Happy 2013!!

 Happy New Year!

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Happy New Year ladies and gents!! It was a looonnnngggg…. Christmas break. My kids were out of school for well over what seemed like a month 2 weeks. We had a very relaxing break and school has now started back for 2 out of 3 (3rd starts back tomorrow). It’s nice to have some routine and normalcy back. Jeff was off work for a while over the break too, so we got lots of new designs done. Here are the ones just listed today, and I’m quite fond of the Carrot Trio and the Loopy Giraffe (if I do say so myself). These are all featured on our home page!

bunny 4 300-horz

This past week I did some work for a local clothing designer (PBJ ~ Pieces by Jola). She brought over a couple of Blanks Boutiques shirts which are great! She was very specific about the location of the applique (1″ to 1.5″ below the neckline). I’ve never paid much attention to this with the way I hoop and do my shirts, but I snapped a picture yesterday so I thought I’d share. The idea is for the applique NOT to end up on the belly area of the shirt, which happens if you hoop too low. So, for these I marked my center from armpit seam to armpit seam (which is usually an even number – 14″, 13.5″, etc). I also made a mark on my shirt around 1″ from the top neckline. I then moved my needle to the top placement on my machine (should have taken a pic of this) and got it as close as I could. Here I’m using a Durkee 9×9 hoop which is great for multi needle machine users. It allows you to do a 5×7 design that might fill up a 5×7 hoop PLUS a name underneath!


Here is the finished product, and as you can see the shark‘s top fin is probably about 1.25-1.5″ below the neckline. I love this design! I use Monogram Wizard Plus “Tipsy” for the name Aaron.


I also did this girl shirt with our Seahorse design. Again, good placement of the design on the shirt and I love these SIMPLE one fabric designs. They stitch out so quickly and easily! Jola is a clothing designer, so she has certainly made cute bottoms to go with these tops! Below I used Monogram Wizard Plus “Party Time (aka Curlz)” as my font. Again, a Blanks Boutique top. The shirt seems really LONG in this photo. It was a size 6 and the wind was blowing!


In my last post I showed you this cute Old Navy hoodie dress Mallory got for Christmas. As I was outside taking new design pics today she decided to get in the bushes and pose. I love this dress! It’s super soft and I love the colors. She wore white cableknit stockings and some matching pink sparkly Keds to school today with it. I would love some orange leggings but haven’t found any yet. This is Monogram Wizard Plus “MC Center” font which is a new favorite. It’s a “sister font” to Master Circle which is more of a rounded monogram.


I love this girl! She was actually taking a break from playing soccer with her brothers and 3 other boys from down the street. She’s going to be TOUGH!!


I mentioned in my previous post thread colors, so today I decided to do my reds. I was going to take some pics with some of my red polka dot fabrics, but I was afraid that would be too confusing and lead to too many questions! I use #3 and #4 90% of the time, probably because they are 5000M spools. Here they are L to R:

1. Exquisite ES213 ~ this one is borderline burgundy

2. Exquisite ES3015 ~ I would say a deep red

3. Isacord 1904 ~ Again, deep red, but not too dark (I probably use this one the most)

4. Isacord 1704 ~ I would say cherry red

I get my Exquisite thread from www.kenssewingcenter.com and my Isacord from www.sewingmachine.com! I would say 2 and 3 are very similar being different brands.


Mark your calendars if you are “local” ~ I’ll be doing a class at Beth’s Heirloom Sewing in Wetumpka, AL on Saturday, February 2nd! I’m planning a trip up there maybe this week to make some notes and start working on what I’d like to teach/share. The class will be held that morning from 9:00 to 11:30 AM and will cost $35. You can find Beth’s on Facebook ~ HERE! More info will be in their January newsletter or you can call them for more details!

Thread and Hoops!

I hope this doesn’t look too gross? Yesterday was New Year’s Day. In the SOUTH, we take the ham bone from the ham we’ve been eating every other meal for the past week, throw it in a pot and throw in a bag of BLACK EYED PEAS!! We don’t/didn’t do the “greens”, but hopefully the BEP’s will bring us good luck in 2011! If this picture didn’t make you shut down my blog, then read on…
Today I “organized” my thread on the floor. I have both 1000M spools and 5000M spools. I’m working on a thread order so I had to sort all the colors and figure out what I needed. I use mostly Poly X thread from www.kenssewingcenter.com (and I have a gift certificate to use) and also Isacord from www.sewingmachine.com (most of my 5000M spools are Isacord). I like both brands and my machine seems to like them too. I have REAL thread charts for both brands with real thread samples, so it makes ordering very easy. I’m trying to build up my collection of 5000M spools, especially on the colors I use most.
Isn’t thread fun??
Tonight I made a Walmart run for diapers (Mal still sleeps in them unfortunately) and a dust pan. I came out with diapers, a dust pan, an 8 pack of paper towels, a pack of hot dogs, a pack of Oreos, a turtleneck for Mallory, a sippy cup and this super duper soft fleece pullover for G. I didn’t even have a buggy so the dust pan was literally hanging from my finger and I had stuff tucked under every part of me that would bend. You know exactly what I’m talking about!! Anyway… this fleece top was $5.00. This is why I love what I do! I can add a monogram to a $5.00 fleece top and I have a cute soft warm fleece for my G! The stitching is all light blue.
And now we come to my new best friend, the 9×9 HOOP!
This hoop is from Allbrands and if you have a 6 needle Brother machine, then this hoop is a must! It’s not made by Brother, but rather by Durkee and is compatible with several Brother and Babylock machines (see listing). This is a photo of the hoop on my machine. As you can see, my arm is expanded as wide as it’ll go just about ~ this hoop is probably as wide as the XL hoop that comes with the machine. It clips on just like any of the other hoops.

Here is a picture of the hoop hooped onto a size 4T turtleneck. It actually works great for smaller sizes too. I use medium cutaway and the 15″ x 25 yard roll from sewingmachine.com is great for this hoop!

Here is the 5×7 hoop on top as a comparison. The 9×9 hoop is about the same width b/c the 5×7 hoop is also 9″ wide. But, as you can see, it gives you more room vertically. Even though the 5×7 hoop is really 9″ wide, your machine will only allow you to use 7″ horizontally. With the 9×9 hoop, your machine recognizes it as the XL hoop so while you have to watch your boundaries like you do with Fast Frames, it gives you more than 7″ to work with across the shirt.
Here is a picture of my needle position as far up as it’ll go. The top of my design will be here and the needle will not hit the hoop.
Here is the finished shirt. I did not put a name on this shirt, but as you can see, there is plenty of room below the cross to put a name. Had I wanted a name on the shirt below the cross with a 5×7 hoop, I would have had to hoop vertically which would mean my shirt would be sideways on the machine! We all know this is a pain!
I was turned on to this hoop by some friends on Facebook, finally ordered it and use it all the time! As my friend HBS says, it’ll make your 5×7 hoop jealous!