Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Hello it's me!

Hum..... I now have that song in my head! lol (Todd Rundgren - Hello It's Me" ) - Gotta love the Internet!

Well, not much has been going on in my quilting world. I'm still working on that Sherbert quilt. I now have only the borders to machine quilt! I'm hoping to have that done along with the binding ready to be hand sewn by Friday. Wish me luck! lol

On the hand embroidering front, I've been plugging away at the panels and patterns that were sent to me from my wonderful friends in blog land. I plan on making a quilt with the various blocks. As I sat in my yellow room watching the beautiful snow fall while hand embroidering, I thought about the various methods people employ for hand embroidery and became curious. Oh.... did I ever tell you that I really think way to much? Well, I do..... anywhoooooo

I know that some of you use stabilizer and others a thin batting etc... I need to understand why the need for something like that. I read/saw on a tutorial from Cinderberry Stitches that she uses "fuse Pelon". I have no idea what that is. I did try using a batting behind one of my blocks and I felt like I was hand quilting more than hand embroidering. Mind you the batting may have been too thick (I used Warm & Natural) but still, it gave me an idea as to how it would feel.

I look at my stitches and think that they look okay. So I'm basically questioning the advantage of using a stabilizer behind my work.

What you have here is the front and back of one of my panels.


I've included pictures of my work so that you may provide me with your opinion. If you click on the image, you will have a closer view of the work. I did not use any form of stabilizer.

I'd love it if you would let me know what method you use for your hand embroidery work and why.

When I think of stabilizers, I think of the stuff I use for machine embroidering and let me tell you, it's pretty stiff. I'd be stabbing my needle in as opposed to gently piercing my fabric.

Would you tear the stabilizer out after you finished your project? Or does the stuff wash out? I have machine embroidery stabilizer that completly washes out. No residue! Would that be a good product to use?

Thank you for taking the time to instruct me!

16 comments:

Screen Door said...

I definitely like the thin batting feel. But I use fusible interfacing on applique blocks to stabilize. Your embroidery stitches are beautiful. I took ballet as a kid. Either you had the grace for it or not. I hope it's not that way for embroidery-- I'm still working a the stitches....

Guðrún said...

I will be reading your comments as I know nothing about this but bought the Butterfly garden and need to do stitchery on some of the blocks.

CONNIE W said...

I don't do lots of embroidery but here's my two cents' worth. In the past I did not use anything behind the fabric because I never knew differently. The threads would show through, of course (knots, etc.). I am now doing Leanne Beasley's BOM Journey of a Quilter and the pattern recommends using a woven iron-on stabilizer (or interfacing), whichever the product is known as, it is called "Weaveline". I have been unable to find any here in the states but ordered it online from Honeysuckle Cottage in AU where I purchased the BOM. It is sold by meters. I like using it and find stitching through it is not a problem. It provides a lining and the stitching does not show through from the back. Before I got the Weaveline I tried to substitute a pellon iron-on and it puckered so I ceased using it. I wrote about it on my blog and some commenters wrote that it puckered because I used steam, but the instructions with the pellon product advised to use steam. I must have over-steamed or done something, whatever. I am doing Bea's Bluework BOM in dark blue floss on white fabric without backing stabilizer and it looks ok to me (but the thread will shadow through if you look closely.) Hope this is helpful to you.

Thimbleanna said...

Ha, I was with you right away on that song! The minute I read your title, it was going through my head, and then you reminded me who originally sang it. Anyhoo, your embroidery is beautiful! I like to use a piece of white flannel behind mine -- nice and thin. I never used to put anything behind(I sure wish I had used something on that redwork tree skirt I did) but then I noticed that sometimes the thread shows through to the front on jump stitches. I see you've had some good comments so far!

kjquilts said...

I use a light weight fusible interfacing on my stitching pieces so that the stitches don't show through to the front.

Julia said...

I am so glad that you asked these questions. I was wondering some of the same things. I like the idea of using flannel. Thanks to everyone for your comments!!!

Peg - Happy In Quilting said...

I use a product called weaveline, it is very thin and you actually iron it onto the back of your fabric, it adds a small abount of stiffness, not much...very slight...but I really think it makes it easier to do the stitcheries....but it all comes back to your own personal choice.

Karrin Hurd said...

Your stitching is beautiful Carole. I use a thin batting for my stitchery. It makes it so the carryover stitches on the back do not show through. I have never heard of this weaveline, but might have to try it.

La Manosa said...

Hi Carole,

I'm so glad you asked this question. Seeing all the beautiful embroidery you do has definitely inspired me and I've been wanting to get started on something apart from the crazy quilt embroidery I've been doing. I didn't know that people used different means of stabilizing their fabric and all the comments people are leaving are so helpful.

I always love reading your blog. And many thanks to all the commenters who explained what they use in their embroidery!

Wendy said...

Good question, I use a light weight fusible interfacing that is bought at sewing stores for making clothing. I don't like the batting because it's tough to stitch through and I like my stitches to lay flat. The reasons I use the interfacing is to keep the threads and knots on the back from showing through to the front.

Your stitching looks really good. Ask for lightest weight interfacing, you'll love the feel while you stitch.

Ginny Worden said...

Hi Carole, your embroidery is lovely. I use a very light weight fusible interfacing ( Presto Sheer, which seems to be limited to Canada), it is not for stablizing as much as a lining, so my threads if I do any travelling don't shadow thru. It also allows me to get the fabric in a hoop with some tightness. I have tried doing embroidery without the Presto, but feel my stitches are better with it. I think we all do what we feel comfortable with, and which gives us the feeling of accomplishment. Have fun.

Linda said...

Ok time for my 5 cents worth. You'll find that a lot of Aussie stitchers and designers reccomend the use of pellon on the back of their embroidery. Pellon is a very light weight batting. Some even reccomend that it be iron on. If you want your work to carry through the years and generations I would reccomend that you don't use anything that's iron on. We don't know what the glue from these products will do to the threads over a period of time.
The idea behind the batting is to hide stray threads or carry over threads. Now remember this is only my opinion, and in no way do I want to offend anyone, but you should not carry your threads from one spot to another. If you don't use a knot to start your embroidery with and if you finish off your work by weaving your thread through the back of the stitches, your threads won't show through. Having said that I've tried several methods, batting, pellon and althoguh it gives the embroidery a nice almost quilted look, it's a real toad to quilt, as you end up with two layers of batting. Depending on what type of fabric I'm working with I may back my embroidery cloth with a piece of good quality muslin. This gives the embroidery a little more stability, especially if the stitching fabric is lightweight. What's the right way, is what works best for you. Well that's probably way more information than you probably ever wanted.

Janet said...

Hi Carole: First of all, I must thank you for taking time to help me out in my learning curve on blogger.com/ Much appreciated.
As for your embroidery - your work is exquisite!!
In general - how have embroiderers managed for centuries to produce beautiful work without the help of commercially available "must-haves"? I think a lot of the time, needs are developed in the quilting industry in order to market materials that we have no real need for. The careful embroiderer does not carry threads over long distances and if they do carry they try to conceal it by traveling under stitches on the back. Similarly, big ugly shine-through knots are for the most part avoidable with care.
I am a product of a convent school where we were taught that the back required as much care as the front
I have always used a hoop for embroidery and i think you will find that if you use Kona cotton to trace your emboidery pattern onto you will not have an awful lot of shine-through
Janet.

atet said...

Hey Carole! I've tried no stabalizer as well as using a thin batting (Quilter's Dream their thinnest and Warm and Natural). I think it all depends on what you want to do with the finished piece. I mean, if I'm doing a tea towel or something -- I'm not going to use anything to stabalize and I'm just going to take care with my stitches so the back doesn't look horrible. If it's going in a quilt -- well, I may use batting since it will be quilted anyway. I think it's a matter of preference (like many others have stated) and to hide knots and/or carry threads. Since I'm a bit, um, obsessive, I'll usually knot off a thread rather than carry it I don't have huge issues with this. Your work is beautiful -- so, do what feels comfortable to you :0). (oh, and I've been using the batting mostly 'cause while I have hoops, I'm lazy and the stiffer fabric means I don't have to juggle the hoop at all, I can just use go with the fabric and batt).

Patti said...

Thanks so much for asking this question - I've been wondering the same thing myself. I grew up doing embroidery on dish towels, pillow cases, etc. and of course never used any sort of stabilizer on them. I'd never heard of such a thing until I started reading May Britt's and other's posts concerning their stitching. I always used an embroidery hoop to stabilize the fabric and never carried the thread from one area to another. Now everywhere I read that we should use a stabilizer which will also hide our stitches. I guess I'll try it - it'll be interesting to see how I like it.

Karen said...

I know this is an older post but it showed up when I did a search for information on a stablizer for embroidery. I use the thinnest batting by Quilter's Request. I did not care for an iron on interfacing because it was "bumpy". I think what is available in Australia would be better than what I found in the USA.

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