Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Staff Projects: Gloria's first

One of my first sewing projects was a chalkboard mat for my nieces. I made it was last year when Annie gave me my first sew machine. At first, the only thing I knew about the sewing machines was how turn on and turn off, but Annie taught me some of the basics and soon I was making things alone.

When I finished the chalkboard mat, I was very happy because I did the whole project myself. From design to sewing, I did it all without any help. Sure, I had some problems. For example, when I started sewing, I realized that one piece of fabric was longer than another. I had to cut all the sides to make a proper rectangle. Later, I had a perfect dream for wide & accessible pockets, but when I went to attach them to the mat I didn´t have good access to sew them. It was a challenge, but well worth it.

Once I was done I gave it to my nieces and I was especially proud to see how much they loved the mat! They played with it all day and they wanted to bring it everywhere. For two weeks we played with it constantly. And perhaps best of all, for them it was perfect! They couldn't identify the mistakes. All they could do is have fun and be creative with my creation.

This mat was one of our first steps toward developing our artist's portfolio, the Fetch Your Sketch.  If you want to make your own with the help of a pattern, you can find it here: http://www.byannie.com/shop/product/fetch-your-sketch/

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Machine Applique and Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day!

We always look forward to February and Valentine's Day so that we can display two of Annie’s favorite little quilts: You Stole My Heart and Loves Me!
These two quilts are special to us, not only because of their cute appearance, but also because they involve two very fun products Fusible Thread and Water Soluble Applique Foundation. These two resources that may not be known to all home crafters, sewists, quilters and applique lovers, but can change their world and open up new doors for creativity and success on projects.

You Stole My Heart

For You Stole My Heart I wanted to have cute small hearts appliqued onto the wall hanging without having any stiffness in those embellishments. To do so, I used my favorite fusible thread, Superior’s Charlotte's Fusible Web. Charlotte’s Fusible Web is a wonderful product which you sew onto the design, before cutting it out, and then, once cut out, allows you to fuse your embellishment into place quickly and securely with no stiffness.
Check out these useful videos that Annie did with Superior Threads to explain how to use Fusible Threads in more detail.
Fusible Web Video #1 - Fusible Thread Part 1
Fusible Web Video #2 - Fusible Thread Part 2: Finishing The Edge
Fusible Web Video #3 - Fusible Thread Samples Part 1
Fusible Web Video #4 - Fusible Thread Samples Part 2
Fusible Web Video #5 - Texture Magic and Fusible Thread Part 1
Fusible Web Video #6 - Texture Magic & Fusible Thread Part 2
Fusible Web Video #7 - Winding Fusible Thread on a Bobbin

Loves Me!

For Loves Me! I used my favorite method of machine applique, Water Soluble Applique Foundation. The foundation is a special product that produces the look of hand-done needle-turn applique using the sewing machine!

Here are the easy steps to use Water Soluble Applique Foundation:
  1. Trace the appliqué design onto the Water Soluble Appliqué Foundation material and cut out. (Make it really fast by stapling several pieces of foundation material together and cutting out all at once!)
  2. Glue the foundation shape onto the back of the applique fabric using a water-soluble school glue stick.
  3. Cut out the fabric, leaving a seam allowance around the stabilizer shape.
  4. Apply glue to edges of fabric and turn fabric edges under. A wooden nail stick makes it so easy!
  5. Glue the prepared applique pieces in place on quilt background.
  6. Stitch in place using invisible thread and a blanket or zigzag stitch. The Water Soluble Appliqué Foundation material keeps your pieces sturdy yet still easy to quilt over.
  7. After quilting, wash the quilt and the foundation material dissolves, leaving a bit of fiber to fill out the applique shapes. Your applique pieces will become very soft and have the appearance of needle-turned hand applique.
The Water Soluble Appliqué Foundation material also makes a great stabilizer when thread painting, satin stitching, or embroidering by hand or machine. It will easily tear away if desired and any remnants will dissolve when the object is washed.
Also, because the Water Soluble Appliqué Foundation material is stiff enough to run through the computer, trapunto or quilting designs can be printed onto the foundation material. This can be great for more complex designs. Once printed, glue the design to the back of the quilt, stitch along the lines, and wash the foundation away when you are finished!
For these and more tutorial’s please visit ByAnnie.com and Tutorials from ByAnnie.com on our website.