Course 1 now available on DVD


You can now purchase the entire content of course 1 on DVD. If you have insufficient bandwidth or internet speed to watch lots of video content on line,  here is your chance to get an in depth set of tutorials. There was too much content to fit on one DVD so there are two in the package. Online participants seem to be very happy with what I have provided with many of them continuing on to Course 2. When Course 2 is complete I will make that available also.

Included on the DVD are instructions for emailing me with any questions regarding the course content, So I can support you through the learning process just like I do for those enrolled in the on line Classroom.


Click here to purchase.

Posted in Courses | Tagged | Leave a comment

Course 2 is now Open


Following the success of Course 1, I have opened Course 2. The price remains the same $60USD for 6 Units of content.

Topics that will be covered in Course 2 are

  • Lace
  • Cross Stitch
  • Quilting
  • Carving Stamp
  • Morphing
  • Multi Hooping
  • Ripple and Contour Fills
  • Sculptured Fancy Fill

Not in this order

Posted in Digitizing | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Course 1 Outline


Well it has been a long time since I posted directly to my website. I have been flat out running my online classroom. It has been a huge success with over 150 people enrolled. Although the course was supposed to be six months long, it actually took me nine months to add all the content. Now that all the content is there, it is time to move forward with Course 2. While it won’t be compulsory to do course 1 before you do Course 2, I will be assuming you know what I have taught in course 1. I have compiled an outline of what I included in Course 1 below. Course 1 will remain open indefinitely so you can still enrol and work through it at your own pace. There is no time limit on how long you take to complete it.

Here is what a few kind participants said about their experience with the course.

Carol, Thank you for all your hard work. I have received more than I ever could have wished for in your course. Your have opened up a whole new creative world to me with all the tools that need. I cannot wait to redo your course one with the V7 edition and then I am sure I will forge ahead with Course 2.. Kind regards “

I have enjoyed your course very much. Our last few months were unexpectedly hectic and we were gone a lot so I am BEHIND but I have them downloaded except for this last one. I am anxious to catch up so I can do another course with you. Thanks “

Here is a video showing how to enroll and use the course, including an excerpt from one of the video tutorials included in the course.

Course 1 Outline



Calibrate Your Screen

The Help Menu

Open a design

Saving Designs

Sending designs to your machine or memory stick.

Digitizing Project

A Coin Purse

Practical Embroidery

Instructions for the embroidery and construction of the Coin Purse.



Accessing Corel Clip art

Loading a Picture

The difference between Raster and Vector Graphics

Where to get Graphics and Copyright

The Convert Tool

The Auto Digitizing Tools

Using an image as a backdrop

Setting up your scanner

Open and Closed objects

The Reshape Tool

Digitizing Project

Digitize a doodle

Practical Embroidery

Pattern and instructions for a notepad cover embellished with your doodle design



Editing Bitmaps

Art Canvas page set up

Editing Auto digitized designs

Other Manual Digitising tools

Underlay and Pull compensation

Different fills and outlines and their settings

Blackwork Fill Options

Digitizing Project

Digitize a Blackwork Flower

Practical Embroidery

Positioning your design on your project

Printing a Template



Advanced Applique

Creating a graphic for applique in Art Canvas

Exporting your graphic

Blanket Stitch Applique

Inserting a fill stitch into your applique

Other Outline stitches for applique

Using the Carving Stamp to add interest.

Digitizing Project

Digitize an applique rooster for a towel topper

Practical Embroidery

Instructions for the construction of the Towel Topper



Editing Lettering

Speciality Fonts

Identifying Fonts

Lettering in Art Canvas

Elastic Lettering


Pattern Runs

Digitizing Project

Digitize a monogrammed lingerie bag

Practical Embroidery

Instructions for hooping and constructing the lingerie bag



Thread colors

Color Bar/Palette

The Freehand Tools

Textured Edge

Removing overlaps with textured edge

Gradient Fill

Digitizing Project

Digitize a Daffodil from a photograph

Practical Embroidery

Create an applique outline to apply your successful test sews to projects.

Posted in Courses | Tagged | 4 Comments

Version 7 now included.


I have uploaded all the version 7 content for month 1 to my Bernina Designer Plus online classroom. Month 2 will be up by the end of next week, but don’t worry you can take as long as you like to work through the course.

A big thank you to those who have already enrolled. I know some of you have already completed the purse project and are eager for next months content.

Newbies can get started by clicking on the Classroom menu tab at the top of this page.

Posted in Courses | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

On line Classroom


At last I have got my online classroom up and running! At the moment the Course 1 only includes content for Version 6, but my Version 7  is on the way. As soon as possible I will add V7 material to the course so that it covers both versions.

Version 7 is now included.

Each course has 6 monthly sections. Only Month 1 is currently visible. Each month a new month will be revealed.

Each month has three Sections

  • Digitizing Theory – A step by step guide to using the software, starting at the very beginning. Great for people new to the software, but as it is very detailed, experienced users should browse the content for anything they haven’t picked up on yet.
  • Digitizing Project – Step by step instructions to digitize a design, and instructions and patterns to complete a project using that design. Suitable for all levels of experience.
  • Practical Embroidery – Suggestions for suitable fabric, stabiliser and hooping etc. for the project.

The course content consists of videos and notes. The notes are in PDF format so that you can save them to your computer or print them.

There is a Question and Answer forum where you can post if you need anything in the course clarified.

The cost is $60.00US per course (6 months), but you will remain enrolled in the course permanently so you can always return to go over the content, or re download any PDF’s you may have lost.

After 6 months if you would like to continue, you can enroll in the next course.

Just click on the Classroom tab in the top Menu to get started.

Posted in Courses, Digitizing | Tagged | 5 Comments

Echo stitching for a square quilt block.


Just taking the echo stitching a step further by filling the quilt block. Here is a video to show you how.

Posted in Digitizing, Quilting in the hoop | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

More Digitizing For Quilting


I have made a couple more videos with quilters in mind. Outlining or Echo Stitching and Creating a stipple background for a quilt block.
While the concepts are great for quilting in the hoop projects, they can also be used purely as decoration to enhance any design.
Both techniques are easy to do. The Echo Stitching video uses the Outline Design tool. Version 5 does not have this tool, so I have included instructions on how to get a similar look in that version.

Posted in Digitizing, Quilting in the hoop | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments



The Portfolio section of the Bernina Designer Plus, is the file management area. Here you can navigate to any folder on your computer and view thumb nails of the designs in that folder. You can sort designs, access designs from zipped folders and open designs into the digitising part of the software for editing. You can convert designs from one format to another, either individually or in groups. You can also convert the designs to multiple formats at once. Here is my latest video showing you how to do all of this and more.

Posted in Digitizing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

And the Winner is!!!


Well this is a bit overdue, but I have finally got there. Thank you to all who entered the competition to win the signed copy of Eileen Roche’s book . The entries were all wonderful which made my job of picking a winner quite difficult. Added to that The only guide I gave entrants was that I was looking for the most original entry. I have now realised this was quite vague and if I ever run another competition it will have more specific parameters.

I ended up picking Marian Hardman’s entry. Marian developed her project from a photograph she took while on holiday. Her vest is pieced so as to depict a typical Australian outback landscape.  She further embellished the design with embroideries and appliques. The whole project was balanced in both layout and colour, and while her embroideries were not digitised by her, they were appropriate and well placed. Congratulations Marian!

IMG_0192_1_1         IMG_0193_1_1IMG_0194_1_1     IMG_0195_1_1


For those of you who digitised your own designs I was very impressed so well done. Just goes to show what is possible. I wish I had more prizes to give away, because really all of you deserve one.

To see all of the entries go to the Hall of Fame page.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Puffy Foam


Puffy Foam is used in embroidery to pad stitching to give a three dimensional look. Sulky produce packs of this foam in 2mm and 3mm thicknesses. You need to use foam that tears easily. Not all foam sheets will work. Possible uses for this technique are lettering on hats, decorative projects and artworks including wall hangings.
Recently I shared a link on the Machine Embroidery and Digitizing Facebook Page to an article published by Wilcom on digitizing for Puffy Foam. I remembered doing a Puffy Foam design some time ago and thought I would share my experience and provide some additional tips.

Chinese Symbol for Peace stitched using Puffy Foam

Chinese Symbol for Peace stitched using Puffy Foam

I chose A chinese symbol, because traditionally they are created using a paintbrush, and therefore the individual parts don’t have blunt ends. Normal lettering has blunt ends, and as explained in the Wilcom article these are areas where the foam might poke out unless you digitize some covering stitches.
For those of you who are using the Bernina software, I set the Satin Stitch Spacing (density) to 0.23 (the default is 4). This is nearly twice as dense as normal. I made sure Satin Stitch was selected (not Satin Special) so that there were no needle penetrations in the middle of the design,  and I deselected the underlay.

Stitch settings for Puffy Foam

Stitch settings for Puffy Foam

I was not in Artistic Mode and I had view Needle Points selected. As you can see some of the areas of the design were too wide for normal satin and the software has replaced the stitches with jump stitches and needle points. I decided to use the reshape tool to change the angle of the stitching to fix this problem. I also kept an eye out to avoid any long stitches forming along the outline of the object.

Unwanted needle points and jump stitches

Unwanted needle points and jump stitches

Changed Angle Changed Angle

I set two underlays. For the the first underlay I chose ZigZag and changed the stitch length to 8. This eliminated any needle penetrations in the middle of the foam. The second undelay I chose was Edge walk. This was to add additional needle penetrations around the edges to help with tearing away the excess foam on completion, and to help with achieving a neat edge.

Underlay Settings

Underlay Settings

Next I checked my stitch order to minimise jump stitches. I then moved my start and end positions to put any remaining jump stitches in places where objects were close enough so that they wouldn’t show. In other projects I may choose to put the jump stitches where they are easy to trim, and depending on your machine you may get the machine to trim the jump stitches for you.
As a result of the above processes, the software has now put travel stitches running under the satin stitch.

Unwanted Travel stitches

Unwanted Travel stitches

As Travel on Edges is not available for Satin Fill, these have to be moved manually. I went into edit mode, (press”E” on your keyboard) And left clicked and dragged these stitches to the edges. (see my video on Manually Moving and Deleting stitches on YouTube for more info on moving stitches).
You can digitise a placement outline if you like, but I chose to use the basting stitch on my machine as a guide to where to lay the foam.

Posted in Digitizing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment