May 19, 2023

My Love of Miniature - Simply Sweet

I'm still determining what it is about tiny things, but I've been drawn to them since I was a little girl. Dollhouses are like magical little worlds. Before they realized it was a choking hazard to add a small object with the Cracker Jacks, those prizes were my favorite treasures. 

The best part about collecting miniatures is that they only take up a little room!  

When I started designing my new book, Simply Sweet, I wanted to create little embroidery designs that made me smile. Just random little doodles that made me happy and would make others happy too. 

I found the easiest way to design these was to trace 3" circles onto my fabric and start stitching! Sometimes I made some rudimentary lines using a Frixion pen as a guide, but I tried to let it be more free-flowing than when I designed a larger project. I wanted to make them round because they reminded me of the badges I collected as a Girl Scout. I LOVED earning those badges!  

This book has 64 images. How did I come up with that number? It was because 8 designs fit nicely on a page, and I had 8 pages to work with. I also made sure to have a blank page on the back of each design page for easy tracing. You have to be creative when you know you have 24 pages to work with, including the cover!

SIMPLY SWEET  by Kathy Schmitz

The little wall hanging I designed for this book is A Simple Sampling. It features 30 designs, so you can pick out the ones that speak to you.  It's a fun and relatively simple procedure with much-added embroidery work.  

There are also several pincushion patterns in the book.

What will you think of stitching these designs onto?  How about a quilt label? Or make them into little badges to pin to a jacket?  

Another fun feature is that you don't have to trace the designs if you don't want to!  You can purchase the preprinted fabric on Spoonflower!  All 64 designs are printed on their Petal Signature Cotton, and all 64 fit on one yard of fabric.  I left plenty of room between the images for cutting them apart and sewing them into things.  Remember, this is a digital print, meaning the ink is applied to the dry fabric and sits on the material.  This makes the material stiffer to work with than lovely quilting fabric. I recommend washing it before stitching to make it softer.  It also gets softer the more you handle it.

You can find the fabric here - SPOONFLOWER

You must order 1 yard of their Petal Signature Cotton to get all 64 images.

I hope you have fun stitching up these little designs!


Pin It!

October 1, 2021



When I was a kid, my favorite part of Halloween was watching the Charlie Brown special. Now THAT 
will put you in the fright night spirit!

This spooky design, Pumpkin Patch, was designed for my monthly embroidery club One Stitch at a Time.
Members receive a new 6" x 6" design on the first of every month.  We also have a monthly prize, an annual contest with prizes, a private FaceBook group, and members are the first to know about upcoming kits and receive occasional coupons and discounts. Members can purchase any of the older designs for the member price - all for only $2 a month!

If a club isn't for you, these designs are also available for purchase individually for $4.00.
They are available on my website for those of you in the US - MONTHLY DESIGNS
If you are outside of the US the designs are available on my Etsy shop -HERE

Interested in joining the monthly club?
Here's more info -

With this month's design, I wanted to show you an easy way to finish the block.  This method comes in handy for finishing all sorts of smaller projects.

Faux Binding

When you finish your embroidery, press it on the backside.  Using a nonpermanent marking tool (I like the Pilot FriXion Pen) mark a 6" x 6" square with the design centered.  Then draw diagonal lines 1/2" apart for a crosshatch design for the quilting. I didn't quilt through the embroidery, only around it.

Cut a piece of batting larger than the design.  I used a piece that was 8" x 8".  Using a temporary spray adhesive is a great way to "baste" them together. 

Quilt, taking the stitches to the outside line, but not beyond.
Trim the quilted piece to 6 1/2" x 6 1/2" with the design centered.

For the faux "binding" cut 2 pieces 1" x 6 1/2" and 2 pieces 1" x 7 1/2.
You will also need backing fabric - 2 pieces 4 1/2" x 7 1/2"
Using a 1/4" seam allowance, sew the shorter "binding" pieces to the top and bottom and press. 

Sew the longer pieces to the sides and press.

Using a 1/4" seam allowance, sew the backing pieces together on the 7 1/2" sides switching to a basting stitch for the center 3".  Backstitch before and after the basting stitches.

Pin the backing and the top with right sides together.
Using a 1/4" seam, sew around ALL FOUR SIDES.  Don't leave an opening.
I used the side of my pressure foot as a guide and ran it right along the side of the batting.

Trim the corners and any extra seam fabric.

Remove the basting stitches and turn the piece right side out.

Press.  Hand stitch the opening closed.

Stitch in the ditch around the "binding" to finish the piece.
Pretty slick!

Happy Stitching,


Pin It!

June 25, 2021



Ready to stitch the Birch Lane table runner?  Great!  Let's begin!
Most of the stitches used on the Birch Lane Table runner are pretty basic -
stem stitch, straight stitch, whip stitch, running stitch, lazy daisy, and the herringbone stitch.
The herringbone might be the most intimidating if you haven't done it before, but once you get it down, it will be a favorite!

                  Follow along with my YouTube tutorial - To the Point With Kathy Schmitz

The first stitch I'll go over is the whip stitch. This is used to stitch down the birds, the bird's tails, and the cherries.


 The bird's beaks are satin stitched.

 The bird's heads are filled in with a running stitch.

The wings are done with a fly stitch.

The leaves have a stem stitch going straight down the center with diagonal straight stitches as the veins.

The cherries are topped off with lazy daisy stitches
and the cherry stems are stem stitched.

The final stitch I'll show you in the video tutorial is the herringbone stitch.

Hop on over to YouTube to learn all of these stitches!

I would LOVE to see your finished table runner!  If you post a picture on social media please tag me so I won't miss it.
Instagram - @KathySchmitzStitches
Facebook - Kathy Schmitz

Happy Stitching!

Pin It!

June 20, 2021



I've always been a big fan of Moda's toweling so I knew I needed to use it for the background of my table runner.  The fabrics used in the applique are from my new Moda fabric line called Maryland.  The panel in the line was inspired by the Baltimore Album blocks and woodblock prints. Below is an image of one of the designs from the panel.

I didn't use the panel in the table runner, but Coach House Design created a lovely quilt pattern using 2 of the panels.  The pattern is called My Baltimore. The pattern is available at quilt shops now!

Ok, back to the table runner!  At 60" long and 16" wide it's a nice size runner.  Use a longer piece of toweling, repeat a design and you can make it as long as you want!
The pattern calls for 1 charm pack of a Maryland fabric and a fat quarter from the line.
It doesn't use all of the charm pack, but with the variety of fabrics in the pack, the leaves and cherries can all be from a wide variety of fabrics.
The applique is fused so you will need a fusible web.  Lastly, we get to stitch it all up with lovely Valdani 12wt pearl cotton threads.

I'll show you the first steps here on my blog, but you can also check out the video tutorial on my YouTube channel - To the Point with Kathy Schmitz.  Part 1 (applique placement and fabric choices) is available now.  Part 2 (embroidery stitches) will be coming soon!

Gather your supplies:
Birch Lane pattern
Moda toweling Cream and Black #920-181  -  1 2/3 yd
Moda Maryland Trailing Vines  -   fat quarter
Moda Maryland Charm Pack
Valdani 12wt pearl cotton Wheat Husk 0514 and Ebony Almond 0501
fusible web

Trace the applique designs onto the fusible web.  Adhere the fusible web to the back of the fabric pieces used according to the direction. 
In the pattern, it will tell you to use black print pieces for the bird bodies, solid black for the wings and heads, etc. In the video, I also talk about fussy cutting the cherries if you want to give that a try.

After all of the applique pieces have been cut out it's time to lay out the design.  The directions tell you where to place the branches, birds, leaves, and cherries.  In video there are other helpful tips too.

Do you need supplies?  
The kits are gone, but I do have toweling, charm packs, and fabric if you are looking for these items. 

Find the video tutorial here - 

If you enjoy fusible applique and embroidery you might also want to check out my pattern 
16" x 20"
This pattern takes Moda black flannel 22" x 26" for the background and a Moda Maryland Charm pack for the applique (plus a tough of red fabric for the cherry).  This one is also embroidered with Valdani 12wt pearl cotton threads.

Happy Stitching!

Pin It!

May 18, 2021

Tiny Treasures - Trophy Cups

I love looking at old treasures and figuring out how I can make them pretty and useful.  I found these sweet silver trophies and a cup at a thrift store and I challenged myself to create a fun project using the designs from my Tiny Treasures book.
The next time you are out and about, keep an eye out for small silver containers like these.
The largest one is 4 1/2" tall with a mouth 2 1/4" wide. I was looking for a size that would hold a ball of Valdani thread.  Do you see where I'm going with this?

embroidery fabric
Valdani 12wt pearl cotton
 foam core - or heavy cardboard
cording (I made mine out of DMC using a Kreinik Custom Corder)
glue pen - Sewline Glue Pen
vintage silver containers/cups 

Trace the top (opening) of the cup onto a piece of foam core board or thick corrugated cardboard. Cut out the circle. This circle will be the top (lid).
Trace that circle onto another piece of foam core.  This time, cut the circle slightly smaller than the first one.  This is IMPORTANT  - this circle needs to fit very snug inside the lip of the cup. It shouldn't slip down into the cup itself.
Cut 3 circles of batting the same size as the larger piece of foam core.

I used the Moda Mochi Linen Unbleached for this project.  
I stitched up design #2, the nest and eggs, and then gave it a good pressing from the backside.
I traced the larger foam core circle onto the wrong side of the fabric with the design centered.  To see through the fabric, I held them up to a window and used the shadow of the cut-out circle to find the center.

Then I measured an additional 3/4" past the drawn circle and cut out the fabric circle.  

Using a heavy thread, I actually used some of the Valdani 12wt pearl cotton, sew a row of basting stitches around the edge of the circle.

Stack the 3 batting circles on top of the larger foam core circle.
Place the batting and larger foam core circle in the center and pull the thread to gather the fabric to the back of the piece.  Tie a knot to secure.

Now take long stitches from side to side and pull them tight.  The linen I used has a bit of a loose weave so I took a large chunk of the fabric when doing this.

Keep stitching around the entire back until you have a nice finished look on the front.

Now it's time to make the bottom piece.
Cut a circle of fabric larger than the small circle of foam core with about a 1/2" allowance all around.  

Make small clips around the edge of the fabric, but not too close to the foam core.  Using a glue stick, like this Sewline Glue Pen, glue and wrap the fabric around the foam core.

This is the bottom of the finished project. 

This will be the part that fits snuggly inside of the container.  
Now is a good time to check the size.  It should be a very tight fight.

Hand stitch the bottom circle to the top circle, wrong sides together.  Try to be as neat as you can.  
My stitches are small, but they could be a bit neater.

Push the bottom circle inside of the cup.  This might take some pressure at first.  The foam core is a bit forgiving and it can be wedged in for a tight fit.  

Using a Kreinik Custom Corder I made a length of cording the circumference of the cup top plus 3-4" or so.
The rule of thumb I use when making cording is to decide on my finished length x 5.  This is the length I cut my DMC floss.  I use all 6 strands of the floss.
To see how I make cording, pop over to my YouTube tutorial HERE
Using 1 strand of the DMC floss, whipstitch the cording to the edge of the top, larger circle - NOT OVER THE SEAM. See photo below.
Leave a tail at the beginning.  Tie a knot where the cording meets up and knot and trim the ends.  

In this photo, you can see the placement of the cording.  It will sit on top of the cup rim.

How cute is that?!

If you enjoyed this tutorial, make sure you subscribe to my blog.
On your computer, the sign-up tab is on the top right side.  On your phone, scroll all the way to the bottom and click "View web version".

Thank you so much!


Pin It!

May 11, 2021

Tiny Treasures - Frame It!

Looking for another way to use the designs from the Tiny Treasures book?
Frame them!
I'm always on the hunt for little frames so I actually had two of these in my stash already. 
Get creative with the designs!

• For the smallest one, I used design #59 just as it is found in the book. I used the Valdani thread colors listed in the book and I stitched it on Moda Mochi Linen Unbleached.

•The medium size one uses design #42.  With the size of this frame, I decided to add and repeat some of the design elements to fill the area in.  This was stitched using Valdani 12wt pearl cotton Withered Blue P7 on Moda Mochi Linen.

• The largest frame allowed for some fun additions.  I wanted to come up with something that would be cute in a nursery so I chose four images that had short names to write - #2, #22, #49, and #58.
I used the Valdani colors listed in the book and stitched this on Moda Crackle Linen (color).
I also decided to quilt this one with a crosshatch diamond set 1/2" apart.  

Here's how I framed them -
Along with the frames, I used a thick backing board, like a matt board, and batting.

Cut the backing board the same size as the frame opening.

Cut a piece of batting the same size as the backing board.
Cut the embroidery fabric 2" larger so that it can be wrapped around to the back.

I found it helpful to use a bit of spray adhesive to hold the batting to the backing board.  Then I gave the batting a slight spray and centered the embroidery on top.

On the backside of the embroidery I used long stitches, side to side, to pull the fabric taught.

Then make large stitched going the other direction folding the corners in neatly.

This was a snug fit so there wasn't a need to secure it in the back, but you can.
At this point, you can call it good or you can cover the back with another piece of the backing board.

Thinking about framing a design or two?  I would love to see your finished projects.  If you post them on social media please tag me!

Happy Stitching!

Pin It!