Judy's Hints Tips and Ideas
The Angler 2 ™
Every quilter should have one of these wonderful gadgets in their tool box! The Angler 2 ™ is a plastic template that fits every sewing machine. It can be installed and reinstalled in minutes with a few pieces of masking tape. Make up to 7¾ " squares with this upgrade. (from the original The Angler) It eliminates the necessity of drawing or pressing diagonal seam guide lines and is very accurate for chain piecing. After a bit of practice, it cuts piecing time in half for most of the "quick piecing" techniques.
What is Needle Tatting? Barbara Foster is an expert in this field and has written several patterns and books about tatting with a needle rather than a shuttle. In her words,
"Replace the tatting shuttle with a needle and tatting becomes easy, becau se the double stitch is put directly onto the needle. Once the double stitches are on the needle they are slid over the eye to make either a ring or chain. The only difference between shuttle and needle tatting is the instrument used to make the lace. In shuttle tatting, the shuttle moves back and forth, over and under, transferring the loop to the other thread, which for most can be difficult. In needle tatting, the stitches are first supported on the needle, then pulled off over the eye onto the thread. There is only one stitch in tatting, the double stitch."
"Learn Needle Tatting Step-By-Step" is a book written with the purpose of teaching to tat on the needle using ANY tatting pattern. This book takes you step-by-step with 85 full colour photographs. Patterns include Doily or Collar edging, Pillowcase edging, Bookmark, Medallion, Butterfly, Note Card and Hanky edging.
The Little Aussie Swag
The pattern for this great little swag appears in Topkids Magazine issue 57. It uses Marti Michell's Template Set H. Carol Le Maitre is the designer and we will have a pattern available on the site very soon!.
In Australian Stitches Magazine is an article on "FUSIBLE THREADS". Benz Fuse ™ Thread is a low temperature melt, nylon adhesive fusible thread. The most common use of fusible thread is to wind it onto a bobbin or use it on the lower looper of an overlocker for sewing with normal thread elsewhere. This method is used for "no-sew" hems, however, in this article Judy also discusses other timesaving uses for Fusible Thread.
- Use Fusible Thread to position a zipper.
- Excellent for perfectly matched stripes and checks.
- Quilters use it for careful piecing.
- Two quick ways to apply binding.
- For applying lace, braids or trims into position - particularly helpful for curves and tricky corners.
Ever thought about inserting Pipe Cleaners into narrow bias fabric tubes with Fasturn® Turning Tools? They make wonderful 3D embellishments that will "mould" to any shape and stay put. Soft to use, they make an ideal filling. Judy has used them for animal tails and for flowers. Maybe you can think of other suggestions.
Iron on Transfer Books
Do you own a computerized sewing machine that does automatic embroidery? Well, all of our Iron on Transfer Books make an excellent source for hundreds of designs for you to digitize. They are simple outlines making them easy for embroidery use.
Recently a well-known sewing machine dealer was having all the trouble in the world with metallic thread breaking when embroidering. Can you relate to her frustrations - been there, done that? She had tried all the common trouble shooting methods. Then, like a light bulb sparkling, she remembered Judy telling her the benefits of using Lube-a-Thread . Applying this to her machine, brought so much relief of her tension (let alone the machine's tension) she phoned Judy and raved on about what she could now do which was giving her so many problems without Lube-A-Thread.
Why don't you try it too?
Photo Transfer Paper
Just a reminder, that teflon coated irons are a "no-no" when using our Photo Transfer Paper. The iron just doesn't get hot enough to transfer the design onto the fabric. Also, you really need to be working on a firm surface. Most ironing boards are too "spongy" to accept the transfer effectively.
True Story: It may have been a "bad hair type of day", but hurrying to make nighties for her granddaughters for Christmas at the last minute, Judy was having trouble inserting two needles simultaneously in her overlocker. (Some models require this.) She admits that the eyes have "matured" a little but this was ridiculous. Then she remembered a Two Needle Installer in the product range. Wow! What a difference! Easy-peasy! It saved the day. If you can relate to this - GET ONE!
Needle Gumming from Stabilizers?
Well, what you need is a little packet called Innovations Needle Release™ . The sewing machine needle collects some of the adhesive used in iron-on stabilizers and interfacings. This can result in poor stitching, as the needle will often "miss" the bobbin thread. Instead of changing the needle, place this little packet of non-toxic lubricant underneath the needle and sew five or six stitches (without any thread) through the bag. Can be used for hand sewing needles too. DO NOT REMOVE CONTENTS FROM THE BAG THOUGH.
Maybe you have some hints or tips you have discovered whilst using our products. If you want to share them, we would love to hear from you.