The JoyOS Advisor makes choosing decorative stitches a snap!

I’m back, and it’s time to do something with that endless embroidery design we worked on yesterday. I’ll be using the Husqvarna Viking Designer Ruby 90 to finish prepping the rest of the pieces for the tote bag.

Husqvarna Viking Designer Ruby 90

When I positioned the endless design on the tote bag band, I knew there would be room to do some topstitching, and I chose to do that after the embroidery process. I selected a stitch length of 2.5 and used the same decorative thread as for the embroidery. I didn’t get too scientific about spacing; I ran the B Foot down the center of the space, which worked like a charm.

Topstitching the tote bag band

I then cut the two outer pieces using the large square ruler. When I chose the non-fusible fleece, I knew there would be an issue with the edges. See how the edges of the outer bag are wavy? This will act as two separate pieces during the stitching process, and could cause potential tucks along the top edge, which I don’t want.

The edges of the non-fusible fleece are not attached to the fabric, causing waves

I went to the built-in JoyOS Advisor for advice on what stitch to use to finish the edges and which settings I needed to use. Wait a minute – this is all in French? How did that happen?

The JoyOS Advisor in French!

If you didn’t know, it’s super easy to switch languages on the Designer Ruby 90. Go to Machine Settings in the Settings menu and choose from a wide number of languages. I’ve been doing some work in French, so my machine gets switched between English and French regularly. It’s a great way to learn terms in another language.

Okay, here we are at the JoyOS Advisor (in English) with the mySewnet Blog in the top section of the capacitive touch screen.

The JoyOS Advisor (in English) with the mySewnet Blog at the top of the screen

It’s easy enough to close the mySewnet Blog if you don’t need it on the screen.

The JoyOS Advisor without the mySewnet Blog on the screen

I chose the Overcast Technique from the Basic Sewing Techniques. The appropriate stitch opened automatically, ready to start stitching, and the selected presser foot and a tutorial are displayed on the screen. How cool is that?! So, if there’s a technique you’re not familiar with, the JoyOS Advisor will give you all that information. I love it!

A stitch appropriate for overcast automatically selected through the JoyOS Advisor, as well as a tutorial

Let’s see how that stitches out. The small pin on the side of the Edging Foot J prevents overcast stitches of 5.0 or 5.5 mm wide from puckering along the edge of the fabric. It’s easy to line up the edge of the tote bag with the pin and start stitching. How simple is that? You can’t see the pin in this picture, but it’s right bedside the needle. I also use my Quilter’s Awl to keep the fabric from shifting around as I’m sewing. The intend of the overcasting is to have both edges work as one!

The Edging Foot J is used to overcast the edges of the tote bag sections

Here’s the overcast edge. That was so easy to do, and I didn’t have to remember which presser foot to use, or which stitch would be the best. The Designer Ruby 90 helped me out.

The overcast edge of the tote bag

I found a photo with the little pin on the Edging Foot J. Why is that pin so important? It helps form the stitch and prevents the edges of the fabric from puckering or rolling, especially with the wider stitches. It’s a great little presser foot, especially for overcasting.

The Edging Foot J

Now that the pieces are all prepped, let’s move on to making the pockets. You can follow along with the Quilted tote bag tutorial, and I’ll provide you with some additional tips that make quick work of this part.

I sewed the pockets together with a ¼” seam allowance, and it was a dream when I went to turn them inside out. The fusible interfacing was completely attached to the pockets, so none of it pulled away. That Singer 20 Garment Steam Press is a keeper.

Once the pocket is right side out, I fold in the edges of the opening and use a ¼” wide fusible product to close that seam. It’s slick and fast!

Using a ¼” fusible product to close the opening in a pocket

It’s time to stitch the pockets to the lining. I use fusible interfacing on the lining, which gives it body, especially if you are going to stitch pockets to it. If the lining is limp, the pockets will sag, and the inside won’t be pretty.

I use my long ruler to help position the pockets and get them centered. Super easy. Then I stick a couple of pins in place, and off we go to stitch them in place.

Using a long ruler to position the pockets on the lining

I love having all that extra space on the Designer Ruby 90. The lining pieces are large and stiff, but with more than 12″ inches of sewing space from the needle to the tower, it’s easy to rotate and sew around the pockets.

A large work area allows ease of use with large stiff projects

I’m using the B Foot (you could use the A Foot as well) to stitch around the pockets. Using the Exclusive Sensor System with the Needle Stop Up/Down makes it a dream to pivot on the corners. There’s no need to touch the presser foot lever – well, there isn’t one to touch! It’s such a brilliant feature, and I’m so used to it now that if ever I use a machine with a presser foot lever, I’m all thumbs. The best advantage is that I don’t have to remove my hands from the project. It’s hands-free!

Pivoting on the corners is HANDS-Free with the amazing features on the Designer Ruby 90

Be sure to reinforce the top of the pockets. There are two ways – you can make an elongated triangle as you see here. I’m showing you the back, since the thread exactly matches the pocket, and you can’t see the stitching on the front.

An elongated triangle used to reinforce the top of a tote bag pocket

The other option is to use two lines of stitching around the entire pocket (leaving the top open, of course) and squaring off the top corners. The key to reinforcing the top is to have a horizontal line to prevent the pocket from tearing away, which will happen more readily if there’s only a single stitch at the top.

Another option is to stitch the pockets in place and reinforce the top

Now let’s work on the handles. I started by winding a bobbin in the same decorative thread I’m using on the top, as the thread will be visible on both sides. It’s a 40-weight thread commonly used for machine embroidery and works like a charm for decorative stitching.

A bobbin with the same thread as for the topstitching

Now I need to topstitch along both sides of the handle, which will secure the seam along one side, and of course, I must stitch the other side to match. I’m using a longer stitch as I’m going through three and four layers of heavy interfacing and two layers of fabric. The Designer Ruby 90 had zero issues with those thicknesses, and the quality of the stitch on the front and the back are impeccable.

Topstitching the edge of the tote bag handle

Depending on what you are stitching, you can use the Stitch Positioning feature to move the needle left or right to use the edge of the foot as a guide to assist with even stitching along the edge. You can see above that the edge of the handle is along the red line on the foot. It’s super easy to use Stitch Positioning to keep things consistent.

Using the Stitch Positioning to move the needle to the right

Here are the beautifully formed stitches along both sides of the handle.

Beautifully formed stitches along the edge of the tote bag handle

How about the back of the handle? It’s equally beautiful, and look how well-formed those stitches are, and no skipped stitches. You have to love the piercing power of the Designer Ruby 90 to make that happen.

The stitching on the back of the tote bag handles

I like to add some stitching to the center of the handle, and it depends on the day as to which stitches I choose. I wanted to try some of the Omnimotion stitches that you’ll find in the K menu. These sideways stitches are much wider than the standard width of 7mm.

I chose a stitch that has a width of 32mm. Hmm – will this width fit into my space and still have a bit of room on the edges? I used the little measuring guide along the base of the Designer Ruby 90 to check the width of my handle with the width of the stitch. This little guide is for selecting buttonhole sizes, but it worked perfectly for this instance.

Using a guide on the base of the sewing machine to measure the width for the decorative stitching

Even though the width seemed okay, it’s always a good idea to test to check tension, etc. While it’s best to use the same layers of interfacing/stabilizer/fabrics – sometimes it’s not possible. But try to duplicate the layers as best you can, or the results may not be exactly like your sample.

Stitching a sample of the Omnimotion Stitch

Let’s have a quick peek at the functions on the Function Panel. There are two Function Panels just above the needle on the front of the Designer Ruby 90.

If you’ve been playing with the stitch widths and doing sample stitch-outs, you should use the Stitch Restart button to make sure you’re starting at the beginning of the stitch sequence. I like to use the large Start/Stop button when stitching decorative stitches. However, stitching at top speed doesn’t give me the control I need. There are five different speed settings, and I like to use the middle one. I find it allows me to get the work done quickly and still maintain control.

The Function Panel on the left

If we look at the other side of the Function Panel, there’s the Stop feature (super for ending a stitch sequence), the scissors, the Fix (great for anchoring seams), and the Presser Foot Up and Down. All the functions are super handy – right at your fingertips. Don’t forget that it’s possible to program some of these functions into the Multi-Function Foot Control to make it even easier to access them.

The right side of the Function Panel

After the test and tapping Stitch Restart to reset the stitch sequence to the beginning, I marked a chalk line down the center of the handle, and off I went. Oh my gosh – this is so easy to do. You must focus, as the fabric moves to the left and right as this is an Omnimotion (or sideways) stitch. But that was okay.

The Omnimotion stitch on the tote bag handle

When the stitching was complete, I cut the handle into two equal pieces, each about 21″ in length. I didn’t include a photo of the underside but trust me, it’s just as beautiful as the top. You have to love the power of the Designer Ruby 90 to be able to go through many layers of thick interfacing, plus two layers of fabric, and not skip a single stitch, and all stitches are beautiful.

The decorative stitching on the tote bag handle

Gosh – I was hoping to get the tote bag together, but I had a lot of super features to share with you using the Husqvarna Viking Designer Ruby 90. I’ll piece the bag tonight – it’s all super easy piecing now, and you can see it tomorrow.

I have another adventure to share with you tomorrow. Be sure to come back for that!

Have a super day!!!

Ciao!!!

This is part 3 of 5 in this series

Go back to part 2: 8 clever tips for stitching an endless embroidery design

Go to part 4: Experimenting with machine embroidery on a macrame cord table mat

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