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Monthly Archives: June 2012

  • Roll Up Napkin

    June 26, 2012

    Whether you're going on a picnic at the beach, a park or in your own backyard, this napkin makes it easy to carry an individual set of flatware.

    Supplies to make 4 napkins: 1 yard of “outside” fabric 1 yard of “inside” fabric 3 yards of grosgrain ribbon fabric marker


    1. Cut the inside and outside fabrics into 18” x 16” rectangles. 2. Cut a length of ribbon 24” long. Place seam sealant on cut ends of ribbon. Match the ends and fold at the middle of the length of the ribbon. 3. Place the inside fabric right-side up with a 16 inch edge towards you. Mark the middle of the left 18” edge with a pin. Place the mid-length fold of the ribbon at the edge of the fabric where you placed the pin. Pin ribbon in place.  NOTE – the ribbon must run towards the right, laying on top of the inside fabric. 4. Lay the outside fabric right-side down on top of the inside fabric, matching the widths and lengths, and pin to hold the sandwich together while sewing. 5. Leaving a 3” opening for turning somewhere along an edge, stitch all the way around with a 1/4” seam allowance.

    6. Clip the corners.

    7. Turn right side out. 8. Use a point turner, or my favorite, a chopstick, to push out corners. 9. Press.

    10. Edge stitch along all 4 sides about 1/8” from edge. This will close the opening. 11. Lay the napkin with the inside fabric facing up and the ribbon on the left side. Fold the bottom of the fabric up about 4”.

    12. Along the length of the right and left sides which are now double layered, stitch on top of the existing edge stitching.

    13. Starting at the right edge, measure over 1 1/2” and mark for the first pocket. 14. Mark the next pocket 3” from right edge, and the third pocket 4 1/2” from right edge. You should have 3 lines.

    15. Before stitching, test the width of the pockets to make sure your flatware will fit. 16. Stitch on the marked (or corrected) lines. 17. Place your flatware in the pockets. 18. Fold the top down over the flatware and starting from the end without the ribbon, roll the napkin up.

    19. Tie the ribbon to keep the roll from unwinding when handled. I attached a pin back to the small pinwheel from last weeks' project and pinned the pinwheel to the ribbon. When the napkin is opened, the pinwheel can be pinned to ones' shirt or hat.

  • Pinwheel

    June 19, 2012

    Fourth of July and pinwheels go together like peanut butter and jelly (but there is no sticky mess and they don't stick to the roof of your mouth). Whether you make them big or small, they are sure to add to the holiday feeling.

    Supplies: 2 – 5” squares of cotton fabric - the size of the fabric will determine the size of the pinwheel 1 – 5” square of heavy fusible web, such as Heat and Bond - match the size of the fabric Note: if you want a stiffer pinwheel, you can apply fusible web to the wrong side of both fabric squares and fuse them to a piece of light weight poster board.

    Instructions: You may prefer to cut only the fusible web to size and work with a large fabric piece from which you will cut pieces to fit the fusible web while in a stack.  The photos show this process. This technique reduces the problems cutting all items to the same size and precisely aligning them into a sandwich of fabric and fusible web. 1. Place 5” square of fusible web on wrong side of fabric. Following manufacturer's instructions to adhere to fabric.

    2. I find it easier to trim the fabric after the fusible web has been pressed. 3. Remove paper backing.

    4. Position trimmed fabric wrong side to wrong side, fusible web in the middle. Press. 5. Using tailors chalk and a ruler, draw two chalk lines diagonally across the square. 6. Draw a chalk mark circle centered on the crossing chalk lines. The size of the circle will vary according to the size of your fabric square. A 5” square and a quarter work well. 7. Cut on chalk lines to the point where the circle crosses the cutting line. 8. Fold one corner to the center (where the diagonal lines cross). Use the machine stitch for attaching buttons to tack the corner to the center.  Note - you can create pinwheels that look like they should spin clockwise or counterclockwise.  If one visually appeals more to you, be sure to use that technique to create your pinwheels. 9. Continue the above step, bringing in the each corner and tacking it. 10. Last of the corners being tacked down. 11. This is a 2” square. It would be hard to stitch by machine, so you can use a hand needle and a double strand of thread. Bring needle up from the back side and push each of the corners onto the needle. You will need to use a thimble to push the needle through all the layers.

    12. Push the needle from the front to the back and secure thread. Attach a pin back to the small size pinwheel and wear it, or attach it to a hair clip. It can also be used as a napkin ring when attached to a ribbon.

  • John Deer Embroidery Party

    June 12, 2012

    In the past, John Deer has presented hands on events in our stores, but this time Moore's hosted the event at the Ontario Convention Center. Something magical happens when you put 200 people, all sharing a common passion for embroidery, in a large ballroom.

    If you were not able to attend this year, I hope my pictures will entice you to be a part of this the next time. If you were there, I hope they make you smile and remember something interesting or fun about the event.

    Staff arrived at 8am Friday to start setting up. The guys - you know, the ones with all the muscles -  started bringing in large boxes of notions, embroidery design CD’s, books, embroidery hoops, scissors, stabilizer, thread, and most important, top of the line Baby Lock machines. John Deer’s crew was busy putting up 100’s of samples of embroidery designs. They display a stitched out sample of every design so you can see how really wonderful they are.

    Saturday morning the staff arrived at 7:30 am to make one last check before we opened the door to greet our friends, or soon-to-become friends, to our ‘embroidery party’. Floriani stabilizer and thread ready - check! Had I taken a picture at the end of the second day, you would have seen only wire racks. Check out area - check! At the back, racks of shopping bags - a bag assigned to each person, in alphabetic order, ready for the 'angels' to add items the guests at their tables want to purchase. Yes! - we CAN get a 10-needle embroidery machine into one of those bags. Just for attending, each guest got a free digitizing program from John Deer. No one was going home empty handed.

    Embroidery hoops and upgrades for those who already own an embroidery machine - check!

    Embroidery designs, LOTS of embroidery designs, all neatly stacked - check! Stitched out embroidery designs, all neatly displayed - check! Samples of the embroidery designs hung everywhere you looked. For those who couldn't make a decision, there is an ultimate design collection. Racks of sparkle design packs - check! I love the sparkle packs. The crystal transfer sheet is included for the embroidery design and all you have to do is lay the crystal transfer sheet on top of the embroidery design and apply heat. The crystals really add sparkle to your designs. Time to open the doors and greet our guests - Within minutes the room became alive with excitement.

    We are ready to begin our first project. John explains the technique we will be using for the current project we are getting ready to do. We did a total of 10 different projects using different techniques. The 'angels' (the people in the blue Moore's shirts) listen carefully so they will be able to help our guests with the project.

    We are ready to begin - We worked together in teams of three. Each person in the team takes a turn doing a project, so everyone goes home with at least three projects - everyone receives a CD with all the projects and instructions. George helps a guest find what she needs. Bags are beginning to fill.

    Now I know where all that stabilizer went - - - - A raw edge applique ladybug was one of the projects we did on the first day. The lace earrings were also a project we did the first day. Some people even added crystals. Those shirt ladybugs were embroidered before the event – did the lady wearing the ladybug shirt have some inside tip on a project theme?

    Like everything, all good things must come to an end. We learned new techniques, had fun making projects, and best of all, made new embroidery friends. I saw a lot of email addresses and phone numbers being exchanged. As a staff member - or as John Deer calls us, 'angels', which by the way is just another name for a 'worker bee' - I had a wonderful time. I look forward to the next event and a chance to see old friends and make new ones.

    I hope I will see you at one of our future events.

  • Embroidery on Soap

    June 5, 2012

    First it was T.P. (toilet paper), now soap? I had requests for how to embroider on soap, so here it is as promised.

    Supplies: Tulle Netting - 2 pieces 2” larger than hoop size (in width and length) Water soluble stabilizer - 2 pieces 2” larger than hoop size (in width and length) Bar of soap - flat on one side, the flatter the better Embroidery design that is small enough to fit on the soap bar


    1. (You might decide to stitch the design first and later 'install' the design on the soap. But, if you need the custom soap bar as soon as possible, you can multitask and do the sewing while the soap bar is being prepared.) Place a clean sponge on a plate and provide enough excess water to surround the sponge up to about half its thickness. To prevent the texture of the sponge from interfering with the smooth surface of the soap, place a piece of dampened muslin on top the sponge, then place the soap face down on top of the fabric. Softening the soap may take 10 to 15 minutes. Different types of soap soften at different rates, so check frequently. 2. Sandwich 2 layers of tulle between the water soluble stabilizer. 3. Hoop the sandwich.

    4. Stitch out embroidery design.

    5. Rough trim away the excess tulle and stabilizer. Soak the design in water to remove the water soluble stabilizer.

    6. Cut around the design leaving about 1/8” of tulle along the outer edges of the design. This doesn’t have to be exact. The tulle will blend into the soap and will help hold the design in place.

    7. Press the embroidery design into the softened side of the soap. 8. Allow the bar of soap to dry for a day, or longer if you have the time. The 'face' of the soap should be hard and moisture free before wrapping.

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