Creating a Sewing Machine Stitch Bible

About 2 posts back I talked about a new class I was taking through Craftsy, called Stupendous Stitching. One of the first lessons in the video encourages you to make a Stitch “Bible.” This is basically a personal reference for all of the pre-loaded stitches on your sewing machine – most notably those of the decorative stitches. My Janome came with 222 decorative stitches. The other 48 are utility and bridge stitches. There are also 5 different fonts included. So my Stitch Bible is going to take me some time to finish. I spent 4 hours on it today and got up to #84. I wanted a reference to my utility stitches and buttonhole stitches as well.

The first 6 pages!

So my book is going to be laid out in stitch order. The class suggests you can do it in any order you like, but since mine are arranged by stitch type, I figured it would be best to stay sequential! I decided I wanted it to look somewhat neat and tidy, too, so I first started by choosing to run an outline stitch every 1 inch. This made it look kind of like notebook paper. The awesomeness of the Janome is that the extension table and the throat plate have ruler markings, making it easier to measure up to 10″ past the needle. I also decided that instead of using a marker to number the stitches, I would use the embroidery fonts for the numbers – meaning one less page of references.

Markings every 1″ 
Numbering the markings

I set up one page at a time to break away from the monotony of straight stitching. I also wasn’t real sure how many pages I would need and no, I didn’t feel like doing the math. I left the first section of each one blank – no number or stitches, so that I have room later on to put in grommets and tie the whole thing together. Beginning on #5 (since the first 4 are straight stitches with different back stitch choices), I started my utility stitches.

The difference between what the machine illustrations show and the actual stitches is pretty amazing. It is also fun to see how different the stitch is when messing around with the length and width of them. 
What the machine shows and what the stitch actually is! 

Adjusting length and width of stitches

I haven’t finished it yet, but when I do I’ll post it. I have to start a new quilt tomorrow, but that’s the great thing about Craftsy. I don’t have to complete my class during a webinar, or adjust my schedule to attend one. I also don’t have to haul around materials, forget what I needed, risk taking my machine with me, etc., etc. It’s right there, online, when I want it or need it. There is a material list and I can re-watch anything I might have forgotten. It’s just this side of heaven! So it may take me a while, but I’m not rushed and I don’t have to put anything aside right now. If you make a stitch bible or reference, please share it with me! You can upload to my Flikr group. Also, if you’re taking this class I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts on it. 
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