Kathleen's Blog
Friday, 31 January 2020 08:36

valentine kitchen towel finished


It's just one more week till Valentine's Day...

and I still don't have a cute kitchen towel hanging on the front of my oven...

How can that be...I'm an embroiderer after all!

Let's fix that real quick...fast...and in a hurry!

 Gracius BE...

There are tons of Super Cute Valentine designs to choose from...

and I really LOVE this Heart Bundle Applique...

So that's what I'll use today!

I chose the 8x8 design size because I wanted it to “fill” the front of my towel nicely

and it was the perfect size for adding the word “Love” across the largest heart applique. 

I used the 1.5” size of the Happy Day Font...

and this particular font, with it's whimsical appearance, was the PERFECT addition to this applique design!

You are sure to LOVE it too!

No pun intended there!


Let's get started...

I prepped my 8x8 Full Fast Frame with Sticky Stabilizer and then used my rule of thumb for kitchen towels...

by measuring 2” from the bottom of the towel to the bottom of the design. 

I found the center from there. 

I just like the way an applique design looks when it's placed in this position...

but there are NO hard and fast rules to this...

So be sure to place yours where it is most pleasing to YOU!

I like to use a piece of fusible NO Show Mesh Cut Away Stabilizer on the backside of my kitchen towel,

covering the area where the design will be.  It holds the design in place...

during those repeated washing's...

You know...

Just in case someone dares to wipe their messy hands on this Beautiful Home Decor Towel!

But that NEVER...

EVER happens...


Here she goes...

valentine kitchen towel on the machine 2

I gave my towel EXTRA support and HOLD by using my Clover Red Clippies around the frame...

Gracious Alive...I LOVE these cuties so!


I did slap a piece of WSS on top of the design...

once all the applique panels were in place and just before it goes into the satin work.

Here's the design stats for this particular project...

7.5” Tall X 7 inches Wide

15,113 stitches (approximately)

PS...In the Tools of the Trade you will find that I listed the fabrics used by which HEART I applied them to...

check it out!

It's official...

Valentine's Day can arrive in Full Fashion...


valentine kitchen towel finished 2


-Heart Bundle Applique Design (I used the 8 X 8 size) (www.babykaysappliques.com)

-Happy Day Font (for the word LOVE) (I used the 1.5” size) (www.babykaysappliques.com)

-Fast Frame (I used the FULL 8X8 inch size)

-Perfect Stick Stabilizer (I used Floriani Brand)

-No Show Fusible Mesh Cutaway Stabilizer(I used Floriani Brand)

-WSS (off Brand)

-Heat and Bond Lite (Hobby Lobby, Joann's, Walmart and Amazon)

-Clover Wonder Clips (Hobby Lobby, Joann's, Amazon and Quilt Shops)

-White Kitchen Towel (Bed Bath and Beyond)

-Fabric...Large Heart (“In Love” by Alexander Henry) Heart on Right (PNK.TNL.DOT by Brother/Sister Design Studios-Hobby Lobby) Heart on Left (Pink Essential Dots by Moda Fabrics) Heart on Bottom (“Hatch”-C2959 by Timeless Treasures Fabrics of Soho)

-Thread-Exquisite Brand...Red #3015...Hot Pink #325...Pink #305..Light Pink #302...White #010

-Water Soluble Pen for Marking Center of design 

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Sunday, 26 January 2020 16:52

best valentine frog and cupcake

Gracious BE...

Who doesn't love them some Super Cute Valentines Day Decor?

Can I get an AMEN?

After I had taken down my bazillion Christmas Decorations,

from every nook and cranny in my house...

I quickly realized my home felt like I had just moved in...

A BLANK CANVAS...of sorts!

I digress...

I decided a couple little Valentines Day cuties were in order!

After combing through my Valentines Design Files...

I came across this adorable Froggie holding a Valentine Heart...

so in my Embrilliance Software I went a "merging"...

and this Sweet Font called Smoothie Shoppe surely fit the bill!

Next up was a Calorie LESS Cupcake...

complete with Sprinkles!

Such a Simple Applique design...

but she surely packs a PUNCH!

I love to get UP close and PERSONAL with my Embroidery Machine...

by using my magnifier glass to see all its "pieces parts" in action!

Don't YOU?



I used a piece of Glitter Vinyl for the "frosting" applique part of the cupcake top...

I love love love the glittery shimmer it gives...

I mounted both pieces...similar to the way I do my Christmas Ornaments...

using Sticky Board, Batting, Fabric and Stitchery Tape...

I LOVE it when a plan comes together...

and let's face it...

with these super cute applique designs...

it takes so LITTLE effort!

valentine frog


valentine cupcake

Happy Valentines Day PEEPS!




-Frog Heart Applique (https://www.theitch2stitch.com/Frog-Heart-Applique.html)

-Smoothie Shoppe Embroidery Font (https://www.theitch2stitch.com/Smoothie-Shoppe-Embroidery-Font.html)

-Valentine Cupcake Applique (www.justpeachyapplique.com)

-Perfect Stick Stabilizer (I used Floriani Brand)

-WSS (off Brand)

-25 Count Opalescent Lugana Cross Stitch Fabric (https://www.fatquartershop.com/opalescent-white-25-ct-lugana-36-55-cross-stitch-cloth)

-Glitter Mirror Vinyl for the Frosting on the Cupcake Design (www.mikriworld.com)

-Sticky Board  (https://www.fatquartershop.com/16-inch-x-20-inch-pres-on-mounting-board)

-Stitchery Tape (https://www.fatquartershop.com/double-sided-stitchery-tape-60-foot-roll)

-100% Cotton Warm and White Batting (Fat Quarter Shop/Hobby Lobby/Joann's)

-Flat Head Pins (Hobby Lobby)

-Pink Heart Buttons (Hobby Lobby)

-White DMC Floss (Hobby Lobby)

-Water Soluble Pen for Marking Center of design


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Thursday, 23 January 2020 11:47

together pillow finished

Right about now, you are probably wondering...where are you going with that blog title...Kathleen? 

Fear not...I have a plan...so STAY with me here!

We all LOVE Valentines Day, but it's such a short Holiday that most people don't really decorate their homes all that much.

Well...maybe not like “over the top” as I may or may not do at Christmas!

Sound familiar?

Today's project remedies that...simply because it can certainly stay out in the living area of your home all year round!

You are sure to LOVE this one...

Let's take a fabulous combination of sizes from Jamberry Swirls and Simple Day Fonts and combine it with one of the heart appliques from the Heart Bundle Applique Design...all from Baby Kays Appliques!  

Now...that's what I call a SERIOUS plan...in action!

So let's jump right in and get started...

Because I am using my same Red and White pillow from Christmas...

which is an 18” square...I have cut my fabric and cotton batting in the following manner...

-9” Wide X 41” Long (fabric)

-8” Wide X 38.5” Long (100% Cotton Batting)

I prepped my 8x12 Full Fast Frame with sticky stabilizer and then put the

batting onto the sticky first, and then layered the fabric on top of the batting...

centering it, so that there would be “excess” fabric (top and bottom) to make a hem out of over the batting...

when you finish your embroidery work.  

together pillow frame ready

I also added a few of my flat head pins around the edge to secure the top fabric layer and the batting to the frame. 

You will notice that I used the straight edge of the bottom of my fabric to match up with the straight edge of the frame itself...

and this assures me that I am loading it evenly across the frame. 

I also have my center marked with a water soluble pen for a reference point.

Here she goes...

stitching effortlessly...

as my Sweet Matilda Jane always does!

together pillow on the machine

I used my Clover Green Clippies this time because they are LONGER...

and can take a bigger bite where I need it to hold my fabric and batting more securely along the front edge.

And YES...

I slapped on a piece of WSS...

because it makes my heart sing!


Once I removed the finished work from the frame...I

press the top edge over to the backside of the top and the bottom and hemmed it.

After I hemmed both the top and bottom with a nice top stitch,

I put it on the pillow I planned to use and trimmed the length of it to fit with a slight overlap. 

I secured it onto the pillow by sewing velcro at the overlap. 

I just LOVE it when a plan comes together...

How about YOU?


together pillow finished


-Jamberry Swirls and Simple  Day Fonts (www.babykaysappliques.com)

-Heart Bundle Applique (www.babykaysappliques.com)

-Fast Frame (I used the Full 8x12 inch size)

-Perfect Stick Stabilizer (I used Floriani Brand)

-WSS (off Brand)

-Cotton Linen Blend Fabric in Light Gray color (Fabric.com)

-100% Cotton Warm and White Batting

-Flat Head Pins (Hobby Lobby)

-Green Clover Wonder Clips (Hobby Lobby, Joann's, Amazon and Quilt Shops)

-Red and White Geometric Pillow Cover (18”square-Hobby Lobby)

-20” square Pillow Form (Joann's)

-Velcro (to hold the wrap closed on the pillow)

-Fabric...”In Love” by Alexander Henry (for the Heart Applique)

-Thread-Exquisite Brand...Red #3015-White #010-Light Pink #302

-Water Soluble Pen for Marking Center of design

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Monday, 20 January 2020 08:47

valentine card finished card


January is coming to a close and it's time to get a jump on Valentine's Day.

I've always believed that taking the time to make a sweet gift for someone, makes me feel like I'm getting the gift too! 

How about YOU?

When I first saw this adorable Stick Couple embroidery design a while back...

my first thought was...

“That's gonna make a Fabulous Card for my special Valentine"! 

How about making a set of 4...using each of the designs in the set!

Now...that's a plan!

Let's get started...

Cut the following pieces for EACH card you want to make...

-6.5” wide x 6” tall cotton fabric (a lighter colored solid works best!)

-Heat and Bond Lite (cut slightly smaller than the fabric)

-6.5” wide x 6” tall Buckram Stabilizer

I am using the 4x4 design size (Stick Couple Love 1 version)...

which is just perfect for my card front, and leaves me just the right amount of room to add some “LOVE”...

using the 1” Quirky Girl Font in all Capital Letters!

First...let's prep our Fast Frame and Fabric...

Fuse the Heat and Bond Lite (per the package instructions) to the backside of the cotton fabric. 

Remove the paper release from the Heat and Bond and fuse the Buckram stabilizer

to the Heat and Bond side of the prepped fabric.

You essentially have a 3 layered piece that is now the base for your card front. 

This layering process gives you the proper stabilization you will need to make the embroidered card base.

I used the 5x7 Fast Frame...prepped with a sticky stabilizer

(use whatever frame for your machine that will accommodate the prepped layered base that you just made).

Find the center of your prepped piece and mark it with a water soluble pen. 

Stick the prepped base piece to the sticky stabilizer...

centering it the best you can on the frame. 

Here's what my frame looks like all set up...

prepped frame

***TIP...we are making the card front larger and then will cut it down after the design has stitched out...

so don't worry about “perfect placement” at this point.


valentine card on the machine

The sticky stabilizer does ALL the work, keeping the card base panel in it's place. 

No worries about removing all the sticky from the backside of the card base...

it won't show when we put the card together later.

As you can see...

I did NOT use WSS stabilizer on top of the design...

it's just not necessary! 

***Keep in mind that the use of a lighter colored cotton fabric for the main card base

will help this “Sketch” design pop right off the background.

Once the design has finished stitching out...

which takes no time at all with only 3,783 stitches for this approximately 3” wide x 4.75” tall design...

you will remove it from the sticky stabilizer on your frame. 

Do not worry about removing every little piece of sticky stabilizer...

we're going to cover that right up in the next few steps.

Before I cut down the card base panel...

I went ahead and removed the center mark I made with my water soluble pen. 

No need to soak the whole base panel...

just use a wet Q-Tip to add the “right amount” of moisture to remove the mark. 

Easy Peasy...Lemon Squeezy!


cut the base panel down to 4” wide x 5.25” tall

(this size is slightly smaller than the card stock you will be adhering it to). 

Set this aside.

Cut a piece of Card Stock in half...

so it now measures 5.5” tall x 8.5” wide.  Then fold the card stock in half...

making a card that will measure 4.25” tall x 5.5” wide...

Now you can see that your base panel piece is slightly smaller than the actual card itself.

Adhere the embroidered base panel to the card stock...

using one of the two following methods (which ever one you fancy BEST).

-You can simply glue (using a glue stick) the embroidered card base panel right to the front of the card or use double face tape.


-You can fuse a piece of Heat and Bond to the backside of the embroidered base panel and then fuse the whole panel to the front of your card stock. 

Are you surprise you can iron on a piece of card stock? 

YES...you can! 

Just be careful not to use steam or hold you iron onto it for a long period of time...

as you might scorch it. 

You just heat set it enough to melt the Heat and Bond Lite, so it will adhere to the card stock. 

This will hold it in it's place when you take it over to your regular sewing machine

and sew closely to the edge of the embroidered base panel with a top stitch...

sewing through the base panel AND the card stock all at the same time.

valentine card sewing the card

Are you almost as surprised you can SEW through card stock too?

OH...YES, you can!

Don't you just LOVE it when a plan comes together...

No pun intended there!


 valentine card finished card

Make one for your SPECIAL Valentine this year...

or perhaps a set of 4 to give as a gift to your favorite person!




-Stick Couple Love 1 Design (I used the 4x4 size)(https://babykaysappliques.com/product/stick-couple-love-set-of-4-designs-4x4-5x7-6x10-8x8/)

-Quirky Girl Font (1” size for the LOVE word in all Capital Letters)(https://babykaysappliques.com/product/quirky-girl-font-5-1-1-5-2-2-5-bx/)

-Fast Frames (I used the 5x7 inch size)

-Perfect Stick Stabilizer (I used Floriani Brand)

-Buckram Stabilizer (Hobby Lobby...available on the bolt in the stabilizer section)

-Heat and Bond Lite Fusible (Hobby Lobby, Joann's, Walmart and On Line)

-Fabric...Light Gray (Hello World by Abi Hall for Moda-Stock #35305)

-Thread-Exquisite Brand...Black #020-Red #3015

-Card Stock (I used a Heavy Weight from Staples)

-Water Soluble Pen for Marking Center of design



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Sunday, 19 January 2020 09:44


framed monogrammed sweatshirt finished

It's not a secret that Kathleen LOVES her some Monograms...

You know...

BIG...JUMBO Monograms...

And since this project is going to be for ME...I wanted to shake it up a bit, by adding some Fabric Bling to the mix!

Reese Witherspoon would be so PROUD of me!


Let's get moving...

I started off by choosing the 6x10 inch size of the

Rounded Square Patch Applique from the “Monogrammed Patches” design. 

I set it “on point”

and then added my 3 letters in the 6” size of the Vine Monogram Font on top!

By choosing to start with the Square Patch Applique as a base for my completed design...

I was able to add multiple colors to the mix. 

I chose a pretty Pink and Gray Plaid

and then used HOT Pink Thread for the Vine Monogram on top!

It's a WIN...WIN situation!

Here's my design stats...

-7.85” X 7.85” square

-18,850 stitches

I prepped my 8x8 Full Fast Frame with Sticky Stabilizer

and then found my center of the design

using my rule of thumb of 2” below the neckline to the TOP of the design. 

Once you have the mark for the TOP of your design you can easily find your center. 

I also fused a piece of No Show Mesh Cutaway to the backside of my sweatshirt...

for added permanent control during repeated washing's. 

***TIP...When I make shirts for adults

I usually use the 2” number from the neckline to the Top of the design. 

Baby and Children's garments I use a 3/4” to 1” number from the neckline to the Top of the design (this will depend on how SMALL the baby garment is). 

I like my designs to be up on the chest and not in the middle of the stomach...but that's just a personal preference and you should use what ever design placement strikes your fancy!

Here she goes...

framed monogrammed sweatshirt on the machine

Are you thinking...

Red Clippie OVERLOAD?

I LOVE my Red Clippies from Clover...

and I'm NOT ashamed to use the WHOLE box!


As you can see in the above picture...

I have loaded my shirt upside down...

with the waistline going in FIRST to the neck of the machine. 


the design is loaded upside down too! 

This gives me “less stretching” at the neckline of my garment.

Once I had the Applique panel of fabric tacked down and trimmed...

I slapped a piece of WSS on top and let Matilda Jane do her magic...

stitching out all that FABULOUS satin work and triple bean stitch overlay!

Gracious ALIVE...

I LOVE it!

framed monogrammed sweatshirt finished

And just because I “CAN”...

Here's a close up of this Fabulous NEW Monogrammed look...

framed monogrammed sweatshirt close up finished


-Rounded Square Patch (from the Monogrammed Patches Design-I used the 6x10” size and set it on Point)(www.babykaysappliques)

-Vine Monogram Font (I used the 6” size) (www.babykaysappliques)

-Fast Frame (I used the FULL 8x8 inch size)

-Red Clover Clips (Joann's-Hobby Lobby-On Line and Quilt Shops)

-Perfect Stick Stabilizer (I used Floriani Brand)

-No Show Mesh Cutaway Stabilizer (I used Floriani Brand)

-WSS (No Name Brand)

-Pink and Gray Plaid (Joann's)

-Thread (Exquisite Brand) Light Gray #1707 and Hot Pink #325

-Jerzee Brand Sweatshirt (choose your favorite department store or on line store)

-Water Soluble Pen for Marking Center of design

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