Like many people who sew, I love fabric! The fibers, the feel, the weave, the colors – there is so much that grabs my attention. One of the things I love to do with fabric is to use it as a “canvas” by embellishing it in some way. Sometimes it takes a while to decide what I want to do. After all, there are so many options: quilting, beading, pintucks, thread painting, adding buttons, appliqué, single needle tucks, couching etc.

Listen to Your Fabric

The other day, I pulled a piece of fabric from my stash and immediately knew what I wanted to do to dress it up. The fabric was speaking – actually, screaming – to me, and I could see the finished look before I even started. Here’s the before fabric – a Japanese-style cotton with a faint geometric design printed on an indigo background.

Make a Stitching Plan

I wanted to brighten the surface of the fabric by overlaying a stronger design using a bold stitch in a light color thread. I saw a heavy straight stitch traced over some, but not all, of the design lines of the print. You can use a triple straight stitch, which is on most sewing machines and it is usually #6 on BERNINA models. I used an even heavier stitch that is programmed with a longer stitch length. This stitch is #713 on many BERNINA machines. The best presser foot to use for this embellishment technique is Cordonnet Foot #11. It has a narrow channel on the sole of the foot that allows the thick stitch pattern to move easily under the needle.

High Impact Embellishment

This is a straightforward and uncomplicated embellishment. It’s easy to understand and simple to sew but has a lot of impact because of the boldness of the stitch and the contrasting colors of the fabric and thread. Click here for a stitching video to see how I embellished this indigo fabric..

Don’t Forget to Listen

This embellished fabric looks as good or better than I imagined it. I have an idea for a project using the overstitched fabric and as soon as I finish it, I’ll share it with you. So, the moral of my little story here is: If your fabric speaks or screams at you, LISTEN. You may love the results.

Do You Hear Your Fabric? Japanese Print

If you haven’t already, check out my new course about BERNINA presser feet. Click on Courses & Classes for more information.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *