Napkin rings with Machine Embroidery

So, I did get the gift for my landlady done on time! It was a bit tricky to make these things so that all the seam allowances were enclosed, and they had enough body to really act like a napkin ring (if you know what I mean) but they turned out really well, and I’m so pleased that what I had in my head really worked.

Machine Embroidered Napkin Rings

I already had a lovely fabric covered box for her, and the napkin rings fit right in, and I have the perfect piece of organza ribbon to tie around the box for the finishing touch.

Napkin rings in box

Voila, the perfect gift!

Fabric Box

I’ve had such fun with my embroidery machine and all the software that now I just want to keep going, but I have to wait until after Christmas probably, since if I don’t go bake Christmas Tree Bread and some other goodies today and tomorrow, my family will probably mutiny! I really want to try these Brombeerbusserl from Delicious Days, a simply yummylicious blog that my mom sent me a link to recently. They sound (and look!) so d’lish, as Nicky says. I’m off to the kitchen, then!

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The unorganized quilter?

I really don’t think I’m all that unorganized. Yeah, my studio (and the rest of the house, it could honestly be said) is a bit cluttered, but I’ve always said that know where everything is. I do have a pretty good memory, and that helps most of the time. Every once in a while though, I end up running around crazy looking for one stupid item that’s gone astray. I must point out here that I didn’t, in any way shape or form, help whatever it is to go missing. I didn’t put it somewhere weird, or lend it to someone, it just grew legs, and isn’t where I left it.

Every once in a while, I end up running around crazy looking for one stupid item that’s gone astray.

What does all of this have to do with my quilting and fabric art life? Today I set out to make some little napkin ring type thingys to give to my landlady for Christmas, to match the tablerunner and door hanger from last year. Nothing is ever as simple as you wish it to be. Considering that I haven’t used the embroidery machine since last Christmas, the first order of business was to excavate the thing from the clutter that finds its way to the table where the machine lives. Then I realize that due to major computer issues including a new motherboard and reformatted hard drive, the software that drives the card reader/writer that makes the embroidery designs available to the sewing machine isn’t loaded.

So I go hunting for it, and the box with the software and instructions is nowhere to be found. After an hour and a half of tearing the studio apart, Continue reading The unorganized quilter?

Crafty gifts

Every year, I think long and hard about what gift(s) to give our landlord and landlady. They are just wonderful people, but it’s difficult to know very well what they like. They’re German, of course, and retired, and pretty much have everything they need. Things to eat and drink seem safe, and are usually well received, but I do like to go a bit farther than that if possible. Last year, I used my embroidery machine to make a table runner and a matching door hanger:

Table runner & door hanger

It was really funny, since I’d put the fabric that I used for the lining in a pile with bunches of other quilting stuff to get rid of donate to charity, and when I needed something to line the table runner with, I had to go digging for it. See, this is why we never get rid of anything, packrats that we are in my family. As soon as it’s gone, we need it for something. It absolutely never fails.

Anyway, I still have more of the green fabric (and the lining, which I decided might be worth keeping after all), and more threads for the embroidery, so I’m thinking I’ll make some napkin rings or something with some of the other embroidery designs that came in the package I bought. I’m not sure that I have the time to make placemats (much bigger and take longer of course), but some kind of napkin thingy might be doable. Oh, and maybe if I actually use the embroidery machine for the first time since I made these gifts for last Christmas, hubby will quit twitting me about it!

Favorite Things: Curved thread snips

Easy Kut curved thread snips

I love these snips! They are so perfect for machine quilting, because you can get really close to the quilt to trim the threads, but you won’t risk cutting the fabric (as I’ve done before with other scissors!). I need to order another pair so I have a spare, because if I lose them, it’s a really bad thing. I’ve also used them to trim threads when I do machine embroidery, but now I see there’s a new snip on the market that might be better for that:

Kricket scissors
Interestingly, it doesn’t seem like these are made by the same company. Go figure. Nancy’s Notions has both of these products.