Archive for the ‘Embroidery’ Category

Art Deco Fashion Book
January 2, 2013


This is a lovely book of drawings of 1920’s fashion. I bought this book last year at the Samuel French bookstore on Ventura Boulevard. Rick and I stop there when we are in the neighborhood. The store is a wonderful resource for books relating to theatre and film. I fell in love with this book. It has 8 to 12 little black and white drawings on at least 100 of the 408 pages. That is a lot of inspiration. There are many color pages too. This book will be big help in deciding where to place embroidery designs, such as the black rose from a previous post, on a garment. The photo above is labeled with the ISBN 9789054961352 to help with finding it online. I found a few books for a reasonable price doing a google search, but like all out of print books, some prices are exorbitant. I paid the list price, I wouldn’t recommend paying more.

Here are a few pages that I particularly like. I want to make the scalloped collar on the right and have been thinking of ways of doing the contrast edging easily. It might have to be trim, since binding scallops is not easy.


I like the hem below. This has the scallops following the embroidery.


Having the embroidery peek out on an under dress is nice too.


Many of the photos I took were really blurry. So this is all I have to share right now. I do need to stop looking at books and actually make something. That will be my resolution for this year.

Best wishes for your health and happiness in 2013.


Happy Holidays!
December 19, 2012

Less than a week to Christmas, and I still have so much to do.

I didn’t get to much crafting this week either. I had two big fillings replaced, one will need a crown. So with the dentist appointments and the internet, I didn’t get much done. A few yo-yos got made, and one embroidery sample. Not much to show for a whole week. I am still struggling to use my time wisely, but it tends to get away from me. Maybe by admitting that I will take some serious action to improve the situation.

I want to do this to the collar on Rick’s shirt. The patterns I have do not give directions on how to install collar stays. I really like this way, which is on several of Rick’s shirts. I will have to re-pattern the collar facing, but I think it is easily doable. The shirt has a binding down the inside button edge. I might do that too, though on a black shirt there may be no reason. It could be for decoration instead of utility.


I did a practice embroidery using the endless embroidery feature on my machine. It requires re-hooping the fabric and matching these little basted arrows with the needle. It was surprisingly easy. This design is one that came included on Belle. I wanted to use something that was intricate but didn’t use a lot of thread. I like how this pattern looks all lined up. Now I need to find something to put it on.

Endless-Embroidery-Sample copy

Merry Christmas Hugs to Everyone!

FM Practice
January 23, 2010

What have I been up to this week besides freezing? Not much. I must be cold blooded, because just like my tortoise, Thumper, I slow down when it gets cold.

I did manage to try free-motion quilting using the fabulous BSR (Bernina Stitch Regulator). That attachment does make it much easier to go from never sewing without feed-dogs to free-motion sewing. I tried to stitch without it, but that did not go well for me. I like that even though I am not perfect at moving the fabric at a constant speed, I still get reasonably even stitches. I am getting better but still need a lot more practice before stitching on a project.

I read a tip that suggested using felt to practice. I had lots of old acrylic felt left over from Alex’s elementary school days. I like that I didn’t have to use any fabric to practice on. Actually felt may be easier to stitch too.

Please do not judge these samples harshly. I am a total novice with this type of sewing. It is going to take me a long time to get the hang of it. I had to break some old sewing habits. One was keeping the fabric oriented in the same direction. I am use to turning the fabric to go in the direction I want to sew.  The BSR has two settings. I am only able to use setting #2 that allows for short stops.  Setting #1 will sew in place if the fabric stops moving.  I need to stop and think to get a corner, otherwise I get a rounded shape.  Someday I hope to work up to setting #1.  Using setting #2 a button needs to be pressed to tie off the stitching.  Something that doesn’t bother me now, but I can see it being time consuming if I were to quilt a large quilt.

Here are some photos. The first one is of the pile of samples. The others are closeup of some motifs I tried.







A Whole Month
January 15, 2010

It has been a whole month since my last post. Sorry, I just got out of the habit, and have been busy with boring stuff.

I did manage to prune the roses, but didn’t take care of the old tomato plants. Look what I saw on Christmas Day. Being lazy gave a squirrel a rare December treat. The next day these tomatoes were gone so, they were eaten by a squirrel or a crow. I hope it was a squirrel.


I quit teaching the sewing classes at Viking this week. I just wasn’t having fun since the dealer kept taking stuff away from the class. First a cutting table, then the serger, and finally the open-toe foot I liked to have on hand for students to use to attach trim. When I complained and asked her to reconsider, especially for the serger, she said, “NO, deal with it.”   I dealt with it by telling her to get someone else to teach the classes.

I made this cute measurement form for my students using a trial version of office that came with my new laptop. I saved it in a file format I can open on the mac (.doc). I will use them for Alex’s friends cos-play costumes so they won’t go to waste. All the horizontal measurements are on the left and the vertical ones are on the right. They are listed from head to the floor on both sides, so I can go down the list do not have to go up and down on my old knees. It is similar to the form I used in my costume shop work. Back then, some days all I did was measure people. If I am making something for an individual I like having all these measurements handy. Just makes checking things before a fitting easier. Email if you would like me to send you a copy of the sheet. If you want the font I used, I can send you that file too.


Now the fun stuff:

Machine cut-work. This is cut out by putting a blade in instead of a needle. This is an included design. I still need to learn how to digitize a design of my own.


Here is something I did digitize. I scanned an image of the way Rick signs his paintings. I want to embroider this on a shirt for him, either on the pocket, or in the center back of the yoke. I think on the yoke would be a bit more artsy placement, though it might be weird. I still need to make some adjustments to the digitizing, but am happy how I managed to remove all the really long satin stitches in a way that went with the look of the letters.


Last is an embroidery design that DesignerPlus V6 came with. I am thinking of making a little bag out of it. The kind of bag that is round and hangs from the wrist. The first photo is of it being embroidered. I am still amazed watching the embroidery, though I am getting comfortable leaving the room when the longer colors are being embroidered.



I hope to post more frequently now that I no longer have to go to work.

December 9, 2009

It is cold here, 46 degrees. It even snowed in the mountains. My geraniums decided it was a good time to bloom. I do not want to move them inside, but probably should. I know they will die if the temperature gets much colder.


I have been playing with Belle’s embroidery option. These were stitched using left over Sulky Rayon thread and Pellon tear-away stabilizer. I want to try the better brands of thread and stabilizers to see the difference. I think these turned out nice though. There are so many pretty designs that come pre-loaded on the sewing machine. I haven’t even started to use the embroidery software yet. I hope to get to that next week.


Here is a photo of some of the stabilizers I bought today with a stitch out of some of the stitches that I had heard do not stitch out nicely. They are decorative machine stitches, not embroidery designs. The one on the right is off, but I think I held the fabric to firmly. The other two I think look nice. Decorative stitches take a bit of skill keeping aligned. The one on the left I wouldn’t hesitate to sew out as a decorative stitch. The other two stitches I would stitch in embroidery mode because they take a lot of concentration keeping the fabric straight. Being able to hoop them quickly is one of the things I love about Belle.