Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Thanksgiving Turkeys

I am being "crafty".   After finishing my Christmas Pillow I decided to try another Holiday project. This project is also from San Francisco Stitch Co.   It is a cute little embroidered turkey for a table decoration.  It also has room inside for a little treat, such as a Hershey kiss.

Li'l Turkey
As I said before, I don't like paying for projects.  But since this one is teaching me a technique, I thought $1.99 was reasonable.

I had a little frustration with the instructions.  I don't know if it was my "brain fog" or something else. I did get the turkey finished, it just took a while.  I rewrote the instructions for the second turkey.

The project comes in 4x4, 5x7, and 6x10.  Since my Janome MC200E does a 5x5,  for my second turkey I took the 4x4 and enlarged it using the Janome's built-in editing software.  I made it 120 percent larger.  This made it easier to work with.

Here is the way I did my second turkey.  I think my way is easier to understand than the instructions.

Be sure to fill the bobbin with brown thread, because the bobbin thread will show.

After attaching lightweight fusible stabilizer to two pieces of beige material that fit my machine's hoop, I embroidered the face on one of the pieces. I skipped the second stitch, it was redundant.  The first stitch is actually a placement line.  But since I know where the embroidery is going to be, I didn't need it.

While the the other piece of material was being embroidered with the body I cut the face out.  Again, I skipped the second stitching.

 I attached the face to the underneath of the embroidery in the hoop with a hand-basting stitch.  The instructions said to use spray adhesive, but I didn't have any.

 The machine bastes on the face to the body.  I removed the hoop to make sure it looked good. Removed my hand-basting stitch, then reattached the hoop to finish the embroidery.

Machine embroidering body.

Face basted on by embroidery machine.

Embroidery finshed

 Finally, I used my sewing machine to "fill in" some places.  I ran out of the brown bobbin thread, so a different color was used.  But it won't show when finished.

Face finished

Body finished

The turkey is folded into position.  A little piece of thread or ribbon is put through little holes in the feathers to hold everything in place.

Two Li'l Turkeys going to dinner.
Two Li'l Turkeys ready for dinner.

Hope you enjoyed my little tutorial on Li'l Turkeys.

Thanks for stopping.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Christmas Pillow Part Two

I finished the center piece for the Christmas pillow in part one.  Now it needs the pillow part.  This is like a small quilt.  The fabric is cut into strips 2 1/2" wide.

Then two strips are stitched together good sides facing.  And pressed.

Next the strips are cut into 2 1/2" wide pieces.

Finally the pieces are sewn sided by side to create the checkerboard look.

Here the pillow front is shown finished.  I assembled the tree to the pillow face.  I also embroidered snow flakes on it.  The big flakes are white, which makes them more texture than popping out.

The red piping is sewed on.  I looked online to see all I had to do is snip the corners of the piping to make it curve..

Here is the finished pillow.   Might need a little more "shaping".
My Pillow
Not too bad when compared to the one made by San Francisco Stitch Co.  Mine actually looks homemade.  Since this was supposed to look hand, not machine made, this is probably good.

San Francisco Stitch Co.  Pillow

I have another "crafty" thing in mind.  Be sure to come back and see what it is.

Thanks for stopping.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Christmas Pillow Part One

I like to use my embroidery machine.  There is something soothing about watching the machine stitch out designs.  A gentle beep lets me know when to change thread color and the last beep lets me know the machine is finished.

My Janome 200E is smart.  It will let me know if the thread breaks, is threaded wrong, or the bobbin runs out.  This is good if I want to do something else while the machine is working.

I started the Christmas Pillow project, and worked until the center piece was finished.  I can't believe how good it looks.  A few scraps of material, some stabilizer, and thread made a wonderful little tree.

This is my second project from San Francisco Stitch Co.  It is called the FlipNStitch pillow.
I am doing this project because instead of a satin stitch to attach the fabric and hide the edge,  the stitching is hidden.  This makes the little tree look hand sewn.
San Francisco Stitch Co.'s version

The embroidery machine stitches the outline of the tree.  The hoop is removed, fabric is added, the hoop is reattached, and the machine stitches the fabric. The process is repeated until the design is finished.  Then the machine embroiders some decorations on the tree.

Here are some pictures to give you an idea of how the project is progressing:

Tree trunk and background on.  Tree bottom stitched wrong side to good side of tree.

Tree bottom folded to good side out

Next piece stitched and folded up.

And so on..

And so on...

Top background stitched on and folded back.

Square stitched to hold background down.

I satin stitched the square, then added the border.


The tree is shown on the fabric I am making the pillow from.  But first I have to cut the material into squares and stitch together to give the "quilt" appearance.  Then snow flakes will be embroidered on the squares with white thread.  Then the pillow assembly starts.

Thanks for stopping.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Back To The Seventies Finale

I did a couple of projects between my last post and this one.  One of them was a  T-shirt I embellished for my nephew's sixth birthday.  He loves to play soccer, so a soccer themed shirt seemed appropriate.

Here is Sam during his party at Red Robin posing with his shirt

After Sam's shirt was finished, I returned to working on my Simplicity 6249.  I top stitched it with my Singer 626.  The stitching makes the shirt otherwise it would be too plain I think.  The faux-flap pocket adds a little Je ne sais quoi
Look out Brady Bunch........Here I come!

I am starting a Christmas pillow project.  It is from San Francisco Stitch Co.   Unlike the Mystery project I did from their site in which the instructions were given out over six weeks.  This one  was downloaded immediately.  I usually don't pay for online projects, but for $3.75 this one looks to be interesting and educational.

Thanks for stopping.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Back to the Seventies

I decided to make another shirt from the seventies since I like the last one I made so much.  This Simplicity 6249 from 1974 is a unisex pull-over top. I am using a lightweight broadcloth material I had in my stash.
Simplicty 6249

I decided to try on the pattern to check for size and length.  I ended up only adding an inch in length.

Original Length

One Inch Added
 I am sewing this with my Singer 626.  I picked it up at the thrift store for a few dollars. This model does have neoprene gears.  Some have metal.  I am certain the gears were replaced because they are opaque.  Not black like the few gear bits I found in the bottom of the case. Also, I don't think it was used much at all after the gears were changed, because they and the whole machine look like new.  So it should last a long time.

This machine has just a few decorative stitches, and does not use cams.  The wind-in-place bobbin works great.  Some machines with this feature have problems, but on this machine it works easy.

You have to love the color!
Singer 626 Touch and Sew
 Back to the shirt.

I was confused when sewing the pocket, because the instructions did not state it was a faux-flap.  I kept trying to figure out where the flap was at in the picture.  Finally, I figured it out.  All I have to do now is sew a button on it to finish.
Faux-Flap Pocket
Since the decorative stitching looked great on my previous shirt, I decided to put my Singer 626 to work.  As seen on the pocket and collar.
Decorative Stitching on Collar


Next Comes Sleeves.

Thanks for stopping.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Groovy 70s Shirt

This was supposed to be a pajama top, but after I began making it, I decided that indeed it would make a great shirt.  I used Simplicity 6436 from 1974.  It is interesting it is shown as a uni-sex pattern.  I think the belt would be a little over the top for me.  So, no belt.

I added two inches to the sleeves and body length.  Otherwise, besides the decorative stitching with my White 571, I followed the pattern instructions.  I serged the seams.   If I made this again, I would probably use flat-fell or french seams.  A quick project called for quick methods of assembly.  After all, this was supposed to be a pajama top.

White 571

Decorative Stitch Selections


Max likes my collar

I am glad I have a huge quantity of this fabric.   It is comfy and looks great.  This was a great thrift store find.

Now I am not sure if I will go back to pajama tops.  The crafting urge is hitting me.  Some appliqué, some embroidery, or whatever hits me.

Thanks for stopping.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Treat me nice!

Remember in my last post I mentioned a Bernina I made my shorts with?  Now that the fiasco is over, I will tell you about it.

My pair of shorts was made with a Bernina 1011.  I had this machine only a few days.  It was purchased on ebay.  When it arrived the spool pins were broken off, the power knob was sheared off, the stretch-stitch/feed dog knob was smashed and bent. It was rusty inside and some corrosion on the bottom.  All the knobs would not turn due to corrosion.
Shorts made with Bernina 1011

Bernina 1011 on ebay
 I was able to get it going.   I turned the cog for the power and lights to "on" with pliers, so it would be "on" when plugged in like old machines. I oiled and cleaned it up.  The reverse didn't work and the feed dogs rubbed the needle plate.  I adjusted the feed dogs and was able to get the reverse working. The stretch-stitches still needed some adjustment, but it purred and sewed  nice like a Bernina should. I was going to keep it because I felt I had found an excellent deal for $125, even with the shipping-damage.
Sheared power button

Broken spool-pin

Smashed knob

Bent knob shaft
Bernina as received

Packing material

Then as they say, "All Hell broke Loose".
Joe had me email the seller to tell them in the future to package things better. I also sent pictures of the packaging and the damage.  I didn't ask for money back or anything.

I was pummeled with numerous emails calling me a scammer and a liar.  I was threatened with I should "hide".  And other threats.  The seller said to turn it over to UPS and they would win because the packaging was strong.

So I turned it over to ebay and UPS because of their attitude. Then I received emails from the seller saying the money was taken out of their Paypal and they were out of business because of me.

I had never opened a case on ebay.  I did not know the funds would be seized immediately, but I guess it makes sense.   Then more threatening emails.  Plus, they said they closed their bank and Paypal account so I would get nothing. I am glad these people are in Mississippi and I am in California.

Guess what?  Ebay refunded all my money.  UPS took the machine and returned it to them in the same box and packing it was sent to me.  I  would hate to see what it looks like after another trip across the U.S. in that poor packaging.

Moral of the story.  Treat me nice and I will treat you nice.  If this seller would have simply said I am sorry, I would have probably let it go.  If they had offered $20 to replace one spool-pin, I would have let it go. Their attack on me is what caused them to get their smashed Bernina back and my money back to me.

I miss my Bernina 1011 even though I only had it a few days.  It definitely had a better home with me.  I feel sorry for it.

Did I do right?

Now I am making a 70s shirt which should be "Groovy"!

Thanks for stopping.