Last week I played truant, and stole an hour away from work commitments, to stitch out some Christmas postcards. I had been wanting to try out a technique for stitching fabric postcards on the Longarm for quite some, so the festive season was the perfect opportunity.
I loaded some plain fabric on the quilting frame & marked it into a 7″ grid to give me a rough spacing for placing the design. A sewline marker was perfect for this step.
I then selected a Christmas design from my IntelliQuilter digital quilting patterns. In this case I used a pretty holly wreath (unfortunately it didn’t have a name on the file so I cannot acknowledge the designer)
It took a little bit of playing to find the optimum settings to stitch out so that I got the desired look. I was using Cotton Mako’ Ne 12 in the needle, and Cotton mako’ Ne 28 in the bobbin and I wanted a 6″ block that looked hand stitched.
I eventually settled on the following settings on the Machine:
IntelliStitch Motor speed: slow (4 to 5 setting in continuous stitch)
IntelliQuilter: Speed = 0.9 & Detail = 0.9
I was using Cotton Mako’ Ne 12 so I also changed my standard MR3.5 needle and put in a larger MR4.5 to allow for the thicker thread.
The machine was plodding along very slowly but I just loved the result and I was able to set up a production line to stitch out 10 designs in quick succession.
Once they were stitched it was just a matter of cutting them apart and finishing the edges and voila …. 10 fabric postcards for the friendship group.
Did I say that I just love the effect? I am now dreaming up lots more projects to use Cotton mako’ Ne 12 for the stitch outs.
PS: You could do the same thing on a domestic machine by just adjusting the top tension, using a bigger needle, increasing the stitch length and stitching at a slower speed.