Welcome December! Actually, I’m not smiling on you, December, because you arrived too quickly and are somehow speeding up time faster than any other month. Where did the year go? It seems like I was going to accomplish more, or at least have my Christmas presents wrapped up by now, including the stitched ornaments I am making. There’s so much I want to do, so many people I want to see, so much TV to watch (yes, I’m a Christmas movie/special/episode addict). I have to prioritize my priorities and finish those stitched gifts. Are you feeling the same way?
Let’s take a breather and talk about something that will help you be more efficient in the time-crunch known as December, which none of us want to get sucked into since it is The Holidays after all. If you are busy stitching or sewing gifts and holiday ornaments, here’s a sanity and time-saver, a helpful gadget, a quicker twister-upper: the Kreinik Custom Corder. I have only a few must-have tools for stitching: needles, scissors, needle magnets, and the Custom Corder. I keep mine on a bulletin board by my sewing table and use it weekly. It somehow comes in handy for many things.
The Custom Corder makes piping or trims that you use for finishing (trimming stockings, ornaments, pillows, etc). You can also use it to make jewelry, purse straps, miniature items for dollhouses, belts, purse straps…and it makes the nicest ornament hangers. You can combine your own colors to match your project, and the result is professional looking piping. Attach your trim using glue, or tacking stitches made with clear monofilament sewing thread or a matching color of floss or Kreinik Cord.
Here’s a link to one video showing how to use it: http://www.kreinik.com/shops/VIDEO-Making-Bracelets-and-Trim-with-the-Custom-Corder.html Here’s another link to a fabulous video made by the editor of The World of Cross Stitching magazine: https://youtu.be/bL5OgLf15Jg. I’ve heard people say you can get the same effect using a power drill, but this Corder is easier, smaller, and cuter.
So yes it is quick, easy, and you can combine your own colors, but I also love it for the variety of materials you can use. I have corded Kreinik threads, embroidery floss, silk ribbon, strips of fabric, knitting yarns, rickrack, and leather strips among many other materials. In fact, combining different types of fibers makes gorgeous trim. Here’s a link to the Corder, where you can find photos and ideas on combinations and uses: http://www.kreinik.com/shops/Kreinik-Custom-Corder-AMCDW-HD.html or http://www.flickr.com/photos/kreinikgirl/sets/72157638583212684/
One tip about using the Custom Corder…It helps to have someone to hold one end of whatever it is your twisting (children and my 81-year-old mother love to help). In fact, the more people you have making cording with you, the more colors you can incorporate into that cord. However, if you are alone, you can attach one end to a cup holder installed in the wall, or pin the end to a bulletin board, etc. Here is one stitcher’s clever idea for using multiple colors when your friends/family aren’t around: http://stitchinpost.blogspot.com/2007/11/kreinik-custom-corder.html
I hope this recommendation makes life easier for you as you stitch those lovely projects. (Shameless Plug: if you need project ideas, take a look at the 25 Days of Free Christmas Projects on the Kreinik website.) Happy holidays or happy new year, and thanks for another wonderful year of inspiration, community, and creativity on www.mrxstitch.com.