Software Printed Cards made Better

I often make cards for family and donate cards to a local hospice patients.  I love that I can finally use some of craft stock I have been buying for that someday use.  I wanted to share with you a way I make my software printed cards even better!.  These cards I make get so many compliments and dry quickly.

The steps that I am going to share are from items that I have personally purchased and the links are affiliate links that will not cost you anything to click on. However, it may give me a few pennies to buy more crafts if you happen to purchase the same items.  

First off, I use this Greeting Card Factory Deluxe 11 card making software.  However, you can use any type of software you have.  Select and print out the card you want in the size you want.  I tend to only print out 5 x 7 and 4.25 x 5.5 cards.  The easiest way is that I purchase a lot of card/envelope pairs.  My two favorites so far are listed below.  And, yes, I go through multiple packs of these.:
Once my cards are designed and printed, then I add one or two special touches.  First I use this clear medium coat which gives images texture and dimension.  I use it right from the bottle tip and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, this stuff.  Caution, Don't use too much or your cards will warp and will need to be pressed with a book, once they are dry, to try and get the warps out of it.  Start out slow and maybe color the shading or certain flowers.  See the image examples I've posted.
Finally, I add rhinestones here an there if I really want to like in the bluebird's flowers in the image above.  I use these because I love Arora Borealis rhinestones :-)  You choose the size you want.  Remember if you go too big and you have to mail your card, it will add weight and may puncture the envelope,

Have fun with your creativity!!

Thanks for stopping by! 

Cleaning my Blog House and Cutting files

I've been cleaning house on my blog lately.  Deleting older entries.  I'm planning on completely changing the layout, look and feel of this blog.  I can't believe I've had it since 2009 wow.  So much has changed since then.  I still love crafting when I can find the time.  Stay tuned for a new look!  

 Lately I've been spending time using my Silhouette Cameo 3.  I finally took off the dust cover and got started playing with the Studio software and some vinyl cutting.  I love it!!  I've made many vinyl stickers for myself.   Most of the files have been free files from the internet for personal use.  Amazing how you can spend so much time looking for files and seeing what everyone else is doing with their digital cutter or quilting.

Here's a couple items I completed.  I also created my first Rhinestone template and rhinestone iron on.  Boy that was an adventure.  Not my favorite although I love rhinestones.


Thanks for stopping by! 


Organizing Excessive Digital Content

As crafters, a lot of us collect files and patterns we want to do but, never get around to completing.  I took a couple years off from crafting to deal with the day to day issues that we all deal with.  Recently, I've taken a returned interest into crafting!!  Thankfully, I didn't get rid of a lot of my crafting items that I purchased along the way.

However, I'm having an issue with all the digital files I've accumulated across the years.  I no longer remember what I purchased across the years.  Here's an example.  I wanted to embroider a couple hand towels.  I had a USB stick that had 4 letters from my favorite font for embroidering on towels!  Here's an example   The issue is, I wanted to do more than the 4 letters I had on the Memory stick.  How did I find the digital fonts I previously purchased??

I opened the files and then looked for some copyright text, didn't find it.  I looked at the date in which the file was created and searched my computer for a zip file that matched the date.  Nope, not there either.  I guessed at what I might have renamed the zip file and searched several backup drives I had, Nope.  I searched my favorite embroidery sites with names like rope font, rope text, etc... Nope.  I finally searched my blog archives and I finally found a post from 2011 with a link to the original website where I purchased the embroidery font.  Wow, 8 years ago.

I solved the mystery!!  Did I find the original file I purchased, no.  I purchased the font again!!!  I need to figure out a way to organize all my digital craft content!!  How do you organize your digital content across many years??

Thanks for stopping by!  

Finished Halloween Quilt Binding

My 2014 Halloween Quilt binding is completed.  OK, I'm 2 days late but I'm so happy it's done.  Time to celebrate a finished quilt!    I decided to try and complete the binding by machine.  I used the Clover Wonder Clips on the quilt to wrap the binding to the back and hold until I would sew it.  I would give the clips a B+ on a review.  Here's some pro's and con's that I think of them.

  • It takes a lot of them to hold the binding.  I placed one about ever 2" So you'll probably need to buy multiple sets.
  • If you open them with too much force, the spring mechanism breaks or stretches so they don't hold anymore. 
  • It's hard to move the quilt around with all those clips on it.  They get caught on things.
  • I still had to go back and resew a couple areas where the binding wasn't caught on the back.  Good thing was that this was black binding on back backing.. you can't see the resew areas.
  • Taking them off is a little slower than other type clips I've used.

  • Amazon has them on sale for about $11 for 50 clips.
  • They hold the binding a lot better in place than trying to sew on binding without them.
  • Hey, 90% accuracy is great in my book when it comes to binding.
  • Sewing went slow but it was a heck of a lot faster than hand sewing the binding to the back.
  • It only took me maybe 20-25 minutes to finish a 60 x 80 quilt.
  • I'll definitely use them again when I want to machine sew a binding on.
Here's the spacing I used on the clips

and here's the finished binding.

Now on to quilting the Christmas Present Quilt with a Christmas Present Panto I created.

Thanks for stopping by!  

The Moda Flurry Present Quilt top by Kate Spain is finished!

Hello.  I was able to finish the Moda Flurry Quilt top by Kate Spain today.  I made a few changes on the bordering.  I did not place the outer 2" border since I modified the corner blocks.  Since I was not using the Flurry fabric, I did not have a cute snowflakes for the corners.  So, I was going to use the dark ornaments fabric as large corner block.  I just didn't like the way it looked and I was too lazy to add another 2" white border around the complete outside.  So, I took 4 of the small 2.5" blocks and surrounded them with the 2" white border strips.  I like how they turned out.  They float sorta like the color blocks separating the presents.

Now to decide if I want to try and quilt it or do I send it away to someone.  I still might have time to whip up another Halloween quilt!

Here's a closeup of the modified corners

Thanks for stopping by!  

AccuQuilt Tumbler Flag Binding Completed

Well I finished it!!  5 days later than the intended holiday but completed just the same.  Now it will be available for future celebrations.  I opted to piece my binding to match the changing colors on the tumbler American Flag.  I am very happy with how it turned out.  There are a lot of seams on the binding since I used leftover tumbler blocks for the red/white stripe ends. 

Here's the finished flag

Also, here's a close up for some of the changing colors.

Thanks for stopping by!  

Moda Flurry Presents wrapped

Well, looks like I'm going to have to finish up my Moda Flurry quilt for next Christmas.  That's OK, I'll have more time to enjoy it next year.  Things have been hectic traveling to visit with family and trying to finish the shopping rush.  Still not completed yet :-)

So, I'll probably iron out the present blocks I finished and pack away the precut fabric that's ready to finish the quilt.  I thought I would share the presents completed. 

Here's hoping you and your family have a great Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Thanks for stopping by! ~*~Trish~*~

Moda Flurry Christmas Present Quilt by Kate Spain

Nothing like waiting until the last minute to want to complete a Christmas Quilt.  As I was surfing the Internet, I came across different versions of the Flurry Christmas present quilt and just fell in love with it.  I also found the free pattern online here.  Below is what the quilt looks on their site.

One difference is that I will be completing it using some older fabric I had in my stash.  So, I'll be making my quilt top in basic grey fruitcake fabric layer cake I previously purchased from Moda.  I'm busy cutting out all the pieces.  It's the border I think that will take the most time!

Thanks for stopping by!

IHAN Machine Embroidery Blog Hop - Embroidered Labels

I'm so excited to be part of the IHAN Machine Embroidery Blog Hop.  I'm a hobbyist and not a professional and I love creating items to give away or sell for charity. The quicker and easier things are, the better.  That's why I love working with complete embroidery designs in the hoop when available.

When I saw Anita Goodesign Machine Embroidery files, it was difficult to choose which design to stitch out.   There are so many great options to choose from.  When I was asked to participate in this blog hop and choose a design to participate with, I was drawn to the beautiful labels available to embroider.  I am so guilty of not always placing a label on my quilts.  We all know this is such a no no.  So, I figured if I could churn out a few pre-made labels, I might be more inclined to place a label on a finished quilt.

For today's blog hop, I've chosen the Folded-Fabric-Quilt-Labels to complete.  When you purchase the set, you receive 15 different quick designs to stitch out.  Below is my favorite one.

  • Don't be afraid to stop your embroidery machine and change colors mid stream.  Even though a piece may be designed as one color, you can stop and switch colors and then let it continue on.
  • Unless you are doing contest pieces, just enjoy the process and go with the flow.  If the thread breaks, OK, back up a few stitches and restart. If it keeps breaking... cuss a little and keep going. 
  • If the stabilizer is not sticky back, I'll use the 505 Temporary adhesive spray to help keep the fabric pieces in place.  
  • If you have questions on anything, please feel free to email me!


A.  Place your scrap piece of fabric (duh, I had paper incorrectly typed earlier) for your label background
B.  Trim your fabric close to the outline of the label stitched
C.  Stitch the label outline chosen.  You can even stop here and not stitch the inside sentiments
D.  Finished stitching the label as designed.


For each side placed, the embroidery stitching will stitch the outline of the side, then you place your fabric piece right sides together towards the center.  The embroidery file will stitch down your fabric side with a single line stitch.  Then you fold back for right side up.  Give it a little press and move on to the next side.

A.  Left side size stiched out.
B.  Left side stitched down with single stitch line.
C.  Left side ironed back for right side to face up.
D.  All four sides completed.
E.  All stitched out and cut from the backing.


For my labels, I like to use both fusible webbing and stitch down the sides.  In order to do both, it's easier for me to put a backing on the label so the sides have something to stitch down.

A.  I add a backing to the label.  To start, I place the backing right sides together to the front side of the label and add a 1/4" seam all around the sides.  When completed, I snip off the corners for easier turning.
B.  Next, carefully lift the backing from the front of the label and snip a slit in it to turn the label right side out.
C.  turn your label right side out and then press flat.  Now you can add your fusible webbing to the back of the label plus stitch down the sides.  If you would like, you can just stitch down the sides.

From here, grab your favorite permanent fabric pen and customize your label!


From the label set, there's 14 different additional options to stitch out.  Take a look at some of the others included!

Thanks for stopping by!  

Flat Sue and Sam

I love working with digital files and machine embroidery.  I also love doing things the easy way too!  I'm a hobbyist and not a professional and I love creating items to give away or sell for charity.  If I can put less stress and pressure on myself, I'm all in.  The quicker and easier things are, the better.  You are seeing the picture.  That's why I also like the AccuQuilt Go and fabric die cuts. 

When I saw Marjorie's shop at and all the beautiful Die Cut and AccuQuilt Go Machine Embroidery Files, I thought it was great find and count me in. When I reviewed all of her files, I was drawn to Sunbonnet Sue and Overall Sam.  I recently purchase the AccuQuilt Go templates so I was excited to put them to use.  I've just found a new obsession thanks to Marjorie!

I'm pulling Sam and Sue off the fabric quilt blocks and creating my Sam and Sue for unconventional uses.  You never know, your children may make them their new Flat Sue and Flat Sam.  No one knows, where they will be photographed next.  I can see future posts on new versions so I've added a new category for Sam and Sue on my blog!  So sit back, grab a cup of coffee and enjoy!

My Favorite Tips
  • If you are going to applique for a quilt block, try and cut the quilt block fabric larger than needed and then you can center the applique after the machine embroidery is completed.  This way, you are guaranteed to be centered!
  • Don't be afraid to stop your embroidery machine and change colors mid stream.  Even though a piece may be designed as one color, you can stop and switch colors and then let it continue on.
  • Consider making your machine embroidery pieces as free standing appliques and then sew, glue, or iron them on to their destination.
  • Unless you are doing contest pieces, just enjoy the process and go with the flow.  If the thread breaks, OK, back up a few stitches and restart. If it keeps breaking... cuss a little and keep going. 
  • I love using sticky back tear away stabilizer.  It works well with making applique machine embroidery pieces.  It sometimes has little fuzzies around the edges so sometimes I combine it with water soluble stabilizer.
  • If the stabilizer is not sticky back, I'll use the 505 Temporary adhesive spray to help keep the fabric pieces in place.  
  • If you have questions on anything, please feel free to email me!

Don't worry If you don't own the AccuQuilt Go Sunbonnet Sue and Sam,   Marjorie's excellent instructions also come with a printable template for the pieces!  Here are the dies used as well as my Fall fabric choices in the cut pieces.

As mentioned above, I like the function and stability of the sticky back stabilizer but I don't like the feathered edges it sometimes produces when you pull it away from an embroidered piece.  So, sometimes I go the extra step to stitch out the template outline on the sticky back stabilizer and then I cut it out in one piece cutting directly on the sewn outline (See Steps A and B below).  I then redo the first step of stitching out the template onto wash away stabilizer.  Where the outlined it stitched on the wash away stabilizer, I then place the sticky stabilizer "cut out" within the lines. (See steps C and D below)  I use some temporary adhesive spray to keep it in place.  Then I add the fabric pieces as instructed. 


I have to say that Marjorie's files do stitch out beautifully!  I love the variety of options you get in each embroidery file purchased.  For Sunbonnet Sue you receive 7 different designs and with Overall Sam, you receive 5 different stitch combinations.  I place the fabric according to the instructions (See image A below).  The white you see around the edges is the sticky back stabilizer. Next time, I'll cut it a little smaller,  Then I let the design files and decorative stitches take it away from here. (See images B and C below)


Once the file have stitched out, now comes the fun part.  Even though I used the combination of Sticky Back stiff stabilizer and wash away stabilizer, it's really the wash away stabilizer that's keeping Sue and Sam on the hoops.  Once I take the stabilizer out of the hoop, I just give a little tug and it starts to separate easily from the wash away stabilizer.  If you would prefer, you can follow the instruction for the wash away stabilizer and use water.  Again, quick is good for me.  You can see the freed Sue and Sam below.  Also, a photo for the back of the stitch outs.  You can now see the sticky back stiff stabilizer.  This helps in giving Sue and Sam some structure!


OK, from here there's so many things to do with Sue and Sam.  Here are a few of my ideas:
  • Obviously, you can applique them onto fabric either using fusible webbing or stitching without having to worry about whether it's centered or not.
  • You can glue a stick on the back of them and then cover that with felt or something harder like cardboard to make stick puppets... lol
  • You can add business card magnet paper to the full size and make a car magnet.  :-)


I had so much fun creating the Fall Sam and Sue that I couldn't help but go back to stitch out another set using Marjorie's other layouts for Sue and Sam.  This time however, because of a cantankerous bobbin and temperamental top thread, I had one heck of a time on Sue.  This is exactly what I meant with just relax and most all things will  work themselves out.  Look at the mess I created with the bobbin thread and breaking top thread.  This was totally my machine's fault and nothing to do with the beautiful embroidery files.

But, if you use a little creativity, you can fix anything.  Here is the Sunbonnet Sue before the bobbin and top thread fiasco on Sue's decorative dress border and then after.

And after I finished the Sam, I added few magnets to the back of Sunbonnet Sue and Sam and here's the great reminder I have for everyone today!!  Right now they are on my fridge, but they are moving to my filing cabinet at work today!

Thanks for stopping by!  

Binding Added - Halloween Work Completed

Yeah!!  A finish!!  I added the binding to both the Halloween quilt and runner completely by machine.  It did not turn out bad at all.  I used 2.5" double folded fabric and used a little bigger that 1/4" seam.  By doing this, it seemed to line up better when sewing down the binding machine on the back.  That and the fact that the stitches are black thread on black fabric :-) 

Now on to new projects.  Coming up... Sunbonnet Sue and Sam machine embroidery and hopefully a Christmas Tree and wreath using my accuquilt go!  But first, here's a final snapshot of the finished Halloween projects. 

Thanks for stopping by!  

Halloween Quilting Completed Times Two

I was able to finish up the quilting on the Spooktacular Halloween quilt.  I can't say enough how much I love these fabrics.  They are so bright and cheery!!  I just can't get a good photo of them.  I was able to finish both the quilt and the table runner / bed runner. 

Here are some photos of the finished quilting on both.  All that is left is to bind the two quilts.  I am going to try and save some time by using the sewing machine to add the binding.  I'm determined to finish it that way.  I can use all the extra time I can get!

Here's the back of the quilt.  I wish you could see the spider webs better...

While I was trying to photograph the quilt, I had a guest come in and photobomb my photo.  I didn't know it until I was reviewing the photos.  Of course I had to catch her in the act!

I was also able to finish quilting the Halloween runner.  I did need to remove the backing and piece it a little longer to fit the width and then repin it to the rollers.

Now, It's time to create the binding and add it to the quilts.  I am so exciting I'll be able to enjoy them for maybe 2+ weeks.  My goal is to have this done this weekend!
Thanks for stopping by!  

Halloween Quilting

I wanted spider webs for the Halloween quilt but did not have the pantograph file so I thought I would use what I had.  I had a bat design that would also work well with the quilt.  So, at the top of the newly loaded backing, I tested out some designs.  I threw some pink scraps onto the layout and tested away.  Since I really could not see the design on the pink, I placed black scraps over the pink and then redid the designs.  Of course, I did not iron those black scraps so it looks a little wrinkled.

Here are the bats

Then I decided I really wanted spiderwebs.  So, I purchased the pantograph design from QuiltRecipes.  I tested that out as well. It was a larger 8" design and it did a lot of repeats on the webs, retracing to get from point a to point b.  I was not sure that I liked that.  Here's just a cutout from the stitch out of the spiderwebs.

Then I had the bright idea I would make my own pantograph.  Spent several hours getting the design "just right" on screen.  When I tested it out, it looked great but it was too dense.  I could have resized it but at this point, I just wanted to start quilting the Halloween quilt.  Here's what my pantograph sample stitch out looked like:

So, I loaded up the quilt and away I started.  I ended up returning to the "Plain Spider Webs 1" panto that I purchased from QuiltRecipes.  I liked that you also received a reverse design so all the random spiderwebs did not line up between the rows.  Based on the first row, I'm glad I returned to the purchased pantograph.

I used a grey Superior So Fine thread for the top and white bobbin thread for the bottom of the quilt.  Here's a snippet of the first row completed on the frame:

A couple more rows and then I'll be finished!  Then on to the extra Halloween table runner or bed runner.  I think I might make it before Halloween!

Thanks for stopping by!  

Spooktacular Halloween Quilt Top Completed

This morning, I finished adding the final two borders to the Halloween quilt I am working on.  I decided to go with the smaller center color border.  I just love how it turned out.  The excess that was cut off will probably end up on the quilt backing somehow. 

The quilt top is on of the larger quilts I've done.  It's wider than my banister so the sides are bending in the photo,  Surprisingly, you really can't tell.  Here's the center border being cut off.  I started with 2.5" alternating squares with black.  I cut off 1.25"

Here's what the finished border ended up looking like.  It was a gamble but luckily the corners turned out.  Each one has some black in it to separate the meeting color blocks.

And here is the final quilt top hanging.  The colors on the digital image do not do it justice.  I love the colors!

I hope to have the quilt on the machine and quilted by October 1rst.  That's a long shot since on work days, I just come home and pretty much crash.  But, I'll keep pushing along. 

Thanks for stopping by!  

Debating Borders

There's something about a simple bordered quilt that I love.  However, I had plans to add a pieced border to the simple Halloween quilt I am working on.  I got the first solid border on the quilt and re-pinned the quilt to hang it.  I then placed the pieced border beside one side and the final solid border to preview what's to come.  Now that I did, I'm not so sure about the pieced border.  It seemed good and it's the whole reason I purchased another charm pack.  But, now that it's up, I'm not so sure. 

I tried the full 2.5" pieced border with the outer solid border and then I thought maybe I'll cut the pieced border in half to make really thin rectangle pieces all around.  Hmmm... I wish all decisions were this fun.  So, now as I do housework <bad word>, I'm debating leaving it with a single plain border (Option A), the mini pieced border (Option B) or the full pieced outer borders (Option C).  You can only see the border option in the top left part of photos b and c.  I just hung the border beside the quilt to photograph.

I'm thinking if I post this and keep coming back looking at the photos, the decision will hit me.  Or, when hubby comes home from work, I'll hit him with the question the minute he walks in the door!

I hope you are enjoying your Sunday!
Thanks for stopping by!