Creative Personalization and Unique Gifts all with a Needle and Thread.


Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Machine Embroidery on Hoodies and Happy New Year's Eve

Dear Friends,
I hope you all have a lovely Christmas and are now gearing up for the brand new year.  A time for fresh beginnings awaits us.

I received some wonderful machine embroidery items for Christmas (will share with you in an upcoming post) but my most favorite gift of all was having my family all together.

You see, I was not expecting Katie to be able to come for a visit as she is in the Air Force.  Mike and Katie had other secret plans as Katie had a couple of days off.  It was two days before Christmas and we were all sitting in the living room.  Mike says he has an early Christmas present for us and we are to close our eyes.

I jokingly said, "Is it a puppy?"  I knew good and well it wasn't a puppy.  We all closed our eyes and our beagle, Cindy, starts yipping excitedly.  I laughed and said, "It IS a puppy!" 

Mike says to open our eyes and sitting before us was KATIE!  He flew her in for a couple of days!  What joy!

I was still in need of getting a few groceries for our Christmas meal.  I rushed to our Meijer  which is a one stop grocery/department store.  It was a cold and snowy day.

Along with the groceries, I grabbed a few things to wrap for Katie so she would have SOMETHING under the tree.  First, I got us all matching jammies.  Then I also got her a warm hoodie and a robe.  (I had mailed her Christmas gifts earlier)

Upon opening the hoodie, Katie asked for a bit of personalization on her hoodie which I happily agreed to.  Katie loves horses.  The font and swirl designs are built into my machine, Brother 1250D.
It was sad for us to say goodbye to Katie.  She deploys early March to Kuwait.  Please keep her and all our service men and women in your prayers.
I hope each of you had a very Merry Christmas.  Having all our family around the table and going to church made it simply perfect for me.
With loving New Year's wishes to you all,

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Machine Embroidery on Cards

Dear Friends,
The beautiful Christmas season always brings it's own form of busy to our lives.  That means I have time for only the quickest of projects right now.  I'm sure you understand.  :-)

I've made sets of these snowflake cards to give as gifts.  In the previous cards, I rubberstamped Christmas wishes.  This time, I've left the inside of the cards blank so that the recipient can use these cards for any occasion.

The snowflake design comes from Needle Little Embroidery Yahoo group
The step-by-step directions on how to make these little cuties can be found HERE. 
Have the very Merriest Christmas Ever.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

End of the Year SHINE Update

Dear Friends,

If you remember at the beginning of the year I had selected the word SHINE to focus on during 2013.  It was a word I had felt placed on my heart and I felt I was being called to shine in my words and actions.  That post can be found HERE.

Over the course of this past year, that word has helped me keep me pointed north, meaning that it has guided my way through situations I've encountered.  2013 has been a very difficult year, plus it has been an extremely busy year.  It truly has been a year for me to serve others (which isn't a bad thing and what we are called to do).  A year of service and a year of busy creates a weary Nancy and I have felt like life was out of balance.  It has been through those times I would repeat in my head, "just shine Nancy, just shine."
God used this word in me in ways I didn't imagine when I first selected it.  I didn't realize I'd be called upon and called to serve like I had this year.  I've said many times in my life, "We do not know what tomorrow will bring," and that has rang true over and over this year.

Despite the difficulties of 2013, this year has shown me many blessings.  I can also say that the struggles of this year have brought to light blessings, things I'd taken for granted.  I feel more in tune in that I notice God's beauty showing itself the many things around us.
God is great.  He truly is.  I have full confidence that 2014 is going to be an amazing year, especially considering the words that have been placed upon my heart to focus on.  I can't wait to share them with you and will do so January 1st. 
But for now, Emily is home from college.  It has been the first time she has seen our new home, first time for her to be in Michigan, and it doesn't quite feel like home to her yet, but it will.  There is a lot of beauty out there in that snow today.  God's love is good and everlasting.  I am thankful for my blessings, and I am thankful to all of you who are out there reading this blog.
With love and God's blessings, may you be enjoying the beautiful Christmas season.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

How To Do Machine Embroidery On Cardstock - Sweet Christmas Cards

Dear Friends,
Last night I had a little fun doing some embroidery on cardstock to make these sweet snowflake cards.  Have you ever tried embroidering on card stock?  It really is a lot of fun and I've made up a whole box of cards that I have ready to send.  Paper crafting is something else I enjoy so it is a great way to use up those extra scrapbooking and paper crafting supplies.

First choose your design.  This beautiful design comes from Needle Little Embroidery.  It is a free design that was just posted on the Needle Little Embroidery Yahoo group which is open to anyone.  The design you choose should be pretty light.  Most red work designs work well for stitching on paper.  If you use a dense design, chances are your paper will tear due to the many needle penetrations.  If you have a design that you are concerned will tear the paper, Iron on a piece of light weight tear-away stabilizer to the back of the cardstock and this will help prevent tearing.  I did not do that on these cards because the design is pretty airy.

As for the needle I use, I personally choose a 75/11 needle size as that is a smaller needle thus making smaller holes in the cardstock.  Here's a TIP:  You know those needles you have that are only partially used?  By that I mean, when you start a new project, especially a large project, you should always start out with a new needle.  So you replace your old needle thinking that the old needle still has a bit of life left to it.  Save those old needles and get one out now for making cards and doing paper embroidery.  They work perfect for this!

Hoop a piece of light weight tear away stabilizer.  I personally use pattern weight stabilizer that I get at JoAnn's.  It is inexpensive and just right for a project like this. 

Float the cardstock on top of the stabilizer.  (Don't hoop the cardstock)  Stitch your design.  NOTE:  Now, even though your stabilizer is tear away, CUT it away.  Do NOT tear the stabilizer away.  Tearing away the stabilizer can easily tear your cardstock and you don't want that.  Two side notes here.  The red card is stitched with silver metallic thread.  The metallic thread stitches easily and looks stunning on the paper.  Also, I slow my machine down to stitch at a slower speed again to help prevent paper tearing.

Next, glue your design to a piece of folded cardstock and embellish as desired.  Gluing it to the folded card hides the back side of your stitching and the stabilizer.  On the red card, I paper punched the top edge.  I've also rubber stamped a Christmas saying inside the cards so they are ready for me to add a quick note and send. 

Everyone I've given stitched cards to loves them and I get lots of ohhh's and ahhh's and 'how did you make that?'  Keep several on hand with birthday designs and for thank you cards. 

These cards stitch up super quick and make great gifts and are also perfect for selling at craft shows.

Stay warm everyone.  We got 4" of snow yesterday and got to try out our snow blower for the first time.  Brrrrrr....

Blessings to you all,
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