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Friday, July 25, 2014

Those Pesky Jump Stitches

Should you clip jump stitches as they occur or wait until the end to clip them all? Usually it is easier to clip as you go. Otherwise, jump stitches can get caught up in later stitches and be difficult to clip.

Whenever possible, hold the thread straight up from the embroidery and clip as close as possible to the design. If you have a thread tail at the beginning of a color, take at least four stitches, then stop and clip the tail. Do not try to clip while the machine is actually embroidering, no matter how tempting!

When there are lots of jumps, the kind necessary between small elements like flowers, etc., put down a piece of WSS to aid in cutting the jumps once embroidery is finished. Then run a wet Q-tip around the edges of the design elements and lift off the WSS. Having the WSS in place elevates the jump threads just a bit and makes it easier to slip sharp scissor tips underneath for cutting.

Some designers extend short jump stitches by adding an extra stitch away from the design. This gives you more thread to grab and cleanly clip. You can usually hear when your machine is approaching a long stitch because it will slow down (most models do). Stop just when the needle is poised to take that extra stitch, clip the thread. Holding the thread tail, advance to the next stitch (skipping the extra stitch). Take a few stitches in the new area, then stop to clip the tail. You will get perfect thread clips every time.

When you are done, clip any long jump stitches on the backside of the embroidery and trim any stray thread tails.

Next issue: ready, set, stitch!

from Mary Jane Allen of Perfect Little Stitches

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