Showing posts with label shadow work. Show all posts
Showing posts with label shadow work. Show all posts

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Welcome Baby Grant..and help me win!

Nothing on earth is more precious than a newborn baby along with the miracle of birth! I am so proud to introduce to you, my newest grandson, Grant Hudson!

He surprised us all by arriving about a month early! I had planned to make my daughter a brand new pretty Trendy Hospital Gown - thinking I had nearly a whole month to get it ready! She didn't even have a bag packed for the hospital when he decided what day he was going to arrive! It was a totally uncomplicated birth and he's just as perfect as can be!
I have been working on several hand-mades for him in the past month or so, thinking he would be a pretty good size boy...now he has some beautiful hand-mades to grow into. Even tho he wasn't too happy about getting dressed up, he did wear one of my hand-mades home from the hospital.

This sweet garment is "Baby's Summer Clothes" by Old Fashioned Baby. The monogram is my new machine shadow work circle monogram. It is now available for purchase on my website at Brer Rabbit Designs.
Look for more and more designs for boys to show up on my website in the coming months - I'm getting on a roll doing all this boy-sewing!
Speaking of sewing...I'm in dire need of a new sewing machine, however, I just don't have the funds to purchase what I want right now. With that said, I am hoping to win a new Bernina in a contest I just entered. It's the WeAllSew Pinterest Fabric Design Contest
I have entered two fabric designs that I hope one will win the most re-pins - so far, it's doing pretty good! Please help me win a new sewing machine by repinning and spreading the word! If you click on each swatch below, it will take you directly to the Bernina Fabric Design Contest Pinterest Board, from there you can repin it - that is the ONLY way your vote will count for me - you must click on the swatch and go to their board to repin. So far, my Chevron's Ahoy! seems to be a very popular vote! Please help it go viral on Pinterest! :) If my fabric swatch wins, I will buy a bolt of this fabric and offer it on my website - if I am able to do so! :) I think it's pretty darn cute, what do you think?


As I get inspired to design, I will post more - just watch the board!




Monday, January 21, 2013

Lace Shaping the easy way!

One of the things I love about Heirloom Sewing is all the unique and classic techniques that it involves. Since I'm not a Super Mom and my sewing time is somewhat limited, I seek to find ways to save time without compromising the look of handmade. Hmm, I wonder if that qualifies me for Super Mom...
Lace Shaping is one of the heirloom sewing techniques I love, but often times it can take up a chunk of time to create. In playing around in my Bernina Artista Designer Software, I created some shapes and using stitches, created the look of handmade lace shaping! I love being able to use my embroidery machine to simplify traditional heirloom sewing techniques!   
I call this Lace Shaping the easy way!
It might be hard to believe, but the bow lace shape
 is created completely in-the-hoop!
It's fun, it's easy and most importantly, you can create lace shaping in a fraction of the time it takes to create it the traditional way!
For this diamond Lace Shape, I first stitched my shadow work machine embroidery cross (freebie!), and then surrounded it with the lace shaped diamond for a beautiful effect!!
There are 10 lace shapes included in the entire design set, and I also have created a beautiful full color step-by-step eBook guiding you thru the instructions to create your own beautiful lace shaping in-the-hoop!
Lace Shaping in the hoop is quick, easy and absolutely GORGEOUS! These designs are only for 5x7 hoops and larger. Sorry, but it’s just not feasible to make these designs to fit into the 4x4 hoops. 
The loop shape is made so that you can make continuous loops - how cool is that? All these designs are made in the “normal” sizes that you would find templates for creating lace shapes in the traditional way. I have included the heart and the diamond shape in two sizes.
Combine monogramming or machine embroidery design in the center of the motifs for a beautiful effect, as I have shown above with my free shadow work cross design. 
The uses for these gorgeous designs are limitless! Use them on Christening/Blessing Gowns, Heirloom Dresses, pillowcases, album covers, blankets, blouses and more!

Materials used in my sample: wash away stabilizer, white batiste, cream colored machine embroidery thread, cotton tulle, universal embroidery needle, wing needle.
To order, click HERE!

My next blog post will be a pleating tutorial for a bishop dress. Do you pleat first, then construct or construct then pleat? Stop by to see how I do it!


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Holly-day SALE!

Nothing is prettier than sprigs of holly, especially during the Christmas Season! I just love the bright red berries with the green glossy, spiny toothed leaves! I recently finished up digitizing a new  Machine Shadow Work Monogram Set featuring holly! 

In case you aren't familiar with machine shadow work, or shadow work for that matter, I shall clue you in with this amazing type of embroidery! If you want to learn about working shadow work by hand, then I have a nifty tutorial for you HERE! The shadow work shown above, is my unique shadow work that I have created for machine! The machine shadow work looks almost like it was created by hand. By following my specific instructions included in all my shadow work sets, you can create shadow work in a fraction of the time that it takes to work by hand! It's so quick and easy - you will be both pleased and amazed!


For the past several years it seems that I make multiple stockings every year, and this year was no exception. This is the 3rd stocking for this year! I just couldn't  resist using my new Shadow Work Holly Monogram on a stocking!
Smocked ornaments are another item 
I have tried to make every year too!


 I just love the classic, simple look of this stocking!
I used red and white whipped piping on the lower edge of the cuff.
The new Shadow Work Holly Monogram Set
has the option to purchase a PDF of my stocking pattern
with step-by-step instructions!
The price of my new set is $32 for the monogram set
or $40 for the monogram set plus PDF pattern

SPECIAL HOLLY-DAY SALE!!!
Introductory price for 12-Days of December!
Get the $40 set for $20!!!
That is the entire Machine Shadow Work
Monogram Set PLUS the PDF Stocking Pattern!!
GREAT VALUE!!! GREAT SALE!!!

This is a sale you won't want to miss!!!




Friday, April 27, 2012

Shadow Work - the modern way


Shadow work embroidery has always been a favorite of mine. I love the soft subtle hue of the color shadowing thru the fabric. As the name would suggest, the basic idea is to use sheer fabric where only the barest outline of the pattern appears on the surface and the crisscrossed threads underneath show through, thereby creating a "shadow" design.  It is the opacity of the threads being worked on sheer fabric which defines this form of embroidery more than any single stitch or color combination.  Shadow work is very versatile and looks both delicate and complicated, but it is really quite sturdy and easy to do.  This effect can be used in a variety of ways with a wide array of designs and themes. 


Several years ago I began creating shadow work in a more modern way, by using my embroidery machine. The result of my work was exactly what I was seeking to achieve - shadow work created by machine, but with the appearance that it was stitched by hand!

I still enjoy the traditional way of creating shadow work, which is by hand, but I also like the ease of using my embroidery machine to create nearly the same look at a fraction of the time it takes to work by hand!
My newest set of shadow work is "Baby Shadow Work 3" and I am still working on more designs to add to the set. Here is what is currently completed in the set:
Two friendly little birds!
Radish Rabbit
Carrot Rabbit
Puppy Dog
You can check out all my machine shadow work designs that are available at my design site:
If you still prefer the traditional way of creating shadow work and need a tutorial, you can find that HERE!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

It's a New Year!

Well, 2012 has arrived! This year I have decided to just "sew with the flow" and not try to set up goals that I might be hard to accomplish. "Sew with the flow" allows me to just do what I do with my normal life, which is "go with the flow". 
I love my Bernina Artista 200 and my MacBook, and together I can create "sew" much fun!! I love to design and there are many designs that have been tucked into my brain and my MacBook that need to make their appearance in 2012! My designs, known as "Brer Rabbit Designs" will now be featured here - keeping life simple and moving towards one blog for all my sewing creations!
In no particular order, here are just a few of the items that I promise will be available in machine embroidery format in early 2012!
Vintage Buttons 'n Lace Booties
 Shabby Chic Bunny Slippers
Pink Vintage Booties
I have also been working on digitizing a complete new set of booties in multiple sizes, all new designs that I think you are going to just adore! All booties will be available to order individually or in sets.
I am also working hard to make many more machine shadow work designs, such as shown here:
Shadow work created entirely with the embroidery machine - it's so quick and easy! Here are a couple more of my designs I currently have available:


You can see all the machine shadow work collections HERE!
I'm looking forward to spending more time digitizing designs in 2012, as well as creating more smocking plates...by the way, I have a free one for you to try! For security purposes, the file is password protected and you will need to use the password "BRDpreemie" to open it.
I am also looking very forward to having several of my designs published in Sew Beautiful Magazine this year - always such an honor for me!
More tutorials are also planned for 2012 and I invite you to become a subscriber of my weekly newsletter, where you will get free tips and other goodies each week! My newsletter is sent out most every Tuesday morning.
Wishing you a very Happy New Year and hoping the same for myself! :)

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Monday, August 8, 2011

shadow work {by machine}

One of my favorite types of embroidery is Shadow Work Embroidery. Shadow work is a very subtle and interesting form of embroidery.  As the name would suggest, the basic idea is to use sheer fabric where only the barest outline of the pattern appears on the surface and the crisscrossed threads underneath show through, thereby creating a "shadow" pattern.  It is the opacity of the threads being worked on sheer fabric which defines this form of embroidery more than any single stitch or color combination.  Shadow work is very versatile and looks both delicate and complicated, but it is really quite sturdy and easy to do.  This effect can be used in a variety of ways with a wide array of designs and themes.  The hardest part is choosing your design and laying out the way you will approach it. Several years ago, I created shadow work machine embroidery designs that look very close to shadow work that is created by hand. Creating these designs by machine is very quick and easy and, as you can see, results in a beautiful design!
This is a design that I created for my friend, Mandy, who I might add, has the most beautiful family you have ever seen! Mandy has a pretty nifty blog that you can check out HERE
Back in February, when I met Mandy, I was featured on her blog with a giveaway. In return for her featuring me, I made a tiny preemie gown for her baby, who was expected to be born premature. I decided to use my machine shadow work and create a pretty little daygown that the baby could wear for Mandy's sister's wedding.

The pattern I used is Anna & Andrew Baby Dress & Day Gowns by Bonnie Blue Patterns. The pattern features dress and day gowns with button closed backs for easy to dress styles. Five sleeve variations include heirloom techniques and are available short or long sleeved. A slip pattern and embroidery designs are also included. 
The shadow work designs are combined from two of my Brer Rabbit Designs sets - Shadow Work Script Monogram and Shadow Work Bows & Bouquets. My machine shadow work designs are soooo easy to do and the results give that added hand-embroidered look to a garment. 
Mandy has given me permission to post a pictures of her precious baby in the gown, and what a precious baby she is!!!

Meet Gabriella!


Soooo Angelic!
If you would like to learn how to do shadow work by hand, please check out my tutorial HERE! To see more pictures of the dress, go HERE!





Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sew Beautiful with Shades of Blue!

I FINALLY received my Sew Beautiful Blue Issue today! YAY! I am also honored to have several items published in this issue! This is a wonderful issue and I am soooo happy to see 13 super styles for boys! Little Boy Blue is featured on pages 22-25 and has some of the most adorable boys garments I have ever seen! My good friend Sara, also has several items in this issue, including 3 totally adorable boy's garments in Little Boy Blue! The super sweet ensemble on the lower left is one of Sara's creations! Included in this article is a baby top that I made, shown in the upper right corner. The baby top is made from the pattern "Baby's Summer Clothes" from The Old Fashioned Baby
My sweet little top is embellished with a sailboat from 
"Shadow Work Baby I" collection from Southern Stitches.
Featured on page 76, is a blue gingham bishop dress that had it's beginnings when I taught how to pleat a bishop dress at a Sewing Retreat. After the retreat, I was inspired by an outburst of ladybugs hatching in our area, and designed the Lovely Little Ladybugs bishop smocking plate that is included free in this issue!
Here is a close-up of the free smocking plate that is included with the article.

Also included with the smocking plate is the machine embroidery design for the band on the lower edge of the dress. You can download the Lovely Little Ladybug machine embroidery continuous band HERE.
I think my most favorite project I have worked on recently was Drafting for Jack & Jill. I gave my blog readers a sneak peek of Jack & Jill in an earlier journal entry, which you can see HERE. I have a collection of vintage boy's bubbles and looking at them I realized how easy it would be to change up a boy's bubble into an A-line dress for a girl.
 The article gives step-by-step instructions on how to accomplish this simple method of pattern drafting!

I hope I have whet your appetite just a bit to go out and pick up a copy of Sew Beautiful magazine, if you don't already subscribe to it. In fact, click on that link and go see previews of what else is in this great issue! There is something for every one! It is by far, my most favorite Heirloom Sewing magazine and you don't want to miss seeing all the blue creations in this fantastic issue! I think this is one of the best issues Sew Beautiful has ever published! 
I want to thank the staff of Sew Beautiful magazine - it's truly an honor to have my creations  published, especially along side so many talented designers!

Friday, March 5, 2010

"Daydreams" smocked daygown & bonnet

Did you notice that I have a new header on my blog? I decided to make a new banner that really represents my passion for sewing! Photographed in my header is a daygown and bonnet that I created several years ago. It's been one of my favorite and one of the sweetest heirloom gowns that I have made! This gown is perfect as a Blessing or Christening gown or for Sunday Church! This baby bishop gown and bonnet are smocked on pure white batiste with a touch of blue and pink! Don't forget that you can click on each picture to see a larger picture.
Gown Front
Gown Back
What I really liked about this gown is that it had alot of different techniques on it; smocking, pin tucks, shadow work embroidery, bullion roses and joined lace for the hem. The bishop neckline is smocked with perle cotton #8 in white, accented with a touch of blue and finished off with pink bullion roses. 
Close up of Smocked Bishop Neckline

Close up of front of gown

Close up of back of gown

The hem of the gown features three shadow worked bows between two sets of pintucks. There is a shadow worked bow on either side of the front of the gown and one centered on the back of the gown.

The sleeves of the gown are smocked in white with just a touch of blue for accent.


Between each of the buttons down the front of the gown is a bullion rose.

The bonnet has a dainty band of smocking to coordinate with the front 
of the gown, along with 3 rows of pin tucking.

Close up of bonnet smocking.

The pattern for the gown is in Australian Smocking and Embroidery Issue No.36 from 1996. There is a bonnet pattern in the magazine, but I used my own tapered bonnet pattern for the smocked bonnet and used the smocking graph in the AS&E article.
I hope I have inspired you to make a beautiful daygown and bonnet for someone you love! As always, if you need assistance in smocking, or shadow work, my tutorials are available!


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