Monday, December 9, 2013

Getting my cross-stitch on

My Juki has an official diagnosis from the repair shop - it has a badly damaged needle plate. I'm thinking this may have always been the issue since I bought it second-hand and it's always sounded a bit noisy, but it's hard to know for sure. Naturally, the needle plate isn't a part they typically stock, so it's going to be a little while yet before my machine comes home :( I've been sorting and folding fabric instead of sewing with it, and cross-stitching my little heart out, and I'm starting to see the light at end of the sampler tunnel!

Christmas Sampler progress!

My Kawaii Christmas cross-stitch sampler is coming together nicely while I'm without my machine, although if you compare my stitches with the chart, there's definitely some blips where I've made mistakes. For example, that red present with the cream box on number 13 was supposed to be a blue polka dotted present, but my inability to follow a pattern reared its ugly head there and it turned into a red present. But I'm not too worried about those little "design choices" - they give it character, right? Ha!

May not be totally perfect, but I'm okay with that!

I've found a new method of stitching that's been working pretty well for me. When I have some quiet stitching time to myself, I follow the chart and stitch half of my X's, then when I'm stitching while watching TV or multi-tasking in some other way, I finish off those X's so I don't have to pay attention to the chart then. It's working out pretty nicely for me.

My next hand-stitching project after my Christmas sampler!

At this rate, I feel sure that I'm going to wrap up this sampler before Christmas. Yay! But then I'll have to start another hand stitching project, and I happened to pick up the perfect one during the Black Friday sales from Pink Chalk Fabrics...the new Studio Stitches pattern from Empty Bobbin. I am SO excited to embroider one of those adorable sewing machines!

Have a great day :)


  1. Bummer about your Juki! Hopefully, it won't be too terribly long. Your new method of X-stitch sounds like a winner to me. I'm always getting distracted when I stitch because it's usually in front of the TV, so I will definitely be trying this out when I pick it up again. Also, that sampler is adorable!

  2. This is so cute! Hang in there :)

  3. It's so rough to lose your machine at this time of year. I commented a week or so ago about getting my new Juki-- you're right-- I absolutely love it! Although my Viking is about 15 years old, it was a nice one when I bought it. I paid more for it than my Juki, but you were also right about it feeling like a cheap piece of junk in comparison. It shakes and shimmies during FMQ and would work to keep up with me. I doubt I'll ever be able to sew as fast as the Juki will go.

    Hope yours is back from the shop soon! I enjoy some hand stitching every now and again, though, so sometimes it's good to be forced out of our patterns and back to something else we enjoy.

    Quick Juki question-- what kind of needles do you use? I'm trying to decide whether to buy the Organ ones they recommend or just use mine. I use Schmetz quilting for my Viking, so I'm stocked up on those. I'd love to be able to buy something locally like Joann's. Do you find it to be picky about needle brand? Also, I'm assuming you use Aurifil 50 wt, and I've noticed a couple other bloggers with Jukis do the same. I'm going to give that a try. I mainly use Gutterman since it's easy to come by, but I'd love to see if I can tell a difference in the Aurifil.

    1. Hi Tara,

      First off, welcome to the Juki family again! I'm so glad you're enjoying your new machine :)

      I use Schmetz needles 95% of the time. I don't love Organ needles, mainly because of their packaging, not anything specific to the needles themselves. I like the plastic cases that the Schmetz needles come in, they're sturdy and they're clear so I can see if I have any left, and they're what I've always used. I typically piece and quilt at this point with either a Sharp 90/14 needle or a Topstitch needle 100/16 with this machine, it likes both needles quite well. And I'm definitely an Aurifil girl. The 50 wt glides through the Juki just beautifully. I find that the Aurifil moves much more quietly through any machine and also tends to leave way less fuzz behind in the bobbin case.

      Happy stitching!

  4. Thank you for the tips! I'm glad to know I don't have to special order needles. I did order more bobbins, but I decided to wait on the needles, so I'm happy to know Schmetz works well for you.

  5. I'm working on 4 different samplers (all by The Frosted Pumpkin) including this one. To say mine have a lot of character is putting it nicely :). I really should work on following directions...


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Welcome! I'm Elizabeth, mom to a very busy nine year old boy and a one year old baby girl and I sew for my sanity. Let's get to quilting, shall we?
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