CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
This application claims the benefit of PPA Ser. No. 60/555,940, filed on 2004 Mar. 24 by the present inventor.
This method relates to embroidery and more particularly to a method for performing applique cutwork embroidery with a sewing machine, which yields applique cutwork embroidery that looks like fine applique cutwork embroidery, performed by hand.
Traditional cutwork embroidery is accomplished by removing whole sections of material from a fabric, before, during, or after the application of an embroidery design, leaving a void in said fabric that is integral to an embroidery design. Satin, or similar, stitches applied in tight formation about a section of fabric to be removed, hold in place threads of said fabric after fabric sections are removed.
With the expansion of fabric types that include materials such as organza, organdy, netting, and laces, cutwork embroidery has expanded to include a second fabric layer applied over said fabric voids in a cutwork embroidery design. Said second fabric layer is often of a lighter weight and lower thread density than fabric in which cutwork sections are removed.
In traditional cutwork, stitch construction about cutwork sections of an embroidery design does not undergo shearing forces when opposing forces are applied along the plane of said fabric. However, applique cutwork involves stitching a second, often lighter weight fabric, to a foundation fabric to cover fabric voids integral to a cutwork embroidery design stitched on said first fabric. The seams binding both layers of fabric are stitched along the edge of each cutwork section and concealed by satin stitches, or similar concealing stitches.
Often seams used to join two fabrics in applique cutwork are insufficiently stable to endure shearing forces along the fabrics' plane that would otherwise be considered normal to ever day use. As a result, most garments and other fabric items embellished with applique cutwork as used infrequently to minimize repeated wear and stress on the seam construction of the applique cutwork.
Furthermore, applique cutwork applied to garment construction often apply the second fabric layer to the back of a cutwork embroidery design, leaving the second fabric layer intact as an additional layer to the garment. The applique fabric is sized and attached to the garment in manner that allow said applique fabric to undergo shearing forces along the fabrics' plane in greater proportion than said foundation fabric. Such construction techniques waste materials, especially in large scale manufacturing, while producing undesirable effects that can only be applied to a limited number and type of garments.
As a consequence, people have tried to develop a method for creating applique cutwork using a sewing machine. Unfortunately, while most methods to date have accurately reproduced applique cutwork embroidery using a sewing machine, with greater uniformity, the need to construct an applique cutwork seam suitably stable and durable for every day use still persists. Additionally, the preferred method of constructing applique cutwork for garments is wasteful in its fabric construction, potentially requiring more labor and a higher skill level to perform.
- BACKGROUND OF THE PRIOR ART
Thus a need exist for a method for performing applique cutwork embroidery, using a sewing machine, that is equal to or better in appearance and durability to hand stitched or machine sewn applique cutwork embroidery and can be performed in a manner suitable for more efficient construction of garments and other fabric articles.
In prior art, a method used to perform applique cutwork embroidery using a sewing machine uses partially removable stabilizer. Also said method does not address applique cutwork seam construction suitable for normal, daily wear and stress. In addition, said method does not address embroidery on the applique fabric. Furthermore, said method calls for removal of excess applique fabric after all stitching is complete, limiting the scope of the overall applique cutwork embroidery on the foundation fabric and choice of fabric that may be used for applique.
Another method to perform applique cutwork embroidery with a sewing machine applies embroidery to the applique fabric. However, said method does not allow for machine embroidery designs that span both foundation and applique fabric. Furthermore, said method does not address applique cutwork seam construction suitable for normal, daily wear and stress.
Another method uses an embroidery sewing machine and removable stabilizer to adapt traditional machine embroidery applique designs to create applique cutwork embroidery. However, the method requires the intermediate introduction of partially removable stabilizer to stabilize the cut fabric edges of a cutwork embroidery design to complete stitching of said embroidery design. This method leaves one side of the embroidery design unsuitable for display. Furthermore, said method does not address applique cutwork seam construction suitable for normal, daily wear and stress.
U.S. Pat. No. 2,169,590 to Myers; U.S. Pat. No. 2,215,834 to Magliano; U.S. Pat. No. 4,512,274 to Campbell; and U.S. Pat. No. 1,764,848 to Moffatt are methods for seam finishing by folding under the fabric edges. However, methods do not apply to my invention. U.S. Pat. No. 6,241,081 to Holden; U.S. Pat. No. 6,176,271 to Sayers; U.S. Pat. No. 6,267,068 to Fickers; and U.S. Pat. No. 6,431,221 to Wrigley connect two fabric edges with loops and a pin. However, methods do not apply to my invention. U.S. Pat. No. 4,580,514 to Hanyu and U.S. Pat. No. 2,122,526 to Kattermann use a machine with two needles and a looper. Neither method uses a conventional sewing machine. These methods do not apply to my invention. U.S. Pat. No. 5,141,140 to Moffett-Hall, U.S. Pat. No. 5,531,176 to Johnson, U.S. Pat. No. 4,427,472 to Trager, and U.S. Pat. No. 1,723,729 to Goldberg show methods of creating applique. However, the methods do not include embroidery or cutwork. U.S. Pat. No. 3,226,732 to Zerille is a method of reverse applique using a sewing machine, but is not this invention. U.S. Pat. No. 4,754,719 to Takken is a method to temporarily secure applique fabric in the hoop while being stitched in place, but does not involve cutwork. U.S. Pat. No. 6,364,356 to Keshavaraj is a method for reinforcing a fabric seam capable of enduring large shearing forces, but is not my invention.
- SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
While some of the aforementioned methods produce applique cutwork embroidery designs with a sewing machine, the durability of the applique cutwork embroidery is such that items manufactured with these methods are relatively fragile products, requiring special handling and minimal use in order to preserve the applique cutwork embroidery design.
The primary object of the present invention is to provide a method for producing applique cutwork embroidery using a sewing machine (preferably one that is computerized and has digitizing software) which duplicates the appearance of hand stitched applique cutwork embroidery;
Another object is to provide such a method that yields applique cutwork embroidery having an even more enhanced, perfectly stitched appearance than that of hand stitched applique cutwork embroidery;
An additional object is to provide such a method, which produces a seam construction suitable for using applique cutwork embroidery in everyday garments and other fabric products in which said products undergo normal, daily wear and stress;
An additional object is to provide such a method, which reduces the amount of material required to produce applique cutwork embroidery in garment construction;
Still another object is to provide such a method, which increases the types and combinations of foundation and applique fabrics that can be used to produce applique cutwork embroidery;
Yet an even further object is to reduce the complexity and skill required to construct applique cutwork embroidery, thereby reducing the labor required to construct applique cutwork embroidery and increasing the commercial viability of same; and
Furthermore, another object is to reduce material cost of clothing and other fabric articles produced with applique cutwork embroidery designs by employing a method suitable to improved material conservation.
The present invention accomplishes the above and other objects by providing a method of producing machine applique cutwork embroidery, of sufficient durability for normal, everyday use, while greatly expanding the types and combinations of fabrics that can be used to do so. Furthermore, the present invention expands the concept of applique cutwork embroidery to allow for machine embroidery designs that cascade over both foundation and applique fabrics.
The method employs a foundation fabric and removable stabilizer, which bind together with concentric underlay stitches about a cutwork section binding said foundation fabric and removable stabilizer together. Examples of removable stabilizer material include, but are not limited to, water-soluble or heat-removable plastic, cloth or paperized fabric.
Concentric underlay stitches should be in rows of at least two, in which the rows are approximately parallel to each other. The normal, cross sectional distance between the inner and outer rows of concentric underlay stitches should be nearly as long as the width of the satin stitches, or similar concealing stitches, that will eventually cover said concentric underlay stitches.
Once said concentric underlay stitches are sewn and each cutwork section is defined, remove fabric from said cutwork section of said foundation fabric, using the inner most row of concentric underlay stitches as a cutting guide, leaving said removable stabilizer intact.
Place applique fabric on top of a cutwork section, covering said cutwork section and all associated concentric underlay stitches with said applique fabric.
Bind said applique fabric to said foundation fabric and removable stabilizer with more concentric underlay stitches. The second set of concentric underlay stitches should be stitched in the same manner as the first set, as at least two rows of stitches, approximately parallel to each other, and in approximately the same location as the first set of concentric underlay stitches.
Trim excess applique fabric from the applique cutwork embroidery. Use the outer row of concentric underlay stitches as a cut guide for cutting said applique fabric, without cutting any underlay stitches.
Apply zigzag stitches on top of concentric underlay stitches, overcasting the inner most and outer most rows of concentric underlay stitches to complete applique cutwork seam construction.
Apply, as appropriate, a decorative embroidery design stitched to applique fabric. The embroidery design may cascade over both applique and foundation fabrics, where appropriate, thereby allowing the decorative stitches of the applique cutwork embroidery design to take on a contiguous appearance across both foundation and applique fabrics.
Cover said applique cutwork seam with machine satin stitches, or similar concealing stitches.
Finish stitching the balance of the embroidery design onto the foundation fabric
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
Upon completely stitching an applique cutwork embroidery design, remove removable stabilizer. When the stabilizer has been removed by the appropriate method, as determined by the type of stabilizer used, the applique cutwork embroidery design is complete. No further trimming of fabric or threads is required.
In the following detailed description, reference will be made to the attached drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a top view of an applique cutwork embroidery design obtained by prior art;
FIG. 2 is a top view of an applique cutwork embroidery design obtained by my method;
FIG. 3 is a top view of a fabric with concentric underlay stitches and representative cut line before fabric is removed;
FIG. 4 is a top view of FIG. 3 with a cutwork section of said fabric removed;
FIG. 5 is a top view of FIG. 4 with an applique fabric placed on top;
FIG. 6 is a top view of FIG. 5 with said applique fabric stitched in place and trimmed about the outer row of concentric underlay stitches;
FIG. 7 is a top view of FIG. 6 with zigzag stitches applied on top of concentric underlay stitches;
FIG. 8 is a close up view of zigzag stitches overcasting all rows of concentric underlay stitches and associated fabric cut edges;
FIG. 9 is a top view of FIG. 7 with machine embroidery design stitched on top of and spanning foundation and applique fabrics;
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
FIG. 10 is a top view of FIG. 9 with satin stitches covering zigzag, concentric underlay stitches, and associated cut fabric edges.
For purposes of describing the preferred embodiment, the terminology used in the reference to the numbered components in the drawing is as follows:
- 11. foundation fabric
- 12. removable stabilizer
- 13. concentric underlay stitches
- 14. cutwork section
- 15. cut fabric edge
- 16. applique fabric
- 17. zigzag stitches
- 18. applique cutwork seam
- 19. machine embroidery design
- 20. satin stitches, or similar concealing stitches
Referring now to the drawings, FIG. 1 shows applique cutwork embroidery design performed by prior art.
As shown and describe in relation to FIGS. 2-10, the present invention uses at least three layers of material, a layer of foundation fabric 11 a removable stabilizer 12 and an applique fabric 16.
FIG. 3 illustrates the application of concentric underlay stitches 13 about a cutwork section 14 of an applique cutwork embroidery design, binding together foundation fabric 11 and removable stabilizer 12.
FIG. 4 illustrates removal of foundation fabric 11 from within the inner most row of concentric underlay stitches 13 about a cutwork section 14, leaving removable stabilizer 12 intact.
FIG. 5 illustrates application of applique fabric 16 to a cutwork section 14. Applique fabric covers said cutwork section and all associated concentric underlay stitches 13, before being stitched in place with concentric underlay stitches 13. Said concentric underlay stitches are stitched as at least two rows of stitches, approximately parallel to each other, and in approximately the same location as concentric underlay stitches shown in FIG. 3
FIG. 6 illustrates removal of applique fabric 16, about the outside of the concentric underlay stitches 13 using the outer row of said concentric stitches as a cut line guide.
FIG. 7 illustrates stitching of zigzag stitches 17 on top of and overcasting concentric underlay stitches.
FIG. 8 provides a close up view illustrating zigzag stitches 18 overcasting all concentric underlay stitches 13 and associated cut fabric edges 15, completing construction of applique cutwork seam 18.
FIG. 9 illustrates stitching machine embroidery design 19 onto both foundation fabric 11 and applique fabric 16.
- DESCRIPTION OF ALTERNATIVE EMBODIMENTS
FIG. 10 illustrates application of satin stitches 20 concealing applique cutwork seam 18 and associated cut fabric edges.
With FIG. 9, a machine embroidery design is stitched onto both foundation fabric 11 and applique fabric 16, following completion of applique cutwork seam 18. Completion of zigzag stitches 17 before stitching a machine embroidery design 19 is not imperative. Zigzag stitches 17 may be sewn before, during, or after stitching machine embroidery design 19 onto applique fabric 16.
Furthermore, while stitching a machine embroidery design 17 onto applique and foundation fabrics 16, as an integral part of this method is a significant improvement over prior art, said embroidery design can be omitted in order to create a more traditional applique cutwork embroidery design.
Additionally, due to my method of constructing an applique cutwork seam 18 using a sewing machine, the choice of foundation and applique fabrics 11, 16, and combinations there of, can be expanded beyond the traditional use a lighter weight applique fabric with respect to a foundation fabric.
Still further, while stitches of an applique cutwork embroidery applied solely to said foundation fabric are sewn at the end of my method, said stitches may be applied before, during, or after the sequence of my invention, as outlined in the preferred embodiment, with minimal impact to the final result.
While only a few embodiments of the present invention have been described in detail hereinabove, all improvements and modifications to this invention within the scope of equivalents of the claim are covered by this invention. Some improvements include but are not limited to:
Using the same thread in the top and bobbin of sewing machine to produce a finished look on both sides of an applique cutwork embroidery design.