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Sewing techniques with the HV Designer EPIC

 

The week is over and I haven’t stitched anything on the Husqvarna Viking Designer EPIC!

There are so many amazing features to drool over, there hasn’t been time to sew. However, now that we know some of the capabilities of the Designer EPIC, it’s time to give it a test drive.

Let’s dive in and have a look.

 

Piecing

I was thrilled to find that my favorite foot for piecing the scant ¼ʺ seam was included with the Designer EPIC. What I love about the Quilter’s ¼ʺ Piecing Foot P is that it’s very easy to transport projects from sewing machine to sewing machine. There’s no need to move the needle to the left or the right in order to find that scant ¼ʺ. All you do is snap on this foot and use the edge of it as the guide.

Now some of you may not have multiple sewing machines, but if you do, this foot is invaluable and I’ve purchased one for every one of my sewing machines. Yes, there’s more than one.

And as I mentioned earlier this week, using the Needle Stop Up/Down in conjunction with the Presser Foot Down/Pivot option, it’s a snap to turn corners if you’re sewing pockets or anything that requires a turn. Even curved piecing becomes so easy when the presser foot pops up ever so slightly when you stop. This is definitely a must have for me on any sewing machine.

 

Quilter's ¼ʺ Piecing Foot P comes with the Designer EPIC
Quilter’s ¼ʺ Piecing Foot P comes with the Designer EPIC

 

Topstitching

I needed to make handles for a bag and I needed to do some topstitching. I like putting multiple rows of topstitching on my handles to make them nice and firm. While it’s easy to gauge where to sew along the edges, it’s not so easy in the center. However, look at those markings on the Needle Plate. I was able to get nice straight rows of stitching by using the markings as my guide!

It’s small details like these markings that you initially think “oh yes that’s nice, but I’ll never use that”. And then poof! I’m using the markings!

 

Using the markings on the Needle Plate to get straight lines
Using the markings on the Needle Plate to get straight lines

 

Winding Bobbins

At some point in my sewing marathon, my bobbin ran out. Now I did manage to sew for a long time with the 30% extra large bobbin, but eventually it needed to be refilled.

I was sewing with a spool of thread and the first thread I grabbed for the bobbin was a cone. Normally this is a problem because of the space available for cones on the top of the sewing machine. Not so with the Designer EPIC. I didn’t have to move or unthread the upper thread, I simply stuck the cone on the auxiliary spool holder and wound the bobbin. The thread paths are completely separate so no danger of the threads getting tangled.

Oh yes – I love this small detail!

 

Easy to wind a bobbin using a cone of thread
Easy to wind a bobbin using a cone of thread

 

Stippling stitch

I’m mentioning this stitch only because a lot of people are always intrigued by what stippling is. As you can see from the photo below, stippling is a meandering stitch. Due to the nature of the sewing machine, this meandering does go in a relatively straight line. But notice that the JoyOS Advisor shows that you must put the Side-Motion Foot S on the machine. This is a very large foot and is necessary for these wide stitches. You can see that it is 29.6mm wide. Now that’s a wide stitch!

And did you notice that little black dot at the beginning of the line of stitching? That’s the start of the stitch sequence! I love how every little detail of the stitches are very clearly outlined on the screen!

 

Details of the Stippling Stitch
Details of the Stippling Stitch

 

Notice below the selection area, that you are provided with the name of the stitch and to use the S foot. There’s absolutely no guess work with the Designer EPIC. And did you see those laundry symbols that you can use to make your own labels?

 

Description of the chosen stitch (stippling stitch)
Description of the chosen stitch (stippling stitch)

 

Decorative Stitching

Next up, I wanted to try some decorative stitching. Oh my! I scrolled through the menus and then I scrolled through them again. I wanted to try them all! However, it didn’t take long to find one that would fit nicely on the fabric that I was using for my bag.

 

Open Scroll Stitch
Open Scroll Stitch

 

I love how all the stitches have a name and the Designer EPIC also provides some suggestions where to use that stitch.

Make sure when you’re stitching decorative stitches that you use a stabilizer underneath your fabric. These decorative stitches are too wide to be used on a single layer of fabric. You wouldn’t be happy with the results if you forget the stabilizer.

 

Stitch out of the Open Scroll Stitch
Stitch out of the Open Scroll Stitch

 

In case you’re wondering just how big that S foot is, the photo below compares the Side Motion Foot S foot with the Quilter’s ¼ʺ Piecing Foot P. Yes – there’s a significant different in size! And if the Designer EPIC tells you to use a specific foot, you need to follow those instructions.

 

Side-Motion Foot S and the Quilter's ¼ʺ Piecing Foot P - HV Designer EPIC
Side-Motion Foot S and the Quilter’s ¼ʺ Piecing Foot P – HV Designer EPIC

 

I wanted to try another decorative stitch. Back to the menus to peruse them again and this time, I chose the Whiskers stitch. How neat is that name! Like I said, I love that all the stitches are named. That’s way more fun than saying “I used E57” I would never remember E57, but I’d remember Whiskers!

 

Whiskers Stitch
Whiskers Stitch

 

I had a piece of crazy quilting that I wanted to try that stitch out on. I snapped on the S foot as instructed. This foot takes a bit of practice to get used to. The fabric moves significantly from side to side (that’s how you can get a wide stitch like the stippling stitch). So if you’re looking for a precise line of stitching, you might want to try something a bit narrower.

I didn’t care as I was experimenting and I think you would become very proficient at keeping the work on a center line if you spent a bit more time at it.

 

Using the S Foot to stitch out the Whiskers stitch
Using the S Foot to stitch out the Whiskers stitch

 

Whoa – this next picture is quite detailed! And I see that I have a tendency to use very matching thread. I really tried not to do that, but I did. Old habits die hard. But you can see that I did a pretty good job at keeping that stitch centered on that seam line.

This is just a very good example of why it’s important to do a stitch out before you start your project and to read the advice given by the sewing machine. While the Whiskers stitch is a beautiful decorative stitch, it gets lost for one main reason: my thread choice wasn’t good. You see how the stitch bleeds into the left side but is visible on the right. Now you may want this, but it would have looked much better with a different color thread.

But this is a very good lesson for all of us. Don’t you just love the learning process? I can’t get enough of it!

 

I’m going to close this post with that valuable lesson: there are times when it’s perfectly fine to have matching thread, but in this case, the results could have been better!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this week as we explored the Husqvarna Viking Designer EPIC sewing and embroidery machine. There’s so much more that we could explore, but that will have to wait until next time.

I’m off with visions of sewing and embroidery dancing in my head. What to sew next? What kinds of things can I find around the house to embroider? You’ll have to wait until next time to see what happens. Have a great day! Ciao!

 

This is part 5 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 4:  Wifi capabilities of the Designer EPIC

Elaine Theriault is a teacher, writer and pattern designer who is completely obsessed with quilting. Elaine’s Tech Tips column (originally published in A Needle Pulling Thread magazine) is now available online in e-book format at QUILTsocial.com. When not quilting, she enjoys spending time with her two dogs, Lexi and Murphy, or can be found cycling across the country. Her blog is crazyquilteronabike.blogspot.com.

1 Comment

  1. Rebecca Woodbury

    I need to know how to end a decorative stitich pattern… I have 2 hearts, a name and 2 hearts… and I want to end it there but it repeats.

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