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    The First Tools of Hand Sewing

    03/28/11

    Permalink 04:11:29 pm, by dtirico Email , 328 words   English (US) latin1
    Categories: Background, Tools and Techniques

    The right tool for the perfect job … that’s my motto and each time I teach a class or even sew with my friends, I promote this idea. The first tool of hand sewing is a good pair of glasses, maybe you are ok with sewing through the bifocal portion of your eyeglasses … well, not me! I have a more than a few pair of the really “mean” drug store glasses and use different magnifications for different tasks. I use 3.0 when I hand sew and appliqué, I use a 2.5 when I am at the sewing machine … and a 1.50 when I’m cutting. Yes, the glasses are all over the house and studio, but to see well is to sew well.
    Let’s talk about lighting. I find that lighting your hand sewing is critical in providing the ability to stitch well, stitch even and to develop rhythm. I use an Ott High Definition Task Lamp when I am seated at a table sewing or embroidering. It is a great light for 2 reasons; one, it lights only your work and can be adjusted lower or higher to eliminate reflections on your eyeglasses or other light sources in the room; and two, you can easily close it when it’s not in use and the florescent bulb seems to last forever. When I move from the studio to the living room to sew, I have a great task floor lamp with a halogen bulb and a movable snake neck that I am able to position perfectly to light just the fabric I am sewing, not above my head where the light would reflect off of my eyeglasses. In addition to these lights, I have a portable Ott lamp that is light weight, fits in my stitching bag easily, and I take it when I travel or stitch with friends to be sure I have adequate lighting.
    Ott lights are available at JoAnn stores in a variety of sizes.


    As always … Happy Stitching!

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    About Deborah

    Deborah Tirico is an avid quilter, needle artist and instructor. A serious student, Deborah has taken classes in embroidery, piecework, appliqué hand and machine quilting. In 2006 she launched originals designs in felted wool appliqué with embroidery embellishments under the name Pemberley House. Her area of specialization is the creation of a sculptural look to felted wool appliqué by using needle tilting techniques and the layering and stuffing of wool pieces. Unlike the primitive felted wool embroidery popular today, Deborah’s designs feature matching and overdyed wool threads and embroidery embellishments which enhance and define the clarity of her subject.
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