Polar Fleece Monogrammed Throw


As cold weather approaches, I am taking inventory of my polar fleece stash.  It is a fabulous fabric with unbelievable warmth, undeniable ease of care and unfailing popularity. A suitable gift for anyone, a monogrammed polar fleece throw is always a winner.

When one of my oldest and dearest friend moved to Maine—MAINE for heavens sakes!!!!–from our  neighborhood in sunny Florida, I was shocked and a little outraged. She is my son’s godmother and my daughter is her namesake.    How could she, who had loved and lived in Florida for 40+ years, leave Paradise—and us— for the frozen North! I was pretty sure she would freeze to death in her charming but ancient 1880 farmhouse overlooking the ocean, while I was  warm and worrying and missing her here in Florida.

For her August birthday and for a modicum of my own peace of mind, I made this throw for her. At least, I thought, she could curl up in the polar fleece with her cell phone and have a hot pizza delivered to her home. Well, she could if they deliver up there during Maine’s 10 month winter and if they could make it up her steep, icy driveway. But back to sewing……

I love Sandy Jenkins Paisley Alphabet machine embroidery collection from Martha Pullen. The letters are 7″ tall and gorgeous. But on fleece, it seemed to me that 7″ of heavy stitching would be a stiff and unpleasant distraction from the soft drape of the throw.

So using my beloved BuzzEdit program, I inserted the necessary stitches to convert the design to an appliqué. A rich ginger brown ultrasuede was used for the “C” and the fill stitches were deleted.  Ultrasuede was also chosen because the feathery stitches surrounding the fill stitches of the C are not dense enough to prevent raveling on a woven fabric.

The contrast between the texture of the fleece and the ultrasuede created interest and the satin filled paisley motifs added yet another texture.

The C was surrounded by a diamond frame design built into my Brother ULT 2003D.  Unfortunately, I didn’t realize that I wanted the frame until I was done with the C embroidery and decided it needed a little more oomph.  So some of the frame stitches are on top of the monogram design stitches.  If I had planned ahead, I could have laid it out perfectly in the embroidery edit function.  Next time that’s what I’ll do.

The fleece edges are finished with the wave stitch on my Babylock Evolve serger. There is much to love about the Evolve, with its jet air threading and no tension dials to adjust.  But honestly, I bought the machine because of the wave  stitch and  I use it all the time.

I like to use a heavier thread, usually variegated  Sulky 20 wt., in one looper and a solid color in the other. My favorite solid thread for this stitch is Sulky 12 wt. cotton, but that is hard to find. I have some old stock Cotty 12 wt. and between the two I can usually come up with a satisfactory combination.

My dear friend Rebecca Kay said that she loved her throw. But she also said she loves the Maine winter.   Hmmmmmmmm….Now I wonder.

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