All of the applique pieces are ready to stitch down. I have gathered the tools I need, including an open toed applique foot, Mettler Black-50 weight thread on the spool as well as in the bobbin, a thread nipper, and a brand spanking new Microtex Sharp size 80/12 needle. Two other items, not shown and optional, but very worth it, are a self-threading needle and a Bendable Bright Light. I also have taken the time to clean and oil my sewing machine.
I did some practice stitching on some fused scraps to determine my stitch length and width and that the tension was correct. I will be using a Blanket Stitch for my applique. On my Bernina machine, the settings I used are 2 for the width and also for the length. This creates a stitch approximately 1/8" wide and 1/8" long. Engage your needle down position if available. I started stitching on the top of the ghost's head. I left a good length of thread and kept it out of the way while stitching. I also left a good length of thread at the end. By pulling the bobbin thread I can see the loop that is created by the top thread and I can pull the top thread to the back and tie it off. The top thread can also be popped into a self-threading needle and poked to the back.
Because my background is dark I just tie the ends into a double knot and clip the thread about 1/2" from the knot.
I invested in a Bendable Bright Light a few months ago and I don't know how I ever got along without one. You can see from the photo below how much extra light is concentrated on the stitching area. Also, because it is bendable, I bend it out so that I can see the threads I'm trying to pull to bring to the back.
This is the stitching order I used for the ghost:
- Top of head
- Right eye
- Left eye
- Bottom of the eyelids
- Left side of body
- Right side of body
Next comes the skeleton. I stitched the eyes and nose first. Because the eye and nose sockets are under the skull, you will be stitching on the white fabric. The photo below shows my threads popped into a self-threading needle so that I can poke them to the back. This is the stitching order I used for the skeleton:
- Top and bottom of hat band
Congratulations! You have finished your first two blocks. My photo of my two completed blocks didn't turn out very well, so I will take it again tomorrow in better light and post it below. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to leave a comment or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.