Monogramming Waffle Weave Stuff

Back in February I did a blog post reviewing a Craftsy class I did on monogramming textured items. You can go back and review it HERE if you missed it! Today I’m monogramming 7 lavender waffle weave short robes which are bridesmaids’ gifts. If you’ve ever monogrammed waffle weave, you know that sometimes your monogram can turn out a little “waffley”. Yes, all those little squares can show up in your monogram. I’ve done it in the past and ended up running the monogram twice just to get a pretty result. One thing I learned in the Craftsy class I mentioned on monogramming textured items (terry cloth, towels, waffle weave, etc.) is that it’s best to 1) use a water soluble topper on top and 2) apply an underlay stitch underneath your monogram. I use Monogram Wizard Plus (Master Circle font shown) and there is an option to add underlay, which is extra stitching beneath your letters which helps the monogram stay on top of the texture and turn out pretty! It takes a little longer (these are averaging 18 minutes each at 4.25″ tall) but the result is worth it. Adding underlay adds a few thousand stitches to my particular monograms. Note: I used a waffle weave tearaway stabilizer on bottom.

Here is what the underlay stitch looks like:

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Here is the finished product! Both are the same color robe by the way … lighting! See how nicely the monogram lays on top?

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I wanted to share this because this is what I’m working on today, and because CRAFTSY is having a 50% off top classes sale through tomorrow (Saturday, 4/23). Here is my affiliate link if you want to check out any of their classes – click HERE. I’ve reviewed several on my blog and have found them all fun to watch and very helpful! Just search Craftsy or click on the Craftsy tag.

Have a great weekend!

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.

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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!

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Stabilizer Savvy

Happy Monday! I’m excited to share with you ANOTHER great video class on Craftsy that I just watched! This one is on STABILIZER and is perfect for beginners, but still great for the experienced embroiderer like me. I took 4+ pages of notes!

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This one is called Stabilizer Savvy with Terri Hanson, and it’s 9 lessons and took me about an hour to watch. I skipped through a few parts and you can also go back and watch different lessons or skip around.

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Here are the lesson topics:

1) Intro

2) Storage, Labeling & Other Basics – this lesson gave a couple of cool ideas for storing your stabilizer and labeling it to know what is what! She also went over hooping and basics of stabilizer (stabilizer = SUPPORT for your garment or item).

3) Cut-Away Stabilizer – medium weight vs. mesh which doesn’t show through as much

4) Tear-Away Stabilizer – great for more stable fabrics like denim, towels, canvas, etc., she also goes over “floating” tearaway stabilizer underneath

5) Sticky Stabilizer – true sticky stabilizer vs. spray adhesive + cutaway, what to do about sticky residue

6) Water Soluble Stabilizer – wash away vs. film topper and when you need them (she discussed free-standing lace designs and patch-looking designs)

7) Fusible Fleece (I skipped this one but will watch later)

8) Fuse & Stick Stabilizer (such as Heat N Bond Lite or Wonder Under) – in this lesson she goes through the applique process step by step also which might be helpful for beginners

9) Toppings & Cloud Cover (aka Solvy & Comfort Cover) – WHEN do you use these and how to remove it

I tried doing a video once using my Iphone and ended up posting like 9 snippets of video of me trying to applique and show you how to use my machine! 😛 What I love about the Craftsy videos is that they are professionally done (in a real studio) and super easy to understand. There are Questions & Answers on the right side of your screen with real people asking questions and Terri and others answering. You can also check out the Q & A’s under the Discussions tab when you are done. There’s also a spot at the bottom to type NOTES while you are watching that you can look at later (or you can hand write them like me!)  Also, when you purchase the class, you can watch it as many times as you’d like and you are given materials you can download like a sample design that Terri used and a Resources & Templates download which is like a cheat sheet with short notes on which stabilizer to use with what (for this particular class).

Here are a few of my take-aways for this class:

Stabilizer is used to SUPPORT the item you are monogramming, embroidering or appliqueing! She goes over hooping and stabilizer and how to avoid gaps in fill stitch designs, distorted designs and puckering which are usually all stabilizer issues! When all else fails, test your design first on a similar fabric to make sure your stabilizer is right!

If you missed my last post, it was another awesome video ~ How to Start a Machine Embroidery Business.

All designs are on sale at Applique Cafe til the 28th!

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