Thursday, October 22, 2015

Get $5 Off Your Next Order

We added more than 10 new designs to the shop this week just in time for a little Halloween sale- pick up any of our one of kind tees or upcycled accessories & get $5 off your order with code SAVEFIVE at check out. Shop now to get the best selection at Sale ends October 31st 2015.

Are you following TrashN2Tees on Facebook? Share the sale with your friends there for an extra treat. Find out what it is here.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Easy To Make Zombie Cake

Are you planning an awesome halloween or zombie party? Cupcakes are a staple for any party, today I'm joined by master bakeress Ann Marie McEnroe and we're going to show you one fun and easy way to decorate undead mini cakes anyone will love this Fall. Cupcake decorating is not in my repertoire of skills so I've called in for some help from a good friend who is dynamite at Do-it-Yourself creative and unique icing decorations. If I can do this- anyone can. Stick around to find out how we've married machine embroidery + cake which I'm sure will inspire you!

What You'll Need:
Baking Supplies
Wilton Cake Decorating Tip #233
Zombie Embroidery Design Completed (TrashN2Tees Whippersnapper Collection)
Leaf Green Wilton Coloring
Oreo Cookies

1. Follow my original Fimo Embroidery tutorial on the BERNINA We All Sew blog to complete the zombie cupcake sticks. Before baking on Fimo clay- insert tooth pick between embroidery and clay. Bake as directed.

2. Remove the scrumptious (I won't tell anyone if you eat them all!) Oreo middle and place the chocolate wafers in a zip lock bag. Use a rolling pin to crush cookies into chunky 'dirt' mixture. You'll use about 2 cookies crushed up per cupcake.

3. Mix color concentrate in with your white icing. Add small drops until you create the color you're trying to achieve. Feel free to check out How To Color Icing for more in-depth instructions.

4. Start shoveling (my term not Ann Maries!) the green icing into a pastry bag with the Wilton #233 tip that will help up create 'grass' texture onto the cupcake. Tip: You'll see in the next step how we tapered the cupcake so the center was higher.

5. Hold the bag 90 degrees up. Squeeze the bag to form grass then pull up and away from the cupcake releasing pressure when it's long enough. Continue creating grass around the outside bottom edge working your way up but stop near the top. Leave the center 1.5'' icing free.

6. Sprinkle a teaspoonish amount of crumbled oreo 'dirt' to create a mount in the center of the cupcake. Add zombie embroidery pick to finish off the cupcake!

What other fun cupcakes will you make using machine embroidery designs? Need some inspiration? Head over to the BERNINA We All Sew blog for a chance to win my entire Whippersnapper collection now through Friday, October 16th 2015.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Why WD40 is Bad For Your Sewing Machines & When It's Okay to Use it

Using WD-40 as a lubricant for your sewing machine can actually damage the parts you're trying to protect. 

Back in the 1950's the military developed WD-40 as a rust preventative solvent and de-greaser to protect missile parts. It quickly became popular in households everywhere when people discovered other uses for the product such as a cleaner, rust-prevention agent, squeak-stopper and more. It also works wonders as a light lubricant on small items like hinges, locks, and toys.

Sewing machines on the other hand are far too heavy duty and fast moving for the lubricating power of WD-40 to have any affect at all. As a matter of fact, WD-40 will actually strip away any existing lubricant and leave your drive train dry - metal on metal. Eek! Basically, spraying this stuff into your sewing machine is worse than using no lubricant at all! Don't do it. 

What kind of oil should you use to lubricate a sewing machine? ONLY sewing machine oil. Not 3 in 1 oil, not WD-40, not engine oil, olive oil, or fax machine oil. 

When it it okay to use WD-40 on your sewing machines? 
Many of you already know I have an affinity of antique and vintage sewing machines. I admit to using WD-40 on these, but not as a lubricant. I only use it with my sewing machines as a solvent. It does a great job breaking down OLD gooey gunky grease and oil check out She's a Sewing Machine Mechanic for detailed instructions on this method. 

Side Notes: 
Never ever ever use WD-40 on long arm quilting machines or industrial sewing machines as these types of machines because they may have porous bearings.

BERNINA model sewing machines require a special high performance type sewing oil which can be purchased through your local dealer.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Fimo Clay & Machine Embroidery

Did you catch the season premier of The Walking Dead this weekend? Gear up for next week with an easy to make brooch or patch with my latest project over on We All Sew. Check back later this week for another zombie project just in time for Halloween! #fortheloveofzombies

Monday, October 5, 2015

I'm a BERNINA Brand Ambassador- What does that mean?

 Claude Dreyer CEO, Myself*, and Hanspeter Ueltschi Owner of BERNINA (2015)

 As I am nearing the third anniversary of my ambassadorship with the BERNINA company, I feel compelled to share what it entails & what this relationship means for me both personally and professionally. For those of you are aren't familiar with the sewing industry; BERNINA is 5th generation family owned Swiss company that manufactures the highest quality of sewing, embroidery, and quilting systems.

Long before I ever sat down and sewn a stitch on a BERNINA machine our relationship blossomed. Beyond the pride and precision they take from design to execution this company is the most sustainable sewing brand around. I contacted them directly to learn more about their initiatives both here in the United States and in their pristine factories of Switzerland. As you know, this is a sector I'm deeply passionate about. They are too and collaboration was born. I continue to be inspired by their practices and innovations.

How They're Made // Sustainability 

In close proximity to the Steckborn plant, machines are designed, developed, and prototyped cutting back environmental emission waste & maximizing the nexus which I believe lends itself to the undeniable quality of their products. The Steckborn plant recently was modernized in 2012 to be more eco-friendly and also changes were made to directly improve the work environment to be more ergonomic & easier. 

Machines have been produced at the Steckborn plant since 1890's and today some of the high end machines, parts, and presser feet are still manufactured there. BERNINA also operates a factory in Thailand which uphold the same company standards and policies. Employees there work in state of the art, air conditioned factories, are are paid above minimum wage. BERNINA employees are a vital part of my overall experience with company because it's family. Cliche as it sounds, but I've actually had the pleasure of spending time with people have worked within the company for 20, 30, 50 years. Okay, I realize that I probably sound like a walking advertisement but it's important for you to know what goes on behind the the fancy machines. It's important for you to know that I'm not being paid to tell you this, I'm not being paid to sew on a BERNINA. These views are my own. Just in case you needed a disclaimer. 

As a business owner myself, it is important to support organizations and brands who operate with not only our environment, but our future in mind. Whether it's the fact that they reinvest a large portion of cash flow into new developments, give back to communities around the world, or their mission is to create products that are used for generations to come. Transparency, authenticity, and the belief that we are always at the beginning, never at the end. Bottom line, our ethics and values align. These are the reasons why I loved BERNINA before.

Quality // Design // Legacy

There are so very many posts on the interwebs that will illustrate & validate why I love sewing on a BERNINA. Quality, innovation, consistency rise to the top of my mind immediately. Do you know that you have the option of receiving guide classes when you purchase or upgrade machines (or anytime if you contact a local dealer!) They're dedicated to teaching you & inspiring you to learn new techniques and masterfully create with ease. There's an accessible database available right on the website & app.  My relationship with BERNINA as a brand ambassador offers me the ability to contribute creative ideas to the We All Sew in exchange for a loan machine. However I've gained so much more than just that. If you're curious about the BERNINA sewing experience might I suggest a few of these testimonials: 
Sara Snuggarud How Sewing On A BERNINA Changed My Life 
Lola Pink Fabrics on her BERNINA 880 Sterling Edition
Mandy Leins loves her Q24 Long Arm Quilting Machine (video)

Family Values 

Family Matters. While my ambassadorship doesn't get me a round trip Switzerland it has opened up doors to an entire collective of people within the organization who have changed my life. I've found myself with opportunities to grow as a person, an instructor, and as a designer through this company and connections I've made there. From the educators to executives to the local shop owners most everyone you'll meet are approachable and down to earth. I love BERNINA because they've encouraged me (and so many others) to explore our passions. I'm here to change the way we consume and create, make things that matter, and leaving a lasting legacy for others. My relationship with BERNINA is a reflection of those beliefs and values, together we embark on creative endeavors that may push the status quo through innovation, hard work, and exceeding expectations. Because neither of us settle for hearing, "This is the way we've always done it." 

Please share your BERNINA love with me in the comments below. What other companies or brands do you support because of their values and ethics?  

*Arizona T-shirt Ball Gown Designed & Sewn by Angela Johnson


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