Saturday, December 29, 2012

new toy learning curve

When I first got my quilting machine, I had days where I wanted to pull my hair out.  It was so frustrating because the thread kept breaking and shredding.  Then, I figured out the trouble and have't looked back since.  Now, when there is a problem, I can usually fix it in 5 minutes and I'm off again.  Most of the time there is a burr on the quilting foot and a quick change of that puts me back in business.

Well, I got my new to me Brother pe 770 embroidery machine and I feel like I'm back at square one.  Because I purchased it used from a private seller, there were no lessons and while I feel like I'm a pretty good do it myself kind of girl, I'm at the hair pulling stage again.

I can't get the snowflakes to work with just the water soluble stabilizer.  Supposedly you sew them, then wash away the stabilizer and have the free form lace to hang from the Christmas tree.  I've tried two different stabilizers and both of them just poked holes and made a tangled mess of thread.

I won't give up though because one day embroidery will be as easy as sewing, quilting, crocheting and knitting.  Maybe even as easy as walking and talking :)


Kathy MacKie said...

I use Sulky Heavy Weight Water Solvy and though it is just about in shreds it has always held together for my stitch out. I have used the same thread for top and bottom and also a neutral bobbin thread with a more expensive top thread with success. It sure does take time to get comfortable with an Embroidery machine and I'm still not there yet either. Good luck.

Farm Quilter said...

I am no pro by any means, but I did take a class from Mr. Floriani (they make stabilizers and thread for embroidery) and he said that if you were getting the drawing up of the material like your picture shows, to use 2 pieces of stabilizer in a criss-cross pattern on top and bottom (4 pieces total) and maybe reduce the number of stitches in your design. You can also stitch around the area of your design (since you are going to cut it out anyway) to stabilize it some more. Some thread just isn't made for embroidery - like cotton! I finally bought thread specifically for embroidery - hard to do when I have thread for piecing quilts and then different thread for my longarm...I don't even want to know how much I have spent on thread in the last 4 years!

LJ said...

Farm Quilter had lots of good suggestions for you. I bought my Viking Designer about 4 years ago and love doing the embroidery.
Here is what I was told about FS lace and stabilizers. Use Aqua Magic stabilizer or 2 layers of Solvy stabilizer at opposite directions; Aqua Magic is definitely the BEST. BTW, Aqua Magic looks just like fabric. I've used it lots and have had NO problems. You must use the same thread in the bobbin or you'll end up with a backside and a front which looks esp. bad if the thread colors don't match. I have always used rayon thread though I want to try poly one of these days. You can actually hoop a piece of organdy, too. It gives a little different look but isn't 'in your face'. When you go to dissolve the stabilizer, 1)cut away most of the stabilizer, 2) place the design into warm/hotish water and allow it to drop to the bottom, 3) take it out and lay it flat between layers of a terry towel, 4) allow to nearly dry before removing from the towel, 5) throw the refuse water outside - not down the drain - as this is glue and could give you drain problems. FS lace is supposed to be stiff so that is why you only need to allow it a moment or two in the water. If this isn't clear, email me and I'll be glad to help.