Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Stitching Week - Templates and Tools (Sew Easy)


If you are just starting out with stitching or if you aren't comfortable with drawing your own designs just yet, stitching templates are a great tool to have on hand. A few years ago, if you wanted to use templates for stitching it was very limiting but now, with the help of the In Stitch'z line from Bazzill, you can find a template to fit virtually any theme or style.  From birthday to alphabets and borders to flowers, they pretty much cover it all!

Since they are clear and have the design in black you can easily see if the design is going to work with the project you are stitching on by laying the template where you want the stitching to go. Each template design has the holes pre-pierced and all you have to do is use your paper piercer to pierce the design onto your page.

Template tips:

• The holes on most stitching templates are fairly far apart. If you want a more fluid, smooth look to the design pierce an extra hole in between each hole you pierce with the template.

• Sometimes after you pierce the design onto your page and lift the template it looks like a big confusing cluster of holes instead of the pretty design on the template. If you look at the holes and are having a hard time figuring out which direction you need to go or which hole should be next, flip the paper over and connect the dots with a pencil to create the design on the template. This way, when you are stitching you can see which hole is next and what direction you need to go.

"Sitting Pretty at the Pumpkin Patch" by Jill Sarginson
Supplies Used - Patterned Paper: Bella Blvd; Floss: Anchor; Letters: Pink Paislee, October Afternoon, Doodlebug; Tools: Creative Memories circle cutting system; Templates: Bazzill Basics In Stitch'z Cardstock Stitching Template 8x8 Circle

I framed the entire page here using the Bazzill Basics In Stitch'z Cardstock Stitching Template 8x8 Circles line stitch. And it took a long time. It helps to make your page pop, particularly if you only have one piece of pattern paper as the background layer. I also stitched the circle to help accentuate the circle layer - I chose to do two stitched circles in different colours, using the the Bazzill Basics In Stitch'z Cardstock Stitching Template 8x8 Circles template as a guide for piercing my holes.

Tip: Save the stitching for the end. This way you don't have to stitch areas that embellishments will eventually cover up.

 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

"Daddy's Girl" by Jill Sarginson
Supplies Used - Patterned Paper: Cosmo Cricket; Floss: Anchor; Letters: Pink Paislee, October Afternoon, Doodlebug; Tools: Fiskars Apron Lace border punch, edge distresser, Creative Memories circle cutting system; Chipboard: Cosmo Cricket; Ink: Vibrance; Flowers: unknown

I stitched the flourishes on this using Bazzill Basics flourish stitching templates. You can also achieve these by tracing chipboard flourishes or drawing your own flourishes.

 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

"Brown-eyed Beauty" by Jill Sarginson 
Supplies Used - Cardstock: Bazzill Basics; Patterned Paper: My Mind's Eye; Floss: Anchor; Letters:
stitched; Tools: Fiskars Sunburst border punch, Creative Memories circle cutting system punch, Creative Memories circle punch; Ink: Vibrance; Templates: Bazzill Basics In Stitch'z Cardstock Stitching Template 8x8 Circle; Other: alphabet stencil; Unknown: brads, ribbon

On this layout, I used random stitched circles to go with the circular theme of the layout. I used the Bazzill Basics In Stitch'z Cardstock Stitching Template 8x8 Circle template for this. I also stitched the
letters using an alphabet stencil.

 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

"Surprise Baby Shower" by Amy Roller

This is a one-page layout, that I did without a sketch. I didn't have many pictures to use and decided to put them in a collage type page. I used a stitching template for the title to help take up some of the white space on the page along with a cluster of embellishments.

 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

"Baby Gifts" by Amy Roller
Supplies - gift wrap, cards: various sources-unknown; Jewels: Recollections; Swirls: Maya Road; Paint: Making Memories; Title: unknown

On this layout I had a lot of pictures of hospital gifts and such, (We were there 8 days before going home..that equals a lot of not so attractive pics!) I had to find a way to include everything but do the layouts quickly. I ended up using pictures of the gifts along with parts of the cards, gift wrap, and any extras we accumulated. Each square is a little piece of each gift we received in some way.

Another thing that added detail to the layout but didn't take much time or effort, were the stitching templates I used to make the gifts across the top of the page.

 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

"The Many Faces of Drew" by Allison Davis
Supplies - Cardstock: Bazzill; Patterned paper: Fancy Pants; Transparencies: Fancy Pants; Chipboard stars: Fancy Pants; Rubons: Fancy Pants; Chipboard alphabet: Fancy Pants; Chipboard journaling block: Fancy Pants; Template: Crafter's Workshop

To create the large stitched star background, I used a template from Crafter's Workshop. They have tons of awesome templates that can be used for many, many things. One of my favorite ways to use them is for stitching. They don't have the holes for piercing but you can trace the shape you want to stitch and then pierce your holes on that.

Tools - Sew Easy

There is no doubt that hand stitching can be time consuming and piercing the holes can be a big part of that. It can take about five to twenty minutes depending on the size and detail of the piece you are stitching. With the Sew Easy tool from We R Memory Keepers you can pierce your holes in five to twenty seconds. That's a huge time saver! 

So what is Sew Easy?
It's a piercing tool that features different head attachments that you can change for different stitching patterns. Like these:

Instead of piercing each hole one by one, this tool rolls across the area you want to stitch on and pierces the pattern. 

Sew Easy tips:

• Practice, practice, practice. Figuring out the right amount of pressure takes a few times of use to get the hang of it. If you apply too much pressure as you roll the piercer across the paper it leaves a crease on the page. If you don't apply enough pressure, the holes won't pierce all the way through.

• If the holes don't pierce all the way through the paper, don't worry. It will leave a indention of the pattern and you can pierce the holes with your paper piercer. 

• Using a foam board underneath the project you are piercing the holes onto is important. You can use any foam or cork board but I would recommend using the We R Memory Keeper piercing mat that goes with the Sew Easy.

• On the back of each package there are pictures of several different patterns you can stitch with that particular head. Keep the backs of the package on a book ring so you have them for future reference.

"Snow Good" by Carolyn Wolff

I used the burst piercing tip to create the border around this page.

I recommend practicing before trying this on a layout. Depending on the thickness of your paper, you may not get the tool to pierce the holes all the way through your paper. You will get dents that are easy to feel and then using a piercing tool you can poke your holes. This system is especially great if you want to do a fancy pattern.

 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

"The Great Outdoors" by Shari Thurman
Supply List - Patterned Paper and Cardstock Stickers: October Afternoon; Tools: We R Memory Keepers Sew Easy, Brad Setter/Paper Piercer and Corner Chomper, Fiskars border punch; Glitter Glue: Ranger Stickles; Ink: Colorbox Chalk Ink; Embroidery Thread: DMC; 3D Adhesive: Thermoweb; Other: Cardstock, Jute and wood chips

Since the theme of my layout was camping, I used my Sew Easy tool and created the blanket stitching around the background. This process was fairly simply. I think the end result was worth the added time.

I placed the paper on the piercing mat, strategically placed the stitch piercer (blanket) on the edge of the paper and gently rolled it along the edge of the paper. Be careful that you do not press so hard that it bends and warps your paper. I then used my brad setter/paper piercer to finish poking the holes in the paper. Follow the directions on the back of the packaging to create the blanket stitch. If you are new to sewing, you might want to Google blanket stitching or search on YouTube to find an easy tutorial to help you learn the blanket stitch.


dawn said...

You ladies really rocked the layouts today. I love everything and want to try this too. Thanks for all your hard work today and all week ladies.

Allison, thanks for the tips and showing us the tools to use to start stitching. They all came out great. I'm having fun seeing what each day this week is about and it's only Wednesday!!!

Erica said...

Fantastic stuff ladies! I am loving these Layouts and tips this week! I can't wait for tomorrow!!

connie said...

Thanks for all the stitching tips and the review on the sew easy. I think I need to invest in one.

COScraps said...

Yeah, thanks for the tips and LO examples. I just bought the Sew Easy and haven't played with it yet now I can't wait!

scrapstampcrazy said...

I saw those sew easy things in the Notions catalog and wondered how they worked. I love hand stitching on my pages and use my Bazzil templates all the time.

Luv2talk said...

Love what you all do with string. LOL!

I have the SEW EASY but have not had all that much success with it. I love how the stitching looks, but I really struggle with having it turn out well.