Double Giveaway Alert

That’s right there are TWO chances to win something from my etsy shop, Stitches by Sara, on the same day!

You can enter to win at Pennies & Blessings or at The Southern Institute. Go enter both to double your chances! You know you’ve been crushing on a coffee cozy….

Stitches By Sara Collage

Both of these blogs are run by friends that I met through the blogging world, but have also met in real life last year at Relevant. Since then, our friendships have grown and we talk often, even collaborating on a few online projects. (You’ll see more from Jenny at The Southern Institute here at the Happy Brown House sometime soon…she’ll be sharing a tutorial for me whenever little brother arrives to give me a few days to relax and get settled in after childbirth. Yay!)

So, what are you waiting for? Go enter!

Tutorial: How to Applique Without an Embroidery Machine

Ok, so I know that I have an embroidery machine to make most of my cute appliques for my Etsy Shop. However, I know not everyone has a fancy embroidery machine to do all the hard work. Fear not, my friends, you too can add a cute applique to clothing, pillows, or anything else you can think of that needs some extra cuteness without an embroidery machine!

How to applique without an embroidery machine

How to Applique Without an Embroidery Machine:


  • Shirt (or item you are adding an applique to)
  • Fabric for applique
  • Heat’n Bond Lite Iron-on Adhesive (says “sewable” on the package)
  • Pattern for Applique (mine is an outline of Africa straight off the internet)
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Machine
  • Thread


1.  Gather your materials (Forgive me, I switched shirt colors after I took this picture)

2. Iron the Heat-N-Bond Lite on the wrong side of the fabric. Make sure you are ironing the side with adhesive to the fabric…if not, you’ll have a mess on your iron! The smooth paper side should be the part you are ironing. (A word about Heat-N-Bond Lite: There are different kinds. You want to make sure you get the kind that is sewable. If you don’t, it will be really stiff and will get your needle all “gunked” up. Make sure it is the LITE version.) Read the directions if it’s the first time you’ve used Heat-N-Bond.


3.  Cut out your pattern (if you haven’t already).  Flip your pattern and trace your pattern BACKWARDS on the paper of the Heat-N-Bond. If you trace your pattern right side up, your pattern will be backwards when it is time to place it on your clothing. Trust me.

4.  Cut out your applique. Flip it over…see, told you it would look right in the end. :)

5.  Peel the paper backing off the fabric. There will be a “sheen” from the adhesive that transferred to the fabric. Find the proper placing for your applique.

6.  Using the proper heat settings (refer to the packaging), iron the applique in place.

**Oops! I missed this picture….imagine an iron :)

7. In order to make it easier to maneuver my shirt, I removed the bottom portion of my sewing machine. Now I can slide my shirt over the arm of the sewing machine.

8.  Topstich around the applique. Go slowly and stop as needed to turn your needle or adjust your shirt. I did a simple straight stitch, but you can get fancy if you’d like depending upon the stitches you have on your machine. Zig-zag is always fun, but might be hard to control the first time using this technique or if your applique is curvy…like my Africa shape.

9.  Voila!

Love For Africa Ribbon Ruffle Shirt

See, it is easy to applique without an embroidery machine!

Any questions? Ask it in the comments!

Stitches by Sara {Coupon Code Alert}







Show me more!!

Aww, come on…Is that all you’ve got?

Stitches By Sara Collage

This is just to let you know that my Etsy Shop (Stitches By Sara) is open again!

I’ve been working very hard behind the scenes trying to get everything ready to go and it’s time to sell. I’ve still got a few more things that I’m hoping to load in the next few days, but for the most part, the shop is stocked and waiting for customers!

ALL proceeds from the shop go towards our adoption. Thank you in advance for your part in bringing our little one home!

Since I love my blog readers and the support you’ve been giving us, how about a coupon code? Use the code “HBHblog15” to receive 15% off during checkout! (Coupon code expires: 7-20-11 at 11:oo PM so act fast!)

Thanks for subscribing!

Sponsor Spotlight: Kottage on 5th

When it was time to order blogger business cards for my trip to Relevant, I knew exactly where I’d go to get the perfect design–Kottage on 5th! And they did not disappoint! My card design looked amazing!

Here is the front…

Here is the back…

Super cute, right? Let me tell you about the designer…


 Kottage on 5th is THE go-to shop for adorable designs. Daina, the owner and designer, is so talented and an absolute joy to work with on customized designs! Kottage on 5th specializes in adorable, one-of-a-kind announcements, invitations, and holiday cards….using your very own pictures! Just look at this cuteness…

Kottage on 5th does all the work for you–including cropping and editing your picture for the design! Once you receive your custom card design, you upload it to your favorite photo-lab to develop digital pictures–Walmart, Target, Snapfish, etc.–even one hour! You may also print at home or at a copy shop like Kinko’s. Your options are limitless–saving you money! You choose how many to print–on your budget!

In addition to invitations, announcements, and cards, Kottage on 5th can design coordinating thank you’s, matching return address labels, party favor/goody bag tags, cupcake toppers, banners, etc. to make your event complete! I’m already thinking of the fun we could have with this superhero design for Jonah’s 4th birthday (in July)…

Want to know the other thing I love about Kottage on 5th? Daina is a Christian mommy that values time with her family. She’s set hours for her Etsy shop and sticks with them. She closes up shop during the weekends to spend time with her family and stay balanced. Love it!

So, what are you waiting for? Go see Daina at Kottage on 5th to get a jump start on your Holiday Cards–The Christmas Card Countdown has begun!

Kottage on 5th can also be found on Facebook! Go become a fan and register for giveaways!