. 

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Remove the piping foot.

STEP 15

Finger press the piping towards the top of the strips.

STEP 16

Set the sewing machine length to a basting stitch. Baste the top edge of the silver Aluminor ½” all the way around, pivoting at the corners. This will be used as a guide to turn it down. Trim corners.

STEP 17

Fold the silver Aluminor down along the ½” basting stitch and finger press in place.

STEP 18

Turn the gold Aluminor piece inside out, with the right side facing down.

STEP 19

Place the silver Aluminor piece inside the gold piece, matching the silver edge that has been folded down snuggly against the gold piping.

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Clip in place.

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STEP 20

Check to make sure that they both fit snuggly one inside of the other. Adjust if necessary.

STEP 21

Using a zipper foot with the needle adjusted accordingly, stitch as close as possible to the edge of the silver edge that was folded down without going over the edge.

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22

Check to make sure that both pieces are sewn together well.

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Remember it is reversible so you can use either side depending upon your décor or occasion.

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Enjoy! 

Having Fun with OlyFun Ornaments

OlyFun is a techy fabric that is so cool to work with. It does not fray, has no grain, and is water-repellent. It comes in 18 different colors so it is a perfect match for making in-the-hoop machine embroidered ornaments. I had so much fun playing with it, but I decided to step it up a notch and  I did three ornaments as a test using "Support Soft Foam Stabilizer" with the OlyFun. 

Machine Embroidery Designs by "Embroidery Library" -Gingerbread Cookies in-the-hoop

Machine Embroidery Designs by "Embroidery Library" -Gingerbread Cookies in-the-hoop

Thank you to Fairfield World for supplying the OlyFun, the "Support Soft Foam Stabilizer"  used for these ornaments, and the inspiration. 

OlyFun is readily available at many of the big chain stores. In my area in the Connecticut shoreline, the best place is Hobby Lobby. There is a whole display at the end of an aisle where the home decorating fabrics are. I have seen the "Support Soft Foam Stabilizer" at Joann's. 

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OlyFun did not require anything special and it stitched like a dream.  Because it does not fray I could use it in the designs that left the edges raw. It is thinner, so I did not need to worry that it would catch in the feed-dogs or in the foot. I wanted to see what the different colors looked like in these gingerbread cookie designs so I tested with green, red, and sand. 

The first design was the Christmas tree in green. The project instructions call for leaving it open and stuffing it with a poly-fil then closing it by hand.

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 I had done many ornaments that way and to be honest, I wanted to see what an ornament looked like that was flat. So here it is...the flat Christmas tree. It turned out pretty well if you ask me. I know that if I am ever in a pinch, I will feel comfortable leaving out the poly-fil.

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On to test two - OlyFun with Support Soft Foam Stabilizer" (I'm just going to call it Support herein) in the gingerbread man in sand. Support is a foam stabilizer that I found out about this summer. It takes a bag from looking sewn to looking store-bought.  It helps anything keep its shape, which Is why I thought I would use it here. One layer of Support on the back just before the back was tacked down made it a wonderful ornament with depth.  

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It was so quick and easy that I plan on using this from now on to fill my ornaments. It gave the ornament just the right amount of loft and texture. 

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Last but not least, I used two pieces of Support in the bell ornament in red. The first piece was added just before I put the red OlyFun on the top. This allowed the design to stitch through both the OlyFun and the Support.  The second was at the same place as the one above.

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I was not sure if my machine would think it was too thick, but it did not have any problems. The only issue I found was that when I cut away the ornament, the foam could be seen on the edges because the OlyFun was popping up. This could be rectified with trimming it before or after the final stitching.

The testing was so much fun and helped me to venture into new fillings for Christmas ornaments in the future. I think you will be seeing more of that Support in this blog as my overall favorite was the gingerbread man in sand with one layer of Support. It seemed to have all the chemistry for these designs.  

They will be cute as a whole set of gingerbread cookies in sand with Support. 

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Hope you have time to stitch out a few for yourself. Happy Holidays!

Leftover Batting Tags

Over the holidays we get so many leftovers from food to fabric scraps. If you are a quilter or use batting for other projects, you probably have a lot of leftover batting. We cut off those wide portions and save them for just the right project.  Well, the right project is here.  It is so quick and so easy to use leftover batting for tags. 

Machine Embroidery Design X3580 by "Embroidery Library"

Machine Embroidery Design X3580 by "Embroidery Library"

Thank you to Fairfield World for supplying the black batting used for these tags and the inspiration. 

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Gift tags are the perfect way to make a gift extra special and with leftover batting, there is no added expense involved. It only took 30 minutes to stitch three gift tags - super easy. 

These tags are machine embroidered in-the-hoop tags from Embroidery Libraryyou could use this same concept with a sewing design for gift tags. 

Some tips for machine embroidering with batting:

  • You do not need to cut each piece of batting and line it up before the stitch down, merely cut a piece of batting larger than the area and place it on top before the normal placement step.
  • Press the batting before placing it over or under the hoop. 
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  • Use a black "No Show Mesh Nylon Cutaway Stabilizer." 
  • Use a water-soluble topper on the top as well as the bottom of the batting.  Batting has loose fibers and they can get caught in the feed dogs especially.
  • Do not use a heat activated topper as I did. The loose fibers of the batting will stretch and make permanent rolls of the topper that must be cut loose. 
  • Remember to use the same colored thread in the bobbin as in the top thread.
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  • Do not use a spray adhesive to keep the parts together as it will leave a sticky residue on the batting.
  • Use a basting stitch to keep the top pieces together.
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  • Use painter's tape to keep the bottom pieces together. First apply it to the batting and then apply it to the topper. 
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  • Remove as much topper as possible by hand. 
  • Cut the tags with a rotary cutter or scissors after it has been removed from the hoop.  This step alone makes using batting so much easier than other fabrics. 
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These gift tags are so easy that you can make lots of them for those last minute gifts. Happy Holidays!

Entertaining Plate Charger with Temperature Control

 

Thank you so much to Fairfield World for supplying the materials to make this plate charger and compensating me for this blog post. 

Holiday entertaining is so much fun and there is always so much food. Keeping that food the right temperature is usually difficult when it is sitting out for hours while people enjoy nibbling. This charger is the perfect solution. You can use it under plates to keep the food warm or you can use it on a serving table for keeping food cold when it is steamy outside. It is reversible so you can make one side plain that would work for any occasion and embroider on the other side for that special day. 

"Wheat Sprigs Monogram Blank" by Sonia Showalter. Font built in on the Ellisimo Gold by Baby Lock. 

"Wheat Sprigs Monogram Blank" by Sonia Showalter. Font built in on the Ellisimo Gold by Baby Lock. 

Plates from the restaurant owned by Henry Ford. Freestanding "Harvest Wheat" design by Sonia Showalter.

Plates from the restaurant owned by Henry Ford. Freestanding "Harvest Wheat" design by Sonia Showalter.

These plates look so small against this full-sized charger that is 16", but for us, Thanksgiving means using the family heirloom china, not the large department store ones that we use regularly. Some places can say so and so slept here, but in our family, we use china dishes that say so and so ate off these dishes. My grandmother had the privilege to be the personal waitress to Henry Ford who had his own restaurant in the Detroit area. He had his own personal set of china for when he was in attendance. When the dishes were discarded due to chips or cracks, my grandmother would bring them home. These were his dishes. I am so glad that I was the one chosen to inherit them from grandmother and I love them dearly, including the cracks and chips. I am sure Mr. Ford could never have imagined a material like "Aluminor" that could keep food temperatures regulated with its thermal capabilities, but then there is so much in our time that is way beyond his comprehension. 

The key to these chargers keeping temperatures hot or cold is the special "Aluminor" material that is quilted providing a thermal barrier. It comes in a gorgeous gold or silver. Fairfield World has lots of projects on their website using this wonderful material. 

INSTRUCTIONS

MATERIALS

17" circle of Gold Aluminor

17" circle of Silver Aluminor

1.5 yards of premade piping or make your own with 1/2 yard Oly-Fun™ Metallic in Rose Gold and 1.5 yards of 3/8" cording - see this blog post on how to make it yourself http://www.the-embroiderist.com/blog/2017/11/20/oly-fun-metallic

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Coordinating Good Quality Polyester Thread

SUPPLIES

Sewing machine and related supplies 

Piping foot (optional or use a zipper foot)

Zipper foot

Small sharp sewing machine needle (I used 75/11)

Rotary cutter, ruler, and self-healing mat, are preferred, but not necessary 

Wonder Clips

FOR OPTIONAL MACHINE EMBROIDERY:

Embroidery Machine

Sharp 75/11 embroidery needle

Embroidery design of choice (the center design is “Harvest Wheat Monogram Blank” by Sonia Showalter http://www.soniashowalterdesigns.com/garden/greenery/wheat-sprigs-monogram-blank/) with built-in fonts

Floriani Embroidery Threads

Prewound bobbin in white

Floriani Medium Cutaway Stabilizer

“Snap Hoop Monster” by Designs in Machine Embroidery  (Magnetic Hoop)

Snips by Famore Cutlery

NOTES:

1.    This project uses 1/2” seam allowances, except where noted.

2.    Finger press the seams open. Do not use an iron.

3.    Do not bend, fold, or crease any of the materials as a permanent mark will remain.

4.    Spot clean only.

5.    A “Snap Hoop Monster” is strongly recommended for machine embroidering on "Aluminor" as the back of "Aluminor" does not stick effectively onto tacky stabilizer.

STEP 1

PREPARATION:

Please read the instructions below before beginning. Gather the materials and supplies.

STEP 2

MACHINE EMBROIDERY:

Download the machine embroidery design and load it into the embroidery machine.

STEP 3

Open the magnetic hoop and place the cutaway stabilizer on the bottom.  Place the silver "Aluminor" right side up into the hoop and center it – verifying the correct orientation of the design.

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STEP 4

Machine embroider the design.

STEP 5

Take the "Aluminor" out of the hoop. Trim the threads and stabilizer to about ¼” from the design.

STEP 6 

Set the sewing machine length to a basting stitch. Baste the top edge of the silver "Aluminor" ½” all the way around. This will be used as a guide to turn it down. 

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STEP 7

Fold the silver Aluminor down along the ½” basting stitch and finger press in place. 

STEP 8

Using a piping foot with the needle adjusted accordingly, sew the piping to the edge of the gold Aluminor with right sides together and using a ½” seam allowance. Splice the ends together for a seamless joint. Remove the piping foot.

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STEP 9

Finger press the piping towards the top of the center.

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STEP 10

Place the silver on top of the gold "Aluminor" with wrong sides together. Clip in place.

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STEP 11

Using a zipper foot with the needle adjusted accordingly, stitch as close as possible to the edge of the silver edge that was folded down without going over the edge.

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Check to make sure that both pieces are sewn together well.

Remember it is reversible so you can use either side depending on your décor.

Plates from the restaurant owned by Henry Ford. Freestanding "Harvest Wheat" design by Sonia Showalter.

Plates from the restaurant owned by Henry Ford. Freestanding "Harvest Wheat" design by Sonia Showalter.

Enjoy! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oly-Fun™ Metallic Piping

Thank you to "Fairfield Processing" for providing the Oly-Fun™ Metallic for this blog post. I am so grateful that you donated some, as I have now fallen in love with it.

Oly-Fun™ Metallic is an innovative craft material that in every way resembles fabric.  It even comes on a bolt. If you love bling, you will love this. It is ideal in a cutting machine or in crafts that you do not want to sew. It is easy to sew and does not fray. It can be spot cleaned. It is available at local craft/sewing stores. The place I see it the most is at the end of an aisle at Hobby Lobby.  They have all the wonderful array of the basic colors as well as the four metallics in gold, silver, red, and a gorgeous rose gold.

Oly-Fun™ Metallic in luscious colors of gold, rose gold, silver, and red

Oly-Fun™ Metallic in luscious colors of gold, rose gold, silver, and red

Since Oly-Fun™ Metallic is so similar to fabric I wanted to put it to the test and see how well it would do under pressure. I made piping out of Oly-Fun™ Metallic for a project that is upcoming. It worked beautifully and because it does not fray, I decided to try making a longer piece without a seam. It was great! Instead of sewing the two ends together like traditional fabric, you pick up one end and slide the other end underneath, pull it tight under the binding foot and continue sewing.  It was a breeze to sew and saved some time by not having to seam it first. I have instructions below on how to makes piping with Oly-Fun™ Metallic with both methods – traditional method of sewing the seams and the Oly-Fun™ way that does not need sewing.

Traditional piping with a sewn seam

Traditional piping with a sewn seam

Easy piping with Oly-Fun™ Metallic does not need a seam

Easy piping with Oly-Fun™ Metallic does not need a seam

No seam on the left and with a seam on the right

No seam on the left and with a seam on the right

Some things to keep in mind when using Oly-Fun™ Metallic in general:

·      Use “Wonder Clips” instead of pins so that marks are not left in the material

·      Be careful sewing as marks will be left if a seam must be ripped out

·      Be careful that the feed dogs do not leave a mark when the right side will be down against the feed dogs

·      If using it with a stretch fabric, consider placing the piping under the fabric when attaching to avoid puckers

·      While Oly-Fun™ Metallic does not have a grain, it does have a slight texture that should be kept in mind when planning your project

Texture of Oly-Fun™ Metallic

Texture of Oly-Fun™ Metallic

·      Do not bend or fold the material as it will leave permanent creases

Oly-Fun™ Metallic with permanent creases

Oly-Fun™ Metallic with permanent creases

·      Use a sharp needle that is as small as possible so that marks are not seen from the needle

·      Do not use it on a project that will require washing

INSTRUCTIONS

MATERIALS

·      Cording for piping the width and length necessary for your project (pictures are 3/8” cording and 12” long)

3/8" cording used for this tutorial

3/8" cording used for this tutorial

·      Oly-Fun™ Metallic - cut the width to be the circumference of the cording plus 2” if you are using a ½” seam allowance and the length the perimeter of your project

·      A Piping/Cording foot for your machine is very helpful, but a zipper foot can also be used

A piping foot has a groove to hold the piping

A piping foot has a groove to hold the piping

The piping foot holds the piping/cord in place while you stitch

The piping foot holds the piping/cord in place while you stitch

 

·      Rotary Cutter

·      Self-healing Cutting Mat

·      A “Piping Magic Tool” is a great help in trimming the piping (www.NancyNotions.com)

STEP 1

Cut your cording and Oly-Fun™ Metallic to the desired length and width. The width of the Oly-Fun™ Metallic should be the circumference of the cording plus 2” if you are using a ½” seam allowance, otherwise, adjust accordingly. This allows for the material to go around the cording and create a margin of fabric on both sides that accommodates a ½” seam allowance. For example, I used 3/8” cording and cut the width to be 2” (the pictures show 3”, but my actual project used 2”).

STEP 2

If you would like to connect your pieces of Oly-Fun™ Metallic the traditional method before piping then, sew the two ends right sides together with ¼” seam allowance (it does not need the bulk and will not fray so a small seam allowance can be used).

Only a 1/4" seam is necessary with Oly-Fun™ Metallic

Only a 1/4" seam is necessary with Oly-Fun™ Metallic

STEP 3

Replace your standard foot with a piping/cording foot.  This foot has a groove that allows the cord to stay in place while you are sewing close to the cord. It is important to adjust the placement of the needle so that the needle lands just to the right of the cord, but does not catch the material wrapped around the cord.

Adjust the needle placement so that it is just to the right of the cord

Adjust the needle placement so that it is just to the right of the cord

STEP 4

Wrap the width of the Oly-Fun™ Metallic tightly around the cord and match the raw edges with wrong sides together.

STEP 5

Slip the cording with the Oly-Fun™ Metallic under the piping foot, pulling the material tight around the cord. Sew with a regular stitch length.

Place the piping foot over the cord and the needle to the right of the cord

Place the piping foot over the cord and the needle to the right of the cord

STEP 6

Stop 2” before you reach the end of the material. Lift the material up and slide the next piece under the first piece about ½”. Place the sewn piece on top and pull tight. Align the raw edges.

Stop sewing 2" before the end of the material and slide the next piece inside

Stop sewing 2" before the end of the material and slide the next piece inside

The material should overlap 1/2" and be tight

The material should overlap 1/2" and be tight

STEP 7

Continue sewing the piping until you reach the end.

STEP 8

At the cutting mat, trim the raw edges of the piping to ½” (or wider if needed for your project). A “Piping Magic Tool” slips over the cording and gives you an automatic ½” seam allowance to allow for easy straight cutting.

Trim easily with a special grooved acrylic ruler

Trim easily with a special grooved acrylic ruler

Trim to 1/2"

Trim to 1/2"

STEP 9

Now you are ready to add it to your project. Follow the pattern guidelines. In general, you place the raw edge of the piping on the edge of the right side of the fabric and using the piping foot, you place the piping under the foot and sew in exactly the same place as before.

Place the piping on the raw edge and stitch with the piping foot

Place the piping on the raw edge and stitch with the piping foot

Then you add the second piece of fabric on top with right sides together. You place the piping under the foot and sew in exactly the same place as before. Fold the fabric back and the piping will be on the edge sandwiched between two pieces of fabric. If your project uses it in a different method, please refer to those instructions.

Add the second piece to the top and stitch again with the piping foot

Add the second piece to the top and stitch again with the piping foot

Finished piping inserted into two pieces of fabric

Finished piping inserted into two pieces of fabric

5 yards of gold piping ready for a great project

5 yards of gold piping ready for a great project

Fairfield Processing has many projects on their website using Oly-Fun™ Metallic. A tray to keep food warm or cold while serving will be posted on their website that includes using Oly-Fun™ Metallic piping. Hope you enjoy it!

Designs in Machine Embroidery – Article "Headrest Covers"

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The September/October issue of Designs in Machine Embroidery has a spectacular cover featuring Katherine Artines’ “Shapely Sunflower.” The theme of the magazine is techniques and technology in the machine embroidery world, and she exhibited the many aspects of machine embroidery.

Magazines routinely work many months in advance of the publication date and some magazines publish an editorial calendar that reflects the different themes for each issue. They release it to prospective freelance writers, which is terrific if you are on that list. However, when you are new to freelance writing, you do not have this privilege and have to submit a proposal blindly and hope that the editorial staff finds it attractive enough to include it or put you on their list to submit proposals for the future.

Blind proposal submissions are difficult as not only do you not know the theme but also you do not know their timetables. You do not know if you are close to a proposal deadline or if you just missed one. It is just a shot in the dark. The hardest part is waiting many months to hear a response, let alone receiving that rejection, which in the worst case scenario never comes.

Designs in Machine Embroidery has an amazing editorial staff and submitting a first-time proposal to them was way beyond my expectations. Personally, I do not believe they would ever ignore a proposal or let one sit for months before responding. To my astonishment, they accepted my first proposal, which happened to be for this issue.  It did not include any new technique or technology, but it was unique in that it had a broad base of interest. It appeals to all ages and genders. 

Circle Monogram Set 1 by Embroidery Arts

Circle Monogram Set 1 by Embroidery Arts

Many of us drive or ride in cars, so “Headrest Covers” is something that appeals to most and, as it turns out, they are a status symbol in some areas. When my then twenty-something Army Drone pilot came home on leave and asked me to make him a set for his new car that reflected his favorite sport’s team, of course, I dropped what I was doing and started them immediately. I measured his headrests and googled what they look like when you buy them from the professionals and finally came up with an idea and a pattern. He loved his first set so much that he asked me to send him a set that would be for each season’s team. I loved doing it, especially since he was the one that had said so adhamantly, “Sorry Mom, machine embroidery is just not for me!” Huh! We showed him that we machine embroiderers could come in handy.  We just needed to think of the right project. Well, in this instance, he thought of it and I am so glad he did because now I get to share it with all the machine embroiderers that read Designs in Machine Embroidery.

Longhorn Skull Single L4939 by Embroidery Library, Inc., 

Longhorn Skull Single L4939 by Embroidery Library, Inc., 

Machine embroidered headrests can appeal to everyone and with the holidays coming up, I think they would make great gifts. They are super simple to embroider and sew. The trick is finding the right fabric in your local shop.  I used fabric that is typically used for swimwear.  This gives it the stretch to go over any headrest and adjust smoothly. The embroidery possibilities are endless. You can find the article starting on page 58, and the pattern is at this link.

For a behind the scenes of the photo shoot for this project, click on this link to see just a little of what it takes to get a great picture for a magazine article. Personally, when I was making these, I kept thinking that they would bring a car seat into the studio for the shooting. I never dreamed that they could possible do a photo shoot actually in the car. Wait till you see them all scrunched up in that car. 

Mermaid Magic Design M5165 by Embroidery Library, Inc.

Mermaid Magic Design M5165 by Embroidery Library, Inc.

I would love to see your version of machine embroidered headrests. Please use the hashtag #TheEmbroiderist so that I can see them. Happy embroidering and thank you Designs in Machine Embroidery for publishing my first article.

These DIME goodies arrived with a copy of the magazine and my headrest.  I felt like I was officially inducted. 

These DIME goodies arrived with a copy of the magazine and my headrest.  I felt like I was officially inducted. 

 

 

Appliquéing on Cuddle® Fabric

Appliqué is a wonderful sewing technique that allows you to sew one piece of fabric on top of another in a decorative manner to form pictures or patterns. It can be used on clothing, quilts, accessories, or basically anything that you can sew.  The hard part is getting the two fabrics to stay in exactly the same place while you are sewing.  Of course, for some people, it may be one of the other processes such as the actual sewing or the precision cutting, which is a challenge.

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Appliquéing Cuddle® fabric adds another wonderful dimension of a plush nap that must also be taken into account when appliquéing, but the soft plush nature of Cuddle® makes it well worth an extra step or two to get perfect and easy appliquéing. 

There are a few of you that read my blog that are relatively new to sewing, so I do not want to assume that you know what I mean by the term “Cuddle® fabric.”  Here is a link to a blog post on Cuddle® fabric that is manufactured by Shannon Fabrics.

One great thing about Cuddle® is that it does not fray, which means that you can appliqué on the raw edge and do not need to take the extra step of turning the fabric under.  That is an advantage that I love.  I have always loved appliquéing wool for that same reason. 

There are many methods of appliquéing Cuddle®, but I am only reviewing two of them in this blog post. Of course, they are the two that I use and love. One technique uses a sticky backing designed just for appliqué and the other does not. Using the backing is super simple, but I have included the instructions on how not to use it because sometimes you want to appliqué right away and you just do not have it on hand. I know that one all too well.

We live in a day and age where there is a product for everything and appliquéing is no different. There are so many different products for appliquéing. Since I am a machine embroiderer, I have a tendency to stay with a company that I trust for that purpose – Floriani (a division of RNK Distributing). I love all of their stabilizers for machine embroidery, so it was natural for me to try their Appli-Kay Wonder product and I love it just as much as I love all their other stabilizers. It is a double-sided fusible with an iron on fuse on one side and a sticky adhesive on the other. You iron the backside of the fabric that will be cut so you can trace the design directly onto the back and THEN cut it out.  This saves the step of cutting out the paper design to trace. 

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The other alternative to using a double-sided fusible product is to cut the appliqué out and spray the back of it with a temporary adhesive like Odif’s 505 Spray and Fix or Sulky’s KK 2000. Personally, when it comes to appliquéing, I love the Sulky just a little bit better. I have a tendency to use the 505 when I baste quilting and the Sulky for appliquéing.

You may feel timid about ironing a fusible on the back of a polyester microfiber plush fabric, but if you are using a good quality microfiber plush fabric like Cuddle®, you have no worries. Because it is high quality, the back can withstand a medium heat setting on an iron or even a high setting for a few seconds. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for applying the double-sided fusible for appliquéing. If the guidelines call for pressing on the top side of the fabric, please use a pressing cloth on top of the fabric.  The Appli-Kay Wonder product has you press the backside of the fabric, so there is no need to use a pressing cloth. As always, it is a good practice to test the fabric with the fusible first.

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At this point, it is the same for all appliquéing. Applying the appliqué to the other fabric is where it starts to make a difference for a napped fabric such as Cuddle®.

HERE IS MY TIP:

To be honest, if that was the end of the story, this blog post would not be any different than everyone else’s on how to appliqué. It is this next step that takes appliquéing Cuddle® to the level of precision. The key is using a product that machine embroiderers call a “topper.” It is a clear water-soluble product that looks like the plastic wrap that you use in the kitchen. It is usually manufactured by companies that produce stabilizers and in an instance where a stabilizer is recommended, a topper can possibly be used in lieu of the stabilizer, with the exception of machine embroidery where a stabilizer is always needed and the topper is just added to the others.

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Now not all toppers are created the same. I have used just about all the different brands and let me tell you that most have almost brought me to tears when they rip while machine embroidering and I have to start all over again. I have found that the product, “Floriani Water Soluble Topping,“ is thin enough for the needle to glide through and yet strong enough not to rip.

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It is an interesting product.  The needle just goes right through it as if it does not exist.  This is not true of all toppers as some are so tough the needle has to work to puncture it. I apply the topper with Sulky’s KK 2000. I cut the topper, spray it, and then apply it to the top of the entire piece to be appliquéd, i.e., the appliqué and the bottom piece of fabric. I proceed to appliqué as if the topper was not there.  It keeps all the fibers in the same direction and leaves a distinct impression as to where you should appliqué the straight lines and the fingers of the stitch.

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INSTRUCTIONS for Appliquéing for Cuddle®

STEP 1

BEFORE any cutting, determine the direction of the Cuddle® fabric. The bottom fabric and the appliqué fabric should be going in the same downward direction.

STEP 2

Cut out the Cuddle® fabric that will be the top appliqué using the traditional trace and cut method,

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or adhering an appliqué product to the back and then cutting it out.

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STEP 3

Lay the bottom Cuddle® fabric and the appliqué Cuddle® fabric next to each other and brush the nap in the same direction. This step is important. You want to smooth out the nap so that the fibers are all lying in the same direction.

TIP: Because Cuddle® fabric has a nap, you can trace the placement of the appliqué onto the bottom of the fabric with your finger or a blunt object. This allows for perfect placement without the need of using a tracing pen.

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STEP 4

If you are using a temporary spray adhesive, spray the back of the fabric and then lay it on top of the bottom fabric.

If you are using a fusible, remove the paper backing and apply it to the bottom fabric.

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Smooth the nap once again; making sure it is in the same direction.

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STEP 5

Cut out a piece of water-soluble topper that is larger than the appliqué. Spray one side of it with a temporary adhesive.

TIP: Always spray temporary adhesives in an area where there is no computer equipment or anything that can be harmed by the spray. I always spray into a cardboard box that I have folded up in my laundry room just for this purpose. 

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Apply the topper with the sprayed side down on top of the appliqué. It should cover the entire piece of appliqué as well as several inches of the bottom fabric.

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STEP 6

Appliqué like normal using a zig-zag stitch or your favorite decorative stitch like the traditional blanket stitch.

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STEP 7

Once all the appliqué stitching is complete, gently tear the water-soluble topper away from the fabric. If any of the shiny filament remains, you can use a damp cloth to remove it or if you are going to be washing your Cuddle® fabric then it will quickly wash away then.

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Enjoy appliquéing. Please let me know what you think of this technique.

By the way, technically this article is not sponsored by Shannon Fabrics. Sulky, Odif, Floriani, or any other company, as I am not getting paid to write it and I paid for all the fabrics in the pictures, but yes, I am a Shannon Fabrics Brand Ambassador, which means I get paid to be an educator for them when I teach at a fabric shop for them. There will be later posts on how to sew with Cuddle® and some of its unique properties. 

 

 

 

  

What is “Cuddle” in the Sewing Industry?

That word “cuddle” conjures up so many warm and fuzzy feelings. Maybe you are thinking of that last lingering hug and kiss from somebody dear to you. But believe it or not, “cuddle” is also actually a type of fabric. Now that is brand marketing at its finest because let me tell you – this fabric really does make you want to cuddle up in it.

A picture is not worth a thousand words when you cannot feel it!

A picture is not worth a thousand words when you cannot feel it!

Cuddle® fabric is a brand of fabric. Cuddle® is like the word “Kleenex.” They are brand names. It is a type of fabric called minky, sometimes spelled minkee (another brand name). Minky is a product name like tissue is the product. So for those of you who took logic or remember those analogies, Kleenex : tissue :: Cuddle® : minky. Well, maybe you forgot those symbols, so it reads; Kleenex is to tissue as Cuddle® is to minky.

Cuddle® comes in different colors, prints and textures.  This is their dimple - unbelieveably cute! 

Cuddle® comes in different colors, prints and textures.  This is their dimple - unbelieveably cute! 

Shannon Fabrics produces Cuddle®, which is a 100% polyester microfiber plush fabric. Microfiber is a very fine synthetic filament that is even finer than silk (Fairchild’s Dictionary of Textiles, by Phyllis G. Tortora). These yarns are knitted together to make this ultra plush textile that is used for so many purposes but is best known for the softest throws, blankets, and quilts. Interestingly, Cuddle® is not a fleece product, but it does have a very strong directional nap like velvet. Cuddle® is far superior to the microfiber plush fabrics in the clothing stores and the chain fabric stores.

This picture shows the difference between Shannon fabrics (top) and the chain fabric store version of minky (bottom).

This picture shows the difference between Shannon fabrics (top) and the chain fabric store version of minky (bottom).

Cuddle® is the softest fabric that I have ever felt. I know it sounds like I would be biased, but I was in love with this Cuddle® fabric years before I became a brand ambassador for Shannon Fabrics. To quote their sales manager, Sheryl Sapriel, “It is the most superior minky fabric in the world.” Even my husband (who is not a tactile person) was petting the fabrics strewn across the kitchen table and said, “No wonder you wanted to work for them. These are the softest fabrics I have ever felt.” Shannon Fabrics is living up to their motto, "Making the World a Softer Place!"