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The reason for using metal hoops with your machine embroidery

by Elaine Theriault

Wasn’t yesterday’s ribbon embroidery exciting? I’ve got so many ideas for projects I can embellish using that new technique.

Today, I’ll be pulling an embroidery design from another source, while I use a metal hoop with the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 to get creative!

Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 with the embroidery unit attached

Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 with the embroidery unit attached

There are three different metal hoops – a large one at 240 x 150 mm, a medium one at 180 x 130 mm, and a small one at 100x 100mm. You’ll find the perfect hoop size for your project with these three options.

The packaging for the three Husqvarna Viking metal hoops

The packaging for the three Husqvarna Viking metal hoops

The metal hoops come with four powerful magnets. You’ll notice there is only one part to the metal hoop, rather than two, as you’ll find on the traditional embroidery hoops.

The Husqvarna Viking 100 x 100 metal hoop with four magnets.

The Husqvarna Viking 100 x 100 metal hoop with four magnets.

You can also purchase accessories for the metal hoops, including extra magnet sets. Do not use more than eight magnets at any given time. The magnets add weight to the hoop and can cause premature wear and tear to your embroidery arm if you use more than the recommended number of eight.

An extra set of four magnets for the Husqvarna Viking metal hoops.

An extra set of four magnets for the Husqvarna Viking metal hoops.

You can purchase the Hat Hoop Accessory, which helps position a ball cap onto the metal hoop, at your local dealer.

Using the Hat Hoop Accessory with the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop

Using the Hat Hoop Accessory with the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop

There’s also the Metal Hoop Fabric Guide set that prevents garments from falling into the embroidery area when stitching out your embroidery.

Using the Husqvarna Viking Metal Hoop Fabric Guide with the metal hoop to position a garment for embroidery.

Using the Husqvarna Viking Metal Hoop Fabric Guide with the metal hoop to position a garment for embroidery.

See how versatile these metal embroidery hoops are? There are plenty of ways to creatively hoop your project.

A handy supply to have on hand when using a metal hoop is a sticky stabilizer. One side of this stabilizer is sticky. I’m using the Inspira brand called Light & Tacky Tear Away Stabilizer.

Inspira Light & Tacky Tear Away Stabilizer

Inspira Light & Tacky Tear Away Stabilizer

You attach a piece of the sticky stabilizer to the bottom of your metal hoop, with the sticky side facing up through the hoop. Then it’s easy to lay out your garment, or whatever project you’re working on, and have it stick to the stabilizer. When finished you simply tear the stabilizer away.

Inspira Light & Tacky Tear Away stabilizer attached to the Husqvarna Viking 100 x 100 metal hoop

Inspira Light & Tacky Tear Away stabilizer attached to the Husqvarna Viking 100 x 100 metal hoop

Here’s an example of a collar that I have placed onto the sticky stabilizer. I’ve added the four magnets for extra stability. I’ll use the Design Positioning function in Embroidery Stitch Out to position the design in the correct location.

A shirt collar is placed on the sticky stabilizer in the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop.

A shirt collar is placed on the sticky stabilizer in the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop.

In the next image, the cap of a long-sleeved shirt is placed on the sticky stabilizer attached to the metal hoop. That sticky stabilizer and the magnets will hold the garment in place during the embroidery stitch out.

Four magnets and the sticky stabilizer secure the garment in the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop.

Four magnets and the sticky stabilizer secure the garment in the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop.

Now that we have our hoops and stabilizers sorted out, what are we going to embroider today, and where shall we find the design?

There are over 750 embroidery designs in the DESIGNER EPIC 2. They are all shown in the Sampler Book, making it easy to browse. The designs encompass numerous embroidery techniques. Grab a cup of tea one day and browse the Sampler Book to find something creative to stitch. Keep in mind that many of the designs can be easily combined to create larger designs.

The Sampler Book for the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

The Sampler Book for the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

Since it’s getting close to Halloween, I wanted to use this spider web design. Notice the Sampler Book provides a lot of information, including the number of the file. When I want to load the design in the Embroidery Edit of the DESIGNER EPIC 2, I’ll open the Design Menu and choose the Submenu H. The number of stitches, the height and width are indicated, and the embroidery technique is Thread Velvet. A clear picture of the embroidery stitched out is included, along with the color changes.

The details of the embroidery file in the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 Sampler Book.

The details of the embroidery file in the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 Sampler Book.

It’s easy to locate that embroidery file in the DESIGNER EPIC 2 Design Menu. Once the Design Menu was open, I chose the Submenu H and went to Design 34. There’s my spider web. That was easy! I select and hold to load the file into the Embroidery Edit screen.

Selecting the spider web design from the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 Design Menu

Selecting the spider web design from the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 Design Menu

I wanted to make a coaster for my water glass, and I found a piece of heavy red felt that would make a perfect base for the coaster. I cut a strip to fit the small metal hoop and placed it over the sticky stabilizer. I further secured the felt with the four magnets.

A heavy red felt has been secured in the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop with a sticky stabilizer and four magnets.

A heavy red felt has been secured in the Husqvarna Viking metal hoop with a sticky stabilizer and four magnets.

It’s time to start the embroidery process. I left the Automatic Thread Cutter and Automatic Jump Stitch Trim function on, and verified the remainder of parameters to ensure everything was correct.

The Embroidery Stitch Out settings screen on the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

The Embroidery Stitch Out settings screen on the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

Even though I’m not changing anything in this design, I’m changing the colors. The first color I’m using is a silver metallic for the spider web. Yes, you can embroider with metallic thread. It’s easy, but you must slow down. I dropped the speed control to the second-lowest setting. I didn’t have a single issue with the thread breaking or shredding, even when stitching through that heavy felt and the sticky stabilizer.

The pop-up window for the speed control on the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2.

The pop-up window for the speed control on the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2.

I’m starting the stitch out process, and that silver metallic thread is already looking fantastic against the heavy red felt.

Stitching out the spider web on heavy red felt using the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

Stitching out the spider web on heavy red felt using the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

Here’s something to note… It’s great to have the Color Block List on the screen to show me which color comes next; however, you’ll see it’s blocking part of the design. Remember that I’m changing the colors, so I need to see the design to help choose the appropriate colors. Did you notice the colors in the Color Block List match the colors on the screen, so it’s easy to see which colors go where making it easy to change the thread colors?

The Color Block List is blocking part of the embroidery design

The Color Block List is blocking part of the embroidery design

It’s easy to turn the Color Block List off to see the embroidery design. Once I know the placement of the next color, I can turn the Color Block List back on.

The Color Block List window is closed on the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 stitch out screen

The Color Block List window is closed on the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 stitch out screen

What I love about all the Wi-Fi connectivity with the DESIGNER EPIC 2 is that I get notifications telling me that the thread color needs to be changed. Even when I’m listening to an audiobook, which I often do when doing machine embroidery, I’ll hear the notification come in through my headphones, so I know that I need to check the embroidery machine. How cool is that???

A notification to change the thread from mySewMonitor connected through the Husqvarna Viking mySewnet

A notification to change the thread from mySewMonitor connected through the Husqvarna Viking mySewnet

Here’s the finished design, and it looks amazing on the thick red felt. Orange felt would have been more appropriate, but red will have to do! That silver metallic thread shows up brilliantly on the red.

The spider web embroidery design has been stitched stitched out on heavy red felt.

The spider web embroidery design has been stitched stitched out on heavy red felt.

This design is a Thread Velvet design, and while it’s hard to see, there’s purple beneath the black on the body of the spider (next time, I’ll choose a more vibrant thread color). Once the embroidery was finished, I carefully took my rotary cutter and sliced open the black stitches to reveal the purple thread beneath.

Close up of the Thread Velvet technique on the spider embroidery design.

Close up of the Thread Velvet technique on the spider embroidery design.

I’ve cut a 4″ square around the embroidery design, which is the perfect size for my coaster. The heavy felt will soak up any excess water on my glass, and I won’t have water stains on the table. What a cute little project, and it took no time at all to stitch out that design. I didn’t do this, but you may want to fuse a piece of Halloween fabric (slightly smaller than 4″) to the back of the felt, to cover up the underside.

The finished Halloween coaster, using the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

The finished Halloween coaster, using the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2

Oh my, that was so much fun! And using the metal hoops, the sticky stabilizer, and the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 made it so easy. Now, I have a lot of that heavy felt. I wonder what else I can stitch? The flexibility of the tools makes me want to embroider all day long – I need more hours in my day!

Be sure to come back tomorrow, as I’ll take one more embroidery hoop for a spin and show you a new source for embroidery designs. It’ll to be another jam-packed blog post!

Have a great day!!

Ciao!!!

This is part 4 of 5 in this series

Go back to part 3: Getting creative with the ribbon embroidery attachment: EPIC 2

Go to part 5: How to create embroidery designs using Premier+ 2 software

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