Tackling Reality

Dream Catcher shirt

When it comes to crafting, I’m like a kid in a candy store; a very young kid with the blissful ignorance of limitations in the candy store. I see things; I’m sure my eyes light up; I think ‘ooooohhhhh’ and I stockpile the stuff necessary to complete the treasured project. But, like that kid who can’t taste everything without hitting the wall, I can’t seem to finish everything that in the moment I think I’ll just whip out. In reality, I work amidst piles (and piles) of unfinished projects. However, I’ve managed to finish a few things (woohoo!) to share.

The two T-shirts are for someone who signed up for the 2013 Creative Pay it Forward. The recipient does cancer walks and has mentioned she’d like a shirt with a checkbox that says “other” (the non-pink cancer survivors are “other” when they register). Teal is for ovarian cancer.   Purple ribbons are for Alzheimers.

Other items are a little pouch that holds coffee filters on the wall right by the coffee machine; a reader case front (tree), back (it was a dark and stormy night) and pocket (tudor wildlife design); wine charm earrings for a neighbor who pours at the winery; an owl and a dream catcher on denim shirts and an “in progress” Poe phrase raven that I’m planning to incorporate in a laptop case. You can click on any of the photos for a larger view in slideshow.

The details for crafters (non-crafters skip this paragraph): Thin fabrics don’t support dense embroidery designs well. There are many ways around this, for wearables I like to use something like Light and Soft Fuse-On.  

  • Determine your design size and placement
  • Cut a piece of the fuse on a few inches larger all around then your design
  • Follow their directions and iron it on to the inside of your garment

The Light and Soft Fuse-On drapes well with your fabric. A heavier stabilizer doesn’t drape and can look odd. With the T-shirts and blue shirts, I then hoop them with a light/medium tear away and stitch my design (these were Pellon Stitch n Tear). The embroidery designs are from Embroidery Library (Celebrate Life – my glitch on the “C”, Awareness Rose, Dark and Stormy Night, Quill and Paper, Tudor Wildlife, Retro Coffee, Dream Catcher and Owl) and Urban Threads (Poe Raven and Tree).

The glitch on the “C” happened because for that small ribbon design near the neck, I used Sulky Sticky+ – an adhesive tear-off stabilizer in the hoop. Hooping with part of the neck in the hoop, part out, part of the seams in the hoop, part out would have been a mess. You just press the design area of your shirt to the sticky part in the hoop. But, with sticky stabilizers, or even if you use a lot of adhesive spray, you need to use a larger needle. The needle pokes a hole and the thread goes down and up. If the poked hole is tiny, the thread rubs against the stickiness, get gummy, bunches up, and if you’re lucky it breaks, if you’re not lucky things might get more stuck. I forgot to put in a bigger needle until after the thread on the “C” bunched up and broke. The T-shirts took multiple hoopings, three for the Alzheimer’s rose, with a 6 x 10 hoop. You can still see the hoop marks, but those come right off these fabrics. The shirts are deliberately big, loose and comfy. In the photos the designs might not look centered, because if you wear a shirt too big part of the design would end up scrunched by the armpits. I placed the designs a bit more towards center. If I were to do it over, I would have more space between the celebrate life ribbon and the checkbox and the text on that shirt would be white.

 All phrases on these pieces were done with the fonts available on my machine (SanFran for the reader case Go Paperless, Art Deco for the “other”, Bremen for the “I wear purple..”. The reader pouch was hooped with cutaway stabilizer, Warm and Natural batting and linen, and then stitched. Its inner pocket is linen with cutaway stabilizer.  All embroidery was stitched with Sulky 40 weight rayon embroidery thread. I should add that I get zip, nada, zilch for mentioning specific brands, but they are something machine embroiderer’s get excited about.

The next big order of the day is deciding what to tackle first amid the piles of “things I could do”.

This post is participating in Unknownmami’s Sundays in My City and the Gallery of Favorites put on by a Alea of Pre-Meditated Leftovers and April  at 21st Century Housewife.

4 comments on “Tackling Reality

  1. Keetha says:

    That’s a lot of quality needlework goin’ on there.

  2. You are very talented. I love the things you create : )

  3. unknownmami says:

    I think it just means that you are a crafty optimist. What artist doesn’t work in a room full of other projects?

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