After much wait, and what probably seems like forever, the July block is now online. I know that I said I’d have this done last month, and I really thought it would take me only a day or two to have them online, but alas, I had cut the fabric shapes at the wrong size and needed to redo all of my blocks. So unfortunately, real life and time took their toll and I’m only just getting them caught up now. August’s block is done, however, I need to write the documentation for it still. Because I have a Blog Hop obligation on Monday the 15th, I will shoot for getting the August block online Tuesday.
Little Treasures is the artwork of Gabry from Graphics and Graphics.
At this time, I have decided not to include the cutting files, opting instead to give you tutorials on how to create your own. I really would love to share the svg files with you and have permission to do so, but it is not possible to import the svg file in with the software such as Silhouette Studio without having to resize the svg. Because it’s to difficult to note the sizings that each svg would need to be, I’ve opted to show you how to make your cutting files from the pdf file provided for your patterns instead.
No promises for September, because as much as I say it, I know something is likely to happen that will keep me from getting it posted properly.
However, and let me make this very very clear, I have NOT enjoyed the comments on Facebook over the last month that seemed like some of you are being impatient. When you are getting something for free, I really think you should be more considerate. Your comments were deleted, and if I find more comments that make me feel stressed again, I will ban you from my Facebook page, and the only way you’ll find out there is a new block is by monitoring this site.
To those of you who’ve been kind, and inquired how I’ve been, I really appreciate that you cared enough to ask and I thank you for being considerate in your inquiries.
No matter how late I am, I will finish this series of blocks. I take my commitments seriously, but I am not fast, nor can I whip these blocks out in a day, they take time, but I will get them up and online as quickly as possible.
October, November and December blocks, please do not expect these the first Tuesday of the month, at this point I can not obligate myself to these days, but I will try to have them online during the month in which they should appear for.
Bonus Blocks: I am sorry, but I am no longer sure I am going to offer these, including the two boys that were still yet to come, the comments from last month just really got to me and I really am reconsidering just selling the blocks instead. We will just have to wait and see.
Now onto the tips for July’s Block. These tips don’t necessarily relate to Little Treasures itself, but are techniques I used during the process of creating the blocks.
While I was waiting for my machine to be fixed, I took it upon myself this summer to learn a new applique technique that I’ve been wanting to try lately. Ever since I followed the Jingle BOM last year on Erin Russik‘s site, I have wanted to take the time to learn how to do the applique with the starch method instead of using a glue stick.
Then, this year I discovered Pearl Pereira‘s P3 Designs BOM, I also wanted to learn her techniques, so I ordered her DVD and boy, I wish someone had led me along that path along time ago. Has it changed the way I do applique forever? Absolutely. Both Erin and Pearl teach this technique, Erin has videos of her technique on Youtube, and Pearl sells an amazing DVD of her techniques along with many other wonderful tips on her applique methods. While I won’t be using them all, I was thrilled to learn many new little things that really opened my world of applique.
So with that said, the above picture shows that I keep my pattern shapes all together via a Ziploc bag. I do this to keep it easy for me to know what pattern it is and what I’ve already taken the time to get ready to stitch out. I do label the bags, but the above image I had just put these in the bag and hadn’t labeled it yet.
I know many people keep bags at their sewing tables to put their thread scraps in, but I don’t really have the room to tape a bag to the tables I sew on, I’m in a pretty enclosed space to sew with, and really try to keep the space clean for my legs to be comfortable. So I stack my miscellaneous threads in a pile,
and once I am done sewing I put them in a Ziploc bag as well. I eventually place these bags once they are pretty full in with my scrap fabrics.
One of the absolutely best things about using starch instead of a glue stick is that I can easily remove the freezer paper now prior to doing the machine embroidery, or even the blind stitch to the shape on the background with such ease that I was almost giddy. I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE the starch method of applique. I can’t ever see myself using glue stick again, to be honest.
The above image shows the start of removing the freezer paper.
Because the curl sections of the hair or so thin when turned under, I chose to just tear around the curl on the freezer paper leaving it in, but as you can see, you can easily slip your fingers thru the paper taking out the paper easily. Even on the smallest of pieces I was able to remove the paper easily.
Just another image showing the removal of the freezer paper.
And finally, all removed.
I have also changed from using black thread to a light grey thread. I don’t know why I didn’t do this sooner, other than it occurred to me that when I am piecing I use grey thread and I realized that grey with machine embroidery also would serve me well in that it won’t show thru like the black thread does if I don’t get it all out when removing the shapes from the stabilizer.
Another tip along this line is that if your placement stitch is lose like mine often is on my machine, taking a seam ripper and cutting off a few stitches will easily remove the shapes easier than if you just tried to lift it off without cutting the backing threads.
This picture is a little hard to see, I’m sorry for that, I think the images that follow it are easier to see tho, but here I wanted to show a tip on lining up edge stitches.
I have encountered a problem where my outline doesn’t always meet the edge, so I decided to try digitizing them a little differently so they start on the edge instead of inside the shape. When lining up the stitch you can then place the needle into the first stitch position via your machine settings, and then put the needle down. Line up where the outline of the stitch should be on the shape, and start to stitch. It totally works well to have this meet up well and no more little gap on the edges. I have yet to conquer it with the cowlick on the top of the hair as yet, but I’ll figure something out eventually I hope, in the meantime I have taken to using my sewing machine and stitched the gap out of it that way so I don’t see a gap at that spot.
I think this image will show you better what I mean by lining it up with your needle down.
Get it lined up
and it’s off to the races.. ZooOOOooom!!!
and look how nice that turns out, right on the edge, no gap.
Now, unfortunately, for July, I tried a new placement medium, I thought I was using a wash-away stabilizer, but this stuff is called Rinseaway and one would think it rinses away…
It does, but not in the way I would want it to rinse away and I am in fact so disappointed I almost hate showing my example stitchout of July’s block.
However, because I used my Silhouette Cameo’s printing ability to write on, I again switched from a “black” sketch pen to a lighter sketch pen and that I am pleased with the result, no more black shows thru. 🙂
Part of the process of adding your shapes is done prior to your stitching. Using a glue stick (I knew I’d find a way to use these since I won’t be using them for turn under the edge applique anymore) and that is gluing the shapes on the placement medium into place, then going to the machine and stitching them out. Now I realize some of you appliquers out there may already know to do this, but as of last month I had no knowledge of this step in applique, but I love it. It makes the blind stitch on the machine go so much easier and quicker.
You also can easily remove that freezer paper prior to gluing the shapes onto your medium.
Even with a slight outline that was stitched into place, I removed that stabilizer easily.
Placing the glue on the backside of your shape (where your freezer paper would have been) just a little bit of glue is needed to have it stay in place till it’s ready to be sewn.
You can see on the shoe, the glue, I’ve tried to get close enough with the camera so you could see the glue, but really there is not a lot of glue on that shoe.
I’ve turned the show over and placed it in place. I press a bit with my fingers so it stays in place and continues on.
In the case of the July doll, I did half of the shapes stopping when I got to the head, and went to the machine and stitched these in place. Being that this was the first time I tried this I wasn’t sure how well it would all go together.
I then finished the top and tore away most of the stabilizer. I then started on the bird and finished the rest of the doll.
After all is said and done, the July block didn’t turn out so bad. This image is after I rinsed the block, I’m not happy that parts of the stabilizer is so obviously showing still, I don’t know if another rinse will help rid the block of them or not, but I’m going back to the other stabilizer I used prior as I know that will remove all of the stabilizer.
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