Friday, July 10, 2009

July 10, 2009

Fridays are Cajun Corner day. Every Friday I send the weekly email for people who have asked to be on the Cajun Corner list. The problem was none of the pictures would upload on the email. I have to figure out how to either archive Cajun Corner to this blog or upload the pics to the email.

We are nearly finished with the display tablecloth and orange bowling shirts.

I should write a tutorial on the multi-hooping at this point. I looked on the internet and only found very few tutorials on multi-hooping. We did the display tablecloth on a 72"x120" tablecloth. The design itself is 37"-38" wide. In the end we stitched 3 practice designs and then the final. The first was each part to the design separately (shown in the first photo). The second, was all parts together, including the tree (shown in the second photo). The third, was the trial run before we did the final (shown in the third photo). The last photo shows the final picture and we are very proud of this endeavor. The tutorials suggested printing out the design and placing it on the fabric to determine measurements. That was a pain in the go-go. This was a mathmatical endeavor. It's a good thing that George was a finish carpenter. He measured and measured and measured. George always says, "measure twice and cut once." We measured a lot more than twice. Half of the 72" is 36" = the center of the table cloth. The table top is 24", so the drop begin 12" from center. Take the 12" from the 36" to get 24". 24" is the drop and you want the design centered in the middle of the drop. Half of 24" is 12" -- mark it. Then half of 120" is 60" -- mark it and you have dead center for the design. In our design we stitched out each part separately rather than printing on the printer (see the first photo, above). This gave us a feel for how each part of the design stitched out and fit. We had to use our largest hoop, the jacketback hoop. The design at times went all the way to the edge of the hoop and we were worried that it wouldn't fit into the hoop, but alas, as you can see, it fit. Then we had to align each part of the design, measuring off of the center cross hairs. Our machine has a trace feature which proved invaluable on this project. Everything was traced multiple times. We stopped the trace when it would get to an area that we weren't sure would clear the hoop, and to do all sorts of aligning. Since this was our first display multi-hoop project, we were nervous to the end. But when we finished the final, we had a glass of wine together and toasted our new knowledge of multi-hooping. I wouldn't say we are expert at multi-hooping, but I think you will agree that the project turned out very nice and professional looking. Now we need to do some ironing and removing excess stabilizer and this project is ready to go out the door.

After the bowling shirts, I plan on "trying to" perfect the patch. I've read and heard that a "real" patch is done on a special machine called a "Merrow". Merrow has a very interesting history and if you are inclined to read this sort of thing, I suggest you go to the Merrow web wite. If you look at the edge of store bought patches you will see that the edges are serged. The embroidery machine does applique with a satin stitch around it which looks very much like the serged edge of a patch. I've read a few articles about making patches on the embroidery machine with the satin stitches, rather than the merrow. I've seen pictures of the embroidery machine patches and they look really good. A month or so ago I met with a friend from Orlando who showed me a patch that she made and plans to sell. We discussed making patches and she is convinced that I'm using the wrong stabilizer. I was using Solvy. She said that Solvy wasn't strong enough to do what I want and instead I should use Aqua Magic. She's a walking advertisement for Aqua Magic. I've just received my Aqua Magic order in the past week and am anxious to start on the patches. Of course, my friend's was done via FSL (free standing lace). She is a digitizer and created her own patch via digitizing and layering stitches in different directions. I would be applying designs onto fabric as though I were doing applique work. The difference for me would be that the "fabric" that I would put the applique upon would be the Aqua Magic. Anyway, that's my theory and we'll see if it works. Stay posted for this project.

The Blue Angels are having a show today and tomorrow at Pensacola Beach. I'm avoiding the area because the traffic is usually horrendous but the show is wonderful. Since I live so close to the navy base -- Home of the Blue Angels -- they fly over my house a lot. I get my own free air show without leaving home. So, I'm staying put for the weekend. But anyone who has never seen this show and has the opportunity should see it. This is ballet in the sky. The precision is absolutely incredible.

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