The more subscribers I get on YouTube (I’m not complaining!) the more I notice that a lot of stitchers wonder about the same things. So rather than type, retype, & retype some more, I’m going to write up a single blog post and hopefully answer questions that I’m frequently asked all in one go and I can just share the link to this post the next time someone asks. Some of the links below are affiliate links where I make a small commission at no cost to you. Keith and I truly appreciate you using my links whenever possible to help out the family business.
WHEN AND WHAT: Starting on Sept 8, 2021, I will be releasing a video series on how to create the adorable Candy Corn Quilt Shoppe wall hanging by Kimberbell. Kimberbell releases these patterns in two types: Embroidery and Sewing. I’ll be doing the embroidery version. I will release the videos in a format for brand new embroiderers to follow along. Your machine will need to support at least a 5×7 hoop. These will not be Live videos but instead pre-recorded and you can watch them at your own pace as many times as you like.
SUPPLIES: I’m doing this embroider-along in coordination with RebsFabStash who, at the time of this blog post, has all the fabric, pattern books, and embellishment kits ready to ship out to my viewers. If you purchase in August, the coupon code AUGUST2021 will take 10% off your cart. Links to all of these goodies can be found on my Calendar of Events page under the event title. Calendar of Events – Power Tools with Thread I do not charge any money for these videos but I do make a commission from Rebs so if you’d use my links vs. say getting your fabric from some place like Etsy, I’d appreciate it. If Rebs doesn’t have what you need, here is another of my links and the Fat Quarter Shop just might have what you need.
PLAN AHEAD: Before your first hooping, please, please read the pattern book about making the quilt…EVERY WORD. The back half of the book contains extra projects so it’s not as reading-intensive as it looks at first. But the folks at Kimberbell have painstakingly put every single helpful detail in the book that can be thought of. OK, so you don’t have time for that all at once? Read through page 11 at least to get those fun facts running around through your brain for a couple of days before starting your first cut. However, please read through each pattern before you begin stitching. Even if you are a seasoned embroiderer, some of them throw a couple of curve balls like not cutting the applique fabric when you might think.
BAGGIES: Yep, do it. You’ll save yourself loads of time in the end. For quilt projects like this, organization is key.
FABRIC PREP: I do not pre-wash my fabrics. I prefer to leave the manufacturer’s sizing in the fabrics and I will starch mine on the back of the fabric. I use Faultless Spray Starch in the blue can that you can get at any grocery store. I starch the back of the fabric to prevent any flaking from the starch on the front.
BACKGROUND QUILTING: Background quilting designs are additional designs that are stitched onto the quilt blocks prior to any of the embroidery patterns in the book and they are NOT included on the CD that comes with the book. You can get them here from Kimberbell as a download. I also printed out the Quilting Guides found in the thumbnail images in the design description box. They have a chart to tell you which design goes in what block. IMPORTANT!!! IF YOU WILL BE DOING THE BACKGROUND QUILTING, THEN YOUR BLOCKS NEED TO BE OVERSIZED A LITTLE BIT (1/4″ OR SO) TO ACCOUNT FOR STITCHES DRAWING IN THE FABRIC! Optional background quilting designs can be found using Designs by JuJu’s Sashiko patterns which can be stitched in single, double, or triple run. I would use the single run personally. These designs come in a full range of shapes and sizes in a single purchase. You will want to be sure to tape down the edges of your fabric prior to stitching to ensure the foot doesn’t get caught up under the fabric. Another option may be to use background quilting designs that can be found in your own embroidery machine depending on the type of machine you have. Kimberbell has the option to purchase some of their designs one at a time or in smaller bundles rather than purchasing the entire kit so you can mix and match and still have an adorable result. Designs included in Kimberbell’s Clear Blue Tiles are another option but they haven’t been released to the public just yet (Due approx late Sept 21).
BATTING: Batting is only used during the embroidery process if you are using the Background Quilting Designs mentioned above. Otherwise, you’ll add batting at the end of the process after you finish the quilt top in its entirety just like a regular quilt when you make the quilt sandwich. If you’re doing the background quilting, you’ll trim away the batting prior to putting the quilt blocks together, much like a Quilt As You Go process. Full instructions for using batting are included in the download for the Background Quilting Designs.
FABRICS: If you get the official fabric kit, be sure to do an inventory immediately so you know what you have and can identify any missing fabrics (scary thought!). Quilt shops have been known to replace some fabrics with their own if they don’t buy the entire line to make up the kit so you need to know what you have before you start. I put a check mark next to my fabrics as I ticked them off. One of the very cool things that Kimberbell does is to provide little thumbnail images of the fabric so if you choose to source your own fabrics, you can see it up close and get something similar out of your stash.
THREAD COLORS: Kimberbell received a ton of requests for thread color charts for these types of projects. As you can imagine, with the scads of thread brands with all their different numbers, this would be impossible for them to provide. So they have done the next best thing and have provided images of the colors of threads used for you to match your own thread to. If you step outside into the daylight, you’ll get the best possible match.
FUSIBLE WOVEN FABRIC STABILIZER: This is different from stabilizer that you put in the hoop. Kimberbell recommends you use an iron-on woven fabric stabilizer and adhere it to all pieces of the fabric prior to any stitching. This will prevent excessive puckering in any blocks that have dense stitching. There is a chart below with links to all the stabilizers you will need for this project.
STABILIZERS: This project requires a no-show poly mesh for all hoopings as a base for the embroidery. The FlexiFoam stabilizer that’s required in the pattern book is included in the embellishment kit so I didn’t include it below. You can source other brands of stabilizers at the links below as well. I went ahead and got a roll of each just so I’d have them for future projects as well. Consider them an investment. 🙂
|STABILIZER TYPE||KIMBERBELL||OESD||AMAZON OR SULKY|
|No Show Mesh||https://shrsl.com/34rz9||https://bit.ly/3sLHCxI||https://amzn.to/3zjfjt1|
|Fibrous Water Soluable||https://shrsl.com/34ryw||https://bit.ly/3sKrOLP||https://amzn.to/2WpJUXv|
|Medium Cut Away||https://shrsl.com/34rzi||https://bit.ly/3894TQW||https://amzn.to/3895Icu|
FABRIC MARKING: I’m not a fan of marking on top of my fabric unless absolutely necessary. Instead, I prefer to notch the sides at the middle points with a small V-shaped snip. I mark crosshairs on my stabilizer and then align the snips with those marks. This will absolutely prevent accidentally stitching clear vinyl over marks you forgot to wash or iron away. The tiny snips you make will not interfere with the quilting or embroidery designs. They should be small enough to be trimmed away when you trim the block.
SVG FILES: There are svg cut files available on the CD that comes in the pattern book. It has been my experience that Kimberbell’s svg files need to be increased in size by 1-2mm using constrained proportions. On my Scan N Cut, I click the size + sign 2 times and that seems to do the trick. Please test yours first.
TRIMMING THE BLOCKS: Kimberbell recommends using their Orange Pop Rulers and I found these to be extremely handy to fussy cute these cute blocks. If you are using the Kimberbell Background Quilting designs, the outer stitch line can be used as a trimming line, but be sure the finished cut size is correct according to the pattern. Of course, you can always create your own fussy cut cutting templates from plastic cutting mats you can find at the dollar store.
I hope this info answers some of your questions and also provides some money saving alternatives. If you have other questions on this post or more come to mind as we get into CCQS, please comment below and I’ll respond as soon as I can. Enjoy! I know I will. 🙂