Instagram Live today on our Coverhem machines: Hem guide demo

INSTAGRAM LIVE TODAY AT 1PM EASTERN ON JANOME CANADA 

Celine will show how to use the Janome Coverpro Hem guide as well as the clear foot and the sewing guide attachment.  Dont miss it! Join us or watch on IGTV and later on You Tube Janome Life channel.

 

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Artistic Digitizer free trial

A reminder that your free trial of the Artistic Digitizer expires this Sunday 31st May.

Check out the Artistic Digitizer Facebook page if you have not already done so. 

Be sure you ask your questions, watch the video’s and take advantage of all the support we have been offering for this software. 

 

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Instagram Live schedule of topics this week at Janome Canada

As promised, here is the schedule of our Instagram Live topics for this week on our JANOME CANADA instagram page. 10am Pacific/11am Mountain /1pm Eastern as usual.

Today, Monday 25th May Celine will be talking about the Janome Coverhem machines. Today she will show threading of a coverhem machine as well as coverhem stitches sticthed with different types of thread.

Wednesday 27th May – Celine will tell us more about Janome Coverhem machines. showing samples and she will stitch a hem using the Coverhem Guide and also demo the sewing guide and clear foot.

Friday 19th May – Celine will show some more Coverhem accessories such as the elastic attachment; piping foot, cording foot , etc.

 

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Saturday Sewing with Liz: simple and easy quilting projects

Looking for simple, easy quilting projects that deliver quick results?

Probably because we have been spending so much time at home, hubby asked me to “brighten” up our living room. I really don’t have the time or energy to be doing complicated and time consuming projects at this time.

I had made 4 rather nice pieced cushion covers some time back (piecing designs for these were from a Thimbleberries book I own called  “Big Book of Quilt Blocks” by Lynette Jensen.) Hubby quite likes these scatter cushions ….but he wanted more.  Fortunately, I had quite  a bit of these fabrics left over so I set to work with my rotary cutter and cut a bunch of 5 inch charm squares.

Next was to randomly sew these charm squares together with 1/4 inch seams and my Janome 1/4 inch foot. I sewed these on the Janome Sewist 740DC which got the job done quickly and easily.  I obviously pressed my seams as I went making sure they were pressed in alternate directions at seam joins so that bulk was reduced.

My plan was to make 2 long runners for use as throws over the back of my 2 sofas as well as a square table topper for my coffee table. I had some charm squares over so I sewed them together in groups of 4 to make 4 or 5 large mug rugs or coasters.

Next up was to sandwich my projects. I found suitable backing fabric in my stash. Unfortunately, I am almost totally out of batting so I had to resort to joining scraps of batting I had. No matter though as I used that iron-on tape which joins sections of batting and it worked like a dream.  All sandwiched, I was ready to quilt.

Janome Acufeed Flex ditch quilting foot SD

I moved to the Janome Continental M7 as it is so much faster, has more space for my quilting (almost 14 inches to the right of the needle!) and has the most awesome Acufeed Flex Plus system. What is that, Liz, you ask? The upper feed dogs on this new Janome M7 machine have a separate dedicated motor which drives the feed dogs and the result is a slick and super effective feeding system for quilting and lots of other sewing too.

I found the Janome purple tip needles worked well to prevent skipped stitches as the cobra head on the needle above the eye does a perfect job.

I stabilized the sandwiches with some ditch quilting along the length and breadth of my runners. I used a lime green cotton sewing thread in my needle which blended well with my fabrics.  And a poly sewing thread in the bobbin which matched my backing fabric. I lengthened my stitch to 3.0mm and made sure the Acufeed Flex plus was activated. I used the Acufeed Flex foot SD for ditch quilting and the straight stitch needle plate.

this shows the settings on the Continental M7 before I started the quilting. The pivot function was selected and also the Acufeed flex Plus – icons are yellow showing they are selected.

I then stitched diagonally across the blocks starting in one corner and continuing to the next edge and then switching direction and sewing more diagonals. For this straight stitching, I switched to the HP2 foot and HP plate. I did this as it is narrower and I did not need the ditch quilting guide anymore.  I kept going back & forth diagonally across my charm squares and eventually the entire runner was quilted without having to stop and start at all. This is great as most of us are not that fond of the somewhat tedious task of burying threads. There were zero threads to bury here.

I repeated this for all my sandwiches in next to no time at all. It really is super fast when your machine sews at 1300spm!!

the back of one of my runners/throws

I have not yet trimmed/squared up my projects,  nor has the binding been applied yet. But, the binding strips have been cut and will soon be joined and used to finish my living room “brighteners”.

 

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A “Beginner” test-drive of the New Janome Continental M7

The Janome Continental M7 has certainly been getting lots of buzz since it’s debut at the Janome Institute in August, 2019. One look at the machine, and it’s easy to understand why.

It’s a BIG machine; the largest throat space in the domestic market, and boosts some impressive features. Big LCD touch screen, additional motor for the AcuFeed feeding system, SFS-i Intelligent Feeding System, Quilt Block Advisor and Stitch Composer companion software, on screen QR Code Scan Tool to work with the new (FREE) AcuSpark App + the coolest, slickest way I’ve even seen to switch out a needle plate, as demonstrated below. The list goes on and on!

Perhaps these features might seem a little intimidating for some; that it is too much machine, or you may feel you’re not at “that” level in your sewing yet to make use of all the bells and whistles. That’s how my partner, Joe, felt recently when he wanted to sew some masks to give with little care packages he made for a few of our friends.

m7 Juan care packageHe’s a “beginner” sewist, and has made a few projects on the Janome 6700P, which he really enjoyed using (it’s one of my favourites, too!), but, he was a little reluctant to try out the new Janome Continental M7, fearing it was “too much” and “too fancy” for him, even though it shares many of the same features, and looks a little like the Janome 6700P. Well, when he finally sat down in front of the machine and began sewing, those hesitations of it being “too much” quickly faded away.

The user-friendly features of so many of our Janome machines, like conveniently-placed push button controls; reverse, thread cutters, lock-stitch, stitch length and width adjustment, etc. are of benefit to every level of sewist and are very beginner-friendly. Even though the Janome Continental M7 boasts an impressive 1300 stitches per minute; the fastest drop-in bobbin style machine on the domestic market, you don’t have to always sew at that speed and can easily adjust with the speed control lever. Joe started sewing at half, or medium speed, but, as his comfort level grew, so did his need for speed, and that lever was soon pushed from half-speed to full throttle!

m7 pushing buttonsMy sewing room is in the lower level of our split-level house, in what should be the “family room”, so the overhead lighting isn’t the best. Joe really loved the abundance of the bright LED lighting of the Janome Continental M7 which washes over the entire bed of the machine.

m7 sewing 2There’s no other lighting on in the room other than what’s on the machine. Perhaps you can see by the built-in clock on the screen of the machine that it was after 5 o’clock in the afternoon when I took this photo. I LOVE having a clock on the machine! It’s something we’ve asked for and Janome really DOES listen and deliver when and where they can.

m7 sewingGood lighting is sew important for any sewist, so if your machine isn’t providing enough for your liking, perhaps a task, desk or floor lamp next to your machine would help. Contact your Janome dealer to see if they carry Daylight lamps. There’s lots from which to choose!

Sewing over several thickness of fabric to make the pleats of the mask was no issue for the Janome Continental M7. Including the elastic, there were 9 layers, plus two layers of fusible interfacing to sew through, and Joe was just using the regular 1/4″ foot with guide, not the AcuFeed Flex feeding system, which I always describe as like having a walking foot on steroids. He didn’t need to use that. I must say even I was impressed by that!

m7 completed masksIt was so proud to see Joe complete his 4 masks very quickly and easily, without any trouble, or struggle. By the clock of the machine it took about 2 hours for him, which is really not too bad for a beginner. The main thing is that he enjoyed the process, and felt more confident to try new things with the machine as he went along, even so far as to ignore my advice to switch to the Acufeed Flex foot before sewing through so many thicknesses of fabric – turns out, he didn’t need to as the regular foot worked perfectly fine! That in itself is a great lesson; try new things, experiment to see what happens, and to use a machine which you know will give you great results, especially if you’re a beginner! You want to start off with the best experience possible to continue to fall in love with the craft and art of sewing, and for Joe, he’s found a new favourite “beginner” machine. He’s already started talking about his next project! lol!

Happy sewing everyone!

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Instagram Live today: embroidering 4 table napkins in 1 hooping

Instagram Live today. Same place: Janome Canada’s Instagram page. Same time: 10am Pacific/1pm Eastern – Liz will show how to embroider 4 table napkins in ONE hooping. This can be done on all our Janome embroidery machines.

The video will be available on IGTV after the Live and will also be posted to our Janome Life You Tube channel.

Join us for lots of Janome embroidery hints and tips as well as learning how to make a clever and practical embroidery project.

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Spotlight on Janome’s Horizon Link Suite: Stitch Composer Part 2

Welcome back! Today is Part 2 of my look at Stitch Composer, Janome’s amazing software, which is one of the selections within the Horizon Link Suite CD included with the Janome MC 15000 Quiltmaker, and its two previous versions. To review my previous “Spotlight” posts on Horizon Link Suite, click on the link HERE. 

stitch composer

BUT! Did you know that Stitch Composer is also on a separate CD included with many other Janome machines, including the Skyline S7,Skyline S9, MC 9400QCP, MC 9450QCP, and the fabulous new Continental M7P.? This means you have the ability to design and create your OWN stitches right at your fingertips. Amazing! This also means that, though many of our Janome machines come with hundreds, and hundreds, and hundreds of stitches, the stitch count is really limitless since you have SEW much creative freedom and creative control through stitch composer.

In Part 1 of this look at Stitch Composer, I went over some of the basics and provided links to further resources of learning. I also showed the little sample of stitches I created; my name, which, I always think is a good, easy place to start. Stitch composer stitchesToday I’ll share with you how to get the newly created stitches from your computer to your sewing machine! If you’ve been following along with me through the previous Horizon Link Suite posts , these step should be quite familiar.

Across the top tool bar of the Stitch Composer screen you’ll click “Write a Design“, which means you are done creating and editing the design; the stitches, in this case, and now you want to send it somewhere. You will need to have your computer and sewing machine connected via the cable which came with your machine OR you can use a USB Flash Drive. The less data on this stick, the better. Your designs will load faster and be read by the sewing machine quicker.

stitch composer write a designNow you have to rename your stitch pattern by clicking the Rename tab. I label mine SC for Stitch Composer, then choose a specific name for the newly created stitch design. The .STX after the name is the file format – a Stitch File; STX. If it were an embroidery design, it would be JEF or JEF +; a Janome Embroidery File.

Next, select a destination where the design/ stitches will go. You can see at the top of the photo I have “USB Drive (E:)” selected from the drop down menu since I have a USB Flash Drive plugged into my laptop. Other choices are a direct connect to the sewing machine, or to save it to my PC. I can further select where the design/ stitches will go by selecting a folder in which to save them. Since we created stitches, not embroidery, I select the ORD, or Ordinary Sewing folder, which helps keep me organized. stitch composer correct save ord folderOnce I click on the ORD folder, it is now listed as the destination in the drop down menu at the top of the photo. Click the ARROW between the Computer icon and the Sewing Machine/ USB Icon to complete the transfer. You’ll note there’s nothing showing in the window below since I have no other designs/ stitches saved in that folder. stitch composer correct save into ord folderOnce I transfer a design/ stitches to my sewing machine, I take my USB Flash Drive back to my laptop and delete all the data from it. Of course, that’s AFTER I have saved the design/ stitches to my PC, an external hard drive, or another USB Stick which has a much larger memory storage capacity. That way, you have back-ups of your master designs/ stitches, but the USB Flash Drive which you use to transfer the data stays clean and fast, and doesn’t get bogged down from having too much information stored on it.

After the data is transferred to the USB stick, a very important, and often over-looked step is to click along the lower task bar of your computer to “Safely Remove Hardware”. Removing the USB Flash Drive before receiving that message; just pulling it out of the computer can corrupt the files stored on the drive, and corrupt the drive itself, rendering all the data stored on it useless. No one wants that!

stitch composer safely remove device

The next step is to plug the USB Flash Drive into the sewing machine’s USB port and retrieve the design/ stitches from the ORD folder. I recorded a little video to show those steps HERE. Though the machine on which I demoed was the Janome Continental M7P, the steps are the same regardless of the machine. Also, I forgot to wear my microphone, so be sure to turn your volume up to hear me better. Sorry about that!

I hope you have lots of fun creating whatever stitches your heart desires! Literally, the sky’s the limit! Want more info on Stitch Composer? It’ll be one of the classes at our Janome Sewing and Learning Centre in Oakville, ON, so you can write me at classes@janome-canada.com to be put on the mailing list!

Happy Sewing!!!

 

 

 

 

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Spotlight on Janome’s Horizon Link Software Part 5: Stitch Composer

Today, we’ll be continuing our look at Janome’s amazing computer software, Stitch Composer, which is part of the Horizon Link Suite software included with the Janome MC15000 Quiltmaker and its pervious versions. For a review of my previous posts on this spotlight on Horizon Link Suite, click on the link HERE. Use the Search Box at the right of the Janome Life main page to find even more posts about Horizon Link Suite, and all things Janome.

stitch composer

Since, as always, I have SEW much information to share, this post is Part 1 of  2 on Stitch Composer, so be sure to click the FOLLOW tab on the main page of Janome  so you get an e-mail notification when new blog posts are published.

So, what exactly IS Stitch Composer? Stitch Composer allows you to design and create, or   “compose” your OWN stitches. Is that not the coolest thing?!  Janome is always about choices and empowering you with the tools to be your own designer of your own creativity. Many Janome machines come with the Stitch Composer software on a separate CD, so they too, share in this Top-of-the-Line added feature. The Janome Skyline S7, Skyline S9, MC 9400QCP, MC 9450QCP, and fabulous new Janome Continental M7P ALL come with the Stitch Composer CD included.

Whenever people tell me they’re not creative, can’t draw, etc. my suggestion to them is to always start with their name. It’s less intimidating, and we’ve all had plenty of practice printing and writing it, so, why not continue by stitching it?! You can also bring in a photo, artwork, etc. as a “Backdrop Image“, which you can trace, so you don’t always have to start creating from scratch.

Stitch composer stitches

After I imported my newly created stitches into the machine, I used the machine’s editing capabilities to experiment making it more narrow and closer together- just like with any other stitch in my machine. Amazing!

There are some terrific Stitch Composer lessons on the Janome website, but I’ve included the link to the Getting Started exercise HERE and another lesson HERE  As well, there’s a great video on Janome America’s You Tube Channel. Even though you may not have the machine being shown, the process is the same regardless of which sewing machine you may have which has Stitch Composer.

When you open the Stitch Composer software, or pretty much any of our Janome software, the first place I recommend people look is to the upper right hand corner to find the little blue question mark. That question mark is literally the answer to your questions as it’s a built-in, printable instruction manual.

stitch composer main screen (2)

 

stitch composer blue question mark

stitch composer help files

While looking at the photo below, put your ear to your left shoulder while you continue reading. I’m serious! It’ll help get your head around this. What you’re looking at in essence is the needle plate of your sewing machine; specifically, the opening for the needle to swing left and right of centre. Centre needle position is “0” on the graph. Above that, or, it’s actually to the right, is 4.5mm, and below “0”, or, to the left, is another 4.5mm, for a total of 9mm, which is the width of the needle plate opening on the Janome MC 15000 Quiltmaker, Continental M7, etc.

stitch composer starting

You need to keep this in mind as you create your stitch design; it can only be as wide as the opening in the needle plate of your sewing machine. Although 9mm is pretty impressive, it’s relative, so you want to avoid anything being too detailed, too fussy. As well, we’re using Millimeters – there’s no way to change to Imperial (believe me, I’ve tried! lol!) so you don’t want to make your stitches too small by clicking too close to one another. This is especially true around curves. Imagine trying to rip out stitches which are less than 1mm apart! Everywhere you want a stitch, click the mouse of your computer, and the software assigns a number to that stitch. There’s even a Simulation built-in to the software, so you can see your new design stitch out before taking it to the sewing machine! How cool is that?!

 

stitch composer simulationstitch composer simulation finished

In Part 2 of this Spotlight on Stitch Composer, I’ll show you how to transfer your newly created stitches from your computer to your sewing machine…….Coming up tomorrow so not long to wait!

Stay Tuned! Happy Creating!

 

 

 

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SUNDAY SEWING with Janome: an eco friendly upcycling project

Well our May long weekend is turning out to be rather grey and wet – well at least here in Vancouver, BC it is. But the silver lining to those clouds is that it is the perfect time to sew!

Today I am sewing on the Janome Sewist 740. Why? Well because hubby wants me to spend time with him instead of tucked away in my sewing room so we are watching TV and I have this smaller Janome model on my lap!  Laptop sewing…..I have a wonderful sturdy pressing board which I use to sit the machine on and then I have that board on my lap. It works rather well. I think the Continental M7 might have been a big heavy to do laptop sewing?!

I have been pretty impressed by the Janome Sewist 740DC. I currently have this machine at home as we have been filming videos for our NEW You Tube channel (called Janome Life). This Sewist 740DC has some great features, sews beautifully (as do all our Janomes) and is lightweight.  You might want to check out the links to our website for more information about this computerized model or the videos we have published on our new You Tube channel. More videos are coming soon.

What is on the Sunday Sewing menu? I have been thinking about being more eco friendly and saw some pins on Pinterest where people are making make -up remover pads from flannel and soft cotton. I cut up an old hand towel which was super soft as well as some flannel fabric I had and then serged a 3 thread hem on all 4 sides of my little squares using the Janome Four DLB serger.  I used a 3 thread serge stitch so that there was not a thick ridge around the edge but I did shorten the stitch length a little so that the edges were well covered. I left the terry toweling as a single layer but doubled the flannel as it was a bit thinner. Nothing fancy but it will get the job of face cleaning done; and I will not be sending both store bought disposable make up remover pads to the land fill, nor will that old towel end up there too. Win, win.

And please note that there are videos on the Four DLB serger on our new You Tube channel  as well.

I then remembered I had a UFO bag somewhere with larger terry towel cloths cut from a robe I had some years back and which I no longer wanted to use after I got my fabulous minkee robe.  I opened that up and decided today was the day to finish that UFO!

I had already cut and joined strips of BIAS tape approx 2 inches wide in a purple 100% cotton fabric. These needed to be bias stips as the terry cloths I cut have curved corners. Next up was to pin this bias tape right side to the BACK of the terry cloth – just like you would with quilt binding. I used wonder clips but pins would work too.
Sew all the way around with approx. 1/4 inch seam leaving tails to join the binding – again just like you would with your quilts – only this is on a much smaller scale.

Once the binding was attached and joined, I turned the binding to the front and pinned in place with my wonder clips. As the binding is cut on the bias it should lay nice & flat around the corner curves.
Notice the crease in the towelling? Gives you some idea of how long this has been languishing in a UFO bag!

Next up was to sew all around the wash cloth. I could have used a straight stitch but I thought a zig-zag stitch would be better to hold those layers together around the edge – as the wash cloth will be used and washed frequently. I guess a triple straight stitch would have also worked.Voila! I now have 5 new wash cloths ready to use. The terry towelling is lovely and soft as it was upcycled from a robe that had been used and washed often. Bleaching during laundering of my new wash cloths will not be an option as the purple binding will lose its colour. However, bleaching is probably not a good idea anyway as it is not kind to fabrics……and probably not very eco friendly either.

Pretty sure these won’t end up at my kitchen sink – they have already found a spot in my bathroom cabinet.  Can’t wait to test drive these! And more silver linings to the clouds: another UFO  became an FO! And my tray of wonder clips grew in size – I had completely forgotten that so many of my clips were tucked away on this UFO. They are now back in circulation. Yay!  And yay to a bit less going to the landfill.

What is under your needle today?

Are you having fun creating a new project?

Or are you, like me, at last getting UFO’s completed? 

 

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Saturday Sewing : Embellishing with the Janome Border Guide foot


You may have wondered what this foot is used for? It does look rather different to other Janome feet.  This  is  the  Janome Border Guide foot.  This foot is available for Janome 7mm and 9mm models.

What are those red lines for and what am I supposed to use this foot for?

All lined up to stitch row 1

For row 2, simply line up row 1 between the 2 red lines on one side of the foot. Repeat on the other side of the foot for row 3…..and so on.

To stitch the in between rows, line up the 2 red inner vertical lines on the foot with the 2 rows previously stitched.

We did an Instagram Live about this foot at the end of April on this foot and here is the link to the video created during that Live presentation. The video explains all the markings on the foot as well as how to use the foot, hints and tips about stabilizing your fabric, some ideas for creativity with this foot, etc.

Sewing Machine covers? What an excellent way to sew out many of the lovely decorative stitches on your machine AND keep your machine dust free while you are not sewing!
This sewing machine cover project may be found over on http://www.sew4Home.com. Here is  the link.

Liz’s version of the sew4home sewing machine cover. It fits a regular sized machine perfectly.

Embellishing zipper baggies? We have done many Janome life posts on this topic – just use the search box to access these.
We also made zipper baggies on our Instagram Lives a while back – here is the link to our Janome Life You Tube channel  playlist for our Instagram Lives where you will find these video mini tutorials: 3 different videos showing how to add the zipper to your baggie…….which could have been embellished with Border Guide foot rows of dec stitches?! Welt pocket zippers, zipper tab method and attaching a zipper with decorative stitching.

Little yellow arrows show the tabs that are added to the ends of the zipper which neatens the baggie closure considerably

Lots of creative opportunities….lots of sewing fun with the Janome Border guide foot?

What creative sewing are you currently doing? 

What Saturday Sewing are you up to today? 

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