Serger Smarts: The Backside Blanket Stitch
Simple adjustments give great new options!
Previously, we featured an article on how to create a new serger stitch, the Braid Stitch, and our readers loved it! So we asked Janome Serger Specialist, Maddie Bushman to provide some additional insight into simple adjustments that give you creative new options to try on your Janome Serger.
Our newest creative serger stitch is called the "Backside Blanket Stitch." The blanket stitch is a favorite for appliqué, because the stitch is constructed to hold the appliqué in place while finishing the edges of the appliqué fabric. You can find a traditional blanket stitch on many Janome sewing machines, including the Memory Craft 6300 and the Horizon (the Horizon offers a wide range of blanket stitch variations!).
In the past, this special stitch was only available on more advanced sergers, like the 1100D and 1200D. With our adjustment guide, however, you can adjust any serger stitch to create this versatile effect simply and quickly.
The Backside Blanket Stitch creates a blanket stitch on the underside of the fabric (on the bottom as you sew). It's great for edging fleece, felt, or any heavier fabric. You can create it using regular polyester serger thread. Make the following adjustments to set up for this fun and easy finishing stitch:
- Right Needle (use size 14) - 5
- Upper Looper - 1
- Lower Looper - 9
- Stitch Length - 4-5
- Engage stitch finger for Standard Serging
- Adjust the cutting blade one full turn to move the blade further to the right.
Video: Using The Free Motion Foot On The Open-Toe Quilt Set
This foot's open design makes it easier to see your thread as you free motion stitch.
The Open-Toe Quilt Set (high shank) is a sewing machine presser foot set that includes the Open-toe Walking foot with Quilt Guide and the Open-Toe Darning foot.
You might think that something called a "darning foot" would be designed to make garment repairs. You can use this foot for that if you really want to, but it was designed for doing free motion stitching on quilts and other projects.
To see this foot used to fill in a quilt square with free motion stippling, watch Open Toe Quilt Set (high shank) Video: Using the Free Motion Foot.
The same video clip also shows you how to use the Open-Toe Darning Foot for doing thread painting. After you've appliquéd a design to your fabric, you go over the design with coordinating thread colors to accent the areas you want to emphasize.
The Open-Toe Quilt Set (high shank) is compatible with high shank sewing machines such as the Memory Craft 11000 Special Edition, Memory Craft 9700, Memory Craft 6600P, and the new Horizon MC7700 QCP.
Felting on Silk Dupioni! Learn How One Janome Dealer Created Amazing Accents.
Machine felting is usually associated with wools and yarns and coarse fibers. But silk?!
She essentially created her own fabric by needle felting across the silk at a diagonal – first one direction, then the other, creating a crosshatch pattern. Janet then used this felted silk to cut the jacket front and back pattern pieces, leaving the sleeves and collar in the plain silk. Our thanks to Janet for sharing her inspired Needle Felted Jacket technique.
You can produce amazing fiber art with Janome's FM-725 felting machine. It's shaped like a sewing machine. But where you'd expect to find the needle, it has five barbed needles and doesn't use thread. Instead, you place your fabric under the needles and various fibers on top. The needles push down through both layers, meshing the fibers and fabrics into new creations. Read more about the FM-725.
Techniques You Need: Sewing & Embroidering With Metallic Thread
Shine On! Sewing with metallic thread isn't scary after all!
Sewing with metallic thread adds amazing decorative touches to your projects, but many sewists are scared away from this terrific option by stories of thread breakage, stacking and nesting.
Janome is here to help, with some tips for success. Push all your fears away by following our simple guidelines for Sewing with Metallic Thread. You'll be amazed at what you can achieve!
Because metallic thread has a different composition than regular thread, it behaves slightly differently in the machine – making tension a consideration. For success, set the tension slightly lower than the auto, or normal tension setting. (For example, on the Horizon 7700QCP set the upper thread tension at 2 or less.) This will allow the thread to pass through the thread paths and tensions without the tautness ordinary sewing thread requires for a balanced stitch.
In the old days, rumors circulated that placing the spool further way from the machine after threading would result in fewer challenges. (Imagine the fun the kitties had with spools delivering metallic thread to the machine from across the room!) The experts at Janome have tested this assumption, and found that threading the machine in the standard way works just fine.
Finally, if the thread appears to be aged or to have excessive twisting, apply a small amount of Sewer's Aid© to the spool as well as the needle.
In Review, for great results with Metallic Thread:
- Reduce the needle thread tension
- Use Janome Red Tip needle, size 14.
- Apply a small amount of Sewer's Aid© to thread and needle.
Why We LOVE The Horizon Sewing Machine: The Invisible Appliqué Stitch
Invisible Appliqué Stitch - Sewn but not Seen!
Much like the alien mystery surrounding Area 51 in the Nevada desert, Stitch 51 on the Horizon is powerful because it can't be seen.
The Invisible Appliqué Stitch #51 on the Horizon 7700QCP is one of the most popular appliqué stitches used by quilters throughout the country. Below are the settings and special notes for achieving this easy and versatile stitch.
- Stitch #51
- Needle Position - 1.0
- Stitch length - 1.20
- Thread - Clear Nylon (Monofilament)
To use the stitch, you'll need to set it to its mirror image. To do this, follow these steps:
- Select stitch #51.
- Press the mirror image button.
- Press the Memory Key.
- Stitch your appliqué!
When the machine begins to stitch, the first stitch should go into the applique fabric. For better accuracy, use the hand wheel as necessary to determine the precise needle drop location. Test this technique on scrap fabric before using it in an actual project for best results.
Introducing The DC2011 Sewing Machine
This limited edition machine has lots of great features, plus fun pink accents.
For the past few years Janome has released a specially-priced sewing machine in limited numbers. This year it's the DC2011 sewing machine. This computerized machine gives you ease-of-use from threading to sewing to finishing with a lock stitch. And you get legendary Janome quality at a great price.
At the heart of the machine's quality is the Superior Feed System. This Janome exclusive uses a 7-piece feed dog to guide your fabric in perfect sync with the needle. It utilizes a box feed system, which moves the feed dogs in sync with better overall traction. You get beautiful stitches on any weight of fabric.
Speaking of stitches, the DC2011 has 50. These include 24 heirloom stitches, 6 satin stitches, a bi-directional blanket stitch, 3 one-step Sensor buttonholes, and all the utility and construction stitches you'll need. All the stitches and their numbers are listed on the front of the machine. The backlit LED screen shows you which stitch you've selected, and makes it easy to set width and length.
Quick conveniences at your fingertips include a memorized needle up/down, locking stitch, and speed control slider. Threading is a breeze with numbered lay-in paths. And the machine threads its own needle.
Try the DC2011 at your local Janome Dealer then compare its features and stitch quality with machines costing much more. You'll see why this limited edition machine is such a great value for garment, home decor, and quilting projects.
Find complete specifications for the DC2011, including an instruction manual (PDF).
Video: Attaching Bias Binding With The Rotary Even Foot
Use this tractor feed foot to attach bias tape to any thickness of fabric.
If you do any home décor or garment sewing, you've probably had to attach bias tape to the edge of your project. Sometimes called "bias binding tape," it gives a professional finish to clothing, blankets and quilts, accessories, and a host of home dec items.
You can buy pre-folded bias tape at the fabric store, or easily cut and make your own, then attach it with one of Janome's specially designed presser feet.
One of those is the the Rotary Even Foot™. It features a tractor feed, allowing you to sew stretchy fabrics, like jersey and knits, as well as other hard-to-feed materials, like leather or vinyl without slipping or puckering. It comes with five attachments, one of which is designed for applying bias binding.
With this attachment on the Rotary Even Foot™ you simply fold your bias tape and feed it through the see-through funnel. The foot guides the binding over the fabric edge, moving all layers in perfect sync with the tractor feed. You can choose any running stitch on your sewing machine, including decorative stitches, to attach the bias tape.
The bias binding attachment on the the Rotary Even Foot™ is adjustable and can accommodate binding up to 20 mm wide.
Once you've seen it in action, you'll realize how easy it is to use. Watch the video Rotary Even Foot: Attaching Bias Binding.
It fits all Janome sewing machines.
Our Valentine Is The New MC6300 Sewing Machine; We LOVE That It Goes Up to 1000 spm
The speed, power, and sewing room of the Professional series. But at a mid-range price.
It's fitting that we feature the new Memory Craft 6300 sewing machine on Valentine's Day. Because this machine has lots to love. If you're a serious quilter, a garment maker, or someone who does large home décor projects, this machine could seriously speed up your sewing time.
First of all, it shares the roomy 9" x 5" bed space of its popular big sisters, the MC6600P and MC6500P. And it has their speed, with the ability to sew a straight stitch at up to 1,000 stitches per minute.
Second, the MC6300 has the same sew-through-thick-layers power. Go ahead and make a mitered corner with heavy denim or wool. This machine can take it. You'll also appreciate the clear bobbin cover, which gives you a better view of your lower thread.
This computerized sewing machine also has a full range of "power-user" features that save you time and effort: a Visible Pressure Gauge, an independent motor for bobbin winding, front-access feed dog up/down, programmable thread cutter, and quick command keys for auto-lock and needle up/down. The MC6300 also has an automatic needle threader and comes standard with a knee lift.
The MC6300 comes with 63 stitches, including 4 one-step buttonholes, utility, heirloom and quilting stitches. They're divided into four sections with a quick-access button for each section. The stitch chart, divided into those four sections, is conveniently located on the inside of the lid. Once you've chosen a stitch you can elongate or widen it and then save it to the memory bank.
The machine comes standard with a walking foot, darning foot, and eight other presser feet. You can compare it with any other Janome sewing machine (Comparison tab) and also download an instruction manual (Specifications tab) on the MC6300 page.
2011 Truckload Sale Ends Soon!
It makes February seem shorter than ever when you remember our Annual Truckload Sale ends on the 28th.
But you can still save hundreds or even thousands on sewing machine and accessory bundles. And take advantage of savings on the notions you use most. Of course, all these Truckload Sale deals are available only at your local, authorized, participating Janome Dealer.
Check out the Ultimate Embroidery and Monogramming Package, the Wide Open Horizon Quilt Package and the Complete home Decor Package. All the details are in our special online, interactive Truckload Sale Booklet.
Promotion offers are based on regular retail price and valid through 2/28/2011 at authorized, participating Janome dealers. Look for the Truckload Sale icon in our Dealer Locator for dealers in your area.
Free Bonus Design from the Authors of Thread & Bobbin: Hanging Wall Blocks
These soft baby alphabet blocks are perfect for a nursery... oh heck, we want them everywhere!
It's a little hard to tell from our tiny pictures, but these adorable blocks are dimensional. When you click through to the project LINK, you'll see they are pretty little cubes with hanging ribbons so you can string them together to make a darling display in a nursery or playroom.
This project is a special bonus from our friends Alison Newman (from Janome America) and Kaitlin Witte, and is one of the many projects they created when preparing for their book, thread & bobbin: 21 simple sewing projects ($18, All American Crafts). It's a great book for beginners, but equally fun for those more skilled because of the very cute ideas... like this one!
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