Friday Flashback – Girly Alphabet – New Freebie Design

Hello and welcome to another Friday Flashback.  This week I am bringing you a really cute collection – the Girly Alphabet.

Girly Alphabet got it’s start when I was sending the twins (Emma and Grace) off to daycare one day a week.  Now it’s not like the girls look (or looked) anything alike – Gracie’s hair was in ringlets, and Emma’s is dead straight – however the daycare had a lot of trouble working out which twin was which.

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I really didn’t want to put their entire name on a shirt – we hear so much these days about stranger danger, and I didn’t want to take any chances, however I figured a decorative letter might prompt the teachers, and not too much like a “hello my name is …” shirt.

And thus the Girly Alphabet was born.

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At it’s heart, the Girly Alphabet is a set of beautifully appliqued and stitched block letters, however each letter is also highlighted with a girly element, such as a flower, butterfly, or a bee.

I began with the applique, and I had recently seen a set of beautiful designs completed in applique, that were finished with an extra row of stitching.  I really thought this finished the designs off really well, and looked incredibly professional, and so I decided to try this on these letters.  The other change that I made to standard applique, is that my applique stitch is slightly thicker, meaning that there is more coverage, and errant threads don’t pop through quite so easily.

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One of the tricks that I have learnt over the years with machine embroidery applique, is that when you are creating clothing, ALWAYS use a fusible web on the fabric, to ensure that when you wash the shirt, it won’t warp or distort.

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Once I had created the letters, I then began adding the highlights, using cutsie elements.  I have used basic stitches for these, to add extra dimension to the designs.

I had a lot of fun with these designs.  As well as making the shirts for the girls (only one of them had to wear the shirt each week), I also created a beautiful wallhanging using Emma’s name.

The story of the wallhanging really brings a smile to my face.  On the day that I was creating this, Emma was being “extra” challenging.  So as I was using beautiful words to describe my gorgeous daughter, I was thinking alternative words.

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To create the wallhanging I layed out the letters making Emma, and then used my software to add the rest of the letters to form the words.

Initially we gave away the lovley tulip element from the Girly Alphabet collections.  If you missed these the first time around, you can collect your copy from our free designs page HERE.  As a thank you to all of our loyal customers, for the next week we are also offering the letter L – as a free download.  Simply click HERE to collect your copy.

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Thank you for taking this trip down memory lane with me, I hope you have enjoyed looking at this collection, and that it has inspired you to stitch for a loved one.

Until next time, have a Stitchin’ Day.  Julie.

 

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Friday Flashback – Gracie G. Raffe – Huge Discount

Welcome back to another Friday Flashback, taking a look back at some of my favourite classic collections.

This week I am bringing you a really cute stuffed animal – Gracie G. Raffe.

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Gracie G is named after my own beautiful Gracie G(irl), as everyone else already had a collection named after them, and it was her turn.

Gracie G came about as a lot of other digitizers were creating stuffed animals at the time, with each piece being made in the hoop (many of them in a crazy patch style), and then being pieced together in the end.

I loved the idea of this, and decided to try my own hand.  It was a toss up as to whether to create an elephant, or a giraffe.  In the end, I went with the Giraffe, simply because I could name it after Gracie.

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I digitized and created Gracie G over a 4 day weekend one November.  At that time, the girls were still in nappies, and we were living in Melbourne.  As a treat each Melbourne Cup (horserace) Day weekend, my hubby would go away camping, and drop the children off with his mother on his way out.  So I had from Friday night, to Tuesday all to myself to create.  I can remember sitting in front of the machine, at about 3 in the morning, trying to get one piece right, but it was a great weekend.

Gracie G Raffe is created piece by piece in the hoop, with the design consisting of flowered panels, and then the pattern stitching out.  You cut the pattern out at the end, with seam allowance added, and you will have all of your pattern pieces ready to go.  You then construct the Giraffe once all of the embroidery is created.

I did have a couple of issues with the Gracie G Raffe collection.  When I test sew my designs, I will do different designs (in the collection) in different machines, which normally works wonderfully, however in this instance, the Bernina and Brother brands of machines did not like the long satin stitch that I had created for the mane.  Unfortunately due to the way I tested the design, I didn’t realise this until after the pattern had been released, and I had to immediately create a multi layered mane with shorter satin stitches that would still give the same result.

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The construction of Gracie G is quite simple, however it must be done in the correct order.  One of the parts that people have a little trouble with is the base of the giraffe, and after a lot of speaking with customers, we found that it was the paper size – the joys of working internationally.

There is no real purpose in giving away part of the giraffe design, however I really wanted to be able to thank you for taking the time to read this post, so for the next two weeks, I am giving a 50% off discount for the purchase of Gracie.  To get your discount, use the code FLASHBACK in the discount code section at checkout.

Thank you for taking this trip down memory lane with me, I hope you have enjoyed looking at this collection, and that it has inspired you to stitch for a loved one.

Until next time, have a Stitchin’ Day.  Julie.

Craft Alive – Free Entry for Guild Members this weekend in Tamworth

If you are in Tamworth this weekend, and a member of a craft guild, join us for FREE on Sunday.  Simply bring your guild badge with you for free entry.

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Friday Flashback – Sugar & Spice/Snips & Snails New Freebies

Welcome back to another Friday Flashback, taking a look back at some of my favourite classic collections.

This week I am bringing you two collections that kind of go together – Snips and Snails and Sugar & Spice.

I can remember as a child I had a grandparent who was partial to girls rather than my brother, and she would recite the poem “what are little girls made of…. Sugar and Spice, and Everything Nice….what are little boys made of….Snips and Snails and Puppy Dogs Tails….”  Now I don’t totally go for the whole gender role thing of girls are sweet and boys are muddy, however the name always stuck in my head.

The idea for this collection began with seeing some amazing artwork based around little girls.  I really wanted something that was quick to stitch out, and at the time, I hadn’t worked on any redwork collections.

So redwork was my style of choice for these gorgeous girls.  I found that I had so much fun creating these designs, that once I got started, in no time I had 16 gorgeous girls.  I like to think there is something for everyone in this collection – there is the little girl at the party, cooking, picking up frogs, dancing are all covered in this sweet collection.

I was so proud of the collection at the time (remember back in 2008), not many machines had thread trimmers on them, and these designs are all created to have no jump stitches except for the eyes.

As I was test stitching the collection, I found that using black thread made the designs look incredibly harsh, and I had to switch to a dark brown thread.  This trick has worked for me for more than 10 years now, giving a much softer and natural appearance to my embroidery designs.  The other interesting thing that happened as I was test stitching these designs, was Cameron (then 4) asking where the boys were?

And so the Snips and Snails collection was began as well.  Once again, using the same artist, the Snips and Snails collection gives 16 different traditional boy designs, with the sweet boys engaging in BBQing, playing super hero, policeman, fishing, and skateboarding.

Over the years, I have used the designs are a quick way to embellish items (each design only takes about 10 minutes), and the designs are brilliant for applying paints to for an added dimension.

The first items that I created with these designs were the quilts.  They are so easy to make, and are a great gift.  I have also used the designs for birth samplers successfully, and even used the designs in a binder cover that I still use to this day.

Initially we gave away the very pretty faces for two of these designs HERE as a freebie with the Snips & Snails and Sugar & Spice Design collections.  As a thank you to all of our loyal customers, for the next week we are also offering a second design from each collection – as a free download.  Simply click HERE to collect your copy.

Thank you for taking this trip down memory lane with me, I hope you have enjoyed looking at this collection, and that it has inspired you to stitch for a loved one.

Until next time, have a Stitchin’ Day.  Julie.

Come and See Us in Tamworth this weekend

For anyone in the Tamworth area (or those willing to travel), this weekend we are participating in the Craft Alive Tamworth Show.

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We have some new quilts to show off, including the new Elegance and CATastrophy quilts, and a fabulous special on the SewBright Sewing Light

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You can also check out our fabulous display of recycled clothing.

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I look forward to seeing you there.

Until next time, have a Stitchin’ Day.  Julie.