Mighty Hoop It!

Happy November blog readers! Once again, it has been a while since my last post! Fall is so busy… blah blah blah…. :) Back in February I did a blog post about Mighty Hoops. They are the fantabulous magnetic secondary hoops that you can use with various brands of multi-needle embroidery machines. I have had the 7.25″ x 7.25″ mighty hoop for a while now, and I’ve just used it solo without any stand or fixture. I was contacted recently by one of the co-owners of HoopMaster about trying a smaller hoop and the fixture. I have seen these things demonstrated over the years and have always been intrigued, so I was excited to give it a try. So now I have the 6.5″ mighty hoop and fixture/stand. I’ve used it quite a bit over the last week or so and I.LOVE.IT! It’s an investment, but like any embroidery investment (like software, that bigger machine, etc.), it’s worth it if this is what my job is!  If this is what I’m going to do, why not spend the money on the things that make my job easier! Monogram Wizard Plus seemed like a lot of money to spend on font software back in 2008 (or whenever I got it), but when you put in to perspective that I’m still using it in 2015, it makes it seem so worth it and not such a huge investment! Might Hoops will be that same great investment!

Here is the Fixture/Stand. When I first put it together, I will admit I had no idea how to work it. Luckily there are several videos out there so I got the hang of it very quickly. Here are a few things to note:

The -0- is the center of the hoop.

The T-bar is used when you are monogramming something like a hand towel. I will post a photo of that later.

It’s really hard to understand the whole Fixture/Stand without having one in front of you, so hopefully my pictures and explanations will kind of help you get it!


I monogrammed some baby blankets recently and took some pictures along the way. See if you can follow me! The bottom of the hoop, which typically goes on the bottom of the garment, is placed neatly in the fixture. It fits like a puzzle. It simply keeps the bottom of the hoop in place until you can get your garment centered and ready to hoop.


Next, you lay your stabilizer on top of the bottom of the hoop. I’m using a waffle weave tearaway on the bottom of my baby blanket. Note: the black corners and top piece flip back (see the hinges) and can hold the stabilizer in place. Pre-cut stabilizer would come in handy here. I just laid mine on top which worked great too.


I marked my center of the blanket which was about 6.5″ from the bottom. The lines on the fixture count up from -0-, which is the center of the hoop. If I want my monogram centered 6.5″ from the bottom, I line the end of the blanket up with the 6.5″ line on the fixture. I also lay a piece of water soluble stabilizer on top of the blanket because it’s a minky material and I don’t want my monogram thread to sink in to the blanket. Note: the clear part on top bounces up and down, and is used for the top part of my hoop. Note 2: I did not use the T-bar for this particular blanket, but will show a photo later of when I did use it on a hand towel.


Next I rest the top part of my hoop on the clear part of the fixture. It fits perfectly in between the clear arms. Now I am ready to actually hoop the blanket with the Mighty Hoop!


I pressed down on the top hoop/clear arms and the top of the hoop snaps to the bottom of my hoop because of the MAGNETS in the hoop. You can also see my center mark on the blanket is centered in the hoop below. You can also see closer that the edge of my blanket is lined up with the 6.5″ line on the fixture. If I wanted the monogram centered 10″ from the edge, I would line the edge of the blanket up with the 10″ line.


As you can see below, my tearaway stabilizer is in the hoop also on the bottom. I am now ready to monogram the blanket! So my layers are: bottom hoop, tearaway stabilizer, blanket, water soluble stabilizer and then top of the hoop on top.


Below is the hoop on my machine, and as you can see, my center dot is already lined up with needle because my blanket is hooped (almost) perfectly centered!


Wouldn’t you know I didn’t take a photo of the finished monogrammed blanket! Sorry!

Here is a hand towel and maybe this will help with the T-bar explanation. (From the HoopMaster website: “The T-square is to assist you in measuring the horizontal distance from the edge of a garment to where the center of a logo is to be embroidered.”) The hand towel is 15″ wide, so if you adjust the T-bar to line up the center of the fixture with the 7.5″ mark ON the T-bar, your towel will be centered if you line up the corner on the right where the T is. I didn’t have any way to hold it AND take a picture, so I used a clip. I know this is hard to understand!! Trust me… if I had 15 hand towels to do, this would REALLY come in handy! No measuring tape and marking the center. It’s all done on the fixture!


I also used the hoop/fixture/stand today to hoop the back of a jacket! I had marked the center where I wanted my monogram, but used the fixture to keep it all in place so I could hoop it. The magnets draw the 2 pieces of the hoop together, so it’s SUPER EASY and there’s no hoop burn!


You can find more information about Mighty Hoops on the HoopMaster website – click HERE! They have several videos you can watch also. Click HERE to see those! There’s one on setting up the T-square that might explain it better than my 1 photo.

I posted a photo of this on Instagram last week and got lots of comments and questions! Please let me know if you have any questions! You can also email info@hoopmaster.com if you have any questions that I might not be able to answer! I know this is hard to comprehend without the Hoops in front of you! Or maybe you DO have the hoop and fixture but aren’t sure how to use it? Several people commented that they had the hoops and/or station and LOVED them! I’d love to hear from you!

Give Life to an Old Design!

So I had a longtime customer email me the other day, and she wanted a baby gown with an *old* design on it that I had not sewn in years. It was the below elephant design and I bought it YEARS ago on Etsy, like in 2009 or before! I don’t believe the seller sells it [or any designs for that matter] anymore. I had done a gown or onesie for my customer’s son and she wanted the same to give as a baby gift. So…. I searched and found the design on my computer, and quickly remembered the design was digitized a little wonky. The design had 1 marking stitch (#1 black below) and then elephant outline satin stitch (#2 below) and then the eye and ear (#3 below) . What does that mean? NO TACKDOWN STITCH. In the good old days I would just repeat the marking stitch after I placed my fabric down, trimmed around the design and then proceed with the satin stitch around the elephant. However, I decided this week to give this old design a makeover using Sew What-Prolong thread

First on the list, create a tackdown stitch! I click on step 1, which is the marking stitch. long thread marking

Next I click on the COPY icon in my menu bar. This will copy that step 1 marking stitch.


Next I click the PASTE icon in my menu bar, which pastes another marking stitch step 1 (aka tackdown stitch) in my design. How handy! It does place that new step at the end, so it’s step #4 of my design which wouldn’t work. No fear… we can reorder our steps to make this right!


Click Edit, then Order Threads in the toolbar.


This is the order of the steps after I have copied and pasted that marking stitch. I want to move step 4 up to step 2 so that the design stitches 1) marking, 2) tackdown, 3) satin elephant and 4) eye and ear. The satin stitch and eye/ear are 2 different steps in case you might want to sew those in 2 different colors.

long thread order

Below I have typed in the New Order, and when I click OK it reorders the steps.

long thread order 2

Now, since this is an old design, the satin stitches are really thin. Guess what? I can make them thicker in Sew What-Pro! I first click on the ear/eye step in my thread chart. Just pick one of the satin stitch steps – it doesn’t matter which one.

long thread ear and eye

I then click on the Stitch Density and Pull Compensation icon.


On the bottom you see Pull Compensation, which makes the satin stitch thicker. I bumped it up to 5 and when I click OK, my satin stitch becomes thicker. You can go all the way up to 20, but 5 to 10 is usually enough. Please note that I do not mess with density!

long thread density

I do the same for the satin stitch of the elephant step. I click on that step in my thread chart.


Again, bump the pull compensation up to 5. Again, you can do more, but 5 is plenty for this project!

long thread density

As you can see below, my satin stitch is noticeably thicker.

long thread outline satin thicker

Here is a side by side comparison! Again, this is bumping my pull compensation up to 5. You could do more if you like really thick satin stitches. So… I was able to add in the needed tackdown step to my design AND make my satin stitches thicker!

long thread thinner satin-horz

And here is the finished layette gown! I used Monogram Wizard Plus “Kazoo” font. I also did all of my satin stitches and my name in a light green color.


To see and read more about increasing Pull Compensation using Sew What-Pro, check out my previous blog post where I show several different variations of increasing the PC of the satin stitch (5, 10 and 20) – that post is HERE! Pretty cool, eh? Sew What-Pro is a great investment at only $65! Please note that SWP is a Windows embroidery software. I get asked a lot if you can use it with a Mac, and you CAN, but only with a Windows Emulator. PlayOnMac Windows is a free emulator available on the Sands Computing website – click HERE for more info. Applique Cafe is an authorized dealer of Sew What-Pro!

Here are a few new designs we added last week! I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Girly Turkey! She has been a popular design since we added her! The Vintage Christmas Tree is a fast and easy design too! You can see all of these at Applique Cafe!

girly spider 500-horz

Lastly, our new Digitizer’s Pick which is $1.50 for a limited time….

adigitizerspick 500

Love of Learning

Happy Thursday! I saw the below *BATHROOM* monogram guide floating around Facebook this week so I thought I would share! I know when I do towels, it’s usually a guessing game as to how big to make the monogram. I usually try to fill up my 5×7 hoop when doing a regular towel monogram, but this is way more helpful! monogram guide

In case you didn’t know, I’m a big fan of Craftsy video classes! They are having a “Love of Learning” sale now through 9/27 on over 550 classes, and many are embroidery related. Most are under $20! You can watch at your own pace, watch over and over again, take notes, ask questions, etc. You can click on the photo link below to go to Craftsy and then click on the Embroidery link to see what all they have related to embroidery and applique. I noticed a few that I was interested in and haven’t seen yet – there are a couple on hooping! There’s also a cute one on In the Hoop gifts! I haven’t really delved in to ITH projects but they are all so cute! There’s also a great Product Photography video class I posted this summer which was super helpful!

Social Embroidery

Applique Cafe is a proud Affiliate of Craftsy!

Check out our double Digitizer’s Pick ~ Gingerbread Girl and Gingerbread Man 2! You can find both of these and our other new designs at Applique Cafe.  I have 3 more new ones to list in the morning. These are cute, they match and are only $1.50/each!

adigitizerspick 500

Have a great weekend!

Shower Curtaingate 2015

Happy Friday Y’all! It’s been a wacky however-many-weeks since school started. I think I said in my Back to School Post …and I quote….  “Now I hope to have more time again to work, blog, get organized, monogram stuff, clean out closets and all that other stuff we put on our to-do list for when the kiddies go back to school!” Blah blah blah yeah that was a joke. Me thinking I would have more time sounded like a good idea! I forgot allllll about laundry, bible study, library duty, recess duty, morning runs to Target, 12:30 carpool, 3:20 carpool, 5:30 soccer, 7:00 soccer, 4:00 soccer, 5:15 soccer, etc. I haven’t really had time to organize or clean out anything. But, I have had time for Shower Curtaingate 2015, which consumed a week or two of my embroidery life.

I have a sweet customer that I’ve been doing monogramming for for YEARS. She dropped off this cute Pottery Barn Kids shower curtain for me to monogram, and since I’ve done a shower curtain or two in my career, I had little no worries. I formatted the humongous “B” in my Monogram Wizard Plus software (Library font) and made it as big as I could get it to fit my 11.8″ x 7.9″ hoop. I *carefully* hooped the shower curtain and put it on my machine to stitch. I even took a picture and put it on Instagram! The first attempt was 84 minutes and 42,852 stitches. About 10,000 stitches in, I realized that part of the shower curtain was being SEWN in to the B on my machine from underneath!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was SO CAREFUL in making sure the machine would not sew the shower curtain, and yet it did!!!!

Below is a photo AFTER I had to cut the shower curtain loose from my hoop. Even Jeff tried to “cut out” the monogram from the back/bobbin side, but people, you can’t merely cut out 10,000 FILL stitches. I gave it a day, and then scrounged up a 10% off coupon from PBK and ordered a replacement. I won’t tell you how much that set me back. I almost drove to Birmingham to buy another one, but it’s a new shower curtain and they didn’t have them in stores. So I ordered. Then I waited.


So friends, about a week later, I got the replacement shower curtain in the mail and attempted to monogram it AGAIN….. This time I made SURE the shower curtain was all free from the sewing arm underneath. It wasn’t until I was about 50,000 stitches in that I realized that for some reason, the weight of the shower curtain was causing the edge of my hoop to ever-so-slightly bump the arm of the machine where the bobbin stays. Therefore and henceforth, my B got *off* on the right side, left about 1/2″ gap in the middle and I finally just stopped the machine {and cried a little}. 2 Pottery Barn Kids shower curtains. 2.


Here’s a closeup of my wonky B. There was no salvaging this B. However, the shower curtain itself was still in tact (no hole cut in it) so I came up with a plan!


I decided to create a patch using the white canvas material from the 1st shower curtain (with the hole in it). I cut out a huge square of it and proceeded to stitch a new B in it with a frame around it (outline stitch only). This time I used the MWP Pharmacy B which is not as thick, and I had Jeff digitize a custom sized Frame Patch 2. Again, I only stitched the outline stitch of the frame plus the fill stitch B. I would use this “patch” and applique it in to the 2nd shower curtain. Hang with me! I know this is hard to follow….


Once it was done, I removed the stabilizer (solvy on top) and trimmed closely AROUND the frame outline stitch. The outline stitch would be use as my placement guide on the 2nd shower curtain.


Sorry this photo is fuzzy, but I hooped the 2nd shower curtain with the messed up B on it, with the messed up B centered in the hoop as closely as I could get it. I then stitched another outline stitch of my frame patch, and then REMOVED the fabric and messed up B inside. I trimmed inside that outline stitch and closely. After I cut it out, what was left was medium cutaway stabilizer inside the frame patch outline which was also hooped with the shower curtain (stabilizer, that is).


Next… I placed my outlined *new* B “patch” that I stitched alone and lined up the outline stitches of the frame. I used some temporary spray adhesive to stick the patch down and made sure the outline stitches of the frame patch lined up with one another. I then stitched a tackdown stitch, which tacked the patch in place.


Lastly, I stitched the satin stitch around the frame patch, which created an applique patch of the new B! Did I lose you?


Here is the finished product! I think it turned out great and saved me from buying ANOTHER shower curtain! So 2 shower curtains and $$.$$ later, I think I have decided that I am retiring from the shower curtain monogramming business. UNLESS… it’s something like a 3 letter monogram or something not quite as huge as this B. In hindsight, I should have sewn an applique “B” using red fabric, instead of an 80,000+ stitch count fill stitch letter. Live and learn.


Thank you to all of my Instagram followers who liked, commented, prayed and cried with me over this saga of an embroidery job. By the way, I let my customer know what was going on all along the way. She was super sweet and felt super sorry for me. I honestly like how the {B inside the frame} turned out better than just a plain B!

In other news, here are several new designs I listed a couple of days ago! We haven’t done a “Stitch” the dog design in a long time, so I was excited about the Halloween Stitch! I also adore this Puppy and love the fast and easy “vintage” redwork stitch designs (Footballs & Megaphones)! You can see all of these at Applique Cafe!

football dog 3 500-tile

What’s your “Shower Curtaingate” story? We all have at least 1!!

Labor Day Specials

Needleheads gift card sale

My Monogram Wizard Plus People…. Take note:
1) We are now selling $25 gift cards to the Needleheads {Font} Store and they are on sale for $19.99/each. (Save $5 herehttp://www.appliquecafe.com/catalog.htm?item=892)
2) Needleheads has a few *new* fonts in the store, and several of their fonts are on SALE (Save $2-3 here)
3) More Discounts (Save MORE here):
$10 off a $35 or more Purchase
$25 off a $60 or more Purchase
$50 off a $100 or more Purchase
4) Some of my *favorite* fonts from the Needleheads Store: Bistro, Camp, Happy, Kazoo, Library and Sweet Script! You can also add new Alpha Paks like Master Circle, Blackboard, Pendant, etc.
5) Who doesn’t love fonts? It’s right up there with my fabric addiction. 
labor day sale

We are having a Labor Day SALE at Applique Cafe! All designs are 35% off through Thursday, September 10th!

Craftsy is also having a great sale on classes & supplies this weekend! On my blog, search “Craftsy” for several blog posts I’ve done in the past 6 months or so on awesome embroidery & product photography classes!


Lastly, check out our new Digitizer’s Pick which is our Pumpkin 13 Design! This pumpkin could be sewn with a wide variety of cute fabrics! I am obviously partial to polka dots and ginghams, but would love to see this in some other cute fall fabrics! adigitizerspick 500

Back to School 2015

Good morning! Summer is officially OVER around here and we are starting our first FULL week of school! My oldest started middle school (6th – EEK!) last week while the other 2 started 2nd and 3rd grade. So far so good! One advantage to having 2 kids so close in age, we just did 2nd grade so it should be a breeze, right!?!? Amiright?? Please tell me I’m right…. Now I hope to have more time again to work, blog, get organized, monogram stuff, clean out closets and all that other stuff we put on our to-do list for when the kiddies go back to school! IMG_6151

We listed a few cute new designs Friday and I hope to be sampling 3 more new ones this week. Our goal is at least 3 or 4 new designs each week! birds 3 500-tile

Lastly, we are celebrating 6 years of Applique Cafe! We have listed exactly 876 designs in our 6 years online! All of them are on sale {50% off} through Wednesday!

anniversary sale

Check out our Digitizer’s Pick right now also! This has been a great seller and I will be changing it out soon!

adigitizerspick 500

Have a great day and week!

Vintage or Simple Stitch Designs

First of all, I seem to have this thing with taking photos of stuff tilted to the right!? I guess straight on can be boring sometimes. Second of all, the new Friends of Applique Cafe Facebook Group is going great! We are up to about 775 members, and I can tell already that creating a group was the right move! Someone commented on my last post that FB PAGES are more for ME to post what’s going on, but other than that, there is not much interaction if no one likes or comments. Basically, you see what I post IF it shows up in your news feed. You rarely actually visit someone’s Facebook page unless you are looking for something. On the other hand, with a group, it’s more like a community. The people in the group are seeing what you post and are actually *liking*, commenting, etc. Very refreshing!!

So… these “vintage” simple stitch (aka redwork) designs are pretty popular right now. I though I would share what stabilizers I use for these, since the first one I did didn’t turn out perfectly. Below are several that we have listed at Applique Cafe, and they can all be found under the Zig Zag | Vintage | Raggy category. I also just sampled a new one which is Stitch the Dog. We haven’t done anything with Stitch in a WHILE. It’ll be listed in the next day or two! vintage

I have found {by trial and error} that Solvy (water soluble) stabilizer should be used on top with these designs. You can’t really see it in the below picture, but I hooped medium cutaway stabilizer underneath the shirt and solvy on top. I am a hooper btw… This is an old Monag shirt someone gave me to sample on and their shirts are pretty thick, so I went with medium cutaway. On a thinner shirt, you might use a thinner cutaway such as polymesh or no show mesh cutaway that won’t show through.  IMG_9505

The stitch time on our new Stitch the Dog is 2 MINUTES. These designs are super fast! IMG_9506

The solvy on top helps prevent the stitches from a) sinking and b) puckering the shirt. IMG_9507

This is the back of the design and you can see the big piece of medium cutaway. I trim around the design when I’m done, getting close to the stitching. For this shirt I also trimmed in between the front and back legs, as well as around the tail. IMG_9508

I had someone ask how you remove the solvy without pulling the stitches. I haven’t really noticed a problem, but for this post I did wet a couple of Q-tips and went over the stitching/outline of the design on the solvy. Since it’s water soluble, the wet Q-tip helps loosen up the solvy so it’s a little easier to pull away.


There were a few stray pieces of the solvy sort of underneath some of the stitching. You can either pull it off, or squirt some water on it from your iron and it should dissolve. IMG_9511

Here is the finished product! Again, this is a thick cotton shirt so you can’t see the medium cutaway stabilizer through the shirt at all. The red gingham ruffle shorts are from EllieO. These vintage/simple stitch designs are great with simple gingham bottoms! IMG_9512

So here is the first designs I did of this type and I DID NOT use solvy on top. It’s sort of hard to see in the pictures, but there was some definite puckering. I added solvy on the next one and it stitched MUCH better! No puckering and the design and shirt lays flat. The arrows point to the pucker/wrinkles.IMG_9513

You can see the little dimples in the loops. USE SOLVY! IMG_9514

As you can see on the Stitch shirt, the design lays flat with no puckering! IMG_9516 IMG_9517

Here are several of our other designs in this style. The Turkey was done on a Monag shirt as well, so thick cotton and I used medium cutaway and solvy on top. It lays flat perfectly!IMG_9521

The church… I did this one on a flour sack dish towel, which is rather thin. Since it’s a towel, I didn’t want cutaway stabilizer left on the back of the towel, so I used waffle weave tearaway with solvy on top for this one, then removed ALL of the stabilizer. IMG_9522

I did our Pumpkin on another thick cotton Just Blanks shirt I had laying around. I used medium cutaway again as well as solvy. IMG_9523

For thinner cotton shirts, you might try polymesh or no show mesh cutaway such as below. Some people use this type all the time with all shirts. I got mine from Sewingmachine.com and it’s on a big roll. The medium cutaway I use is Sulky Cutaway Plus, or the commercial cutaway from Sewingmachine.com. I recommend 2.2 oz or no more than 2.5 oz for the commercial. More than that is pretty thick. IMG_9525

I also love the waffle weave tearaway that I used on the flour sack towel! IMG_9526

I hope this helps! I think the quality of your shirt also plays a part. The String of Fish design I did above was on a much thinner shirt, but I think the solvy on top would have added a little extra support for the stitches!

Try our Golf Green 2 {vintage/simple stitch} design now for $1.50 ~ our new Digitizer’s Pick!

adigitizerspick 500

Facebook Plunge!

I.am.over.Facebook {pages, that is}. Can I just tell you how discouraging it is to post something and then sit and watch as no one comments. No one *likes*. And Facebook is so nice that they tell you how many people your post is “reaching”. I would almost rather they keep that to themselves!! Applique Cafe has more than 38,000 fans. That is a lot, don’t get me wrong. Howevah… 240 people may actually see a post. While that is a lot too, 240 out of 38,000 is nothing to get too excited over. So….. I have been contemplating an Applique Cafe GROUP for some time, and finally took the plunge last night.

My reservations….

Who needs another group to keep up with? Does anyone even care what I am posting about? Is Applique Cafe even relevant in the world of embroidery or applique anymore? How will I monitor a page AND a group, approve people, post stuff, etc.? I don’t want to overload or overwhelm anyone with Applique Cafe *stuff*……

Lots of questions I’ve been asking myself, but finally decided last night to just DO IT. People don’t HAVE to join. They can leave the group if I bore them to death. I can do it!!

Friends of Applique Cafe is now an official group, and I’ve been approving folks all day long which is exciting! 288 people in 18 hours isn’t too bad.


Please feel free to join us too! By the way, as I was debating and contemplating this last night, I looked up several synonyms for “friend” and “group”… family, crowd, gang, bunch, posse, network. I hope the new {GROUP} is all of these things. I am still keeping the Facebook Page, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, Blog, etc. but hopefully with one more avenue to share stuff, I can reach more of my people.

A lot of applique website owners have “staff”. I have no staff other than Jeff and he’s not even on Facebook. Bear with me! Or is it bare with me….

Product Photography

Hey friends! I hope you are all having a fabulous summer even though it is half over! I’m trying to savor every minute, hour, day and week we have left of no-backpacks, uniforms, yucky snack bags and homework. I may be sleeping until 9:00 too. Anywho… I have found yet another fabulous (yes I used the word fabulous again) Craftsy video to share with you! This one is less embroidery related, but sort of embroidery related in that it’s on PHOTOGRAPHY. More specifically, PRODUCT photography. This is something I struggle with so I couldn’t wait to watch this one. It took me a couple of days to watch all the lessons and soak it all in, but it was well worth it! There are a couple of lessons I need to re-watch as well.

Here are some of the highlights:

*Learn how to use natural light (window light for example)

*Good product photography = selling more in your online shop (our #1 goal, right?)

*Learn exactly what Aperture, White Balance, Shutter Speed and those other camera settings mean and how to use them to your benefit when taking product photos (this is the part that always confuses me!)

*A tripod is your friend (I need to get ours out and knock the dust off)

*The best time to take indoor photos using natural light

*How to tell the story of your product (adding props to really have your product tell it’s story)

*Different types of lighting, shadows and how to take outdoor photos

*Photo editing how-to (she used Photoshop, but I think some of the same features she used can be found in Photoshop Elements or other photo editing software out there)

This class is 1/2 off through next Wednesday, July 15th for my Applique Cafe Blog readers when you click on the link/photo below! As a reminder, when you purchase a video class from Craftsy, it is yours to keep. You can watch it over the course of 2 days if you want to (like I did). You can watch it 8 times if you want to (I will be watching the part about your camera 4 more times probably). You can pause to take notes, answer the phone, let the dog out or make a run to Starbucks if you want to. You can also ask questions if you need to!

Product Photography At Home

Jessica is very calm and easy to understand and shows great examples of how to “style” your product for photos. She uses examples such as soap, jewelry and clothing, but I think her tips would be helpful with any product. With online sales, your photo is ALL YOU HAVE to sell your product! Make it look good! Click on the photo for the discounted class!

Instagram Magic Part II

As a followup to a previous post a week or two ago (Instagram Magic), I am happy to report that I received my first batch of CHATBOOKS Instagram books in the mail this past week!! As I told you before, all of my IG photos divided by 60 photos/book totaled 13 books. I chose to receive 5 at a time, so I got my first 5 and should receive my next 5 next month (July), then the last 3 (plus I may be ready for #14 by then) probably in August. Although after receiving the first 5, I kind of want to go ahead and get them all!!


Above are 4 of the 5 and each book measures 6″ x 6″. I was SO HAPPY looking through all of these IG photos (MEMORIES) going back to 2011! Jeff and the kids enjoyed looking through them too (and pointing out all of the clothes from 2011 that Jeff STILL WEARS!) We live in the age of cell phones photos. I can’t even say we live in the age of digital cameras anymore. We do, but I have taken mine on 2 beach trips this summer and have yet to take a picture with it. I only use my digital camera for AC design photos! Everything is on my phone.


Each book is labeled. You chose the name of the books and I went with The Gulledges. Original, I know. I love that each book is organized by date and broken down in to volumes. I guess I joined IG in 2011? You also get to go through ALL of your IG photos and exclude any that you don’t want printed in the book. Like the picture of the rain or that rabbit you saw in the yard.


Each photos is also labeled with the date (YAY!) and some of them have the location. I guess it depends if your location services was turned on? Each pic also has captions underneath and some of mine were blank. I guess before I “got” Instagram and understood how to use it? The Emojis also show up as little characters. NOT Emoji friendly I guess but they are cute!

IMG_5940 IMG_5941

Anyway, I love this *HAPPY* and wanted to share!! If you are an avid IG lover like I am, then try it out! You can get your first book free with my code!


In Applique Cafe news, we’ve started our 4th of July SALE!

sale3-a copy

I also added 3 new designs last week and all of them are the quick vintage/redwork stitch designs that are so easy and popular right now. I used medium cutaway stabilizer on these shirts, plus water soluble on top. You could also use a lighter cutaway. You just want to be sure to avoid any puckering! All of these are featured on our home page in case you are working on FALLfootball helmet 3 500-horz

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!