Tuesday, April 3, 2012

yin and yang and a satin stitch tip

Watercolour paper on card, concentrated liquid watercolour dripped and dried between colours, hand made stamp.  This is my own take on the yin-yang symbol, which you might have seen before in my sketchbook
No leaf today, but there are two leaves in the stamp. 
Instead, I'm going to tell you about my trials and tribulations with satin stitch edgings.
I have tried every method known to man, but my corners get eaten up by my machine!  I have tried the embroidery floss technique, I have tried the sew first cut second method,  I have tried using water soluble stabiliser, and heat aways and tear aways.  I have tried so many ways to do this seemingly simple thing that all other sewing machines seem to do so easily, that I thought I would never get it.
When all of a sudden it occured to me.
When I am quilting or thread painting something small, I often put a larger piece of paper-scrap computer paper underneath to stabilise.  It seems to have more strength than the tear aways, which crumble as soon as you look at them.
Anyway, I thought, why don't I try this with satin stitch edgings?
You can see in the picture that I have gone around the corner really nicely, with the paper underneath.
The paper tears away quite nicely, as you can see.
Then, because this happened to be a satin that liked to fray, I had a little trimming and a touch up with a permanent marker to match the thread and voila!
A great satin stitch edging (which I showed on my ATC the other day)
With some pieces, I leave the paper on the back.  It depends on the purpose.  With an ATC, it gives extra strength and somewhere to write on the back, so I glue it on before I start.  With other pieces, I take the paper off the back afterward.
I am pretty pleased with this method, because after so many tries, I finally found a method that suits me, and secondly, scrap paper is easy to find!
I vaguely remember reading somewhere that Once upon a time, before we had all these mods and cons, paper was used as a stabiliser.