Friday, March 22, 2013

Centering an "off-center" design

 You have a design that you want to stitch but it takes up the whole field of your embroidery hoop and if you centered it traditionally, it would look off-center.

Have you been there?

All of the sudden you finish and you pull your item off the hoop and realize.........oops, it looks off-centered!

Here's an easy way to make sure your designs are always centered and it really only involves one (or two or three) extra step(s). If you have software, print off a 1:1 ratio template of your design. If you don't have software, go download WilcomTruesizer (FREE software to view and print and change file formats) and print off a 1:1 ratio template.

 You will also need your garment, hoop, and grid.

 Go ahead and add centering marks to your garment.


If I went ahead a stitched out this design based on centering the hoop on the garment, this would be the placement of the design. Technically centered but it also looks off-centered. 

Instead, I want the #1 to be centered. I use the centering marks on my garment to center the #1.

Like so.

I mark new spots to line up my design. You can use the grid on your template if you lay it on top. My template has nice little holes just for marking. Does yours?

Now put your grid in your hoop and line everything back up as you hoop. As you can see, the hoop is not centered anymore......
but the design will stitch out looking more centered!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Studio Stein: March 2013 Business Spotlight


This week's guest is Koral of Studio Stein.
Please read on as Koral tells us a little bit about herself, her business, and her inspiration.

  • Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Koral. I am a wife to an amazing man I am proud to say is an incredible father, a firefighter, and a support to my love of creating! I am also the proud mother of two incredible children: A brilliant, beautiful, and bubbling daughter and a wild, wonderful, and warm-hearted son.

  • How long have you been sewing?
I sewed a few things as a child, made a pillow in Girl Scouts, and sewed some curtains for my and my siblings' bedrooms. So technically since then. But, I caught my love of sewing when I was engaged to my husband: I wanted to make my own wedding gown. That was a success so I went on to make a total of 9 dresses for my wedding (mine, bridesmaids', flower girls', etc.) and never really stopped sewing after that! Many years later I am still happily married and happily sewing!

  • How did you get started using an embroidery machine?
After my wedding I continued on to make formal wear for others by word-of-mouth. I wanted to do custom embroidery on the wedding gowns I was creating so I bought my machine and jumped in with both feet.
  • What is your favorite item to make?
My favorite things to make are smiles. Sounds silly, I know, but things that matter to people, especially for my children and gifts, are why I do what I do. I LOVE gift giving more than chocolate and Starbucks combined (that is HUGE!!!). The only thing about this hobby and business that tops the great gift giving is the smile on my childrens' faces when I give them something I made just for them. My toddler is very proud telling everyone, "Mommy made! Mommy made!" and pointing to his shirt, cup, shorts, etc. everywhere we go. I have to admit, it never gets old hearing that! There is a lot of love and happiness wrapped into those moments and that is amazing!

  • Do you have a shop? Name? Location/website/s?
I do! My business is Studio Stein. I can be found on Facebook (, etsy (, and on my website (

  •  Bestselling item?
I sell birthday shirts more than any other product I create. If I guessed, before starting, what I would sell the most of, I must admit I would be surprised to hear myself say that is my top item!

  • In all of your years of embroidering, what is the best tip you've heard and would like to pass on?

This tip is one that I teach to my sewing students and applies to embroiderers as well: If your machine is on, your iron should be too.
  • Closing words of wisdom.
Never lose sight of your love of creating. Truly! Only make things that bring you joy and help you keep balance in your life. If you make your happiness and life a priority when creating and the rest of the pieces will fall into place much more smoothly!
Please use coupon code OriginalStitches0313 for 10% off any purchase between now and the end of April.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Argyle Sibling Appliques

Expecting a new arrival?

These simple yet versatile appliques are great to announce any addition to your family!

Each of these is sold separately since the combination would be different for each family.

 All of the fonts used are from KG Fonts (see button on side of the blog). 
LIL & BIG are Janda Closer to Free
BROTHER is KG Falling Slowly
Sister is Janda Shine Your Light on Us

KG Fonts are free for personal use and you'll need to pay a licensing fee for commercial use.

Monday, March 11, 2013

A Real Mom Story

I've tried a few different things to work from home....substitute teach (which made me decide to home school my future children)........sell Usborne Books (which started our outrageous book collection)..........and create in my sewing room (still working on that one).

Any way you spin it, a mom works. She works with her kids and she works with her husband. She works with her house and her extended family. And, if she is able, she works with those outside of her home doing something she wants.

Here is a story of one of those moments for me. About five years ago, when I only had three children, I needed to take a call for an event I was hosting (one of those holiday get together events).

Read on if you want to see how well behaved my children are after a few minutes left to their own devices.....

*Names changed to protect the guilty ;)

Double, Double, Toilet and Trouble

This little story happened a week ago, but I am just now at a point where it is slightly funny. Ha Ha.

I've been planning this vendor fair to hold here so sell off some of my stock for Christmas. Someone I had been trying to get a hold of finally called, so I went to the basement to take the call. I left #3 sleeping in his room. I left #1 and #2 playing upstairs. Well, after a minute, I hear the toilet flush. Ok, so someone went potty. A couple of minutes later, it flushed again. Ok, the other one went potty. A minute later, the toilet flushes again.......and it keeps on flushing. Well, by this time, I know those two have been up to something. I hear running and toilet flushing. However, I really needed to talk to this lady, and by this point, I just didn't want to go face whatever they were doing.

When I did go up, I went over to the bathroom via going past the kitchen. I first notice #2's sleeves are all wet. Then I see the floor is wet. Then, I get to the bathroom and see a wet floor, soggy toilet paper all over, and #1 in the bathtub. Evidently, those two decided to take toilet paper, soak it in the toilet, and throw it at each other. That is where all the running came in to play. When I looked out of the bathroom and into the dining room, there was wet toilet paper hanging off the hutch, on the carpet, on the chairs, and hanging off the cord for the vacuum.

Those two where seriously in trouble. At first I didn't say anything, just walked away trying to think of what I was going to do to clean it all up since it was also dinner time at this point and #3 had woken up during their fun. Anyway, I stripped them down because they were soaked with toilet water and then tossed them in their beds. Then I picked up all of the toilet paper chunks off the floor. Then I wiped everything down (even the wood floors) with a bleach cleaner. After all that, I changed, fed #3, and then got #1 and #2 down to get them some dinner (an hour late).

I didn't say too much to them that night. #1 still talks about how he won't play with the toilet paper again because it is naughty. And yes, in 15 years I hope these two are mortified when I tell their friends how they decided to play in the toilet one night :)

Friday, March 8, 2013

CAW March 2013 Winner!

Announcing our winner from our March Customer Appreciation Week

Here are the official results:

There were 127 lines on the entry form. Line one was omitted since it was just the heading. With the range from 2-127, selected #9. 
Congrats Cheryl!
Please check your email as I'll need to know where to send this wonderful bundle of fabric!

Here is a preview of next month's giveaway for our April Customer Appreciation Week!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Customer Appreciation Week - March 2013

Entry Closed

Thank you for following Original Stitches!

I have loved to draw since I was a little girl and was the one to always show up at Grandma's house with a handful of pictures. I appreciate this opportunity to create files for you to use with your little ones or your home business. Being able to stay at home with my children is a blessing and I would like to give you a little something in return! 

Welcome to our third CAW! The first week of each month will feature a new free design (Mini 1 inch Shamrock) and a new free verse (Matthew 19:26). Please head on over to the website to download the all of our freebies! Don't forget to like our Facebook page to stay up-to-date on all of our new releases and freebies!

Each customer appreciation week will also feature a giveaway sponsor by yours truly, Original Stitches. 

Right now, I have this lovely fabric bundle sitting here just waiting to be mailed out!


Winner selected!
Please see: