Caring for Embroidery Pieces

You love your embroidered treasures- table linens, cloth napkins, a stitched pillow cover…. but when they start to look like they need to be freshened up, you don’t know where to begin. Stitches can be very delicate and easily snagged on other things, and you can’t just throw them in the washing machine. How do you take care of embroidered items, both new and old?

We have a step by step that will show you exactly how to take care of all your embroidered treasures! Read on for all the info.

Step 1: Assess & Treat Spots

Take a good look at the item- if there are any obvious marks, pretreat the spots with a Eucalan wipe, or add some undiluted Eucalan directly to the marks. Let sit for at least 15 minutes.

Step 2: Washing

Fill your sink, bucket, or large bowl with cool water and add one capful or one pod of Eucalan in the scent of your choice. Add as many items as will comfortably fit, and let soak for about ten minutes, lightly agitating the water. If they have some stubborn spots that have not been set with an iron already, let soak for an hour. If the fabric can handle it, gently scrub with a cloth or a soft bristled toothbrush. **Only the fabric portion, never the actual embroidery threads!**

Then remove from the water (no need to rinse with our no-rinse formula!) and gently squeeze out extra moisture. Roll the items in a towel one at a time, and then lay flat to dry away from heat or light (which  could cause shrinking or discolouration).

Step 3: Assessment- the Sequel

Take a good look at the items once they are dry. If there are still any spots, repeat the washing and pre-treating process (steps 1 and 2).

Step 4: Ironing

Once you feel that they are looking their best, iron them. Make sure the surface of your iron is clean, and use a spray bottle to spray the fabric surface to ensure a smooth finish. Adjust heat settings as necessary for moving between cotton, linen, and synthetic. Be extra careful with lace sections and embroidery. If your piece has any applique, use a light heat setting, in case the applique is made from polyester or other man-made fabrics. We recommend using a white pressing cloth to protect delicate fibres.

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Making Rag Rugs – Tutorials and Tips

Have you ever tried making a rag rug? They are perfect for recycling old clothes and fabrics, and are easy to make. Fall is a great time to cozy up with a new crafting project like this! Here are some of our favourite tutorials and ideas to make your own rag rug this fall:

This is a great no-sew version, and reuses old t-shirts:

If you want to try a crochet version, you can make a beautiful doily floor mat rag rug:

Here’s a colourful idea that uses up lots of bright t-shirts:

Looking for a simple woven rug? This one is probably perfect:

Want a fluffier rag rug? This is a cute version for a kid’s room:

If you have a lot of old denim, you can make some amazing rag rug crafts, like this runner:

Rag rugs can also be done in a limited colour palette, and by wrapping fabric around rope, like in this great tutorial for the rug below:

And who says these techniques can only be used for rugs? Check out this great tutorial on making storage baskets, using the same process:

Looking for more rag rug ideas? We have a Pinterest board full of them! Find it here.

Caring for Your Rag Rug

When you spend time crafting a rug, it is worth taking some extra care when washing it, even with Using Eucalan in your washing machine with a rag rug, set your washing machine to the delicate cycle  and run as usual. You may need to add an extra spin cycle if the rag rug is dripping wet when you take it out. Smaller rugs can be hung to dry, but larger rugs should be laid flat to dry, turning them over regularly to ensure even drying.

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Crafty Back-to-School!

As summer winds down and the kids head back to school, our thoughts have turned to more fibre-y pursuits here at Eucalan. Perhaps it was all the fun of last weekend’s Twist Fibre Festival (which we sponsored for its third year running), or maybe it’s all of the great new patterns coming out right now in anticipation of cooler temperatures. Either way, we are looking forward to getting crafty in the months to come, and today we’ll be sharing some of our favourite inspirations to stitch this month with a back-to-school theme!

pencilsWe’re loving these clever knitting projects based on the iconic yellow no. 2 pencil! From L-R above:  Sinuous Pencil Scarf by Alice Humbracht (note: we also found a crochet version here on Ravelry!), No. 2 Pencil Socks by the Yarn Enabler, Arthur by Anna Hrachovec.

pencilcaseCROCHETOf course, every well-organized student needs a pencil case, and these whimsical crochet patterns are sure to make studying fun! From L-R above: Pencil Cases by Ana Paula Rimoli, Mister Snaps by Irene Strange,  Robot Pencil Case by Sincerely Pam.

btsSEWThere are lots of creative organizational ideas to sew for back-to-school, and these two free tutorials we discovered via AllFreeSewing.com are simple enough to whip up in a jiffy! Left: Composition Book Cover Tutorial by V and Co.; Right: Crayon Zip Bag by The Good Weekly.

needlepointFor fans on needlepoint, we discovered these amusing projects via Pinterest which cover both ends of the spectrum when it comes to packing a school lunch. Left: Eat Your Veggies by Athena and Eugenia; Right: Darth Vader by DorkStitch.

For more back-to-school inspirations, check out our Pinterest board here!