As promised last month when we did a post about the various Janome applique feet options, here are some little secrets or tips + resources you might be unaware of:
- We have mentioned this great website before on janomelife but if you missed it, you are in for a huge treat! www.sew4home.com has a staggering array of projects, tutorials and more …….and they use Janome machines for all their sewing too! Here is a great tutorial on APPLIQUE over at sew4home.
- And another on Sherry’s blog Thread Riding Hood. Yes, I do know Christmas has passed but perhaps you might like to get ahead start on Christmas 2017??
- Here is a video about how to use our Janome applique foot AP. This foot is also available for 7mm machine models. Please ask your local Janome dealer for the foot for your particular Janome machine model.
- There are tons of video’s on You Tube covering many aspects of applique. Explore but do take care that you do eventually come up from that “rabbit hole”…….you might spend hours watching video’s and not get any sewing done!
- We all tend to have our favourite techniques for doing something and also our favourite stitches. My favourite applique technique is the fusible web raw edge applique method. And my favourite stitch is the double blanket or applique stitch. This stitches one triple stitch on the straight and then swings out to the left (or I can mirror it to to the swing out to the right) and back doing a double stitch on the “teeth” of the blanket stitch. I like this as it gives a bold look to my stitching.
- You may notice in the pic above that I have adjusted the stitch settings: I reduced the stitch width to 2.5 from the default of 3.5. I am stitching here on the Janome MC9400 but this particular stitch may be found on many other Janome models. I did this as I prefer a shorter applique stitch – the teeth are too long for me at 3.5 That is, of course, an entirely personal preference.
- The stitch length on this particular stitch is 2.5. What does this mean? The distance between each sideways swing of the applique stitch is 2.5mm. I left this setting at the default but I have been known to adjust my settings to Sw2 and SL2 for a smaller applique stitch – when it suited my purposes for a specific project and very especially when doing heirloom pin stitching on fine hierloom fabrics such as lawn and batiste. These sorts of projects call for smaller, finer stitches (and finer/thinner thread too).
- If I was wanting the fabric (rather than the applique stitching around the edge of the fabric) to be the star of the show, I would select a matching or invisible thread and/or choose a different applique stitch which is not as bold – such as this one below/left.
- This is an applique stitch but is fine and more delicate as it stitches 3 little straight stitches and a shorter sideways blanket stitch.
- Now what about turning corners and achieving neat “turns”? It really does help if you have a Janome machine with the needle up/down function. Set the needle to stop in the down position so that when you need to turn a corner, you don’t loose your spot when you raise the presser foot to shift the fabric.
- Even better yet is to have a Janome machine which has automatic presser foot lift and pivot function. Yes, this is a deluxe feature and may be found on some of our models: Janome Mc15000; Mc12000; Skyline S7 & S9 and the MC9400. Select pivot function/auto presser foot lift and when you reach the corner before turning, stop and the machine does it all automatically for you: It stops with the needle down, raises the presser foot and lets you pivot the fabric and be ready to roll down the next section of applique! NO need to manually raise & lower the presser foot, it does it automatically AND you may also be able to adjust the height at which it raises up depending on which Janome machine you have. This can be most helpful when you are doing applique on something thick like fleece or minkee or right through a quilt sandwich.
- And there are more applique stitches availale. These 2 above are only the start. Depending on the Jnaome machine model you have, you may have as many as almost TWO DOZEN different applique stitches to choose from. And that is not counting using other satin; decorative and heirloom
- And wait…….there’s more! Does your Janome machine model have the Pattern restart or B icon? If so, you are indeed fortunate! Before starting to sew again after pivoting the fabric, just press the B icon and it will reset the stitch pattern back to the start. This makes it much easier to turn corners and plan how the stitching will work out at the turn. We recommend you do some test stitch outs as the needle drops of various stitches are different and the result you want at the corner may vary……so experiment and know where you wish to stop the stitch and pick it up again at the start for the next side.
- Another feature which I have noticed many people do not know about: Does your Janome have a stop/start button? Many of our Janome models do. If so, you are in for a treat: If you are sewing along towards a corner but want more control as you get near the turn, you might reach for the speed slider bar……and possibly have a stitching “speed wobble” in the process as you “take your eyes off the road”. All you need do is press the stop/start button and hold your finger on it. The speed of the machine slows right down to the slowest speed and allows you to very easily drop the needle exactly in the spot and on the part of the stitch pattern you require (see point above about turning corners neatly). Take your finger off the stop/start button and the needle stays down in that sweet spot you chose. Cool? We think so.
- Now just press B after pivoting and you are off & running for the next section of applique.
Now you are armed with some simple secrets to successful applique……..what applique project will you tackle today?