Well I found out what's behind all those numbers and symbols on the sewing machine. Have you ever taken the time to stitch out all the decorative stitches on your sewing machine? That was the groundwork of an online course I'm taking on Craftsy called“Stupendous Stitching” taught by Carol Waugh. Before getting into the fun of making the class project which I'll show in the next post, I first explored the decorative stitches on my Bernina by making this stitch reference. Class instructor Carol Waugh had us stabilize fabric rectangles, and then sew rows of the numbered stitches in order. We also varied the width and length of the stitches just to see the effect, and numbered each stitch
It was a time investment that yielded a very useful tool. So often the stitch images shown on a machine or a reference card bear little resemblance to the actual results. Now I can see what they look like, and I confess I had never even glanced at many of the available stitches before. Next Carol showed us how to assemble these stitch samples into a booklet to keep handy by the sewing machine. She even made a pretty cover for hers, but I was too anxious to get to the project so mine remains cover-less for now.
While I missed the mark and wound up with pages that vary in size, it won't diminish the usefulness of the project. There are nearly 200 stitches, but taking the time to sew all of them was well worth it. It's easy to spot favorites, it helps to know which stitches use up a lot of thread or take a lot of time, and it provides a great visual tool for sewing. I have the stitch settings for a couple of often-used stitches like the buttonhole and feather stitches memorized, but now I can vary the stitches I use by glancing through my stitch dictionary and making an informed choice.