Day 5 Machine Embroidery Blog Hop – Two Fun Projects

Sat morning 11:20 EST – Yay – Cherry’s post has come back from the cybergremlins. Thanks for stopping by.

It’s Friday and there are two really fun projects that I think you’re going to love. Stop in at Cherry Blossom Quilting Studio and Cheeky Cognoscenti’s blogs and enjoy! It’s almost Christmas – so get your gift list out because you can certainly start marking names off the list with these great ideas.

And a little surprise: I am so excited because AccuQuilt is now carrying my machine embroidery designs on their website. Just this morning, there are six designs for the AccuQuilt GO!™ that are now available through AccuQuilt. AccuQuilt and I have been talking and working on this for a very long time, and this is a nice Christmas gift for me to have this come to fruition. I will still maintain my own embroidery shop that has all of my designs, but will also offer as many as possible on the AccuQuilt website. 
 

ITH Mug Rug Tutorial

Mug rugs have become a fun and expressive outlet for quilters’ creativity. For me, they’re also a great way to practice free motion quilting, and they make wonderful gifts. So when I saw some mug rugs for embroidery machines that were done “in-the-hoop”, it piqued my interest. However, after seeing that the finished edge was a satin stitch, I was less interested because it would mean using a water soluble stabilizer or having a trace of tear-away stabilizer showing on the edge of my satin stitch. Either way, it would look fine after washing a couple of times, but my preference is a finished seam edge on mug rugs and on placemats. And then I had a flash of inspiration and realized that it could be done. And now I want to share it with you.

After working for awhile on a square mug rug, I decided that I needed more space for the designs. Taking into consideration the balancing act in design between the most popular hoop sizes of 5″ x 7″ or 6″ x 8″ and spacing for the embroidery design, I ended up using a hoop size of 6″ x 8″ or 150 x 200 mm.

And for those without embroidery machines or without a larger hoop for their machines, one can simply embroider or piece or hand stitch a design and then use the instructions in this tutorial to stitch the mug rug seam on their sewing machine. Either way, it makes a great mug rug and is the perfect way to show off your free motion quilting designs.

Click HERE for the tutorial. I made it into an adobe pdf file rather than putting all the text and photos into this post.

See what cute mug rugs these are. And they’re made with the Accuquilt circle die and some cutouts:

Come back tomorrow  for an embroidery design giveaway–one design as a mug rug and the same design without the mug rug! 
 

EQ7 Tips for Use with the Accuquilt Die Cutting System

EQ7 is one of the  most important tools in my studio. I have written  about some of the ways to use it with the Accuquilt cutting system. One really neat feature is that you can print the rotary cutting instructions for a block and use that along with the Accuquilt cutting equivalents chart to determine which dies to use. I also wrote about adding text in the EQ7 software to be able to write notes to yourself or to write instructions if you are teachnig a class. I almost always use text from Layer 2 to write instructions to myself. Another great feature of EQ7 software is that you can use it to determine the number of patches that you need. I have created links below to the blog posts that discuss each of these features.

Finding the Right Die

Texting in EQ7 Software

How Many Patches Do I Need?

 Hope these tips help. In the fall of 2010, I ran a series of EQ7 blocks on my blog. In addition, you might want to read Ebony’s Blocks to Die For magazine, as it tells you which die sizes you will need for many blocks which can be drawn in EQ7.

Link to Blocks to Die For

  
 

Accuquilt GO Reference Charts

I realized as I was writing a reference post for the Accuquilt Sew and Tell Discussion Forum that I could make it easier to find links to the Accuquilt GO Reference Charts. I do keep talking about these charts–they are sooooooooooo helpful. All I can say is, use them, you’ll like them! So, I’m going to create a separate category on my blog for them, but I will also put the links here for you.

How to use the Accuquilt GO Cutting Equivalents Chart with Electric Quilt

Accuquilt GO Cutting Equivalents Chart on the Accuquilt.com website

Accuquilt GO Fabric Reference Chart on the Accuquilt.com website (This chart will tell you how many pieces you can get from your fabric.)


 
 

Accuquilt Reference Charts for the GO

A lot of people have asked me about the accuquilt reference charts and say that they can’t find them on the Accuquilt website. Here is a photo of the Accuquilt web page today – and I have circled the link to find the reference charts. Once you click that link you will have to click on the link for the Cutting Equivalents chart. There is no point in my putting the reference charts on this website because they will be updated every time new dies are released.

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Ebony Love has created a list of Studio dies, but it is not a cutting equivalents chart. 
 

Cutting Equivalents Chart and Naming Patches

Again today, I am talking about some of the basics of quilting and combining that with information about using the Accuquilt GO die cutting system and the Cutting Equivalents Chart.

It can be confusing as to whether one is talking about cut sizes or finished sizes when quilting. Using the Accuquilt GO die system is no different. To clear that up there is a great chart on the Accuquilt.com website called “Cutting Equivalents Chart”. You can use that chart to determine how to cut almost anything. If you know the finished or cut size of the patches in the quilt block you can determine which die to use to cut the pieces that you need. In addition, if you are making applique blocks or quilts, you can look at this chart and determine what size background you will need for the applique shapes. It gives you some idea, in terms of size and scale, as to which applique pieces you can mix and match to compose your block.

The other very nice thing about this Cutting Equivalents Chart is that it helps you shop for dies to be sure you are getting a die that “fits” your needs.

This chart includes the following shapes:

Circles
Diamonds
Flying Geese
Rectangles
Squares
Triangles
Other (parallellogram)

Classic Shapes
Alphabets
Animals
Baby
Flowers
Hearts
Leaves
Seasonal
Stars
Other

There are three kinds of triangles included in the triangle section. They are equilateral, half square, and quarter square/flying geese. The pictures below show you what a half square triangle is and the two versions of the quarter square triangle. Sometimes you will see it as four triangles in a square, other times you will see it as a single triangle in a rectangular patch.

I do not have a photo of an equilateral triangle, but that is easy to remember because the name tells is a perfect description of the triangle itself.  Remember, an equilateral triangle is a tessellation and does not fit in a square. Each angle of an equilateral triangle is 60 degrees.

Half Square Triangle
Quarter Square Triangle

Flying Geese Triangle
 
 

How many patches in a block?

Based on a discussion on the Accuquilt Yahoo Discussion Group recently, I am going to post the information that was included in the first set of Accuquilt EQ7 blocks that I showed. This is about quilting nomenclature and will be helpful to those who are just beginning to quilt. I learned about this when I first started quilting from the book: It’s Okay if you sit on my quilt by Mary Ellen Hopkins. This information has been valuable many times and in many ways.

One important aspect of this is that the block size needs to be easy to divide into a certain number of patches. Thus, it is very hard to cut the pieces just the right size for a five patch block that you want to be 12 inches when it is finished. Five patch blocks should come out to be five inches, 10 inches, 15 inches, etc. when they are finished. Likewise, three patch blocks should come out to be three inches, 6 inches, 9 inches, 12 inches, etc. when they are finished. There are smaller numbers that can be used, but it gets complicated. . .

Block Types:

There are a couple of ways that we talk about how many patches make up a block. For example, when looking at the block below, we call it a four patch block and visualize a block that is two patches by two patches.

Two Patch Block:

However, we also describe blocks that are four patches across and four patches down as four patch designs. Thus, based on that nomenclature, the block above may be called a two patch block and the block below will be called a four patch block.

Four Patch Block:

Likewise, we call blocks that are three or five or more patches across and down in the same fashion, as shown below:

Three Patch Block:

Five Patch Block:

Six Patch Block:

 
 

Block #11 – Variable Star

This star block is an absolute classic. I think it’s probably one of the first blocks any of us ever makes when we’re learning to quilt. It can be done in many sizes, but typically we use the 12 inch block for our first samplers.

I thought it might  be helpful to tell you a little bit about  how I determine which dies to use for any given block when I’m working in Electric Quilt. The most useful tool is the rotary cutting instructions menu that can be accessed from the block worktable or the quilt worktable. To get rotary cutting instructions from the quilt worktable, you must have the block selected, then click Print, Rotary Cutting, Preview, and you will see the numbers. Be sure you have the desired finished block measurements in the menu and below that be sure to check “Round to nearest 1/8 inch” option.  This same menu can also be accessed from the block worktable.

EQ7 Rotary Cutting Menu
EQ7 Print Preview of Rotary Cutting Chart

You can use the GO! Cutting Equivalents Chart and look at the column “Actual Die Cut or Hand Cut Size” and find the same number in that column that matches the rotary cutting size. Then read across the line and find the die to be used.

Accuquilt GO Die Conversion Chart

If you have any questions about how to do this, let me know. Now, here’s today’s block–click the image for the pdf download.

11.Variable Star