All Stitched up – A Machine Stitching on Paper Tutorial

Many of you who know my designs, know how much I love sewing on paper. At least 50% of my designs have some stitching on them…it is  something I love to do and seems to go well with my style of creations.  When I was asked to do a little sewing machine stitching on cards tutorial, I must admit it that it had never occurred to me before. It is just something I do and don’t think about. For some of you, this may be pretty basic, for some of you…a new technique to try. I do hope it will inspire you to add a little more machine stitching to your papercrafting!

This tutorial was requested by Amy Westerman who attempted machine stitching for the first time yesterday. Every Tuesday Amy tries out something new on her blog and she always has a hit! Sunday’s Amy also does a FABULOUS sketch challenge.  Check out her great first attempt at Heartfelt Greetings!

I’ve included cards throughout this tutorial from past uploads to my blog. If you would like more info on any of these designs, simply click on the design title and it will take you to the original entry on my blog. To see any of the designs close-up, just click on the picture. If you’d like to comment on this tutorial…I’d LOVE to hear from you. The comment button is WAY down at the bottom of this tutorial!:)

Hula Celebrate

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Your Sewing Machine

The first thing to address is your sewing machine. I own an electronic Brother sewing machine with lots of fun goodies and stitches on it but don’t worry…a regular sewing machine will work just as well! I have mine from days when I was obsessed with sewing and smocking. I’ve always had to be  making something and once I discovered papercrafting…well….. Also my daughter sadly outgrew home-made smocked dresses. I’ll have to share a photo of her sometime…she looked adorable! I digress…. I hope this intro doesn’t discourage you! Sewing on paper is something anyone can do…you just need a little practice  and patience and soon you’ll be stitching everything! Any regular sewing machine should work…nothing fancy is needed. With the price of sewing machines having dropped so much in the past few years, a sewing machine is a great investment for your papercrafting projects, as well as any fabric alterations and repairs you may need to make. I will caution you… a few craft companies have in recent years come out with small inexpensive “craft” sewing machines. While I have never tried one…I have never heard anything good from anyone who owns one. If you are reading this and HAVE had great success….please comment on this tutorial…I’d be most interested to hear about it and also which company produces it. That way I can pass the information along!

Sewing Quick Tip: Make sure you keep your sewing machine clean, lint free and oiled to get many years from it. Read your machine directions and make sure you thread the machine correctly and with the presser foot in the raised position. If you are having trouble with your machine, it may be time for a tune-up. Your sewing machine distributor will be able to help you with that.

Tension

I believe on of the biggest problems people have with their sewing on paper is machine tension. If you have an electronic machine, usually this is not an issue, the machine senses the correct tension making your life so much easier…just stitch and go. No matter what kind of sewing machine you have, make sure you test your tension on some scrap cardstock. It is a good idea to use the same weight and layers of cardstock as you will be using on your project. My advice is to NOT try to stitch more than three layers of cardstock at once…it will more than likely bog down your machine and break your needle.

If you are using a regular sewing machine, you will need to adjust the tension before sewing. First sew a sample line on your scrap cardstock.

 If your tension is too tight, you will see loops of the bobbin thread coming up through the holes. You do not want this as it looks bad, may cause your thread to break and may also pucker the paper. Turn your tension dial to a lower number and try again.

 If your thread tension is too loose, you will see loose threads on the reverse side of your cardstock. This will cause problems of loose thread on surface, bunched up and snarled threads on the bottom and can even seize up your machine with a huge snarl. To correct this problem, increase the tension on your dial.

Perfect stitching will have both the top and bottom threads evenly distributed and no loose or tight threads.

Sewing quick tip: Make sure you use the same weight thread in both your bobbin and your spool.

Adhesive and stitching

One of the things I really like about sewing on paper is the great “hold it all together” properties it has. LOL Very technical term, I know! The great thing about stitching is it does not come undone if you do not get enough adhesive on. Let’s face it…we’ve all had cards fall apart and it is NOT fun! Actually with machine stitching, less is more when it comes to adhesive. You do want to add a little to prevent your layers from slipping or buckling, but too much adhesive can gum up the needle and make your life difficult. I just add a few tiny spots of Mono adhesive to the back of your paper and that works great for me. One time I actually ran out of adhesive and finished putting the project together with the sewing machine!

Sewing Quick Tip: For thread colors, there are so many out there I’m sure you could match up any ink color there is. I mainly just bother with two colors for all my designs…white and a dark brown…they seem to go with everything! I buy Gutterman’s thread. This is a high quality thread that will resist breaking. I seem to have sewn forever on one large spool of the white, even the higher quality thread is so economical when you consider the amount of projects you will be able to make with it!

Freestyle Stitching

Freestyle Stitching if the easiest way to go if you are a beginner. I noticed free-style stitching first just over a year ago in some scrapbooking magazines and it is becoming seen more & more often lately. Free-style stitching is purposely wavy and adds a fun, carefree or shabby look to your design. Because you are purposely stitching in a non-linear way, anything goes! How easy and cool is that? Try it out! It’s super fun! Just stitch in slightly wavy lines around your design. Make two or three passes to highlight the look so it looks like it was on purpose.

Dutch Girl Petals

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Sewing Quick Tip: Start stitching in a spot that may be less noticeable or covered with ribbon once your project is completed. This helps hide the start and finish point that may be less than perfect.

From Start to Finish

Simply start sewing by lowering your presser foot and start sewing. If your start point is in an inconspicuous area, you may want to reverse a couple stitches to lock the stitch…if not don’t worry about it. Stitching will rarely pull out of cardstock unless it is in a detail that gets a lot of movement or pulling. When you are finished stitching…use a needle or pin or other small tool to pull the loose surface threads to the reverse of the design. If you wish, knot the threads on the back and then trim closely.

Sewing Quick Tip: Make sure you always check to see how much thread you have in the bobbin before starting. I know from experience how frustrating it can be to run out. You don’t notice for quite a few stitches and by then you have a lot of holes in the paper but no thread. It can be quite difficult to try and sew the second time into those already created holes the second time to fix it!

Zig Zag corners

I love using a zig zag stitch for extra interest. Some people find the corners a little difficult but once you know what to do, it is easy to keep them looking nice. Start by zig zagging along the edge you want to sew. I find if you keep the edge right in the center of the presser foot it makes it nice and even. When you get to the end of the layer and need to turn it, make sure that you go a stitch or two over the corner and stop with the needle on the outside edge of the corner. Leave needle down in the paper, life presser foot and pivot 90°, lower presser foot and continue along the next edge. This should give you a nice, neat, square corner.

I’ll be adding in some pics here later…as soon as I can!

Sewing Quick Tip: For straight stitching, use the side of the presser foot lined up with the edge of the paper layer to keep your stitching straight. Many machines also have increments marked on the base of the machine that you can use as guides as well. Some machines also have a needle adjustment so that you can adjust the alignment (left or right) of where the needle stitches helping with this.

Mix it Up!

I love the look you get when you use different kinds of stitching on the same design. Dont’t be afraid to experiment! Straight stitch and zig-zag are the most commonly used stitches when sewing. These two stitches can look great together in different areas of your card for interest. Try out other unique stitches on your sewing machine on some scrap cardstock as well. There are some really exciting stitches on some machines. Just remember, some of the most detailed ones may not be the best for papercrafting as they are designed for use on fabric. I’ve found that the really close together or intricate stitches may put too many holes in the paper and cause it to break off. Be safe and try it out first! Above all…have fun!

Spring Bunches Thank You
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Stitching on paper for 3D objects…

If you want to add stitching to 3D objects such as a journal, frame, etc. you must plan ahead and stitch (obviously :) ) before you adhere the paper to the object. This takes a little extra planning ahead of time. When you get everything laid out and stitched together, then adhere it to your project. One thing to be careful of is too much glue. If you use too much, it will ooze up through the tiny stitching holes in the paper.

Aqua Address Book 

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Sewing Quick Tip: Make sure that you change your needle regularly. Sewing on paper will dull your needle more quickly than sewing on fabric. Never sew on fabric with a needle that has been used for papercrafts.

A Fabulous Finish

One of the questions I’ve been asked is do you sew right through your card or sew on it first and then adhere your layers. I like to add the stitching last for a few reasons….one – I rarely plan my cards before I start, I just go with the flow. That means I usually add my stitching as one of the last element to be added to the design. I just add it where is feels right. The second reason is that it really helps hold the card together so nicely. You can stitch your layers and then adhere them to the card front and you would want to do that in the above mentioned scenarios….too many layers to stitch or if you have a 3D object. If you do this, you will need a stronger adhesive as it is harder to adhere layers with the bulk and texture of machine stitching. I would recommend a LOT of mono adhesive or even Sticky strip for this.

Because I usually just stitch through all layers…this leaves a lot of stitching on the inside of your card. Some people don’t care as they feel this adds to the home-made look of your card. For others, this is quite a problem and one your run into when using brads as well. If you are one of these crafters the best idea I have it to line the inside of your card for a more professional look. Just trim a piece of cardstock about 1/4 or 1/2 smaller than the card size and adhere to the inside of your card.

Sewing Quick Tip: Sew slowly and you will get better results. Many sewing machines now have a function or dial that you can turn down the speed of your stitching and this is especially great for beginners.

Final ThoughtsIf You Liked this Tutorial…

Whew! I guess there was a lot more to say about machine stitching on paper than I thought! Either that or I am just supremely long-winded!;) It may not look like it, but this tutorial took 4 hours to put together so I really hope you enjoy it. If you did enjoy it, show me a little love and let me know by commenting or by linking this article in your blog! I’d love to hear from you! This tutorial is for personal use only. Thanks!

Great ideas to use your stitching for..

  • edges
  • borders
  • adhering ribbon
  • visual interest
  • texture
  • attaching transparencies or vellum
  • making pockets

Up in the Air

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221 Responses to All Stitched up – A Machine Stitching on Paper Tutorial

  1. That was a great tutorial. I have a sewing machine but haven’t gotten it out in a loooong time. I have wanted to use it for paper crafting but just haven’t had the space to set it up. I really need to. Have a wonderful day! I love your blog!

  2. Julia – that was excellent. I have recently done some sewing on cards and you gave me some good tips that I hadn’t thought about! Thanks so much for sharing all that information! Your cards are so great!!

    Beth (mommy to a busy 3 1/2 year old)

  3. Thanks for the time it took to write up this tutorial. For anyone new to sewing it will very helpful.
    I haven’t done any sewing for a long time, but I have so enjoyed your cards on SCS (I’m new to SCS and to card making) and your creations have got me thinking I’d like to try sewing on my cards.

  4. Wow…when you said you were working on a tutorial yesterday, I didn’t think it was a tome! This is great! I love your last card…I have had it in my favs forever but I don’t own a sewing machine!

  5. Great pointers & information, Julia — wonderful tutorial!

  6. great job Julia! Thanks so much for doing it. It’s wonderful!!!

    Amy

  7. WOW J! Quite the tutorial!!! Fabulous job!! :D

  8. What a wonderful tutorial, Julia! I’ve been needing to get my machine out for some non-paper projects. Maybe I should let it be out on a more permanent basis.

  9. Karen in Fergus

    Fabulous tutorial, Julia! I’ve been hesitant to machine stitch on my cards or scrapbook layouts, but you have convinced me to give it a try. Thanks so much!!

  10. Awesome tutorial! I might just have to dust off the sewing machine and try some of your ideas. Thanks for sharing and committing so much of your time to writing this tutorial!

  11. Fantastic tutorial! And I love the red, white and blue card!

  12. I think you were exactly right about tension being a big frustration in getting started on a project. Love that you had pointers on knowing if it was too tight or too loose. I had a lot of trouble with that when I got back into sewing a couple years ago and was unfamiliar with my machine. I haven’t sewn on cards (other than faux), but I may have to visit my machine in the basement with a project soon. Thanks for taking the time to work this up!

  13. OMGosh those projects are gorgeous! I was drooling through the tutorial…I don’t own a sewing machine *lol* better go and buy one now *wink*
    TFS.
    Alli

  14. Thanks for this wonderful tutorial! I’ve sewn on fabric for years…but this is helpful for paper! Looking forward to playing some!

  15. Fabulous tutorial Julia! So much information and something that I’ve really gotten into lately. To me it’s much faster to run to the sewing machine (which stays set up now on my bar) instead of faux stitching!

  16. Thanks, Julia !!
    This was great. I just got my Mom’s Bernina and can’t wait to stitch up a card. I had tried it on my old machine and realized why that thing was only drug out when absolutely necessary. Looking forward to taking up your technique.
    Thanks again for all you share. You are a great inspiration!

  17. Thanks for this great tutorial! This must have took some time. I love your blog and your tutorials. Thanks again, for all the time you put into this blog and all the inspiration we get from it.

  18. Great info! I have been ‘planning’ to use my machine for my cards but this has inspired me to actually do it! Thanks for the time and effort!

  19. WOW! You did put a lot of work and thought into this tutorial. I have not tried sewing on my cards, and don’t know if I ever will. I am at odds with my sewing machine. We don’t seem to be able to work together well. But I really enjoy seeing the cards that have sewing included. It gives them the extra touch. You KNOW that there was it is a special card, because you have put a lot of attention and detail into it. So, I just want to say THANK YOU for sharing such a detailed tutorial with us, so that we can learn how to use it in our papercrafting. It might be the push that I need to get to know my machine better.

  20. This is GREAT info! Thanks so much for investing so much in your fans. We all appreciate it. I’ve done a little sewing on my cards, but am definitely going to try more. Thanks again for this awesome tutorial!

  21. Hey great tutorial. It is time consuming I am sure. The info was great even to a seasoned seamstress. I like the ideas you gave to mix up the stitches. Variety is the spice of life.

  22. I just have to thank you for the awesome sewing tutorial. I know you spent a lot of time on it and it shows! Excellent details.

  23. Wow, thank you so much….I had to print it because no way I would remember all of this. Thanks so much for taking the time to do this.

  24. Cindy Haffner

    Great job, lots of work,I just love your stiching.

  25. great work, J!! Its a wonderful tutorial!!

  26. What a great tutorial! Gosh, that was a lot of work, wasn’t it? Thanks for your extra effort. Makes me wanna go get out my sewing machine!

  27. Thank you so much for this information. I love the look of stitching on paper, but have not tried it yet. With your helpful pointers, I’m sure I will make fewer mistakes when I do try it.

  28. It’s a *wonderful* tutorial, Julia, and I will link to it tonight or tomorrow–as soon as I have time to sew something, which you have definitely inspired me to do!

    Debbie Olson

  29. WOW! Thanks soooo… much for your time and tips. I’m going to print this tutorial, and keep it next to my machine.
    Thanks again Julia!
    Kelly

  30. Wow! What a great tutorial! It makes me want to dust off my sewing machine and fire it up. I have sewn on cards and scrapbook pages and really like the look of it. It just adds such a special touch. Your tutorial might just inspire me to do it more often. Thanks for taking the time!

  31. Excellent!

  32. Wonderful tutorial. I am actually looking to buy a sewing machine for both my card making and also clothing. I am a beginner. Can you recommend a good one? Which Brother do you use, and do you like it? Thanks! Suzy

  33. melody aka lacyquilter

    Great tutorial, Julia. And your card stitching is always fabulous!

  34. Great sewing tutorial. I really enjoyed and picked up some great tips. TFS

  35. WOW! What an in-depth tutorial on sewing! I’d try it out if I had a sewing machine :) I love all the projects you featured above- you do such amazing work!

  36. I have admired your paper stitching for quite some time now, so to have such detailed advice from you is very exciting. Your tutorial was great and it will be my motivation to try a little stitching on my own creations. Thank you!

  37. What a fabulous tutorial! Thanks so much! Now I need a new sewing machine! I got one of those little ones but even my mom can’t work it and she totally knows what she’s doing!
    ~Angie

  38. Thanks so much Julia for your great advice on this subject. I tried to sew on my card the other day and if just didn’t look quite right and I immediately thought of you and your gorgeous machine stitched cards. I thought to myself, “How does she do it!!!” and now I know. I really appreciate the time you put in on your blog to inform and share with the rest of us!! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!!!

  39. Dawn Burnworth

    Thank you so much for this tutorial. I have been sewing for over 25 years and I really need to branch out and put some stitches on a card. I was wondering what size needle is best or doesn’t it matter?
    Thanks for sharing.
    Dawn B.

  40. Wonderful! Someone directed me to your blog to get some help on sewing. This was excellent. I just received an email from someone who enjoys her craft sewing machine from Michael’s. Something to check out. Luckily, I have a sewing machine of mine own to dust off and start crafting with.
    Thanks for this tutorial!
    -Mary Lou

  41. Wow…what an amazing tutorial.
    One thing I like so much about your cards is…they are always so clean looking, not cluttered and haphazard. Thanks for sharing!!
    Desi

  42. Great tutorial! Thank you so much! Sewing on paper was throwing me for a loop!

  43. AMAZING tutorial. Thanks for sharing this. I got a sewing machine for Christmas and still have yet to figure out how to use it. Thank you so much for sharing this!!! Very Inspiring!

  44. great tutorial and love the different projects you shared – big fan of you work!! beautiful!!

  45. Cynthia (SCS Stampinak)

    I linked to your blog from Flaxychick out of curiosity. I don’t usually read blogs, but I’m glad I came over to yours. I have been sewing for more years than i want to admit (25+) and enjoyed the tips you’ve provided. Believe it or not, I learned to sew on paper! {My, how history repeats itself.} I love your technique and cards. Thanks for your time and willingness to share.

  46. Okay! I’m convinced – I’ll dig out my sewing maching and try it out. I loved this tutorial. Everything made perfect sense and it was REALLY easy to follow. I’ll link it on my blog. Thank you so much for sharing!!

  47. Karen (Karen Stamps! on SCS)

    Hi Julia,
    Well, I got out my sewing machine and here are the results:
    http://www.splitcoaststampers.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=521857&cat=500&ppuser=67264

    Thanks for the inspiration and the great tutorial! I especially liked your advice to sew in a somewhat crooked line and make a couple of passes. I found it oddly difficult to sew in a crooked line, despite my vast experience so doing….

  48. Michelle Pearson

    Soooo interesting….now if I only had a machine!
    Don’t suppose hubby would bite since it would only be for stamping?! ;)
    Thanks for sharing!!

  49. Julia,
    I truly was inspired by your tutorial. I got my machine out and gave it a try. I loved the results !

  50. I cannot thank you enough. I received a craft sewing machine from my sister-in-law a few years ago. Bless her heart she knew how much I love adding depth and personality to my work, honestly I agree with the nothing good to say. the first time I used it the stitches didn’t lock. there is no way to correct this seeing how there is no bobbin thread. the second time I tried to use it the needle broke, I have been unable to remove the remaining needle. the machine is jammed, and so it sits in the box on my shelf. (don’t want to dissapoint the sister-in-law by throwing it out) I do have a regualar machine but i had greatly struggled when trying to sew on my cards. your advice about starting/stopping and corners has given me a new confidence to try! thank you again~~

  51. Thank you so much for this tutorial. I linked to it through Debbie’s blog at Thinking Inking. I’ve wanted to sew on projects for awhile but I only have an old heavy, huge, Viking from 1968 that doesn’t work well which I store in my basement due to it’s massize size (in cabinet). I’ve debated on whether to have it tuned up and go downstairs to sew or just buy a small machine just for papercrafting. Still undecided, but after reading your tutorial I definitely want to start stitching on my cards and scrapbook layouts.
    You are sweet to take your time to share with us.

  52. Thanks for the great tutorial. I appreciate how hard it is to put down in writing something you do as casually as breathing. You have inspired me with your samples and easy to follow instructions to get out my sewing machine and give this a try. Thank you again for taking the time to do this for us.

  53. Linda (LSN on SCS)

    Awesome tutorial Julia! I just may be motivated to break out the ol sewing machine…just don’t tell my husband as he’ll be mad that I’m not mending his clothes vs sewing on a card.

    One small favor though….can you take pics of what both good tension and bad tension look like? I’m sure that as soon as I see them, I’ll smack my forward and say ‘she really described this perfectly’…I’m just such a visual person.

    TIA!

    Linda

  54. Great tutorial — thanks so much for taking all the time to do this!! Only comment I have is to add the recommended needle size for paper stitching. (Perhaps I missed it, but did not see this noted.) I am a quilter as well as scrapbooker; guess I need to start applying those stitches to my scrapbooking and cardmaking!

    Oh — and BECKY — you will just LOVE the Bernina. I have two (plus a Bernina serger) and they are truly wonderful machines.

    Okay…..back to the craft room I go to try a card…

  55. Thanks for the great information. I sew more on my scrapbook layouts than cards, especially for journaling pockets because they are stronger and there is no adhesive to get on the journaling insert. Your tutorial has inspired me to sew on my cards now, too. Your samples are beautiful!

  56. thanks Julia – for sharing and inspiring. I have sewn quite a bit on paper and have used a silk needle, so the holes aren’t so large. Silk needles are sharper too, can’t remember the brand but I think it is something like Smetz??? I always have to really loosen my tension, both upper and lower and first thought that was really bad! lol out of the box! hehe! I have three daughters and sewed all kinds of cool stuff while they were growing up…then it was quilting, now it’s just paper for me! I have had trouble with the thread not staying in the corners when I turn every once in awhile…not sure why that happens, just using a straight stitich even, have you had that happen? any ideas to keep it from happening?
    thanks again! Pam

  57. Julia this is wonderful. I have two machines that have gone unused since I put down my quilting for stamping. I have used my machine on a few cards but just forgot to bring them into my stamping room, this tutorial has inspired me to bring those babies out and start sewing again, on my cards that is. I have subscribed to your blog, I don’t want to miss another card or tutorial. Thanks go out to Debbie Olson for pointing me to your blog!! Have a blessed Easter!!

  58. Wow – love the tutorial. Glad to find your blog, too. Thanks, Debbie Olson, for the referral!

  59. I should say that I love stitching on paper – I do it all the time, but your examples are gorgeous. I usually stitch on my layouts … here’s an example: http://divamomconfessions.blogspot.com/2007/02/scrapping-backwards-when-i-first.html

    I sometimes stitch on cards, but usually forget! I will definitely have to keep my sewing machine in mind for my next cards. Love all the ideas you gave … it really set my mind a thinking. Thanks, again, for the great tutorial!

  60. Miriam Napier

    Julia, I borrowed a machine from a friend and the thread kept bunching up on the underside of the paper. Now I know why!! I’ll adjust the tention and try again. I appreciate you taking the time to do this tutorial!! It is just perfect and all my questions were answered. Love your work here and on SCS too. Thank you, thank you!!!

  61. Wonderful tutorial…the best on sewing I’ve ever seen. Thanks so much! And your card samples are just gorgeous! I do machine stitch on my cards quite a bit these days but for the longest time it scared the heck out of me. In the past couple of weeks I’ve even been using my machine for *non* paper projects, LOL. Not as much fun, in my opinion. ;) Thanks again for taking the time to create this excellent tutorial. :)

  62. Thank you so much for the great tutorial. I’m a quilter so my machine(s) are alway up in my craft room. I like stitching without thread, less time consuming than the faux stitching with a paper punch. Try varigated thread when using a more dense stitch. I buy the disposable bobbins already wound with thread, when using varigated thread. Varigated thread is a bit thicker so you can’t use it as your bobbin thread. Again, thank you for such a great tutorial.

  63. Thanks for the tutorial. I really want to stitch, but worry about being neat and all lined up. You gave me the courage to just go for it. Your samples are really nice. You are very inspiring. THANKS AGAIN!!

  64. THANKS SO MUCH FOR BLESSINGS US WITH THIS TUTORIAL..IT IS EASY TO FOLLOW, INSPIRING AND I BELIEVE I CAN DO IT!!!
    LOL

  65. Hi, Julia; Debbie Olsen sent me. GREAT tutorial, thanks so much for sharing your wisdom!
    I do sew (for many,many,many years) and I am curious about the needle size or does it matter? Logically thinking it just seems that a larger needle would make a bigger hole in the paper and that’s all there is to it…I guess I should also try it myself since my machine is right here on my desk, lol. Again TFS.

  66. I linked to you from another site and love your tutorial. Fantastic work and photos! I love using a double needle when sewing on paper. I’m the owner of http://groups.yahoo.com/group/FiberArtTraders and would love to have you join in the trading fun with us. Sincerely, Normajean Brevik

  67. Thank you so much for taking the time to type all this up! I finally busted out the sewing machine I’m “borrowing” from my Mom a few weeks ago to do some cards. I must say it is very fun and addicting! I love the look!

    Thanks for sharing some tips with us!

  68. Fantastic Tutorial. I’ve sewn on my SB layouts, but as of yet have not given it a try on my cards. You’ve inspired me!

    Thanks for the great examples as well, you are truly an artist!
    Tiffany
    http://www.scrapsadaisy.blogspot.com

  69. Thank you Julia! This is fantastic. I love sewing on cards and this will be a huge help to me…it has answered many questions I have been fudging through along the way!!! I did not see what needle size you use. Maybe it doesn’t make any difference but if it does could you please let me know? I appreciate you, your work and all your help. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!! Teresa

  70. Julia –

    Thanks for this primer! I’ve had a sewing machine that my mom gave me in my studio for months now, and it has never seen the light of day. Thanks to your demystification, I’m less intimidated and plan to give it a try this evening. I’ll let you know about my results!

    Carole

  71. Sharon (notimetostamp)

    Hi, Julia!!! Every time I see a card of yours it reminds me how much I love to see sewing on a card!!! I am FINALLY beginning to remember to do it — sometimes!!! LOL!!! It sure is quicker and more rewarding to sew on a card than a typical sewing project that takes so much longer to complete!!! Loved reading your tutorial!!! I, too, have never heard a good thing about those tiny craft machines. And I don’t understand how some women can go through life without a sewing machine — EVERYONE needs one!!!

  72. JaneinStateCollege

    That was an “All-In-one” tutorial. I have done a lot of fabric sewing and none on cards. I will start as soon as I get home from work today. I think the most important point you made (at least to me) was that a needle that is used on paper should not be used on fabric. That is the same with sicissors. Fabric scissors should never be used on paper. I will need to mark my sewing scissors so I don’t forget and use them on the cardstock. Your tip on turning corners is a great one too. ___Needle to the outside on the turn.___ that tip alone will “save” many cards being crafted by people new to this feature. Thank you.

  73. Hi Julia:
    I hope it’s ok I think this is a very import tut all scrappers should see this.
    I have it link in my forum
    Maggie

  74. WOW!! What a wonderful Tutorial…I will definately link to it on my blog! :o ) Now I want a sewing machine really bad!! :( I used to have an old one, the tension foot thingy didn’t work, but hey, for cards–it might add more visual effect, huh? Ok…maybe not. It was frustrating. I was actually thinking of spending $20 for a crafting machine, so ??? maybe not huh? What have you heard about them??

  75. Your cards are beautiful! The sewing adds a delicous touch !!! I tried on a piece of C/S just to try my machine as I had just gotten it back from being fixed…I was surprised that the thread stayed in the paper and very pleasantly pleased…thank you for the time and effort it took you to make this very informative tutorial.The tips are awesome too! Christina

  76. Wow! This is the help I was looking for to get me on my way.
    I also sewed very involved clothing for my daughter in the english and french style. It has been hampering my willingness to try sewing on cards/pages but now I am redy to go! Thank you for your time and attention to detail in putting this together for those of us needing a little push.
    PS this was my first visit to your site but I will be back!

  77. WOW!!!!What a wonderful job…you must have taught school at SOME point in your life…these directions were soooo clear thank thank thank you. I have beeb wanting to try to sew for 2 years now and way to chicken I own a machine but just for HEMS!!! its a singer I think its an ok machine but to chicken to try it sooooo I DID buy one of those craft machines and its still in the box!!! even with just hems I have such a hard time with the tension and STRAIGHT lines..(I know I am tooo fast …but thats true with all my crafts and especially stamping I want 50 cards done yesterday and all show case beautiful…needless to say…lollol lol …well better left unsaid…..I do have one question and if you could email me the answer I would be thrilled…..its about the size needle to use…there are sooo many out there and I just use the same one over and over..well not THE same one but size wise it came with the machine so I figured it must be right but not sure it would be right for paper too. Thank you again…I love your blog and will read it all the time now…
    friendship in stamping and SEWING yikes!!
    candy

  78. Awesome tutlorial. I really should try this – I completed Master’s level courses in Clothing & Textiles, so it is a natural that I would sew on my papercrafts!

  79. What a wonderful way to embellish your cards. I have a sewing machine, brought down to be in my stamping room in case I did get inspired by someone. I just put it back upstairs. but you have done it girl. I am going to try this with your notes very soon. I think your card that you just shared with us, looks like some cards my grandparents had and I have a deskl full of my husband’s mother’s cards. I am really loving this idea. I thank you

  80. Thank you, thank you! Your tutorial covered it all. I am a new sewer with a new machine and little idea what I am doing. I tried once before and made a mess. Just knowing how to tell tight tension from loose will save me lots of time and frustration. And what size needle to get! Great advice, Thanks, I really appreciate your taking the time to share your skill, Anne

  81. I really liked the part about the tension, that was very clear and easy to understand, thank you for sharing your time and talent!
    Connie

  82. Thank you so much for sharing this! I’ve been intimidated by sewing on paper, but now I’m really inspired by these beautiful samples! Now I need to practice.

  83. Thanks so much for putting together this fabulous tutorial – I’m still not sure I’ll sew on paper, but you’ve definitely made me feel more comfortable about the prospect (of course, if I only knew how to THREAD my machine I may be more likely to do it…!) :-)

  84. WOW! Your creations are AMAZING! Thank you so much for sharing your talents with us all. Smiles & Blessings 2 U! :) Pam

  85. Julia,

    Thank you for your time and talent. Your tutorial is excellent. I found the machine tension information especailly helpful.

    I find your work very inspirational. You are very talented. Thanks sincerely for all the support you offer us here at SCS.

  86. Julia… this is AWESBOMB. My machine just came and I am super nervous to use it. I feel like you are holding my hand baby!! I’m gonna JUST DO IT!! You are SO awesome.. thanks so much!
    ~Cambria

  87. Thank you for this great tutuorial. I’ve had a sewing machine since I was 17, but haven’t used in on my paper crafts since I wasn’t sure how exactly to do it. I guess I’ll dust off the old machine and give it a try. Thank you so much again!

  88. Thank you for all your work on this tutorial. I see that I am way behind in reading it though! I did not read ALL the comments so you may already know this: The Janome Mini machine is excellent for paper sewing! I bought one some time ago and it is awesome. It is not too heavy to get out and put away easily if necessary.

    Thanks again!

  89. I love your tutorial. I think I will have to go get a sewing machine now!
    Diane

  90. WONDERFUL tutorial – you’ve inspired me to lug out my sewing machine…and give it a whirl! You do such beautiful work – thanks for sharing!

  91. nancy littrell

    All I need now is a mini sewing machine. At least I have my trusty mat pack for faux stitching…….Julia, you do sewing the best and I know where to come if I ever do real stitching. TFS your wonderful tutorial. Nancy

  92. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! I can’t sew at all, but another blogger, Cambria, mentioned the Janome Sew mini. I just got home with it, and followed your tutorial. I must say I have impressed myself. Thanks so much

    Diane

  93. This was an awesome tutorial! Thanks so much for taking the time to show us newbies. I am anxiously awaiting my new machine and this tutorial will no doubt make me much better prepared. Thanks again!

  94. Hi Julia – great tutorial! I found it very informative and very inspirational when I first read it a while back, but I still did not get my relic out of the closet and try to stitch anything. I saw Cambria’s blog and she referenced your tutorial (tweaking my memory) and talked about her Janome Mini. Long story short, mine will be here on Monday and I’m looking forward to putting your excellent tutorial to use! Thank you so much for taking the time to share your expertise and your beautiful creations!!

  95. Thank you for taking the time to write the tutorial.
    But where were you three years ago when I first tried out this technique and ruined a card I had been working on for hours because I didnt know about adjusting th tension … …

    Your cards are fab – with or without stitching.
    Regards fro a Florida gal,
    V.

  96. Thank you for the wonderful tutorial! I do a lot of stitching but have always had trouble getting zig zag corners to look “just right”- I can’t wait to try out your suggestions, thanks again!

  97. Thanks for all the work you put into this tutorial. I may just be inspired to pick up my (dusty) machine and give it a go once more. I think the tension was the problem. Thanks again!

  98. I am just getting into card making and I really love the look of stitching; however, I had no idea how to do it until today. Thank you for the excellent tutorial. It is easy to understand and I am now looking forward to trying out the new technique. Thanks again.

  99. Ann aka datgh

    Thank you , thank you , thank you for this awesome tutorial you put together for all of us stampers out in cyberland! I can’t wait to go resurrect (sp?) my sewing machine which has been sadly neglected since I like you discovered the joys of working with paper! Ann

  100. This is fabulous. I’ve been a sewer for years and gleaned a lot of valuable information.
    Thank you ever so much. Yes, you can tell it took four hours. It is excellent.

    Ill be sharing it with my local friends attributing it to you. They will be inspired, too.

    Again, thank you! I’m sharing it with my local friends attributing it to you.

    (And on’t worry—you’ll get to smock again—-for grandchildren! It’s even more fun!)

  101. This is great! I can’t wait to drag my machine out of the closet and try some stitching on my next card. Thanks for sharing :)

  102. Julia, Thanks for taking the time to add this tutorial! I have sewn for many years but since beginning to scrapbook and make cards, my Pfaff has been sadly neglected! This is inspiration to try some paper sewing :-) .
    Thanks Beth

  103. Great job! I can’t wait to try to incorporate more stitching into my cardmaking! Thanks for all your time in doing this – it’s very helpful!

  104. Julia, Thank You. I know how long these take (roll eyes) and this one is so worth it. I am wanting to sew on my cards, and have been really “worried” about tension issues, and I don’t even own a machine! I hope to dive in, soon, and this will be linked on my blog, shortly. You have given me some confidence to dive on in!

  105. Thanks for this wonderfully written, fun to read tutorial, Julia. The cards you have displayed on here are just gorgeous. I love your creativity and your style! I learned some great tips I am going to try.
    One thing I have done that you didn’t mention, was when I am adhereing layers that have stitching on them already, I use a Staples brand glue stick. I just lay it on extra thick, and when I press the layers together, I usually put it in an envelope, then slip it under a stack of books. It never comes apart after that!
    Keep making such beautiful creations that truly inspire us! I admire your artwork, Julia!
    Crissy

  106. I loved this. Do you ever do embroidery on your cards? I have a Pfaff 7570 embroidery machine. I did some cards with my snowflake pattern last year and they were fine but when I tried to use a more dense pattern it cut my cardstock. Do you have any suggestions that might help with this problem?

  107. Thanks! I looked through a lot of articles and yours is by far the best. I found the answer I needed on making corners.
    Very helpful!
    I am putting a link to you on my website: http://www.creativescrapbooksolutions.com.
    Carol Ann

  108. Well, I guess it is time to dig my sewing machine out of the closet. Wonderful and clear tutorial — Thanks!

  109. I love this site. I have not used my machine in years. This is a whole new adventure for me. I am excited to give it a try! I have one question. Is there a particular size needle I should be using to sew on paper?
    ~Thanks!

  110. Thanks so much for this tutorial… i have been trying to do this for a long time and finally learned how to thread my machine this weekend… (i am sewing-impaired) but i think i will be able to do it now. thanks for giving me the confidence!

  111. Julia – I have a large Singer sewing machine but wanted something smaller for my work desk so I recently purchase the Janome mini and it is only being opened today!! Thanks for the advice especially the need for only white and dk brown thread as I had visions of needing to buy oodles of colours. I work a little like you and don’t do too much planning beforehand. I’ll let you know how the mini works.

  112. Thanks for a wonderful tutorial. I think I’ll be blowing the dust off my sewing machine tomorrow morning!

  113. This is an awesome post! I’m gonna come back as soon as my ‘card sewing machine’ arrives. :)

  114. This was fabulous! I really loved your samples, what beautiful work!

  115. I have to agree with everyone else…EXCELLENT! Thank you so much for sharing your designs with us, and helping us out for these great ideas. Have lots to do now and I can’t wait.

  116. Thanks for this wonderful tutorial. I’ve got my old dusty Singer from 1967 in my closet…need to get it to the Sewing Machine guy for a tuneup and then I’ll be off sewing my cards too. Making a tutorial is certainly an investment of your time and talent, I really appreciate your effort.

  117. Hi Julia!

    Huge fan of you work and the tutorial rocks!

    Just had a few questions for you about possible sewing machines.

    Janome Sew Mini
    Brother CS 6000 Computerized Sewing Machine W/ Free Instructional DVD

    These are both reviewed as very user friendly but I was hoping for your opinion one way or the other as to which one I would be able to handle better. I’m just a baby :)

    Keep that creative genius flowing! You absolutely rock!

    Happy Holidays and God Bless!

    Alicia

  118. Barb Hendrickson

    Ok, here is my thought on sewing on cards….I LOVE it with my new Janome Sew Mini from Hancock fabrics. Because I have a mental block about setting up the sewing machine ie: threading, bobbins etc, my hubby set it all up for me and I have been off and sewing on my cards ever since. What a huge blessing it has been to have such fun added into my cardmaking. I really love the look too.

    One questions, Julia. How do you tie off the loose ends? I didn’t find that in your tutorial….may have missed it.

    Thanks so much for such a fantastic blog!
    barb

  119. Thanks so much for creating and sharing these paper sewing tips. I learned a lot! :)

  120. Hi Julia,
    Thanks so much for taking the time to write this very helpful tutorial. I LOVE your work and I LOVE the stitching on the cards. Your tutorial was very helpful along with all the comments. My DH is buying me the Janome mini sewing machine for my Birthday which is at the end of the month. I will save this tutorial on my Blog and when I start using my NEW machine I will write back with another comment. I have heard nothing but good things about this machine and I can’t wait for my Birthday.

    Jennifer :)

  121. Hi! looks like people are still checking out your tutorial. This is great and so helpful. I have never sewed before and just got my machine yesterday for christmas. I am getting ready to open the box and learn about my machine. I hope to sew later today on a card for my MIL. Thanks so much for taking the time to teach all of us who have never sewed before. I am sure I will reference this tutorial more than once.

  122. Just found this on Splitcoast Stampers site. Very informative, thank-you for taking the time to share your tips with us. I will just have to dig out the ol’ machine and give this a try. I usually make faux stitching, and can see how the real thing can be more visually rich.

  123. Wow, this tutorial was SO helpful!!! Thanks so much for all of the information!!! I love your work – I’ve added your blog to my list and I’ll be back :) .

    You can see my first project using machine stitching here:
    http://scrapbookideas.wordpress.com/2008/01/07/machine-stitching-on-scrapbook-pages/

  124. Joycelyn - Stamps'nCoffee

    Fabulous tutorial!! I’ve always loved the look of stitching on cards and scrapbooking!! I bought the little craft machine and I’ve been thwarted by it to do much sewing as it doesn’t work very good!! I think it would be worth the investment to buy one from Walmart and after reading your tutorial it seems much less intimidating!!

  125. Great tutorial. I have a vocational home economics degree and have sewn since a child. I now am quilting.

    I use a Janome 3000 for nearly every thing. I keep needles no long sharp enoug for quilting for card making. That way I get double usage from the needles. If traveling and planning on doing some card-making while gone, I take my Janome Gold. It is light weight and does everything I need for cards.

    One word of advice for those planning on purchasing a sewing machine. Make sure that the place where you purchase your machine will do repairs. You may have to pay a little more for your machine, but it is worth the price.

    If you can lower or cover the feed dogs on your machine, the cardstock will not side as much and you have more control over the movement of the card.

  126. Julia,

    Thanks – great information.

  127. Hi there, what a great tutorial, I have been a sewer for more years than I care to remember lol. And was googling for exactly this, I have wanted sew on paper for a while, and though was confident to do it, I prefered to look at what some one else had done first, This is just what I was looking for. Thankyou, also I ahve a tiny little portable sewing machine, it runs on batteries and electic, it weighs about 2 kg, so it is tiny about 12 inches high and 8 inches long lol, it works just fine, and it fits into my portable scrap and card bag for when I am on the move. It can even be used when travelling if you start to have withdrawals from scrapping pmsl. Once again thankyou for the great tutorial. Cheers Debra in Australia.

  128. Julia, this tutorial is very helpful. I just got a Jamone Sew Mini, and I really am not a “sewing type person”, so even little things like winding the bobbin and threading the machine were a big deal (figured it out, though! :)
    I had my first practice session last night, and now after reading your tutorial, I know what to practice to get the corners to turn out right. Thanks for the hints about tension, too.
    I love the stitching that you do on your cards. Thanks for the time you invested in the tutorial to help all of us.

  129. Pattie's passion

    I love this tutorial… I’ve been wanting to try sewing on my scrap pages, cards and ATC’s but have been hesitant..Now when I’m ready, I can just come back when I need help or a refresher course….Thank you for the lesson…

    Patti (http://scrappingismypassion.blogspot.com/)

  130. Nice tutorial, and so helpful! I have been afraid of trying to use my machine on my cards, but now I’m going to HAVE to try! Thanks so much for taking the time (Wow! 4 Hours?!) to do this for all of us who wanted some help with sewing on our cards and projects. You are awesome! :)
    Amber

  131. this was wonderful. thank you for taking the time, and sharing this. I recently started sewing on my cards. I purchased the Janome mini to do this. I just might have to break out my Bernina and try some more intricate stitching. You made everything sound so easy! Thanks again!

  132. I love that ‘Up in the Air’ card! I cased it over a year ago for my DS’s birthday card (his birthday’s tomorrow–but I have another card for him this year).
    Great sewing tutorial. One day when I don’t need to put my machine away every time I use it I will sew on my paper crafts.
    Thanks so much for taking the time to write it all out.

  133. what a great tutorial!!! I have wanted to do stitching on cards for a long time.. but thought I would need to get one of those craft sewing machines.. and lets face it … we can’t buy everything. I have a wonderful Viking sewing machine and lots of thread…
    I am going to try one today.
    I appreciate all your precious time to do this for all of us…..
    thanks a bunch…
    judy

  134. Thank you for the tutorial. I was one of the ones that bought a cheapo “Sew Mini”…… it was a waste of money. Couldn’t even get rid of it and the book of ideas/bobbins at a garage sale for $2.00. Should have lowered the price.

  135. This was a great tutorial. I haven’t tried to sew on cards yet. Maybe since I read this I will give it a try

  136. Janet L Sponagle Hopper

    Thank you for taking the time to share these techniques with readers.
    I think it will also be helpful to share info on types of needles, e.g. leather needles are sharpened to a triangular point and may assist card makers in making a clean stitch through layers that have been attached with adhesives or through heavier paper, standard or universal point will give a clean hole through other papers, but ball point needles (used for knitted fabrics) may not be sharp enough for one’s paper. Woven fabrics lend themselves better to paper joining than knits do, so sharps and leather needles are the ‘best bet’.
    You address some beginning sewers who may also not be familiar with the wide variety of needle sizes. I suggest using a size 12 or larger needle; certainly, others may have a different opinion.
    I enjoy looking at your cards. Hope this is not redundant; I didn’t read all the comments.

  137. Marilyn (mlj-mlj)

    Thanks Julia for sharing your time and talent. Lots of great tips here -something for everyone!

  138. Joanne... the holy mackerel-er

    Julia, thanks so much. Will get my machine out now. Have been putting it off due to “the scare factor.” You have given me hope!!LOL In answer to Alice Story on 10/04/07 at 8:15 am–I have seen embroidered cards. Kay does her embroidery on white fabric and inserts it in a cut out/punched out window. Her cards are stunning and everyone appreciates the embroidered work.

  139. Thank you for taking the time to teach us…. Your work is beautiful!

  140. Thanks so much for the tutorial I love to sew but just needed the information in your tutorial to get me started. I have just started in card making about 8 months ago and haven’t sewed any on card stock. I really love your site and have learned so much from it. You do great work, also thanks for taking the time to write this for us. Thanks Julia

  141. Thanks for a great tutorial I just bought a Janome Mini on the recommendation of a fellow card maker. I have done lots of fabric sewing but sewing on cards is totally different. I am going to add this tutorial to my favorites list to use as reference as I start using my machine to stitch on my cards. Ann

  142. {luv2scrapalot}

    Julia, this was the answer to my prayers!!! I have been looking for some direction/a tutorial on papercraft sewing. I have my Janome machine on order… can’t wait to try out the tips/tricks/techniques you provided. AWESOME WORK…. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!
    BTW – you are truly talented – your work is amazing!
    –jennifer

  143. Hi Julia…
    This is a wonderful tutorial. Great tips!!
    I think most people(with reg.machines)
    have trouble with the tension. I used to do a
    lot of sewing(on fabric) when the kids were
    small..and crafts I still do occasionally. I
    have recently done some stitching on my
    cards…I love it!!

    Dee

  144. thank a lot. this was very helpful. i will be trying this out soon :l)

  145. Hi , I tried machine stitching last night for the first time and found that the metal grip thingy under the paper seemed to chew the paper up. Do I need to adjust a setting somewhere?

    Regards
    Kellie

  146. Hunter's Grandmother

    THANK YOU !!!
    I’ve been a life long sewing fanatic and just knew I could sew my cards too… just needed a little help – and more importantly at my own pace!
    Your instructions – and side comments – are great.

  147. That was very helpful information. It was worth the four hours it took you to put it together. Thank you!

  148. I started sewing at age 7 (that was a long time ago) but not on paper. I knew the tension was a problem – just which way to go I was unsure of and also wanted to know if holes showing in the paper is normal – on some cards it appears there are no holes showing. Anyway, you answered both of those questions – this was a great tutorial and I didn’t have a hard time finding the answers I needed. That is a good thing as I’m into instant gratification when I need cardmaking answers. Thanks for the great tutorial – now back to my sewing machine. Thanks again!

  149. Well here I am over a year later just finding this tutorial but just loved all your information re sewing amd papercrafting. I have seen sewing but worried about damaging my machine. Thank you for all your time and effort to put this together for us out here in stamp and learning land. You are the BEST!!
    Laurie

  150. Vernette McIntosh

    Hi there
    I have a sewing machine and have wanted to add stitching to my LOS and cards BUT I heard that the paper dust is harmful to the mechanisms of the sewing machine?
    My machine was $500 and I do still sew ( not as much now that I scrap) Maybe finding a used machine or less expensive one for crafting is in order?

  151. Janet Hoffman

    WOW. I have a sewing machine, plus one of the little SEW PRETTY models…..neither machine have seen a spool of thread! I think I am inspired to try sewing some paper. I will let you know if the SEW PRETTY is decent. Thank you for your hard work on this tutorial, soooooo glad I found it.

  152. Julia, thank you so much for putting together this awesome tutorial! I am just about to embark on my very first machine-stitched card, and it is a swap for Convention, so I want it to look great! I’m really glad to have come across this tutorial BEFORE starting – what a great resource:)

  153. I wanted to try sewing on paper today. I did a Google search, not expecting to find any information. I guess I thought – Everybody knows how to sew on paper – but me.

    I quickly read through your tutorial – It’s very helpful. I will have to come back and read it in greater detail. Now I’m off to sew.

  154. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I am just starting with paper sewing and I am very thankful for your tutorial as it does give basics I was hoping for. Did I thank you yet??

  155. Great! I love to sew so this was great info. Thanks.

  156. Great tutorial, thank you!
    Do you use a certain needle for sewing on papers?
    A “sharp” or a “large eye” etc?
    I have an expensive machine I use for my costume design and don’t want to hurt it.

    Thanks!
    ~Barbara

  157. Very nice tutorial, thanks for sharing!

  158. I just read your wonderful tutorial on sewing stitches on cards.
    Thank you so much as I love this style on cards and have been anxious to use this method. I was looking for an inexpensive sewing machine for my paper crafts and have found a nice machine made by Janome which I purchased on sale for $49.99 the other day at Hancock Fabrics. I really do not sew but love the look on cards and this machine is great for the purpose. It is called the Janome Sew Mini. It received high reviews from other customers that purchased this product. Although I have only used it for a couple days now, I am very satisfied with the purchase,
    thank you for your great, informative tutorial. I printed it out for further reference.

  159. With your permision, I would like to mention your tutorial on my Technique Swap thread because we are making ATC’s useing stiches, real or faux, and this is another technique way to stich.
    thanks larrie

  160. Thank you SO much for this tutorial – it was just what I needed! Will definitely be using my new birthday present for non-fabric stuff now!

  161. I had never thought of using my machine on paper. You have given me a lot of ideas.
    Thank you for the tutorial, and please do add photos of the zig zag corners. I am linking to this tutorial on my blog.

  162. I love the look, but have been afraid to try it. You did a beautiful tutorial. Now I have no excuse!

  163. Julia, this was a wonderful tutorial! Thank you so much for all the time you spent sharing your expertise with us.

  164. Great Tutorial!! Very helpful and in depth. Thank you for doing this!

  165. This is perfect! I knew you would have the answers I needed in order to learn this aspect of card making. Thank you.

  166. thanks for sharing….I was scared to try it but now I love it!!!

  167. Wow! Thanks for the detailed tutorial. I’m going to go and play with the sewing machine once again. Last time I tried, it didn’t turn out that great. So hopefully persistance pays off. I’m a big fan of yours.

  168. Thanks so much for this tutorial! I was having problems with my tension and this really helped out as far as what my problem may be.
    Thanks so much for taking the time to put this together.

  169. I am pulling out my hair! The thread keeps breaking! Do I need a special kind of thread? I am using up some thread that I got in a quilting shop.

  170. Hi Julia,
    Thank you so much for this tutorial. I’ve wanted to stitch on my cards for a while but was wary of using my new electronic sewing machine in case I ruined it (thinking clogged up with paper here). I was looking into getting one of those mini machines just for cards. Now I’ve read your tutorial I’m going to steer clear of the mini and get out my big machine.
    Many thanks to you.

  171. Thanks for the great tutorial. I’ve been wanting to try sewing on some of my cards but since I don’t really know how to use the machine I have.. I’ve put off getting it out and setting it up. I had thought of the mini machine and read the terrible reviews so I guess I’ll have to dig out the big one.

    I appreciate the time and effort you put into this tut. Thank you for the great directions and I’ll let you know when I get up the courage to give it a try. Last time I used my machine another lady helped me and even she had a hard time threading it and an even bigger fit trying to get the tension corrected!

  172. Thank you for a great tutorial, I do machine stitiching on my layouts and cards and greatly appreciated this tutuorial. I did find some useful information in your tutorial, eg tension, and I would like to say your cards and examples of the different stitches is great. I have done straight, zigzag, feather stitching, and cross stitiching with my card and have quite a few others I want to try. I have a Kenmore limited edition 100 stitch machine and it is several years old but works great. I was leary at first at trying the machine stitching, but love it now, and it is one of my scrapbook and cardmaking tools. Thanks once again.

  173. I’m asking for a sewing Machine for Mother’s day.
    I took a sewing class in high school 25 years ago does that count for knowing how to sew. I was looking at the Janome “Sew Mini” Sewing Machine at Hancock Fabrics. Do you know anything about it. The reviews are pretty good. All I want it for is to sew on my layouts.

    Ally

  174. Per your request, I amleaving a comment. TFS and spending so much time on this. I have a sm as I have sewn for most of my life, but have been dreading evend trying it on my paper projects. I love the look, but the fear gets in the way. You have abated my fear and I will try this today!!!! Wish me luck. I love the look on all of your cards and hope I can emulate your fine art. Again, many thanks!!!!

  175. Thank you so much! I bought a little sewing machine (unfortunately, one of “those” mini craft machines that you mentioned) on a rummage sale for really cheap (NIP) a few weeks ago. I’ve always wanted to stitch, but I am too scared to try to even figure it out! Thanks for the great tutorial!

  176. Thank you for this very helpful tutorial! I’ve just gotten a new machine (my Kenmore was over 30 years old, lol) and I’m ready to start sewing on my cards and layouts this week! My mother-in-law has broken in my machine by sewing some window toppers and a bed skirt… I’m using it today to sew some easy window covers, so am getting the feel for it. Thanks for the great tips!

  177. Thank you so much for this tutorial – I am now a sewer (never have been) my mom handed down her old Singer sewing machine to me so that I could use it with my scrapbooking and my stamping (card-making) and I have yet to be brave enough to try it although I have wanted to forever. Tomorrow, thanks to this tutorial I am actually going to give it a try AND I forwarded your link on to my friend Mari who has been asking about the kinds of machines to use also. Like I, afraid of needles, would know the answer to that question- GRIN!!! Can’t wait to let you know how it goes – thanks for taking the time to help those of us who just don’t get it!

  178. Great tutorial! I started implementing sewing on my cards last year and love it! I did buy one of those “special” craft sewing machines and it was not a good buy! I was only able to use it one time before it broke! I will stick with my reliable Kenmore! I was glad to see a fellow thread-stitching, card-making gal! I learned a few new things, as well, especially with regards to the 3D objects! Thank you! I love your creations, as well!!

  179. Great tutorial! Thank you so much! Do you recommend a special needle size to keep the hole size to a minimum? Or do you just use the universal size?

  180. Que belleza, gracias por su ideas Bendiciones desde Costa Rica

  181. Can you please share with me which needle size and thread and any other tips on sewing on transparency sheets?
    great blog.
    thanks
    kareen

  182. Julia,
    This is a great tutorial. I couldn’t sleep–got up at 4:00 a.m. and googled to find out about sewing on cards. I tried the small machines from craft stores and they were useless–I did return them and get my money back. You have spent a lot of time and I want to thank you. Through some of the responses, I read about needle sizes and along with your great information on thread tension perhaps I can get this to work. I make tags for our shut-in baskets through my church and I thought adding sewing would be something different. I’m not sure about the adhesive; does this gum up your needle? What specifically do you use? Also, I too am interested info on sewing transparencies. Again, you’ve done a super job with the tutorial.
    Thanks,
    Joanne

  183. Hi, great tut and tips!! I have done a teeny tiny bit of sewing on paper, love the look haven’t had the time.. But you saved us gobs of time with your tips because *I* would never know that paper dulls the needle faster than fabric and all other great stuff you helped us ward off potential problems. So thank you so much and all your cards are adorable!

  184. Wonderful! Can’t wait to try this out.

  185. Thank you for this. I’ve just bought a sewing machine and you’ve answered all my questions.

  186. Julia I happened upon your blog/article searching on the internet for stitched papers. I am so happy I found this very informative and encouraging for a newbie like me.

  187. Thanks for your wonderful tutorial!
    I just decided to get my machine out of the cobwebs and use it!
    cant wait to try it out on my pages!
    thanks for sharing!

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  190. Thank you for all the sewing on paper tips. I have always used faux sewing on my projects but just invested in a small sewing machine to start using. Since I have sewn in a LONG time (since 9th grade home ec) your post was very helpful. I also enjoyed looking at your projects. Beautiful!

  191. Wow! This was a great tutorial, fun to read! You provided great information with wonderful creative samples. thanks much!

  192. Thanks for this oh-sew-helpful tute! You answered most of my questions about sewing on paper and provided so much helpful information.

  193. I loved this tutorial. I am an experienced sewer but I have not been able to sew on cardstock with any success. The layers always shift. I just didn’t think of gluing the layers in places where the needle doen’t penetrate. Duh. So I’ll be trying again after reading this tutorial. Thanks for posting it.

  194. I just have not ever taken the time to try this, but I guess I am going to have to give in! Thanks for taking the time to help us newbies to this technique!

  195. Wow thanks for this awesome article. Just got my first little crafty machine – Janome Sew Mini – and i love it. Your article really helped with tips for me to become more comfortable. I appreciate it so much~!!!

  196. What a wonderful tutorial. I’ve always wanted to try this technique, but didn’t have the guts to try. Now I feel confident that I can master this skill. Thanks for sharing this tutorial.

  197. I am planning on machine stitching on my Easter cards and have never done it before, plus have a brand new sewing machine that I am trying to figure out. This is just what I was looking for to get some tips. Thanks s”sew” much! :)

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  200. Thanks a bunch for the great tut on machine stitching on cards. I’ve been afraid to try it cuz my sewing machine & I just don’t get along sewing on fabric. Maybe I’d do better on paper. LOL
    Thanks again.
    Huggies ~
    Sharron♥

  201. Thank you sooo much for taking the time to put this together! You’ve given me the extra boost of confidence that I was needing to try this out. :)

  202. Thanks! What a great tutorial! I have a sewing machine in the cellar collecting dust. Maybe a better place for it would be in my craft room!
    Evelyn

  203. Thanks for this detailed tutorial! Just the info I was looking for!
    T

  204. Love your cards. I was inspired to take up this craft again (haven’t done it since art college) and with twin 10 mth year olds, I need something to do in the evenings to unwind! I was just wondering if sewing with paper can ruin a sewing machine as popping pieces of paper through into the mechanism or is there a special machine or attachment for this craft? I ruined my mothers machine in my college days and she wasn’t very happy!

    Would be grateful of any advice.

    Hannah

  205. Hello there, simply became alert to your blog via Google, and found that it is really informative. I’m gonna be careful for brussels. I’ll appreciate if you proceed this in future. Lots of other people can be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

  206. I recieved my new sewing machine today and as a novice sewing machine user, I was glad to discover your excellent tutorial. I would like to use my machine for cardmaking and my main queries are:
    1. Whether sewing on card would damage my machine?
    2. Should I be using a specific or universal needle for papercraft?
    Kind regards.

  207. Great information! Thanks so much for posting and for taking the time to be so thorough!! Much appreciated!!

  208. Rosa M. Vasquez

    Your tutorial was excellent. I especially want to thank you for the warning on changing needles for fabric to paper.

  209. Found this through Pinterest…Love it! I had quit sewing when my daughter grew up too, but now I am inspired! I already had some great new heavy duty thread on order & can’t wait for it to arrive.

  210. Thanks for taking the time to do this tutorial – I now feel brave enough to get out the machine I’ve just bought in the sales and have a play – once I’ve read the instructions fully on how to actually thread it – I’m afraid that seeing machines and myself are complete strangers lols but hopefully you may now have made us friends for life :) Many thanks!

  211. Last week I made my first machine stitched cards (and sold 4 of them!). I really liked the way they came out but was left with quite a few questions about how to do it better. Thank you for your tutorial and the time you put in to get it together. You have answered many of the questions I had. I’m undecided how I feel about the stitching showing on the inside – on two cards I cut a piece of fabric slightly smaller than the card and stitched a frame round. the fabric was one that I had used on the front of the card. I’m now going back to look at more on your site and excited to see what I will find! thanks again.

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  213. lorie vandenberg

    I have a question i just bought the brother sewing machine so i stiched on a peice of paper. and the holes look big do i get a smaller needle or is that what it looks like??

  214. Thanks for your fabulous tutorial, I just purchased one of the mini machines this morning actually and played with it for about an hour and so far it’s brilliant although early days yet and all that.
    Cheers, Elaine

  215. What needle gauge do you use? I’m sorry if someone already asked this, I got lazy attempting to read all the comments :P Great tutorial! Your cards are beautiful!

  216. Carolan Landewee

    Thanks for the tutorial! It was very informative. tfs.

  217. What a great tutorial on sewing. I was looking for an inexpensive machine to use, and now I think I’ll just get a tune up on my good machine and use that instead!! You’ve really inspired me with all your info. Thank you for all your time and hard work, obviously you are still inspiring us!!

  218. For all the beginners who are planning to buy a sewing machine, here are some tips to consider before purchasing the Best Sewing Machine for Beginners. First, you have to consider the simplicity of operation. A sewing machine that is simple to use in your level of experience will set as a training platform to improve your skills in sewing. A user friendly sewing machine is what I offer you. Just visit our site at http://beginnersewingmachinehub.com

  219. Great tutorial!

    Questions:
    Do you need a special needle to go through the paper?

    Have you ever sewn through paper and plastic? I want to seal my cellophane cookie bags with a paper topper.

    Thanks!
    Jackie

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