Sew Karen-ly Created...

If you have arrived here via a link (such as to a tutorial) click on "Sew Karen-ly Created" to return to the latest blog post. I invite you to my website to see a gallery of quilts and patterns available for purchase. Shown here is "To Be Where You Belong", presented to Sir Paul McCartney on his visit to Nova Scotia in 2009.
Comments are always appreciated, simply click the word "comments" at the end of each post to leave your message. Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, 30 April 2020

Mother's Day Thread Special

We are just about to turn another calendar page into May, where we mark one of our favourite special days: Mother's Day. This year instead of taking our Mom out to dinner, or bringing the kids for a visit, we will fete her long distance.
Mother's Day to me is a day associated with "girly" treats - flowers, chocolates, lacy pretty things.  To that end, we will be offering special packaging and gift-wrap for all Mother's Day Aurifil thread orders. You choose the colours and weights of thread Mom loves, and we will do it up pretty (and maybe even add a little chocolate kiss or two!)
Small orders of two or three spools can be done up as a tussy-mussy, a lacy nose-gay of thread rather than flowers.
Colour choice is all yours.
Four or more spools can be done up in a basket wrap...with a wee bit of chocolate included.
Here's a larger basket, of six spools.



It's not the same as celebrating in person, but Mom will know you have thought of her in a unique way.
The thread checkout is here: https://sew-karen-ly-created.square.site/, and we deliver across Canada.  Locally, we can arrange curbside pick-up or delivery. Simply place your thread order, and let us know where you would like it sent.  Please email with any questions.

Friday, 24 April 2020

Aurifil Thread Goodies!

We are all keeping busy, busy: sewing masks, isolation quilts, and now...comfort quilts. The demand for quality thread is high, and we have lots of the best.  Earlier this week, we received more Aurifil collections for our online shop. (There were actually more than this, but the stack kept tipping!!)
Some were old favourites we've had before and sold out of, and others are new to us.  All are gorgeous.
Everyone loves Edyta Sitar's designs and she has curated lovely collections to coordinate with her projects.  Her "Over the Rainbow" collection says, "A colour wheel of threads for every project."
 Jeni Baker's "Favourite Things" collection is a lovely assortment of warm and pastel shades.
 Don't let the name of this one by Zen Chic's Brigette Heitland fool you into thinking it is just for Christmas;  these neutrals can see service all year.
Perennial favourites include this collection of "Botanics" by Carolyn Friedlander...
 ...and the always popular colours of Kaffe Fassett.
You can see all these beautiful threads here: https://sew-karen-ly-created.square.site/ These large spool collections contain a whopping 12 x 1300 m=15, 600 metres of thread...with luck, enough to sew you through stay-at-home time.

Thursday, 9 April 2020

Threaducation

I am making the best of this lock-down time, and have decided to focus on learning as much as I can about thread, specifically Aurifil thread.  I've been a user for many years, and a dealer for over 6 years now.  But even with all the sewing I do, there are things I have not tried.  I am on a mission to learn it all!
Recently, I completed this top of blue and yellow 36 patch blocks, made from Island Batik's beautiful "Forget Me Not" collection.
This is the same fabric I used previously to make "Sweet Dreams", which I quilted using Aurifil 50 weight thread.
The 36 patch quilt went together quickly, each square finishing at 2" (I used 2-1/2" strips, so it was quick to cut.) Only two colours were used in each 12" block, alternating blue and yellow.  The gorgeous light and dark batiks make for a nice wash of colour when the blocks are set together. This shows 3 x 3 in the layout, which is a nice size for a baby quilt, but I ended up doing 4 x 5, for 48" x 60". It makes a nice couch sized quilt.
To quilt this, I decided to use 28 weight thread.  It's the next to heaviest weight that Aurifil makes (12 being heaviest), and is a nice, substantial thread. It comes on a grey spool.  I've used it a bit in the past for satin stitching, sewing on buttons, and for mending a rip in my son's backpack.
Only once before had I quilted with it, and that was for free motion stitching. Never had I used it for straight line quilting with my walking foot.

I chose 1135 light yellow and 2725 light Wedgewood blue.  In the bobbin, I used 40 weight in 1135 light yellow.  For the needle I used a size 14/90 Microtex, which has a sharp point.
Stitching in the ditch was completed first, and for that I used a finer 50 weight.
This was a perfect design for walking foot quilting, as no marking was required;  to work the diagonal cross-hatching, I just eyeballed the distance from corner to corner in the squares. Hobbs Poly-Down is the batting.
My top tension was reduced just a tiny bit, and my stitches were perfectly balanced top and bottom.

Here you can see the difference in the size of the thread, the yellow being the 28 weight and the lighter one in the ditch is the 50 weight.
It was hard to get decent pictures.  At this time of year in Nova Scotia, the grass is still brown and only a few brave crocuses are daring to pop their heads up.  Normally, I would take the quilt to a pretty location like the beach, or a park, but with our province-wide mandatory quarantine, we can be fined $1000. for going to these places. I'll wait.

I am extremely pleased with how the 28 weight thread performed, and will definitely be using it again. 
It's distinct without being overbearing, and I know it will hold up well.

I have a few colours in my store if you'd like to give it a try.  Among other things, Aurifil says the thread may be used for machine or hand embroidery, cross stitch,bobbin lace, couching, thread painting, mending, tatting, crochet, crewel, buttonholes, and serging.  Oh my - with 6 weights of thread, I will not soon run out of things to try!