Cutting felt on the Silhouette

Happy New Year! May it be a good one for all.

A few months ago I became a member of the Facebook Group Silhouette for Fabric Lovers. At that time they had a few hundred members. Now, just a short time later, there are over 2400 members and that number keeps on growing in leaps and bounds. No wonder, it is a very helpful group with some experienced people, but also lots of new users. Everyone is helpful and quick to chime in with tips and instructions to solve problems. It also indicates how popular the Silhouette cutting machine has become with people who love fabric and applique once they learned how easy it was to cut fabric. I love it. I can either take existing designs or design my own patterns on my computer and then quickly send them to my Silhouette Cameo and they are cut out in no time. It is all digital and does not involve buying expensive dies and the machine itself does not cost an arm and a leg. Also there are a ton of videos on YouTube explaining how it all works. Besides fabric it can also cut vinyl that can be ironed onto T-shirt and such. I hope to try that out soon, but so far I have only used fabric.

One of the questions that keeps popping up on Facebook is whether it can cut felt. After some research I found out that it depends on the type of felt. It can’t be too thick and I have to admit that I have not tried it yet, but according to a video posted by Jessica Andersen it cuts a wool/rayon blend of felt quite well.  Here is the link:

felt 1

Another video, also posted by Jessica, shows the results when she cuts different types of felt.

felt 2

There is also some information on Jessica’s blog at .

Then there is the question of vinyl. Never having used it, this confused me a lot, but I found some good information on the Web. This article was written for the Cricut, another cutting machine, but as I understand it, the information applies to all cutting machines. Here is the link: .

I hope that some of you find this information useful. If you have any questions or want to add something, please leave a comment.

Until next time. Have a great day!


DIY Designs to cut and/or digitize

There is something new on my website.

From this: mistletoe To this: mistletoe1 or this: mistletoe 2or this:mistletoe

I never seem to have enough time to design and write instructions for full fledged embroidery or applique designs. So I am trying something different.  I am adding a page to my website with graphics for you to digitize or use as cutting files. They will include an SVG for the Silhouette Cameo and other cutting machines,  a WMF that can be opened in Bernina Designer software (and possibly other embroidery software?), and a PDF with examples showing what can be done with the design. If you prefer another format please let me know and I may be able to provide it.

Here is the first design:

mistletoeA simple design and you may ask what you can do with it. A whole lot actually. Start by opening the SVG file in Silhouette and cut 6 leaves and 6 berries. Next open the WMF file in Art Canvas and convert the berry to embroidery. Make several copies and arrange them in a cluster. Next convert the leaf to embroidery and with the wreath tool arrange 6 leaves in a circle around the berries. Change the berries and leaves to applique. Stitch the placement lines and place the cut fabric shapes carefully in the placement lines and fuse them in place.  Continue stitching the tack down and cover stitches. This is just a quick outline of the steps, not a full tutorial. You may, for example, wish to change the stitches, stitching order, change  colors or digitize some veins in the leaves. Finally, add some binding and you’ll end up with a cute mug rug:


If you are ambitious, you can also enlarge the design and turn it into a delightful table runner or possibly a tree skirt:

mistletoe 2

Of course, you could also just embroider the design. If you have Bernina Designer software you can import the WMF file into the Art canvas. WMF is a vector file, so there is no need to trace the image. Delete the background because you do not want to digitize that. Then select the whole image or just the part you need and click on Convert. This will take you to the Embroidery Canvas and you’ll have an embroidery file that may look something like this.

mistletoeYou can now change the fill and colors anyway you like. You can also change the stitch order in the color film and either delete the outlines or change their color. I just provide the basic design – you do the rest.

The leaf and berry can be arranged any way that strikes your fancy. It is free and available for download on my website.

Here is another free designs that would make a great mug rug.

poinsettiapoinsettiaFile includes an SVG for the Silhouette and a WMF that can be opened in Bernina Designer software and a PDF. Design can be either appliqued or embroidered. Either way you will have to add the veins and the flower center or any other embellishment.

And the last free one:

Circle of treesThis one too has an SVG for the Silhouette and a WMF that can be opened in Bernina Designer software, plus a PDF. Any further embellishments you want to add are up to you.

NOTE: I believe that only version 3 and the Studio Edition of the Silhouette can handle SVG files.

Design files can be downloaded from my website:

Please subscribe to this blog to be informed of new designs as soon as they are available. You’ll find posts on embroidery, quilting, sewing, and any techniques, tips and tricks I come across that make these crafts easier.

Please leave a comment if you have any questions

Applique and Machine Embroidery

I love both, but am often frustrated by the size limitation of in the hoop embroidery. So, when a while back, I wanted to make this wall hanging of an underwater scene I started thinking of ways around these limitations.


Then it struck me, why not embroider the various items in the hoop and then applique them to the background. It worked very well.

The whole idea started when I first saw the blue fabric. It made me think of a reef scene. The plan was to make the picture and to write a pattern to sell. Well, the picture got made, but there was never enough time to finish writing the pattern. So I decided to explain a few of the steps here. Perhaps, it will inspire some others to step out of their comfort zone. This method can be used for many different types of pictures. How about a garden scene, or something for a child’s room?

I started with Timtex or Peltex for the background instead of batting. This gives a nice solid base and best of all it is easy to stitch through. I fused the blue “sea” fabric to the Timtex. For the bottom part I cut different shapes from various greens, blues, browns, and even purple scraps of batik fabric to get some color variations. I overlapped all of them a bit so no white Timtex was showing. These were also fused down. I stitched around all the edges with smoke colored monofilament thread to make sure everything would stay in place and stitched some curved lines over the blue fabric.

All embroidered designs came next. I first studied a lot of photographs on the web and then drew my own versions in CorelDraw and digitized them in my Bernina Designer V7 software. If this seems too complicated you can, of course, buy and use ready to embroider designs. I stitched all of them on wash-away stabilizer, the mesh type, not the film. The fish also had a layer of Mylar, to give them a bit of shimmer. If there is any interest in how this is done, I may go into a bit more detail in a future post. The only design that had any fabric was the green seaweed and it barely fit into my largest hoop, but I could have made the pieces shorter and overlapped them to give them more height.

After all the designs were embroidered, the stabilizer washed away and the designs dry, it was time to play with the layout. Because these were all separate pieces it was easy to move them around until I was pleased with the layout. I then stitched them one by one to the background with monofilament thread and a narrow zigzag stitch. I had planned to stitch all around each piece, but ended up stitching them down only in some places which gave the whole image a bit of a 3-dimensional look. I suppose you could also glue or fuse them down, but I have not tried that so I can’t comment on how that would work.

After I had added a narrow black binding to the piece I decided that I really wanted the whole thing a bit bigger. So I cut another piece of Timtex a couple of inches larger on each side than the original. I fused matching fabric around all sides to simulate a border and placed it under the front piece. I was able to stitch the two pieces together just next to the black binding of the front piece and had no problem stitching through all layers. I folded the border fabric to the back and covered the back with another piece of fabric that I sewed in place by hand.

Here are a few more pictures of the embroidery.

fish 1         fish 2

If you have any questions, please ask in the comment section.

My email address is on my website: You can find it in the Contact tab.


New digital quilting designs

Athletic Shoes 2       Athletic Shoes 1  SP-016-Athletic-shoes

First of all a quilting pattern I designed for Diane Bennett-Meyer in Australia a month or so ago (maybe a bit more – time passes so quickly). Diane needed a special design for a quilt she made for a teenage relative who just loves a certain brand of shoes. The quilt turned out great, cheerful and colorful and the quilting looks great too. Diane was so pleased with the result that she sent me these photos. Thank you Diane. I am sure the recipient will be very happy with the gift.

Then I have some designs I released just a few days ago:

SCF-503-Carols-Feathers  SCF-502-Danas-Feathers  SCF-507-Friedas-Feathers-rev

SCF-505-Friedas-Feather-Block  SCF-504-Friedas-Feather-Triangle   SCF-506-Friedas-Feather-Frame

As a Thanksgivings Special these 6 feather files are available as a package for only $30.00 through December 6, 2014 or as singles at the regular price of $10.00 each.

Details can be found at or enter the item number in the search box on my website.


All designs and other content are copyright protected and/or Georgette Dell’Orco.

Quilt borders – seminole piecing

Hanging Gardens

Sometimes, once a quilt top is finished, all we want to do is add a plain border or two. Many times they frame the quilt top very nicely, but a pieced border can add something special. Pieced borders do not have to difficult if you use Seminole piecing and there are many variations possible depending on the width of the strips used.  Hanging Gardens, the quilt shown above is one example.  I designed and pieced that quilt several years ago for Cozy Quilt Designs and the expert instructions were written by the owner, Daniela Stout, my daughter.

Here is an example of how the border was pieced:

seminole piecing

Complete instructions are, of course, included in the pattern, but if you want to learn more about Seminole piecing, I highly recommend the article at .

Have fun, experiment, and spice up your quilts with that extra touch.