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Janome Week: Embroidered Table Linens with Free Design Downloads

Wednesday, 24 April 2013 1:00

Yesterday during Janome Week it was decorative stitching; today it's embroidery. While nearly all sewing machines include at least some decorative stitch options, only embroidery models can create embroidery designs. Janome has both embroidery-only models: such as the Memory Craft 350E, as well as sewing and embroidery models, such as the Horizon Memory Craft 12000 and the Memory Craft 9900. For our project today, we're using the brand new Janome MC9900 (click here to see our recent review of this model). Although there are many, many built-in embroidery designs on the MC9900, and we'll be playing with some of them later in the week for our Apron project; today we wanted to show you another wonderful option you have with Janome embroidery models: bringing in a design from an outside source - it's so easy! It could be something you create yourself with embroidery software, something you purchase on an embroidery CD, or something you download from the hundreds... no... thousands of embroidery design resources on the Internet. We have two custom Janome-compatible designs as free downloads today – just for our Sew4Home visitors!


Janome Week: Decorative Stitch Pillow Power

Tuesday, 23 April 2013 1:00

I still remember the first sewing machine I bought with a full compliment of decorative stitches. I was in seventh heaven. It felt like the same unbridled choice as when you open a fresh box of 64 crayons. Variety unleashed! But we often get so busy with the construction process, we forget about all those great stitches. Not today! It's Janome Week on Sew4Home, and all Janome machines have at least some decorative stitches, many of them have hundreds! Today's pillow project gives you three different decorative stitching options to try, and we've included three free template downloads to re-create our exact designs. There are random intersecting lines, which allow you to mix and match a variety of stitches. Our starburst showcases the option to program stitches, creating what appears to be individual dots. And finally, we give you the steps to stitch a spiral, using a padded satin stitch in variegated thread. It's all to encourage you to take advantage of your patiently-waiting decorative stitches... or maybe it's time to look for a new model with even more selection.


Janome Week: Out-Of-The-Box Basics: ID the Main Parts of a Sewing Machine

Monday, 22 April 2013 1:00

Sewing is an art. But is does rely on science and technology as well. And there's math with all those fractions and geometry. But most importantly... there's your machine. A good machine makes the difference – not only in the sewing experience but in the professional look of the finished project. Janome America is the exclusive sewing machine sponsor of Sew4Home and we love our studio Janomes. When you have a great machine, you can literally forget about it, and put your full concentration on the art of sewing. To borrow a line from Janome that explains this phenomenon: the easier the tools, the more creative you become. Janome machines are precise and reliable from the top of the line to the most basic entry level model. One of the very first articles we did on Sew4Home explained the parts of a basic sewing machine. We've decided to update that article today as the first day in Janome Week – for the benefit of all the new sewing enthusiasts out there. Plus, it never hurts for any of us to dust off our skills and knowledge. 


Mother's Day with Fabric.com: Farmer's Market Laminated Tote

Friday, 12 April 2013 1:00

Once the crocuses and daffodils poke through winter's chill, it's official. Spring has her new sandals on, her toenails painted, and she's headin' our way. With Spring comes the opening of local Farmer's Markets. For the final project in our Mother's Day week with Fabric.com, we have a sturdy tote specially designed to hold all that farm fresh bounty. It features cotton laminate inside and out and is strengthened with a Therm O Web® interfacing that can take moisture without distorting. A gathered front pouch holds extra green bags for your produce purchases. The finished bag is approximately 16" tall, 15" wide and 6" deep, giving you plenty of room for everything from bouquets of spring tulips to sweet clover honey to farm fresh eggs. Long ribbon ties let you adjust the top closure to best fit your heavenly haul.


Mother's Day with Fabric.com: Two Chiffon Scarves - Serged & Sequined

Thursday, 11 April 2013 1:00

A great scarf can elevate an outfit from drab to dynamic in an instant. However, really nice scarves don't come cheap at the department store or boutique. Here's a little fashion secret: scarves are SUPER easy to make, and this week's Mother's Day sponsor, Fabric.com has an amazing selection of perfect chiffons for under $4.00 a yard! We have two designs today for you to try. If you have a serger, cut on the bias and create a ripply "lettuce edge" all around. For your sewing machine, go long and lovely with a rolled hem and hand sewn sequins all around.


Mother's Day with Fabric.com: Notepad Folder To Go

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 1:00

My mother was the ultimate note taker. She recorded everything from gifts she'd received (in order to write a thank you note later) to the gas mileage on car trips (to make sure we were getting the most for our money). In today's plugged-in-turned-on-digital world, writing something down may seem old school. But jotting a note by hand is often still the fastest, easiest way to capture a thought or remember an important to-do. Plus, if you have a beautiful handmade fabric folder to keep your pad, pen and a few extras; low-tech becomes a very lovely option. 


Mother's Day with Fabric.com: Pleated Pillowcases

Tuesday, 09 April 2013 1:00

What does every mother want for Mother's Day? A nap. In the rush-around-worlds of most moms, sleep often falls by the wayside. Make those precious few hours of shut-eye as beautiful as possible with our amazing pleated pillowcase pair, the second great idea in our Mother's Day week with Fabric.com. Originally, we planned to make two identical cases, but then Alicia said, "Why not mix it up a little?" Why not indeed - it certainly makes things more fun and lets Mom put her fave out in front, depending on how she feels: an elegant damask day or a frivolous polka dot day... or both. Most days are both!


Mother's Day with Fabric.com: Retro Half Apron with Matching Hot Pads

Monday, 08 April 2013 1:00

Mom's special day is coming up on May 12th this year. Now's the perfect time to get started on a wonderful handmade, heartfelt gift for her! Fabric.com is our sponsor for a wonderful week of Mother's Day project ideas. We have five days of pretty, practical, just plain cute-as-pie ideas for all kinds of moms, mothers-in-laws, grandmas, and any other special ladies in your life who may have wiped your tears, cooked up your mac 'n' cheese and believed you could do anything - even when you didn't. To start things off, we have an adorable half apron with a set of matching hot pads in Kiss The Cook from Robert Kaufman. As you can tell by the cool props in the photos, we're collectors of vintage kitchen goodies and absolutely fell in love with the retro vibe of this fun fabric collection. 


Quilt Basics - Quilting The Quilt - Part 5 of 5

Friday, 05 April 2013 1:00

As we enter the final phase of making a quilt, you should be proud of all you've learned thus far. If you think back to Part 1 of this Series, you may have been skeptical about adding "how to quilt" to your sewing toolbox of skills. Now you can see it was simply a case of ignoring your fears and going forward with curiosity and confidence. We encourage you to remember this as we venture into the final phase!


Woven Burlap Pillow with Vintage Paris Map Feature Fabric

Thursday, 04 April 2013 1:00

During our recent DIY wedding series, A Rustic Wedding with Fabric.com, we developed a little bit of a crush on burlap and were looking for a reason to use it again. We've actually combined two elements from this series in today's project: burlap, this time in the form of pre-cut ribbons and the weaving technique brought to us in the specialty Guest Tutorial by Elaine Schmidt for the ring bearer's pillow. We put the two together to create a unique reversible pillow that looks as stylish and trendy as anything you'd find on the shelves of Anthropologie®. The front is Mapped Out in Sienna by Waverly from Fabric.com. The back is woven and stitched burlap ribbon. 


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