l love making lace because it involves my head and hands when it
comesto making lace dont thing there are rules but just people
experimenting what works for them.Making lace is a learning process
that each and everyone one of us most work through.Anyone doing lace
or been in my lace classes will know l love disposable bobbins and
love using them in lace making.If l had to wind my bobbins l would
never get my lace done.I never have to touch my tension with them
they work like a dream in my Brother machines.Alot of
bobbin thread on a big spool can sometimes be made very fast when
winded which gives us many knots and can cause upper thread breaks
and stopping and starting.This is frustrating when you look at the
time one puts in for lace making.I love my spun polyester
bobbins Nebs they are knotless and l get no dust on my rotary hook
which many know dust can shorten the life of your machine.
I love to use water soluble vilene for my lace making but the
hooping of it is very important.
I hoop it taut so there are no wrinkles usually just one layer.It is
made for high stitch counts it will not stretch in any direction is
not a film so it disolves quickly in hot or cold water.
Water soluble vilene is as strong as a cutaway ideal for my
customers to use for there lace making.
With my lace no one really looks at the bottom only the top so
sometimes if it is a metallic l might match top and bottom just for
looks.A very dence lace design l find needs 2 layers of water
soluble vilene.
The main problem ladies make with lace l find is not being sure if
it is freestanding or not.For anyone out there having a giggle yes l
made the mistake too of not checking.Had stitched this lovely cloth
all together which when washed l was left with a big mess of threads
in my sink.Laugh about it now but was jumping up and down at the
I know now to ask the lace designer wether it is free standing or
not.Freestanding lace the stitching is woven with other stitches and
good lace designs are digitized in a way that suuports the overall
stitching and have an underlay of thread.
The direction of the stitching along with the interlocking stitches
is so important in making freestanding lace.Other lace designs not
free standing are to be sewn out to give a lacy effect are stitched
out on fabric base such as voile,batiste or organza.Nowadays l just
put my lace designs in the washing machine when finished.I usually
add some fabric softner which makes my lace lovely and soft.Choose
your lace designs carefully and remember to ask the digitizer if it
is free standing.

Hooping Tips

Your outer hoop holds the tension and the inner hoop holds the
layers of fabric and stabilizer.We need to have proper hoop
tension.Hoop and unhoop the fabric with stabilizer to get good hoop
tension before you start your hooping process.Use the smallest size
hoop to accomodate your design.If you have too much fabric in your
hoop it will cause your design to bounce around and also cause
puckering and gaps around design.Don't use use ironing board to hoop
on as usually it is too soft and the foam on the ironing board may
make your hooping slightly out.Use a flat table or flat bench.Loosen
the adjustment screw all the way out.Lay stabilizer and fabric
together.Use the right stabilizer for your fabric and make sure the
stabilizer is larger than the embroidery frame when hooping.
Stabilizer needs to be larger so there is no pulling or moving of it
when the hoop moves about.Place inner frame in hoop and push it in
with ONE push to stop fabric moving about.Now this is where you
smooth out the fabric and stabilizer and press the hoops into each
other,make sure there are no bubbles.Remove any wrinkles or waves at
this stage.Don't tighten the screw then tug and tug this causes standing up pushing your fingers in it too.Gently
tighten screw.(pulling on the fabric once it is hooped may cause you
puckering).Dont over tighten screw or you may break it in half.Your
fabric needs to be taut but not out of shape by you pulling at

Alot of home embroidery designs are digitized for 4x4 standard
hoop area unless it states otherwise.Hoops do stretch overtime so
always handy to have a spare.You may want to replace the hoop and
keep the stretched one for heavier fabrics like denim or fleece.I
always keep 2 sets of hoops in there sizers 1 for heavy and 1 for
thin fabric.Streched hoops will cause shifting.The fabric may get a
wave and you catch it up in the stitching.
Look at the grain of the fabric once you have hooped ,if it looks
stretched remember it will remain stretched once embroidery is
done.If your grain looks offline start again you want your fabric
to sit smooth on the stabilizer.It's important to understand that
not every design can be used on every type of fabric, even with the
proper stabilizer. Fabric that's stretched too tightly when hooped
will relax when unhooped.A dense design with high stitch count does
not work well on knits.Some designs are suitable for more stable
fabric, but for a lightweight fabric or a loose unstable weave, use
a design with fewer fill stitches.If you don't think you are hooping
wrongly and still getting puckering it may also be very tight
machine tensions.When your machine tension is too tight you will
know because it will pull the stitches so tight and your fabric will
always be puckering look at this on narrow stitches or satin.
It is always hard to keep stabilizer taut in a larger hoop you may
have adjust and use fabric glue stick or spray adhensive or fusible
stabilizer to help stop shifting during machine embroidery.Will
always depend on what fabric you are embroidering on.As you get more
skilled with hooping you knid of know if it will work or not.
Make sure you have alot of space around your machine and that no one
places something behind the embroidery frame.My DH is famous for
placing something behind my machine causing my hoop to get stuck
when stitching.Your machine needs plenty of room. The fabric must
not be too heavy and pulling down on your hoop.Support your heavy
fabric on a chair if you have to.Mens overalls can be done easy on
our domestic embroidery machine as long as you support the weight of
your fabric on a chair.look out for sleeves getting caught or extra
fabric getting stitched.Yes always happens when the phone rings or
the doorbell.LOL
if you are hooping to loosely you will find your fabric has a wave
or a bump through it.Before you start lightly run your hand ever
slightly over the top.Too much movement start again.
Remember that tearaways are for stable fabrics and cutaways work
best for most unstable fabric or fabrics that stretch.If project is
all hooped up and you notice the stabilizer is not supporting the
design side another layer of tearaway under the project will often
get you out of trouble.

Hoopless Embroidery Tip

Make yourself a non skid matting frame for your hoop.It will stop any hoop burn and help hold your fabric snugly or sheer stabilizer in the hoop without any deformations or loose areas.You should be able to get non skidding matting from your hardware store.It is the stuff you put under mats to stop them from moving under your feet. Always use the smallest hoop that will comfortable accommodate your Design.Cut the non skid matting in a square shape bigger than your hoop.Frame it up and cut out the centre.You cut out the design area from the non-skid matting.You can then place the polymesh and matting together when you frame.Make sure your polymesh was hooped taut like a drum.You may need to fuse no show nylon mesh to the backside of the cotton first perpendicular to the stretch of the fabric.Know this sounds strange but it can trick the knit into acting like a woven.Then frame another piece of no show nylon mesh and do hoopless embroidery method perhaps also adding a glue stick and using the iron inside the hoop again.Again pin up the t-shirt to take the weight of the hoop.It must be fused on smoothly with the little iron.