BEVERLEY POTTER: My embroidery story

This is Beverley Potter’s embroidery story. Thanks for sharing with us, Beverley!

If you have an embroidery story that you would like to share, email it to me at

It all started several years ago in 1998 after my dad passed away. It was sad losing my dad but he had left me a little sum of money which I didn’t want to waste and have something to remember him by.  I already had an ordinary sewing machine and made clothes for my two daughters and loved the idea of being able to embellish and personalize them more. At the time I was living in England and there was to be a big event in a city near me, a grand expo with all types of glorious sewing equipment, fabrics and notions. It was at this show that I made my purchase of my first embroidery machine a Brother Super Galaxy 2000 which I thought was marvelous. Technology was not so advanced as it is now but to me it was magic. I was able to purchase a couple of different cards with designs on and it came with software PE Designs 2, for the computer which was a 3.11 windows machine which seemed at the time so fast and capable. 

I dabbled a bit trying to do my own simple designs, to a little degree of success, but I used mainly designs on the pre purchased cards.

In 2000 after a year of complex problems we decided to leave England and start a new in France, which was an extreme adventure, living for 12 months in a small caravan then into a bigger building in a barn for three years until our completely renovated longere was finished.  

Everything went on hold, most of our belongings in storage for that time, so, when eventually I managed to get my embroidery machine unpacked and tried to start using it, technology had advanced, computer operating systems changed and unable to use the design software and new software to expensive to purchase I used it very little, unable to get the card reader to connect and communicate no way of transferring designs the machine, it became redundant and only used the sewing machine part when clothes needed mending.  

Fast forward to 2012 when we moved yet again this time to central France, this time our belongings were in storage for a shorter period of time.  By Christmas of 2012 our first granddaughter was born and I had the urge to start making things for her. Taking another look at my old machine sat in the corner not being used to its full advantage. We once again looked into the possibility of getting software to work, updating the software, I was able to get PE Designs 8, solved the problem of getting the designs on to the card reader and designs on to the machine.   The advancement of technology and perhaps the knowledge by the manufactures that there were people out there with perfectly good older models but unable to use them, helped getting the machine back into working order. I was able to produce some lovely items for my granddaughter with some beautiful designs purchased over the internet, being able to download with such ease. but not really got into designing my own designs.  After a couple of years, a couple of things broke on my machine my husband was able to repair and get working but eventually it became harder to get the pieces I needed for that machine to work,  after the speed controller went and a couple of other electronical pieces my embroidery adventure came to an end.

 I had become resigned to the fact that embroidery passion was over as there was no way I could afford a new machine,  But in Jan 2018 I was blessed, lucky to see an advert for a Innovis 4000d for sale in the south of France about a 2 hour drive, It was at a VERY VERY good price. The sewing machine worked but the owner had had a problem with the embroidery unit there was an error which came up and was unable to use the embroidery part of it. I asked several questions over the phone about the problem but the owner wasn’t to clear on the exact problem. She had been told by a local repair agent it would cast more than a new machine to repair and had convinced to her to purchase another newer model which she did. My husband and I took a chance and decided to go look at it even if we couldn’t get the embroidery part working the sewing machine side of it would be better than the other old sewing machine I have. Three hours later we were looking at the machine tried the sewing part good but as the language was in French didn’t fully understand the message showing when plugging in the embroidery unit and the owner didn’t want us to change the language over to English ( we would have put it back to French afterwards), she just wanted rid of it, it was taking up too much space!!. 

We parted with our 200€ and took it away. Another 4 hrs. later in the comfort of our home, Language changed and screwdrivers out my husband dismantled the embroidery arm cleaned it out of fluff and where there was a sensor stuck down, he freed it and its been working perfectly ever since.  Except for operator error of course.

Now I have pe designs 10 software and trying to learn how to digitize and so thankful that I found the OML embroidery university facebook page and the brilliant Videos on You tube. Trying to devote more time to it. As ever, life has its way of turning things upside down and in turmoil, Now entering in to another difficult period, another potential move either back to England, or to another part of France, separation from my husband with hopefully a swift and painless divorce, freedom from mental emotional abuse.  I hope to be able to continue with learning the process of digitizing and be able to be self-sufficient in the future.  I am enjoying being part of the OML family and have to admit I am AN OML video addict watching every video as and when I get the opportunity.   Sue and Don are such an inspiration and just love their   presentations

8 sewing room hacks that are amazing!

8 sewing hacks that you will love!!

This video is about sewing tools and hacks from the dollar store. If you are a beginner sewer or embroiderer or a sewer embroiderer on a budget or check these dollar store hauls. Some of the sewing tools that we found are great sewing tools for beginners to keep your sewing room organized, and also to keep your sewing tools close at hand. These are some sewing tools must haves that will keep you on your sewing and embroidery budget. The dollar tree and some really good budget sewing tools! This is an amazing Dollar Tree Haul for 2019! Come shop with me and check out my DT haul! Are you on an embroidery budget? Are you a beginner embroiderer or beginner sewing and need to get some handy sewing tools for your sewing room? Check out these 8 awesome sewing room hacks that will help you get organized and make embroidery life easier! All of the items are from the dollar store (Dollarama) and are inexpensive additions for your embroidery room. We checked out the Dollar Tree In this video, I am going to show you how to get your sewing room organized and helpful tips and tricks to make your embroidery life easier! From organizing your sewing machine feet to hooping with ease to keeping your sewing scissors or applique scissors handy with a pretty hanger!

Lace Sweatshirt – step by step instructions! Gorgeous!

I love lace!! check out this video and learn step by step how you can take some lace embroidery designs from Angela Wolf’s Lace collection and stitch them perfectly on an old sweatshirt! Lots of tips and tricks on using the camera on the Brother PR1000E too!

My Anita Goodesign Story: Close to my heart.

Grab a coffee or tea, I am going to tell you a story. This is my Anita Goodesign story, and I am going to explain to you why Anita Goodesign is close to my heart.

My embroidery journey started around 15 years ago, when my kids were little and I was a stay at home mom. This is when I started loving embroidery and learning how to digitize. Within a year, I had formed my own embroidery business and was working very hard, with long hours no days off. Well, I still do that now, working on the business embroidery and then making videos on my “free” time. I am not complaining, I love to work hard and accomplish even the impossible tasks. Around this time, Anita Goodesign started and became (and still is) one of the biggest embroidery companies around. Oh, how I drooled over the designs – so pretty, lots of bright colors and gorgeous fabric. I purchased a few designs, but I never got around to stitching any of them. I moved these designs from computer to computer, backing them up on drives thus saving them for “someday” when I could stitch them out and hang them on my wall.

Fast forward a few years when Anita Goodesign started their website and had all of their design packs on display. Wow. I was thrilled that I could at least see the designs – have you seen the roses designs where they decorated jeans? Yeah, that one got my attention. I loved it. I kept going back to the website to peruse and be inspired and dream of the day when I could actually stitch these designs and be creative, true to my “out of the box” embroidery style. I wish I could be that lucky to be able to get and use the Diamond club designs and those amazing books. I was happily dreaming and being inspired by everything on the website.

Fast forward a few more years, and I finally got the time to do some Anita Goodesign stitching. Luck had nothing to do with it. It was a heart attack. Yep, I was 48 years old and had a heart attack. Not cool, universe. Not cool.

So, what the heck does a heart attack have to do with embroidery? I had to slow down, but I also had to get up and do things. I wanted to do things that made me happy, things that I have always wanted to do and just never took the time to do. This is how Anita Goodesign helped me on the long, long path of healing. I purchased a Halloween Quilt design that I had my eye on for a long time and started working.

I love the background fabric!

Don went out and bought me the exact fabric I wanted and helped me pick out the thread. He also threaded the machine, hooped and helped me stand up. But, I was up, I was happy and I was finally STITCHING ANITA GOODESIGN. The first block probably took me 2 weeks to complete. I could only do a little bit each day before I was too tired to continue. Every day got a bit better, and every day I did more. And more. I loved the design and how each block looked when I finished stitching. I powered on, stitched more. Kept working hard at moving and keeping busy. It was awesome. I felt lucky, happy and calm, because I had waited for 10 years to stitch this design. And I was doing a great job. A dream come true!

I told Don, my wonderful husband, that I had been coveting the All Access books for years – I loved the idea of the books full of gorgeous embroidery designs, silk fabrics, beautiful Floriani threads and so much more. Don insisted that I get a year’s worth of all access, plus all of the gifts you get. Yep, the time of my life picking out all of the designs that I had dreamed of for so many years. Another dream came true.

Fast forward one more time to last week. Last week we traveled from Canada to Charlotte, NC to go to the Anita Goodesign sale and see their offices. Like, see inside their offices – see the work in progress, the machines, the workflow. All of it. The embroidery nerd that I am had so many questions. What software do you use? What software does Stephen Wilson use? How do you do this? How do you do that? These were all questions that I had wondered about for years. Yeah, I am a nerd.

Look how happy I am!!

How does it feel to have your dreams come true? Overwhelming. Really, Really overwhelming, but absolutely awesome. I don’t think Taylor or Lane or anyone else had any idea how much that trip meant to me or how my brain was screaming like a little kid in a candy store the whole time. I boldly walked in there with my Zelda Shield backpack, exhausted and at the same time so excited, and asked Taylor all of my nerdy questions. The coolest part? He answered them all. So. Freaking. Cool.

I gotta be me.

Every month that I get the All Access Books I am thankful and very happy. When I do the videos looking through the books, my happiness, excitement and enthusiasm is real and is from the heart. It’s a big book of ideas, colors, creativity and embroidery designs. It makes me happy.

Both my kids love the Anita Goodesign All Access Books

That is my Anita Goodesign story. The Halloween designs that I loved so much made me get up every day and accomplish my dream and recover at the same time. I struggled, but I was doing it. I worked hard on myself while taking time to breathe a bit and do things that I wanted. For all of that, I am very thankful.

It’s true!! Invite me back, PLEASE!

So thank you to everyone at Anita Goodesign. Your hard work, creativity, and amazing books inspired me to get up after a heart attack and keep going. Everyone welcomed me into the offices. Y’all Let me be an embroidery nerd. You helped make my dreams come true. Even if I have some bad health days or my heart medications make me feel terrible, I can open up a book and be inspired, slow down and do what I can in the day.

This is why Anita Goodesign will always be close to my heart. Literally.

My next goal is to have 100K subscribers to the channel and get a Youtube Play button award. Big goals, I know. Help me make it happen.

Until next time

Stitch your dreams, you never know what can happen

Sue B

We went to Anita Goodesign in Charlotte, NC and bought you some embroidery designs!

Let me first say that this was the BEST TRIP EVER! It was a 12 hour drive from Canada, but worth it! We did some serious Anita Goodesign shopping and had a tour of the Anita Goodesign office where all the magic happens. Yeah, it was a dream come true. All of it.

Well, we did it! We traveled 12 hours by car to get to the Anita Goodesign big Garage Sale in Charlotte, North Carolina. In this video, I am going to show you exactly what we got. It was seriously so much fun, I loved it all! First I am going to show you the thank you package that we received when we made our purchase – such a nice thank you gift in a pretty little box! All for FREE. Next on the video is what we purchased, and most of the machine embroidery designs we purchased are for YOU. Yes, seriously, that is what we did! We have around 200 Anita Goodesign Full, Mini, project and heirloom packs to give away on the channel. There are new embroidery designs, older embroidery designs too. There are tons of in the hoop designs, applique designs for beginner embroidery to advanced embroidery. Do you want to learn patchwork? There is a set of designs for you in my new stash – and you can win it for free! How about large applique scenes? yep, got that too. for any hoop size! If you want to learn how to stitch machine embroidery designs, each embroidery design collection has a complete step by step instructions to show you how to DIY embroidery projects. Applique, ITH in the hoop embroidery are just the beginning – there are so many designs for free for YOU, I don’t even know where to start! We have invested in this channel – nothing in the video was given to us, we paid for everything. We are investing in YOU and want to give you free machine embroidery designs and all we as in return is participation in the OML Embroidery youtube channel! watch, LIKE, comment and SHARE the videos. Shout it out at the top of your lungs to get everyone to watch the videos!! You can do it! Imagine what we are going to give away next? Your embroidery machine will thank you! Even if you are a beginner embroiderer, you will notice the difference between Anita Goodesign machine embroidery designs and other embroidery designs. Your embroidery machine (even if it is a beginner machine) will be happy!

We have invested a lot in this channel, so we hope to get likes, comments and shares from you guys to keep the channel growing. We can do this!


Print templates for embroidery placement. Y’all gotta do this! Part 1

Precision embroidery design placement: Use Templates for basic placement.

This is Part 1 of Embroidery placement. Part 2 will give you a short cut and make perfect placement so much easier. Stay tuned for Part 2 this week – you will be surprised at how easy it is with this “new” simple and effective method. Don’t worry, you will love it!!!

Another blog on hooping skills?  Yes, but this one will tell you how to perfectly place your embroidery design on any item and hoop it all properly. Templates are the way to go.  If you are not using templates, stickers and/or air erase markers to place your embroidery designs, then you are missing out on some basic embroidery skills.  Properly placed embroidery designs will make all the difference.

Although hooping may be getting boring by now, this is exciting to learn, and will save you a lot of time and effort and money on ruined items.   This is the best way to get our designs placed properly.  If you are not using templates, you should.

Not using Templates?  Why not?

Just about every embroidery program out there has a way that you can print your design out.  I am willing to bet that most people don’t bother to do this.  For some designs and some garments, it is a very important step. Anytime I am going to be embroidering a shirt, or a garment of some type, I will print out the embroidery design at a scale of 1:1 so it is the actual size of the embroidery.  I will then cut it out and “try it out” on the shirt that I am working on.  

You can make some real discoveries when you try out the embroidery before actually stitching.  How on earth can you figure out placement if you don’t have it to move around?

Hold the template in different places to find the right place for your design

Sleeve placement is always tricky!

Some of the discoveries are huge – placement is only one of them – you can change the entire look just by moving the design around, or combining it with other designs.  Have you ever finished a beautiful embroidery design on a shirt, only to put the shirt on and the embroidery is too high?  Or not centered?  Or tilted to one side, even slightly?  Or there is too much space around it and it doesn’t look right?.  Yes, we have all done it.  You either wear it because it is OK, or you do it all over again.  I won’t wear or gift any embroidery that is just OK.  Everything I produce is AWESOME, and you should do the same.  It is ALWAYS better to do some prep work before stitching, then to have to stitch all over again.  After all, everyone can do OK embroidery, right?  I can hand my machine over to my daughter and she can stitch something out and it would be fine.  Just fine.  But I can place that design on a shirt collar, on jeans, shoes, etc.  and precision place that design for perfect results!.  You should always do this too!

Here are the basic steps for placement of any embroidery design, on any fabric or garment that you need to precision place it:

  1. Print out the design in 1:1 scale.
  2. Cut out the design – you don’t have to make it perfect, just enough that you can see the shape of the design.
  3. When you print the design, you should see an X or crosshairs or a circle in the middle of the design – keep an eye on that, you will need it.
  4. Pin or tape the template to your garment.
  5. Put the garment on, or have someone help you here. If you are making a shirt for your husband, have him try it on (see pictures above – I used Don as my model).  You will be surprised to find out that your initial placement is probably wrong.  Shirts look different on different people and you will have to adjust the placement so it looks good.
  6. Look at how the embroidery sits and looks where you placed it. Move it around and try different things to make it look how you want.  Then look again, make sure you have it right.
  7. Take an air dissolvable marker, or chalk – something that you can use and remove later – or even placement stickers – and mark the center of your design on the fabric, or securely tape the template in place.
  8. ***Hoop the correct stabilizer AND garment, and get the marked center of the design in the center of the hoop.
  9. Embroider and enjoy.

I need to add on to number 8 above, because you should not make a guess at the center of your design vs. the center of your hoop.

***Using guides to line up material and embroidery (point 8 continued)

Once you have followed the steps above, and are ready to hoop, there are a few more things to do.  You need to be able to clearly see the center of the design that you marked, and you need to match that up with the center of the hoop for perfect placement.   There are a few ways of doing this:  using placement stickers, using the template that you have printed, and marking the center of the design and drawing guidelines with air erase markers.

Let’s start with placement stickers.

If you don’t have any placement stickers, you can easily make these stickers yourself!  All you have to do is buy some sticker dots, and then with a ruler and a pen, you can draw out the vertical and horizontal lines on the sticker.  This doesn’t take much time – you don’t have to worry about it being straight up and down – you can rotate the sticker when you are putting it on your garment.  If you don’t want to use stickers, you can use the template to line everything up.  Just make sure the template doesn’t move when you are getting it ready to hoop! I like to add my stickers to the garment, and remove the template because I think it is easier to keep the sticker in place. Take your garment off and take it to the hooping station.  Refer back to the template for stabilizer information, and make sure you use the correct stabilizer for the material that you are using. Once you have eyeballed the placement, and hoop (but not too tight) it is time for those plastic grid things that came with your hoops. When you look at them, you will notice the grid of course, and probably some small cut outs here and there that fit in perfectly with the hoop, and also and most importantly the exact center of the sewing field of the hoop. It usually has a small hole in it too, and I find this handy! All you have to do is line up your placement sticker or lines drawn with your air erase pen, line it up with the plastic grid, make sure everything matches and then tighten up the hoop. I leave the plastic grid on the hoop after I have it tightened and check it again – just to be sure that nothing has moved. I am pretty careful when tightening the hoop, so it doesn’t move much. If it is off a bit, then don’t pull on the fabric, loosen the hoop a bit and reposition.

I make my own placement stickers to mark the centre and match up the lines

Template with no stickers:  This method may be a bit tricky if you don’t do it right, but it is easy to line up the grid. Securely tape the template to the garment in the position that you want, and carefully remove the garment and lay it down on your work table or hooping station.   Same procedure as above, hoop the item with the template on it, eyeball the center of the design and the center of the hoop and then add your plastic hoop grid to your hoop.  Line up the lines on the template with the lines of the hoop grid, and make sure the the center of the hoop grid is exactly on the center of the template and all of your lines match up.  Remove the grid and the template and you are ready to go.  Again, when you are adjusting to make sure you are all lined up, be sure not to pull the fabric and stretch it.  As long as you template stays in place, it is easy to line up the lines with the hoop grid!

Using Air Erase Markers.

Follow the instructions above with the template placement.  You can use air erase markers or fabric chalk to mark the center of your design from the template, but also remember to mark the horizontal and vertical lines on your fabric with dots or marks.  If you look at the picture above, the horizontal and vertical lines are in red on the template. Before you hoop your garment, lay it out on your hooping station flat and take a ruler and your air erase marker or fabric chalk and connect the dots to form a cross on your fabric.  If you find it difficult to see the dots, you can still use a sticker to mark the lines.

Once you have drawn out the lines long enough to extend to your hoop, then you can start hooping.  Be careful not to pull the fabric to get the right placement – you do not want to stretch the material (that’s bad and will ruin your embroidery when you un-hoop) and take your time.  Patience.  Do it again a few times – you will get this.  Once you can see that the lines you made on the garment are perfectly lined up with the marks on the hoop, you are ready to go.  Pop that hoop down and tighten it up.  Check it one more time, and you are ready to go.  If you line up the marks with the marks on the hoop, you will know that your design will be in the exact place that you want it to be.  Exactly – not crooked, not too low or too high, exactly where you want it.

It does take a bit of practice to get the position right, but it will make a BIG difference on your final embroidery.  There is nothing better than having some cool embroidery that looks great, no matter where you put it on a shirt!  There is nothing worse than crooked embroidery, embroidery in the wrong place, or off position embroidery.  Those mistakes ruin everything!

As a last note, when you are playing with your templates, you might make some discoveries!  And one of the discoveries may well be a new placement!  If you have a small sized embroidery going on a shirt, and you think that it has to go left front chest, try it on the sleeve, or closer down to the cuff?  Or what about on the back of the hood on a hoodie (those look GREAT by the way).  You might find a better place for it that gives the shirt a different and awesome new look.

Templates:  use them every time you are placing embroidery on something.  With a little practice, you will have great results.

Stay above everyone else trying to make it in embroidery.  Hoop properly, stabilize properly and place embroidery properly.  You will have better embroidery, better items, and even better gifts than anyone else out there!

My advice for today:  stop accepting “ok” for embroidery and shoot for the stars and go for the best embroidery you can do.  Stop taking shortcuts that only lead you back to OK.  Do it, and do it right.  You may be surprised at how people react to your work!

Happy stitching!

Sue Brown OML Embroidery

Think outside the embroidery box with Anita Goodesign!

Think outside the embroidery box and get creative with Anita Goodesign! With a few quick edits, you can take a quilt block and transform it into an amazing design for shirts, jeans or just about anything. You can do these edits in ANY software. Keep in mind that I am not changing the size or altering the stitches in any way, I am simply removing some stitches. I am using the China Blue quilt design from this month’s issue. It should be clearly noted that even when you edit an embroidery design like this, the design still belongs to the digitizer – so you can’t sell your edited designs. Have fun!

Think outside the embroidery box and GET CREATIVE!!!

In this video, I am going to show you how to take a machine embroidery design from the Anita Goodesign All Access May 2019 issue called China blue and turn it into a gorgeous repeating embroidery design for a shirt! If you don’t feel like quilting or creating a quilt block, then you can transform the machine embroidery quilt design and make a design that you can embroider on a shirt! you won’t believe how easy this is, and how beautiful the results are! Hatch Embroidery 2 (the Hatch digitizer level of the embroidery software) makes changing an embroidery design easy and fun. Here are some Hatch embroidery basics in this video and geared towards beginner embroidery and beginner embroidery digitizing. We start off with a quilt block embroidery design from Anita Goodesign. Of course, you can’t embroider that on a shirt, that would be strange, BUT YOU CAN carefully change a few of the embroidery objects and edit the embroidery design. Please make sure that you do not change the size of the embroidery – this is a stitch file, I am only removing elements, not changing any sizes. Anita Goodesign gives you 5 sizes of each design so you can pick the size of the embroidery design that will work best for you. Once you isolate the pretty embroidery design objects, you can start with the embroidery basics with the tools: copy, paste, change the angle and my favorite tool the circle multiple tool. I can’t wait to stitch this out on my Brother Dream Machine 2 embroidery machine. This machine embroidery design is going to look fantastic on my shirt!


Until next time,

Happy stitching!

Sue Brown

OML Embroidery/OML Embroidery University

Anita Goodesign Book Clutch reinvented

Video coming soon! I created this from a fake book safe from the dollar store and stitched out the design and added extra designs on the side of the book.

Valentine’s Week Begins NOW!

Welcome to the first day of Valentine’s Week! The first project that we are going to work on is a beautiful applique quilt square that you can add your own creativity to and create a one of a kind square!

Create your own Valentine’s quilt square

check out the video and learn step by step in Hatch Embroidery Software, PE Design 10/11, Embrilliance and Embird Studio! You can create this design in ANY software!!

Add some lettering, give the lettering some style, and you have a quilt block!!

Until next time,

Happy Valentine’s stitching!