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!
Yesterday, we introduced you to a new, favorite tool in our sewing studio: the Oliso® TG1050 Smart Iron with iTouch® Technology. Believe it or not, we actually had fun ironing (read our full review here)! Today, we're putting the iron to a real test with a pleated table runner in a solid-color washed linen. There's plenty o' pressing in this project, but having a great iron made it fast and easy. The beauty of the runner is in the texture of the pleated squares side by side with the plain squares. It looks best in a solid, which really shows off the definition. Plus - we show you a fun way to create pretty mitered corners without using a separate binding strip. Our "binding" is actually the folded over edges of the back panel - binding and back all in one!
The most popular fabric for the Rustic Wedding is burlap. Believe it or not, this coarse fabric, more traditionally known for bagging coffee beans than bedecking wedding finery, is the hottest ticket out there when it comes to adding trendy texture. Part of the reason behind this is how many options there are in burlaps today. Both in density (the coarseness of the weave) as well as color. Yep. Burlap is not just brown anymore. We've come up with a beautiful design for a simple wedding table runner made of two layers of burlap highlighted with a splash of luxurious silk. Burlap, like many of the specialty fabrics we're featuring in this series, comes in wide widths. The burlaps we chose to work with from Fabric.com ranged from 47" to 60" wide with the most common width being 58". This means you can get a number of strips from each yardage cut.
In medieval times, when the local castle was home not only to the landed aristocracy but also many of the surrounding townspeople as well as extended family and friends, the great hall was where just about everything took place, including meals. The very first tables were literally just large boards. When not in use, the board was hung on the wall. When ready for a meal, it was brought down and balanced on the knees of the diners. If you've ever wondered where the "board" of room and board came from... now you know; it meant a place at the table or board. This historical preamble seems apropos given today's table linen fabric is Godwin from the Victoria & Albert Museum collection by Rowan Fabrics. Godwin is based on designs by Edward William Godwin, an English architect and designer who, during the mid to late 1800s, was known as a progressive and experimental artist, one of the first to introduce a Japanese influence to the European design repertory. You can see this in the "Bamboo" fabric used in our elegant table runner.
Since we brought you bold mix-and-match placemats on Monday in Ty Pennington's gorgeous new Fall 2012 collection, of course we need dynamic mix-and-match napkins to coordinate! Although the venerable paper napkin has been around since the late 1800s, we still prefer cloth napkins. They're a beautiful way to jazz up a table setting, generate less waste in the landfill, and are a fast, easy and fun project for a beginning sewer or anyone with just a few hours to create. But wait, there's more: we also have happy little pom-pom festooned napkin ties! It's a beautiful set for your holiday table or simply to brighten up everyday dining. The edges of both the napkins and the ties feature hand-look decorative stitching - thanks to the amazing stitch options on our Janome Horizon Memory Craft 8900 QCP. We show you how the stitch is created with invisible thread, and we have some special fussy-cutting tricks for the super-centered tie motifs.
This week we dive into the rich, bold colors and patterns of Ty Pennington. You likely recognize this charismatic home design guru from Extreme Makeover: Home Edition where his creativity and coordination have helped transform the lives of thousands and inspired millions of DIYers around the world. His latest Fall 2012 Collection for Ty Pennington Impressions is drop dead gorgeous. The riveting jewel tones are spot-on for the holidays, yet the palettes are diverse enough, with a variety of both warm and cool tones, that you can easily imagine the fabric livening up your projects well into Spring and Summer. I'm picturing a spring market tote, a summer sundress or a trio of tiki pillows. We mixed and matched nine different fabrics within the collection to create a set of stunning holiday placemats. A thick floss running stitch across the border adds a subtle dash of handmade style.
Today’s Re-imagine & Renovate project not only showcases a new fabric spin, it also features step-by-step notes to create a variation on the corner accent treatment, and it emphasizes a great idea from the original tutorial: two layers. A plain fringed underlay and a patterned flat overlay. By making the underlay from a neutral fabric (we used an off-white linen) in a simple fringed design, you can reuse it over and over with new overlays. It’s a fast way to change out the look to match the season or a holiday celebration. Plus, the narrower overlay can be made from standard width fabrics. We added a set of matching napkins in the accent fabric.
Round tables present a challenge for placemats, which are traditionally square or rectangular. Maybe it's time for a trapezoid! I bet you've been waitin' to say that since 8th grade geometry. This shape fits nicely side by side when placed around a circular table. We added coordinating cloth napkins to amp up the tabletop color explosion. Both projects are part of our ongoing Re-imagine & Renovate series. Just like a fresh coat of paint can transform a room, brand new fabric can completely change the look of a project. Today, our delightful new fabric is Pat Sloan's Eat Your Fruits & Veggies collection for Moda Fabrics. It hits stores next month in all its vibrant glory: from carrot orange to cherry red to eggplant purple, these colors and patterns are luscious enough to take a bite of. There's even a complete coordinating set of batiks in a dozen slightly softer hues. This collection can turn an ordinary breakfast table into a farmer's market produce stand.
Outdoor dining takes a little creativity in order to keep everything from blowin' in the wind. Our darling, durable placemats have built-in pockets to hold flatware and/or napkins. Dining in? Hooray for the reversible! Simply flip over the placemats for whole new look – the back is pocket-free. These clever placemats are so quick and easy, you can easily whip up enough your own table or the entire family reunion in a weekend, making them the "whip-it-up-winner" of our Weekend Wonders with Fabric.com series.
One of my favorite Christmas items to uncover every year is a table runner my mother made for me. It's the first thing I pull out, and for me, its appearance signals the official arrival of the holiday season. The first of our three projects for Christmas in July with Moda is a patchwork, pom pom table runner, featuring the whimsical winter wonderland of Kate Spain's Joy collection. This happy centerpiece certainly has the potential to become a best-loved holiday tradition. Make one for yourself plus a couple for friends and family. We used a Layer Cake, which contains forty 10" x 10" squares. That's plenty for several runners, simply add your favorite solid. We used Moda's Bella Solids.