Friday, April 11, 2014

My journey into machine embroidery

Hi all,

A few months ago I was having trouble with my sewing machine, it does this thing were you are sewing along and then take your foot off the peddle and it keeps going...not very nice! It has been an ongoing problem and I thought it had been fixed but it didn't last. At the same time my mum got a new to her embroidery machine and wasn't sure what she would do with her old one, sell it, keep it, etc. So, lucky for me she is letting me use it! And I am learning a new skill - machine embroidery.

For someone new to machine embroidery it is a pretty complicated process. You get your designs from a website or disc. You need a program on your computer to store them and fiddle with them. Then you need to get them over onto your machine. And this process will vary depending one your machine and software.

I am using my ipad and this is what I am doing, because I am cheap lol, is I have found an app called "Airstitch" which is free. I can download designs to it when I buy them from an online shop, such as Urban Threads, who I love btw! It is only a basic app for storing your designs, if I want to fiddle I will need to buy software.

But then I needed to get the designs from the ipad to a USB....and Airstitch recommend this USB called Airstash. So I looked into it and it is a bit of an investment but the possibilities seem almost endless. My stick on steroids (it is bigger than you average USB) arrived this week and I got stuck into trying it out.

I picked a simple design from Urban Threads that I already had in the Airstitch app. And did what I had to do to get it on the stick and plugged it into my machine worked! Yay!

Then I had an embroidery with no purpose...I want to make some lunch bags for a couple of friends so I thought I would try out the pattern first. This pattern can be found here.

It is a good size and went together fairly easily. I'm not really happy with how it goes together at the ends of the zip, so I might try and figure something out for that.

I used regular patchwork fabric and iron on pellon, a layer of insul-bright and lined it with a food grade fabric. It was pretty bulky by the end. For the next ones I will use a thinner pellon.

I took it to embroidery club day yesterday (wait until you see what I made there!) and I used an ice brick and my lunch stayed cold so I think it passed the test.

Bye for now, Jess :)


Saturday, April 5, 2014

Getting back on the horse

Hi all,

Well, getting back on the blogging horse anyway!

It has been ages since I have really been in the blogging groove. I haven't been keeping the blog up to date with what I am working on. I have been posting a lot on Instagram and I think then I don't bother putting it on the blog too. I know everyone can't access Instagram and there are probably some that don't want to so I will try to get back into the groove. I should be finding it a lot easier to blog now that I can do it on the Ipad.

I haven't been keeping my Facebook page up to date either...I have been sharing most things on my personal page.

So what have I been doing lately?

I have been working on a commission quilt for my cousins little girl. I have called the quilt "V is for Violet", I still need to quilt it. I hope to get the wadding next week when I am at the local PWS and will wait until the holidays are over to get to the quilting.

I am slowing getting appliqué blocks done for the Afternoon Delight quilt. These are the last few blocks and I have another one nearly finished, I work on these when we watch a bit of TV after the boys are in bed.

The other major project is the Midnight at the Oasis quilt. I have started working on the 2nd last border which is lots and lots of little squares!

I think I will try to blog every Friday night and see how it works out. Thank you for reading all the way to the end if you made it!

Bye for now, Jess :)


Saturday, March 29, 2014

American Beauty

Hi all,

I want to share my 2nd finished quilt for the year....yay! And this one has just been waiting on binding for the last couple of months.

This was a block of the month quilt that I did through my local patchwork shop, Sew This and That. It is a Marti Michell design which uses her awesome templates. We started in February of 2012. It took about 18 months to make the finished top and then I was waiting for some fabric for the backing for a while. Then I had Jane (quilt jane) quilt it for me on her longarm.

This is a monster of a quilt, I think it is the biggest I have ever made. It is approx 110" x 95". Huge!

I used mostly Sandi Henderson's Secret Garden fabric with coordinating solids and prints.

Bye for now, Jess :)


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Clowns Choice

Hi all,

What a funny name for a quilt, right? I am not very good at naming things.

I have had one of my quilts published in the latest Quilters Companion magazine. Yay!

The name come from the traditional block that the quilt is based on. I used EQ7 to draw up the block and play around with the design layout. I made a couple of test blocks to make sure the size of the blocks were ok before I made the whole quilt.

I quilted it on a longarm machine that I hired from Bee Creative on the Sunshine Coast. I would so love to have my own longarm setup one day!

The fabric I used is the Saltwater range by Tula Pink and virtually a whole bolt of Bella White. And it is a big 90" square!

Bye for now, Jess :)