Today we will continue our Dazzling Diamonds Sew-A-Long adventure!
Hopefully, you have pieced most of the blocks this past week. Now, we are ready to embroider the seam lines. The specific embroidery stitches used are described in the book (pages 22-27). There will be some Silk Ribbon Embroidery (SRE) elements on many of these seams, but that instruction will be in our post on November 3rd. Today, we will concentrate only on the fiber embroidery elements.
Each seam begins with a BASE embroidery section. This is then enhanced with additional elements of fiber embroidery and/or silk ribbon embroidery as well as beads/sequins. To begin, we need a pieced block and the base embroidery design.
Then, we need to transfer the base embroidery design directly to our pieced fabric block. There are multiple ways to accomplish this:
1) Free-hand draw the design on to the block.
2) Trace the design to thin paper (like tissue paper), overlay that to the fabric block then for stitching through.
3) Print the overlay directly to sheets of thin paper (like tracing paper), overlay that to the fabric block and stitch through.
4) Print the overlay embroidery designs directly to printable water soluble paper sheets. (This is the method described in the book)
All of the above methods of transfer have pros/cons. Other than (a) you will be removing paper or water soluble paper after completing the basic embroidery. If you choose the water-soluble method, steps are included in the book on page 19. Removing water soluble requires the application of water to dissolve the soluble material. This is best done under a running tap of water, with the embroidered block facing down. As the water-soluble material softens it can be gently scrubbed with your fingers (underneath the block, directly on the embroidery, as water continues to run through the fabric block).
Wet blocks will then need to be pressed dry. If you did not pre-wash your fabrics, then the cotton fabric block will shrink slightly. That is fine, as each design included an extra seam allowance measurement for this purpose.
I’ll post photos of the water-soluble steps discussed above on my blog (shawkl.com) as I work on Block #11. So, if you need more information on on the how-to portion, jump over there tomorrow.