At Hamels, we LOVE patterns and kits featuring Crabapple Hill Designs. Meg Hawkey is a fave! We also have many other quilt patterns that consist of embroidery like Bunny Hill Designs. We are often asked in the store if our samples are machine embroidered to which we explain that the samples are made using a pigma micron pen and then embroidered using either Cosmo or DMC embroidery floss. Some projects and crafters prefer Valdani embroidery floss that comes on a ball. Note: Embroidery is done only after the pattern is traced out with a pigma pen and the colouring is added.
Embroidery Needle – Recently, whilst making our latest sample “Glitter Houses”, by Bunny Hill Designs, Our Kris pulled out some shorter length needles. She has found that John James big eye needles, size 11 worked great.
Kris embroidered the blocks on this quilt using a stem stitch and has discovered that the tinier the stitch the better. It’s easy to do a tiny stitch if you select a shorter needle. Refer to Mary Corbet’s “Needle n’ Thread” website for information on stem stitching.
How many strands of floss? – Another tip is to check the number of strands of embroidery floss you actually need. Kris’ pattern for “Glitter Houses” called for four strands of DMC embroidery floss and when she used four strands, it seemed very heavy for the design. It was also impossible to pull through the fabric as this made for eight strands bunched up at the needle trying to come through. Not the look we were going for! This would work on open weave fabric or cross stitch fabric but wasn’t going to work on the tightly woven quilting fabric. So… Kris found that if she reduced the strands to two instead of an overwhelming four strands, then voila, it worked perfectly! Her stitches using two strands resulted in very tiny and dainty stitching to suit the design. As you can see below, Kris achieved excellent results on our store sample which is currently out being quilted.
Please let us know if you would like to order “Glitter Houses” as a kit. It is available right now on our website and can be found by clicking here.
Here’s a tip recommended by the ladies here at the shop.
Have you ever had to cut lots of pieces of fabric for your project that are an unusual width; like 2 3/8″ for instance? Sometimes it can be confusing to to keep track of that 2 3/8″ line marking on your ruler as you cut the required pieces. What a pain it can be to count the marks on your ruler each time you are ready to make a cut. Mistakes happen easily without the onslaught of distractions coming at us constantly or perhaps you can’t complete all your cutting in one session, but instead over several days for instance.
Well… here’s a quick product that will make it easy to identify where your ruler marking is for that pesky 2 3/8″ that you may have to cut a lot of for your project. Omnigrid has a product called “Glow-Line Tape” which is easy to use. The package includes three colours (pink, orange and yellow) to select from and when you are finished using it, the tape comes right off because it is not uber sticky which means no residue on your ruler. Each roll of tape in the pack is 1/4in x 7yds. Total package contains 21yds of tape. You can use Glow-Line either underneath or on top of Invisi-Grip. Select the colour you prefer and apply tape over the desired marking on the back of the ruler, then trim even with the ruler’s edge. When cutting strips, automatically look for the highlighted line or area, preventing the common mistake of cutting the wrong size. Voila!
Back a decade or so ago, basting a quilt sandwich took some time to complete. A “quilt sandwich” is simply the term we use once the quilt top, batting and backing are assembled together in preparation for quilting. In the “olden days”, we used to sew the layers of our sandwich together by hand with basting stitches or pinned 100’s of safety pins to hold the top, batting and backing together whilst the quilting took place. For a long while now there has been 505 Spray on the market and this has sped up the basting process considerably.
We know that many of you out there have a few finished quilt tops out there waiting to be “sandwiched” and quilted. Perhaps you are a new quilter and are curious about this step in the quilt making process. Every week we have customers who ask us about how to use this spray and we want everyone to see how quick and effective this spray is.
It’s not difficult to use, just remember to apply sparingly. 505 Spray & Fix Temporary Fabric Adhesive is a temporary repositionable fabric adhesive designed for quilt basting, applique, sewing, embroidery and crafts. The adhesive will not transfer from the surface that is sprayed. It eliminates pinning and and allows repeated repositioning! It does not gum up sewing needles, cleans up with soap and water. It is odorless, colorless and acid-free.
Here at Hamels we offer two sizes of spray cans. What size do you need? Well, a small can should last for several medium to small projects that you need to baste. However if you are busy making lots of quilt tops, invest in the larger can that will give you enough product to spray several large tops.
Here’s a quick video that shows how to use 505 Spray: