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Programming stitches on the PFAFF creative icon 2 [Tapering and Patchwork]

by Betty Biberdorf

I’m happy to be back to share more of the PFAFF creative icon 2 sewing features with you. I’m really excited I get to spend the week sharing the creative Sewing Programs on our PFAFF creative icon 2 and during the week we’ll make a Mug Rug embellished with decorative stitches.

I love playing with decorative stitches! When I started sewing (many years ago!) I used decorative stitches to embellish my fabric and I loved the beautiful 9mm decorative stitches I found on my PFAFF sewing machines.

The features I’m sharing with you are available on several PFAFF sewing machines – not just the top-of-the-line PFAFF creative icon 2. See your local PFAFF dealer to find out more about which machines have these creative sewing programs.

Note: If your machine doesn’t have these creative programs, you can still use your favorite decorative stitches to make the Mug Rug. 

White and burgundy sewing machine; PFAFF creative icon 2 Sewing and Embroidery machine

PFAFF creative icon 2 Sewing and Embroidery machine

Let’s get started!

Let’s get our supplies for our Mug Rug prepped and ready for stitching. Since it’s so close to Canada Day I’m making mine in white with red and silver thread and red fabric for my backing and binding.

8” x 11” Red and 8” x 11” white fabric, 2¼” red binding strip, and 3 sewing feet

Fabric and feet to make my Mug Rug



  • 1 piece 8” x 11” tone-on-tone cotton for your main fabric
  • 1 piece 8” x 11” cotton for your backing fabric (This can be a solid or print)
  • 1 piece 2¼” x WOF (Width of Fabric) in either your main or backing fabric for binding


  • 1 spool Robison Anton 40wt Rayon embroidery thread to coordinate with your main fabric
  • 1 spool metallic embroidery thread to coordinate with your embroidery thread
  • bobbin wound with bobbin thread
  • sewing thread to match backing fabric
  • bobbin wound with sewing thread


feet/machine accessories suggestions


Insert a PFAFF embroidery needle size 80.

Insert the bobbin wound with bobbin thread.

Thread your machine with 40wt rayon thread.

Attach the.

Fuse the 8” x 11” fusible interfacing pieces to the wrong side of your main and backing fabric.

Use a marking chalk or pen on your main fabric and draw a line on both the vertical and horizontal center. Draw a line 2¼” above and below the horizontal center line.

On the 2¼” lines mark 2” and 4” from either side of the vertical center.

Place a piece of INSPIRA Tear N’ Wash stabilizer behind the main fabric.

The measurements I used to draw lines on my fabric to know where to position tapering stitches and the first row of decorative stitch in the center of the fabric.

Measurements for marking fabric to prepare for decorative stitches

PFAFF Creative Sewing Programs – Tapering and Patchwork Program

PFAFF has built-in sewing programs which are extremely helpful. The Patchwork Program is found under the Stitch Repeat icon and it allows me to sew a row of stitches and program how long I want the row to be. I can then sew that same length seam over and over again as many times as I need to – perfect for sewing blocks together. Another Sewing Program I like is Tapering. Most of the 9mm wide stitches can be tapered and I can use Tapering along with the Patchwork Program to program a specific length of the tapered stitch. This is perfect for personalized Quilt Labels.

Let’s sew a decorative stitch on our Mug Rug using Tapering with the Patchwork Program.

When I open a decorative stitch that can be tapered, the taper function will appear in the Menu Panel. When I open the Tapering feature, I have a choice of the angle, whether I want it to taper at the beginning of the stitch or the end of the stitch or both beginning and end. I can also choose a different angle for the beginning and/or the ending of the stitch. When I select the Stitch Repeat program I can use the Patchwork Program and tell my PFAFF creative icon 2 how long I want my stitch to be – in this case, a tapered stitch. One of my favorite stitches to use for tapering on the PFAFF creative icon 2 is stitch # 2.3.11 – a 9mm wide cross stitch.

I set my tapering option to Multi 90 degree. Multi means both the beginning and end tapers will be the same – a 90 degree angle. I’ve opened Stitch Repeat and I’ve selected the Patchwork Program feature. Notice the Recommendations window shows me the recommended foot and that stabilizer is required. It also shows the Beginning and End Taper under the Active Features. I’m almost ready to start sewing.

Computer screen on the PFAFF creative icon 2 sewing and embroidery machine

PFAFF creative icon 2 Stitch #2.3.11 – 9mm cross stitch

Before I start sewing I also want to make sure I activate the tie-off function on my PFAFF creative icon 2 as I don’t want my stitches to come undone after I finish my Mug Rug. The tie-off function is just to the right of the Stitch Repeat feature. When I open the Tie-off program I can activate the tie-off at the beginning, the end or both. I can also program a Cut function and if I choose to select it, the stitch will finish, tie off and cut the thread. I’m choosing Beginning and Thread Cut. I love this feature!

Computer screen on the PFAFF creative icon 2 sewing and embroidery machine

Programming the tie-off program on my PFAFF creative icon 2

I’ll also engage my projector capability for sewing this stitch. I love the new projector capability on my PFAFF creative icon 2 – it makes sewing my decorative stitches so much easier! I can either press the projector button or touch the projector icon on the menu.

I’ll place the top of the grid and the beginning of my stitch at the 2” marking closest to the vertical center on the 2¼” drawn line. All I need to do is place the grid on my drawn line and I can see exactly where the stitch will be.

The Projector grid and stitch preview allows me to easily position where I want to start sewing my stitch and what the stitch will look like; PFAFF creative icon 2 sewing and embroidery machine

A projector showing Stitch #2.3.11 on a marked line using a grid to line up the starting point of a stitch.

When my foot gets close to the second 2” marking on the line, all I need to do is touch the reverse button to activate the end tapering and, when the end tapering is completed, the machine will tie off and cut the threads and raise the presser foot.

A white sewing machine with three buttons, one of which is the Reverse button that tells the PFAFF creative icon 2 to activate the end tapering to the selected stitch.

The Reverse Button on the PFAFF creative icon 2 is used to activate the end tapering of the selected stitch.

Note that the Patchwork Program we first selected has now changed to the Single Stitch Program and tells us how many stitches we have in our programmed length – how cool is that!!!! And if I felt I needed another stitch or to delete one, I can easily do that in the Single Stitch Program. Even better is the screen on my PFAFF creative icon 2 shows me the stitch in real size with both the beginning and the end of the stitch tapered. The Information window shows me all the active features I programmed! Remember how we can easily personalize our screen by moving the pop-up windows to where we want them. I really, really like this feature!

The picture below shows my programmed stitch on the screen in real size with both ends tapered. It also displays a Recommendation window with all the Active Features used to program the stitch. The Patchwork Program is now the Single Stitch Program and shows how many stitches are in the programmed stitch.

Computer screen on the PFAFF creative icon 2 sewing and embroidery machine

My programmed stitch with both ends tapered is shown on the screen of my PFAFF creative icon 2

Now I just need to place the start of the stitch on each of the remaining 2” markings on my fabric and sew my tapered stitch. When the stitch reaches the programmed length, it stops, ties off and then cuts my thread. Here’s my fabric with the 4 tapered stitches done.

Note: If you cannot use tapered stitches, sew a few repeats of one of your favorite decorative stitches. 

A square piece of white fabric with 4 cross stitch tapered stitches in red thread

Programmed Tapered stitch is sewn at each of the 2” markings on my fabric.

Using the Patchwork Program with Tapering makes it so much easier than having to sew each one and hopefully get them the right length. I prefer to let my PFAFF creative icon 2 do all the hard work for me!

Join me tomorrow as we take a look at another great creative sewing program the PFAFF creative icon 2 has – it’s my all-time favorite – Stitch Creator! As we continue to work our way through the creative sewing programs, we’ll add more rows of decorative stitches to our Mug Rug.

Until tomorrow!

This is part 1 of 5 in this series

Go to part 2: Stitch Creator on the PFAFF creative icon 2 – Altering Built-in Stitches


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