When you have a family member or friend diagnosed with cancer, it leaves many of us feeling helpless – what can you do to support them? Nancy Zieman and I decided to each create a bag stuffed with helpful items that we’d give to someone in treatment for cancer. The bags are a perfect way to show you care and can be used to to carry everything someone might need during their treatments which can sometimes last for hours. For our bags we used embroidery from the Embroider-a-Cure collection where all proceeds go toward the Be The Difference Foundation, an ovarian cancer research foundation founded by our friend Helen Gardner.
I decided to work with blanks and wrap a little hope and warmth around someone undergoing chemotherapy treatments with an embroidered sweatshirt, pashmina and tote bag.
I selected the Bald is Beautiful design because many patients see no need to cover their hair loss so why not make a statement and put everyone looking at you at ease? This versatile design looks great on both a sweatshirt and a pashmina.
Let’s start with the sweatshirt. Find the center front of the shirt and mark it with a pin. Print a template of the Bald is Beautiful design and place it on the center chest. It’s a large design so standard industry placement templates don’t work for a design of this size. No worries – just place the center of the design on the shirt’s center. Leave enough room at the top of the design to hoop the shirt – about 3” below the bottom of the ribbing will do it. Make sure the template is straight and place a target sticker under the template. Remove the template.
Fuse polymesh stabilizer to the wrong side of the design area. Place the hoop’s outer ring on the pointy end of an ironing board and ‘dress’ the ironing board until the target sticker is centered in the hoop. Insert the inner ring.
Attach the hoop to the machine. Retrieve the design and center the needle over the target sticker. Add film-type water soluble stabilizer over the design area. Stitch the design. Once complete, tear off as much of the soluble stabilizer as possible and spritz away the rest. Trim the polymesh on the wrong side – ready to make a statement!
Since the design is already loaded on the machine, let’s move on to the pashmina. Fold the pashmina in half, lengthwise and measure 8” above the fringe on one end. Place a target sticker in that location.
Place a piece of cloth-type water soluble stabilizer over the hoop’s outer ring; place the pashmina over the ring, centering the target sticker. Insert the inner ring; tighten the screw since the pashmina is lighter than the sweatshirt – the previous hooping. No need to over tighten, just hand tight, is fine.
Flip the hoop over and make sure the water soluble stabilizer extends beyond the hoop in all directions. If it doesn’t, rehoop. Attach the hoop to the machine and stitch the design. Trim as much of the WSS as possible and spritz away the remainder.
For the tote bag I chose the bold Survivor design in a vibrant teal color. It looks great against the black background of the tote and teal is the color of support for ovarian cancer. The bag was stitched in a jiffy on a 10-needle machine. I used Quick-Snap to hold the tote and was done in about 15 minutes! If you’re using a single-needle machine, it would take just a bit longer because it’s necessary to open the side seam to get the bag front to lay flat in the hoop. Once embroidered, just sew the seam and you’re done!
To see more on the Sew a Bag For Hope created by Nancy Zieman please visit her blog here. And, for more information on ovarian cancer and the Be The Difference Foundation please visit their website here or join them on Facebook.