Applique Engineering Solutions: Bernina CutWorks Tool

I really enjoyed making my little applique cat but one of the parts I disliked about the project and applique more generally is the cutting. With an embroidery machine that thinks 1 mm is equivalent to a country mile, precision is the name of the game and I don’t think I’m going to be in competition with Swiss engineering any time soon… Luckily I don’t have to be, as of course Swiss engineering has the answer to all of my cutting woes, in the form of the Bernina CutWorks tool.

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Embroidered Patches

A while ago, I had a go at designing and digitising my own patches. It wasn’t a complete failure, but far from a success either. One of the big problems I’d had was not having a strong enough water-soluble stabiliser so the design ended up not really registering properly as it moved as the layers were being sewn together…

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Machine Embroidered Organza Rose

Machine embroidery isn’t all greetings cards and monogrammed towels. It turns out you can make some rather complex things with it! I’ve been really interested in doing some stumpwork for a while, and made a start on a project, but doing hand embroidery of lots of small fiddly pieces, to go through the heartbreak of cutting them out and risking nipping a few threads is a rough way to learn!

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Christmas Card Panic!

Nothing like a good Christmas deadline to focus the mind and needle… Traditionally, I am terrible at Christmas. I barely manage to get Christmas cards to friends and people who definitely deserve it, even though I really appreciate everyone who is infinitely more competent, organised and takes the time to think of me. I usually deal with this by an absolute refusal to make handmade Christmas gifts, saving them for birthdays instead, but I did want to at least try and redeem myself as a human being this year…

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More Monograms at the Card Factory!

After the success of my last monogrammed card, and as part of the greetings card factory that is now my apartment, I wanted to have a go at digitising and stitching out a more complex design… and including my favourite thing, more metallic thread. This design is a very simplified version of a beautiful cadel by Elen Verch Phelip and you can see some more of her amazing work on her website here. She seems to be a person of limitless talents!

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Making Freestanding Lace

As you might have noticed, I’ve been having a lot of fun with machine embroidery and one of the things I have been trying to do is explore all of the possibilities with the technique just to start building up some breadth of experience. I’ve recently invested in an assortment of different stabilisers and one of the things I was very keen to try was making freestanding lace, which requires dissolvable stabilisers.

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Digitising Monograms

Monograms are incredibly popular motifs with machine embroidery. With the speed of digital embroidery, it’s a quick way to transform a boring generic item into something a bit more special and personal. I absolutely love illuminated letters and fancy lettering too and really think they can easily be a work of art in themselves.

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