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Friday, February 26, 2010

A Quick TGIF

I'm working this morning while the kids are at school and have just a few pics to share! I did the watering can with an initial in it this week. I added to my previous post that this is Jane Street striped fabric. I found some on E-bay and bought a yard. It's a great staple fabric!
I also did the EB flip flops! I'd really love to do an AC pair of flip flops, but I haven't figured out anything different to do!? How many ways can you do flip flops? Great summer design (!
Here is a new AC design coming soon and I did this on a onesie with "jack" underneath in the khaki thread. This is a great baby design!! I think doing this on a white layette gown would be so cute! I currently have 3 more AC designs to sample and will probably get 1 more so we'll have 5 to list next week.
You may have noticed that AC is now on Facebook! I got a wild hair the other night and decided it was a good idea! Hours later and hours spent yesterday morning, it's on there!! I did a group first, then realized a page would be better, so I had to redo EVERYTHING! I also had a time doing the link button for my website & blog. I'm a pretty computer literate person - I do run my own website. I think Facebook is just nuts! Every which way I tried to create a PAGE BADGE, it would NOT work (I even contacted Facebook)!! I was successful at the FAN BOX, so that's the way it'll be for now! I don't know that there is much difference really anyway!?

Lastly, I did these shirts by request but am not able to do anymore at this time! My friend from Ms Monogram Momma (on my blog list) so graciously did the names for me, meaning she digitized them herself! They are really cute, and also really time consuming!! It does each letter at a time so lots of trimming, taking the hoop on and off, etc. Very cute though! My customer wanted them just as MMM sampled it with a variety of ginghams! Jeff & I do not have the font engine to our software, so I can't digitize like this right now. Most fonts on the internet (or the ones shown on my blog) only come in big letters, so putting 6 together is way too big for my 5x7 hoop! We may purchase the font engine sometime soon because I think it would be a great thing to have!
Back to work!! I have 2 hours left with no kids...

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

New Designs!!

I added 5 new designs yesterday afternoon to Applique Cafe (the 5 newest ones up top), and I already have 3 or 4 more to sample this week for next week! We'd like to add 4 or 5 per week if we can! I "counted" my stuff and have 74 items to do before Spring Break! That comes down to me doing 4 or 5 a day ~ weekends too! Again, if I get it all done it'll be a miracle! I'm stayin positive!! I have found that 4, maybe 5, a day is reasonable with 3 kids. But, it doesn't always happen! Yesterday I think I got 2 shirts done.

I did go to the Dr. yesterday and he hooked me up with 3 prescriptions. Unfortunately the antibiotic has a side effect - to say that it may cause "changes in taste" is an UNDERSTATEMENT!! I was up at 2:00 AM last night brushing my teeth! I had to call the Dr. back this morning and let him know that the antibiotic was NOT going to work for me!! They are supposed to be calling in another. Let's hope it won't have the same side effect!

Last night at 9:15 I was walking through the house and heard a wimper...the boys had popcorn and I smelled that (plus the awful taste in my mouth maybe) and I automatically thought someone had thrown up!! Much to my surprise as I checked in on Browder & G, I hear "I'm stuck" and find my crazy middle child STUCK in the headboard. After I laughed I had to ask him if Mommy could take his picture before I got him down. He obliged... 
Notice how Browder is a) completely sacked out and b) oblivious that his brother has tangled himself up in the headboard. I still don't know why or how he did this? I'm just thankful that I heard him and did NOT have the humidifier on last night! He may have slept this way b/c I would have never heard him!! CRAZY!!

Mallory is a messy eater so I thought we'd try something new to keep her hair from getting food in it. Pretty clever I would say, but she had it off in no time! This is actually nothing compared to spaghetti night!!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Customer Photos!

Thanks to my customers who e-mailed me pictures this weekend! This is one customer's niece (and she said I could use the photo) with the bunny applique on this cute dress! It says "Hippity Hoppity" I think on the top - very cute font too!
And more teapot pictures!! This customer did t-shirt party favors like my previous post! What a cute idea and a GREAT party favor!! I'd say that goes above and beyond the average party favor!?
I just sent 5 new designs to be converted to ART, so once we get them back we will get the 5 new ones listed. 4 I posted this weekend, and here is the 5th one we squeezed in last night for Easter! Looks great w/ a bow! I like these colors together too. I don't know what the name of this striped fabric is, but it is just about my favorite! I bought it from a friend who sews a lot and only bought 1/4 yard of it. I asked her and she bought it off one of HER friends, so we don't know who makes it!? It's GREAT!

*Update - the striped fabric is from Jane Street - I found it on Etsy and Ebay for around $4.00-$4.25 for 1/2 yard.
Mallory is well and went to school today! She had fever Sat night after she threw up on me at Nancy's Italian Ice. Lovely - it was milk too! We came home and showered, she slept all night and took a LONG nap yesterday with no fever all day. We played outside yesterday afternoon and she was perfectly fine for dinner, last night and this morning! YEAH! Me, on the other hand, broke down and made a Dr appt for tomorrow and my sweet husband rearranged his schedule so that he can come home and keep the kids. Sat. night I didn't cough a bit all night, but coughed A LOT yesterday, and coughed quite a bit last night. I think it's just some CRUD, but hopefully I can get something to knock the crud out since this is going on 2 weeks!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Hooping 101

I just came across my pics I took on hooping back in September of 2008.
Of course this is how I hoop, but everyone is different!

1) I measure my shirt armpit seam to armpit seam to find the center of the shirt. You'll find that the distance is usually a good even amount - 12", or 10 1/5", etc. I use an air erasable pen to mark my center, then turn the shirt inside out.
 2) I cut my stabilizer (I use a medium cutaway on my t-shirts - it works best for me). I've actually been using precut squares from which are GREAT for my 4x4 hoop! I use a little bit of Sulky spray adhesive (KK2000 temporary adhesive spray). I usually spray the stabilizer inside a little cardboard box instead of on top of my shirt as pictured. The box catches a lot of the sticky ~ however this is a pretty light spray (but adhesive WILL accumulate after lots and lots of embroidery).  
As you can see the stabilizer is "stuck" in place, so when I turn my shirt right side out it stays in place for hooping!
3) I lay the bottom of my hoop inside the shirt. Again, as you can see the stabilizer is "stuck" to my shirt (top of shirt).
Here is another picture. I'm ready to hoop! As you can see I am hooping this shirt with the hoop clamp coming through the neck of the shirt, therefore when I get my design on my embroidery machine I'll rotate it to the left 90 degrees and it will sew sideways (my shirt will be sideways).
4) I eyeball my hoop for straightness. I've also hooped so much that I know just about exactly how tight my hoop screw needs to be. Your hoop should be JUST TIGHT ENOUGH to clamp on the shirt. Meaning... when your shirt is hooped, the shirt should be firm and there should be NO NEED to pull/tug on the shirt or tighten the hoop! If you hold the shirt up and the hoop looks crooked, just unhoop it and try again! I have to do this sometimes too! Here I am using my 4x4 hoop which hoops nice and easy! My 5x7 hoop is sometimes harder to get straight and firm so I use my 4x4 whenever possible!
5) Taa Daaa... My hooped shirt, and as you may see my center dot is centered pretty well in the hoop! It doesn't have to be centered perfectly, but as close as you can get it so that your design will fit nicely!
I know there are tons of people out there who use sticky stabilizer and don't even hoop their shirts! I've just learned to hoop this way so it's what works for me! I think that medium cutaway gives the shirt nice support, so that's what I use!

I mentioned in my earlier post that I prefer Heat N Bond Lite as my fusible product versus Wonder Under. Maybe I've had my iron setting too hot all this time, but I struggle with peeling the paper off of Wonder Under every time! HNB comes off very easily and you can see the clear layer of fusible "stuff", which after it's ironed fuses your applique to your shirt (when you're finished w/ your applique). WU reminds me of ironing cob webs on to my fabric? Like I said, I'm probably doing it wrong but WU & I don't get along too well!

I've also gotten several comments about the "H" store and their lack of customer service! Bless those sweet ladies' hearts that work there! Someone just needs to tell them that when there are 8 people standing in line for 15 minutes, mosey on over and open one of the other 2 registers! It's that simple!! I would tell them  myself, but the german lady scares me!!

A Beautiful Saturday!!

Wasn't it a week ago we had snow on the ground? It's a beautiful day in Montgomery! Mal had fever last night and this morning (103.2!!!!) so we spent the morning at the PED office! No flu, ears/throat looked fine, CBC showed a viral infection - possible what I've had? Hopefully she'll improve and be OK by Monday!

When we left there I knew I was smack out of my Heat N Bond Lite. I had some Wonder Under that I used last night for samples, but me & WU do not get along!!! I threw what I had in the trash! So... I drag my poor little girl to a sewing store which I will not name, but it starts with an "H" and it is NOT Hobby Lobby. Of course they only had a little over 2 yards of HNB in stock, so I got it and headed for the register, where I stood with Mallory on my hip for a good 15 minutes! The 1st lady in line evidently had about 5 separate returns and as many purchases. There was a lady behind her (ahead of me) and about 5 people behind me. Do you think any of the 3 or 4 ladies standing around the cutting table budged to come help or open another register? NO! I stood there, and stood there, and my blood began to boil!!! When the very slow cashier called another lady to help her (for the 2nd time), I threw my Heat N Bond on the counter and walked out! Given that I've been shopping at this store for the past 3 years, and even though they don't act like it, they know me! I guess that means I won't be back?? At this point I don't WANT to go back! I drove to JoAnn, and could only find HNB in a package of 5 yards for $10. Of course my coupons were at home b/c I had not planned a trip to JoAnn! But, I had no time to go home and get my coupon and knew I couldn't do any work without my HNB, so I paid full price. UGH!!!!! I hated to make a scene (which I didn't really - just walked out and was obviously miffed). But, hello customer service!!!!!!!!!!! Some people do not have 30 minutes to stand in line with a 2 yr old on their hip!! They don't put more than 1 register in the store for NOTHING ladies!! Off my soapbox!!!

Here are the new AC designs which will be up next week! Another fishing lure...
Some sand toys... (I like these colors together)
Someone sent this design to us to do - 2 peas on a pod.
I will also show it with a little bow on one's sprig of hair...
Lastly this cute puppy dog...
Not sure if we'll get anything else done? We have a couple of others in the works, but aren't exactly the way I want them just yet! Jeff finally got to play golf today (the first time in MONTHS). I know he & his golf buddies were giddy as they stepped up to the first tee box! Mal is napping and the boys are playing Wii and I'm unfortunately WORKING today! :( I have so much to do... Still praying for good health around here!! Check back for the new designs to be listed hopefully by the first of the week!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Happy Birthday Mallory!

Yesterday (2/18) we celebrated Mallory's 2nd birthday, or as she says "Birthday Two"!! I made cupcakes for our family party Tuesday night! Don't they look yummy?
Here is Sissy w/ her Fat Tuesday Mardi Gras beads on blowing out her cupcake candles! We went all out and had her party at Pizza Perfect! It's one of those dive pizza places and the buffet is excellent!!
I've been under the weather all week with a sinus infection and the coughing & almost-laryngitis set in Wednesday night! Miserable times!! Yesterday I felt horrible and coughed all night last night. :( Last night we did go eat at Texas Roadhouse for Sis's b-day and finished up the night at Nancy's Italian Ice, which is a new place near our house owned by a family from our church. It is dangerously delicious!! Dangerous meaning we could walk to get there! Today Mal came home from school with chills and has had fever twice!? Great week for the Gulledges!!! Pray for good health!

Today I stocked up on some great gift sets and baby gifts! Several bib & burp cloth sets as well as a couple of soft pink little Elegant Baby mini blankets that would be great with a monogram in the corner. And... one lone 3 Marthas bib with green & white check trim. It would be cute with a pink monogram paired with one of the pink blankies! These are very nice big bibs - all terry with ribbon & ric rac detail.

This is a smaller infant bib.
Please e-mail me if you need a baby gift! I did note up top that I'm not accepting any new orders until the end of March. I went from not being busy, to having well over 50+++ items that have all showed up at once (I can't even count them all)! If I get everything finished by Spring Break it will be a miracle! Hence my sudden cutoff on orders! However, since I'm showing these baby gifts they will be the exception since adding a monogram would be pretty simple! Please e-mail me with any questions ( Thanks!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!!

Happy Valentine's Day 2010! We went to church this morning, lunch at Zaxby's with friends and I cooked a little din din tonight for the family! Tomorrow is a holiday (my kids haven't been to school since Wednesday) and they all go back to school Wednesday. I'm battling some crud but had a great weekend and here are a few baby gifts I did for some friends... Layette gown, burp cloth and bib with the AC simple train on it. I've been discussing the ribbon sewn on the bottom of burp cloths with an embroidery friend and used Heat N Bond on the ribbon to keep it in place while sewing it on. It made it SO MUCH EASIER!! Why I didn't consider that before, I don't know? This gift was for a baby who's parents weren't sure of the name yet.

Another baby gift - a burp cloth set. I used the Embroidery Boutique sailboat patch minus the sailboat for the initial patch burp cloth and the elephant from Etsy seller thelongthread. Again, used Heat N Bond on the ribbon and it was easy peasy to sew on! I like the sailboat patch b/c it has several stitches going around it so you can tie in different colors!
We've sent 4 new AC designs to be converted to ART so when we get them back, we'll list them!

I got a tip today to share - I haven't tried it yet but plan to this week! It's a stain removal spray called AWESOME from The Dollar Tree! It is in a clear bottle with red Labeling and the spray is yellow. I had mentioned throwing away some of Mallory's stuff b/c it was so stained, so for $1 a pop I'm going to get me some Awesome this week and maybe save some clothes! Thanks for the tip Courtney!!

Friday, February 12, 2010

It NEVER snows in Montgomery!!

The weather man predicted snow. They closed all schools today and basically shut down Montgomery (except our favorite mexican restaurant b/c we ate lunch there). Weather man was RIGHT!! I looked out the window at about 6 am this morning and saw NOTHING! But, later on when we got up it was snowing, and as of 4:15 pm it is still coming down! This happens... NEVER! The kids had a great time...
This morning when I rolled out of bed and checked e-mail, I had several saying Applique Cafe was suspended? I finally figured out that our "automatic" web host payment had not gone through last month, so I updated the cc info and took care of it and it immediately started working again! I guess the card on file had expired? Not too much of a crisis!

I have 4 or 5 new designs to test, and currently have about 10 things on my to-do list! I do, however, have lots of stuff coming in through the mail, so when I get it (I think one customer is sending me like 26 shirts to do), I will be busy for a while! I think I have another order for maybe 8 shirts for another customer. I guess there is no rush for summer tees, but I'm glad for those who are planning ahead!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


I have had a couple of people e-mail me recently about a couple of designs - 1) an octopus with a smiley face and 2) a dump truck with a few eggs in the back. Of course now I can't find the e-mails nor can I remember who asked me about them, so if you've e-mailed me about these 2 please e-mail me back at!! I have info for you!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

JoAnn, singular

Our Montgomery JoAnn opened Friday morning, and surprise surprise, I was there by 10:00!! I didn't buy anything, but walked around so that I could "take it all in"! I expected the store to be a lot bigger than it was, but was pretty impressed with their fabric selections - both decorating and also "other" (quilting, etc). They didn't have a great variety of ginghams (or I didn't see them?), but on the other hand they had every size & shade of corduroy fabric and even some minky dots I'd never seen (a kelly green). I think my favorite section was the baby pastel fabrics - they had lots of soft polka dots and such which I will go back to get. I also overheard on the speaker that they appear to have a "take a number" system with fabric cutting, which is a good idea. There were also JoAnn people every 5 steps waiting to help, which I'm sure may change once they are open for a while and the newness wears off. GREAT supply of Sulky stabilizers and I also checked out the scissor aisle. Overall, I was impressed and plan to go back when I have more time and again, once the newness wears off! I still want to call it JoAnns. Why no "s"?

Speaking of stabilizer, I am LOVING my precut squares I bought from!!!!! I'm also still using my roll of iron-on Floriani (which I can't seem to get to iron on and stick, so I still use my spray adhesive - I use it for my 5x7 hooping).

I am not sure when my last post was, but had a busy weekend and no pictures to share today. Friday night I went on a women's retreat with 101 women from my church. It was FABULOUS!! I'm still reflecting on the testimonies and it made me love and cherish my church even more!!

Jeff worked on a few new designs while I was gone. We went over them tonight and after some minor adjustments, we'll hopefully get them tested this week. The $5 off $20 purchase sale continues til Sunday and we also marked 5 Valentine designs down to 3 bucks. Happy Valentine's Week!!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Designs Designs Designs

It's so good to have my machines back! Tuesday & Wednesday I did about 17 shirts for someone and here is 1 of them. This is a J.Khaki pretty blue polo type shirt from Belk with an initial in between 2 golf greens ( I thought this turned out cute!
And... I bought several designs last year from and here is 1 of them (a turtle). Somehow, some way, Stitch On Time has about 12,000 designs. A lot of them seem like they'd be copyrighted? Lots of Disney and what I would think of as "licensed" designs. They are in another country so prices are in GP I think, but you can click a button somewhere to convert to US Dollars (or Paypal will do it for you) and most designs are b/w $2-3. You may also notice that this turtle was in Kelly's Kids spring lineup last year!? Again, not sure how they do it, but if you can sort through the thousands of designs, there are some really cute ones! This one had A LOT of steps! The inside pieces were all done individually which goes against my simple motto, but it's cute! They also do a tackdown stitch and then a weird separate tackdown stitch, so 4 steps per fabric!
I've just added 5 new designs to and we decided yesterday (after leaving the sale up past January 31) that we would extend the sale through Valentine's Day! Here are the new designs...
We had a couple of requests for the shamrock and the infamous tow truck with a shamrock! For the individual shamrock I used a piece of white flannel underneath my polka dot fabric. Cross patch (very simple), umbrellas and then my FAVORITE... the pirate ship!! As you can see on my other photo I put G's initials on the sail (?) in blue with Mono Wizard Plus Tipsy font! 1 shirt down for his spring wardrobe!! I get lots of e-mails asking about my other pirate ship from, so a pirate ship design has been on my TO-DO list for quite some time!

I did the umbrella shirt to match some Garanimals lime green knit "bootcut" pants for Mallory to wear to school! I like to put "Sissy" on stuff! Anyway, these pants are like a few bucks, and I found some long sleeve tees at one of our Walmarts marked down to $2.00 so I got a couple. They are the boy style, but who cares!! I can't tell you how much of her stuff I've thrown in the trash! It gets so stained so quickly!!!! I'm trying to make due til Spring and Summer!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Welcome Back Machines!!

Here is a pic of Sis blowin' a little harmonica! She has on her AC Heart Patch shirt (which is covered in dirt and what appears to be chocolate drool!?). She will be 2 on the 18th!!
My blog friend and AC customer "Mimi" sent me this picture today of the 13 party favors she did for her grandaughter's 3rd birthday party! What a dedicated Mimi!!! That's a lot of teapots!! Super cute idea!
And, for some reason I had these thread charts out this weekend so I thought I'd take a picture. I have people ask me ALL THE TIME where I buy most of my thread. I get it at It's Poly-X thread and if you call them, they do sell this real thread chart for maybe $10? I think I paid $9.99 for it and I'm not sure if it's online. This was a couple of years ago so I'm not sure how much they are now? Much better than a photo color chart! I bought both of my machines from Ken's and I think my first one came with like 25 spools of thread. Then I found out they sell it for $2.50 a spool (1000 or 1100 yards). That is cheap! You do have to pay shipping, but they have coupons of like $5 off all the time which offsets the shipping and if you buy enough thread, you certainly come out ahead (versus paying $5+ a spool). When I'm in a bind I do buy it from Hancocks, but I try to keep my favorite colors in stock so I don't have to make those emergency thread runs!!
And here is a closeup! As you can see I underline the colors I have so it's easy to reorder!
So I took both of my machines to (AKA Southeast Sewing) in West Point, GA on THURSDAY, which means they went to Atlanta Thursday evening maybe (they actually service them at their Atlanta store). They were fixed and back in West Point YESTERDAY (Monday)!! Can you say FAST?? This morning I took Mal over to play with her cousin and Browder also went to play with a friend, and G & I took a road trip over to West Point to pick my machines up. It's kind of a fun little drive and I packed the DS for G, so he was an easy passenger! We loaded my machines up, I bought some stabilizer (a pack of the precut 250 piece 7.5 x 8" medium cutaway for $16.95! I got the 2.5 oz (versus 2.2 oz) so it was a little more than my previous post.) I also got a cute brown quilted duffle bag with a periwinkle blue trim and a lime green quilted bag! I pondered over the cute bags for quite a while and decided on these for possible baby gifts! I'm so glad to have my machines back and am very thankful for the speedy service!! Thank you Lori & Steve!! On our way home we stopped in Opelika at TigerTown and had some lunch before heading back to Montgomery!

Back to work!! It's been nice to have a few days off, but I have work to do! We're also having website issues so I'm trying to get that resolved! For some reason some people aren't getting their download e-mails (and some are??). If you've ordered designs yesterday or today and haven't gotten them, please contact me and I will send them again! Thanks!