31 August 2012

I'm a believer

It started with this post from Lynne at Lily's quilts.    Lynne set out all her tips for speedy EPPing.  I'm not terribly bothered about the speed at which I sew, but all the tips she gives seem to make for easier and neater stitching, so I've given then a go

1.  I now always use my bestest scissors if I'm cutting the pieces by hand.  It's quicker and gives a neater cut which is easier to baste.

2.  I bought some better needles whilst I was in the UK, but think I can still improve on the ones I have.   I can't say what's wrong, just that I think there is something that will suit me better. I think it's a case of trying several until I find the one that just feels right.

3.  Lynne recommends Aurifil, as I know many of you do.   I really, truly did not believe that Aurfil could be that good.   After all it's just thread isn't it?   But in the interests of this experiment, I ordered a couple of reels, one white for my machine and one cream for hand stitching.  And I have to agree with everyone else on the planet that it iis brilliant.   It is fine and smooth for hand stitching, and my machine is purring away like a kitten!   The only complaint I have is that it does curl up a lot, making control of the thread a little tricky, especially when it's curling up around the foot on my machine.

Does anyone else have this problem?  Do you have a solution?

4.   Threading the needle from the end that comes off the spool, knotting the end that you cut.

5.    Stitching 8 stitches before pulling the long thread through.  This is where you can tell the difference between the Aurifil and other threads.  This is just not possible with the other threads I tried - they don't slip and either get stuck or break. But the Aurifil slips through like a dream.  And I seem to get into a rythm that gives a much neater, more even stitch.

6.  Stitching fewer stitches per inch.  This certainly gives a very neat finish - I just hope the seam is strong enough in the long term.

And the proof of success of this little experiment

A nice neat row of stitches
So I guess I will carry on with using Aurifil, carry on with the 8 stitch rule, but I'm still not sure about fewer stitches per seam.  I think I may make them a little closer together, just to avoid future problems with the seams. 

A big thanks to Lynne for sharing her experience with the rest of the world.  All these little things add up to make me a better sewer (sewist?)


  1. Even with Aurifil I still can't do the '8 stitches and pull' without getting snaggled, but that may be due to the smaller stitches I am doing.

    Looking great though x

  2. I can't do the big stitches either, but I do find the Aurifil tangles up on me less and that makes me so much happier and more likely to handstitch.

  3. oh i love aurifil so much! i am a believer also.

  4. Yeah... my Aurifil likes to curl too. Not sure how to change that.

  5. Well thank you for that, now I have the Monkees stuck in my head!