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