How to Make an Appliqued-Monogrammed Patch


I LOVE the how versatile a patch can be.  Whether it’s an appliqued patch with satin finished edges or a raggy patch with raggy edges.  A patch can be ironed on (most common way when we think of a patch) or glued on with E6000 (my favorite way due to the ability to stay adhere way longer then Heat-n-Bond Lite).  The glued patch allows you to monogram items that can not be hooped easily with your machine (lots of single needles limit one’s ability to hoop items), items that have pockets on the inside of a bag and can not be stitched shut, and a solid patch allows you to monogram an item that has a busy pattern whereas otherwise a monogram would get lost in the pattern….no matter what color thread choice one chooses on a busy pattern, the monogram always seems to get lost in the pattern. 

Below I explain how I make my patches using simply one of my applique designs.  I demonstrated it using an oval design, but this will work with any patch applique design. 

Materials needed:  hoop, 2 sheets of tear away stabilizer, 2 pieces of fabric, temporary adhesive spray, Fray Check, E6000, craft stick (not shown) and a few drops of water (optional)

The tear away stabilizer will act as your item (example: a shirt) being appliqued. So hoop  your two pieces of tear away.  I used two pieces to give the patch more stability/stiffness. 


Since I know my patch is oval and will be stitched out in the center of my hoop,

I simply adhered my fabric to the stabilizer with the spray prior to stitching out my placement stitches of the applique.   


Not only do I adhere the fabric inside of my hoop, but with my second piece of fabric I adhere it to the under side of my hoop. 

By making a fabric backing of the patch, it will insure that the patch will adhere to the item with the e6000 glue.  If I were to leave the back of the patch tear away stabilizer,

I would be putting glue on something that would eventually tear away……are you with me???  I hope that is not too confusing.  

Some folks call this method floating…..I’m not hooping the fabric on top nor on the bottom.  I am floating it on top and bottom of the stabilizer within the hoop. 


Then place your hoop in the machine to stitch out the placement stitch as well as the tack-down stitch.

This is the underside or backside of the patch once it’s been stitched.

Trim the applique just as you would if you embroidered it on an item. 

This is the top of the hoop.

This is back of the patch on the underside of the hoop.  Trim it just as you would any applique. 

Front….trimmed and ready for satin stitch.


Return the hoop to the machine for the satin stitch and monogram. 


Once the design/patch has stitched out.  Take it out of the hoop and tear away the stabilizer.


There will be or could be a few little remnants of the tear away left behind. 


I put a little bit of water on the tip of my finger and gently rub the remnants away from the stitches. 

My tear away stabilizer is not tear away solvable, but wetting it a little makes it go away. 

img_2837  img_2838

I do the front side as well as the backside with a wet tip of my finger. I also make sure to trim any threads that may show. 


img_2841Once all the tear away remnants are gone, I go around my stitches with Fray Check. 

I would like to believe the Fray Check will act as a protectant coat around my outer stitches. 


I mentioned that I like to apply my patches with E6000 clear glue.  It washes well as well as sticks well. 

NOTE:  It does take 24 hours to cure.

Some people like to put Heat-n-Bond Lite on the back of their patches.  I personally don’t trust HnBL to last as well as the E6000. 

Also HnBL requires heat from an iron and depending on the item, it may not allow ironing.

In the photos below, you will see that I put the E6000 on the backside of the patch and spread it out to the edges with a craft stick.   


The patch is ready to be applied to the item.  My item shown below is a Vera Bradley Hanging Organizer.

The patch works well with VB items for several reasons……

It allows a nice solid area so that the monogram pops on the busy pattern.


It allows a monogram to go on an item that can not be stitched.  The inside of the organizer is filled with zipped pockets. 

I also had a VB Weekender and Ditty Bag in this pattern. 

Neither of those allowed for stitching of a patch due to the nature of the insides of the bags.

When attaching the glued patches to the quilted items.  I placed a clean chopping block inside of the Weekender

to put pressure against something hard. 

The puffiness of the quilting made it harder to put the pressure that was needed on the patch. 

I simply just opened up the Hanging Organizer to put pressure against my hard table. 

It basically lays flat once opened fully. 

The Ditty Bag lays flat and is not quilted so no issues when adding pressure. 

ditty Like I mentioned….a patch can be so versatile.  It allows you to monogram those things that can not be monogrammed the traditional way.

This is also a great way to monogram all the VB backpacks and lunch boxes. (Not just VB items but patterned items)

It eliminates the needles puncturing the insulation of the lunchboxes….if that were ever an issue. Although I have torn insulation before with a monogram. 

Contact me if  you have any questions and ….

happy monogramming!!


I’ve recently been introduced to the latest (at least the latest for this behind-the-times momma) form of social media…..PERISCOPE.

Have you heard of it? Do you scope?

For those of you who may not know what it is, it’s an APP that allows one to broadcast live video to anywhere in the world. My photographer friend introduced me to it. She and other photographers from all over the world “follow” each other. They are able to share behind the scene photo shoots with each other as well as photo techniques, editing tips, etc.

I thought that this might be a great thing for those of us who are embroiders and/or creatives. I’m sure a lot of embroiders and creatives are already “scoping” ….as it’s called when ones does a live broadcast. Now, it is possible that I’m the only one that is late to the Periscope party so again…

Have you heard if it? Do you scope?

I can be found on Periscope as Miss Nola’s Monogramery @RamiParker


Please join me there where I hope to share with you my embroidery and other creative passions. (Coming Soon to the Blog: my soap making adventure

My debut scope will be this Thursday. I’ll be sharing with you a follow up to my last blog post on “How To Make a Boutique Bow”. When you follow me, make sure you turn on the notifications so you will be notified when I begin my live scope/broadcast. Can’t watch it live? A replay will be available for seven days after the live scope.

Can’t wait to see you there!

How to Monogram a Pocket on a “Boyfriend” Shirt

prom shirt 2

Remember the preppy Oxford shirt from the 80’s?  It’s making a comeback and it looks great monogrammed.  This makes me so happy since I love monogram, and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the 80’s. (I’ve been working on my big hair for about 9 months now so I hope it comes back too. I’ve just been letting it grow and wearing it curly. I have natural curl in my hair.)

The Oxford is making its way back to fashion.  I have been seeing it referred to as being a “boyfriend” shirt.  I see it with the collars buttoned and unbuttoned like this one from Old Navy.  It looks great oversized with a pair of leggings or jeans AND of course adorned with a set of initials. 

boyfriend shirt

They are really popular with brides and their attendance to wear as they get ready for the wedding. The brides are usually giving them as gifts.  A few brides even put the wedding date and “Bride/I Do”  on the cuffs.    A big oversized button-up shirt is great for not messing up the hair or make-up. (Notice that this one below does not have a pocket.)

bride shirt 2

 bride shirt

I have even monogrammed a shirt for a friend’s daughter for prom (seen above in the first picture).   And instead of handing down my son’s Oxford to my nephew, I monogrammed it for my daughter to wear with her leggings (seen below).  She is nine.  Her first reaction was “I’m not wearing that boy shirt!”  She changed her mind once she had the hot pink initials on it and especially after she was complimented on it in the grocery store. 

 Shirt 3

I have had great success with adhering the pocket shut prior to adding the monogram.  I use Heat n Bond Lite to close the pocket.  Heat n Bond Lite (HNBL) is double-sided iron-on adhesive.  It can be purchased at any fabric store, Walmart, or even Amazon. 

Materials needed:

Heat n Bond Lite

Medium Cut away stabilizer

Spray adhesive (if using fast frame)

Tear away stabilizer (optional)

Given: iron, thread and machine


I cut a piece slightly smaller than the pocket. 


I slide it into the pocket making sure it is flat in the entire pocket.  I slide it in with the rough side of the HNBL facing down and the paper side facing up. 


I iron the pocket.  I may need to pass the iron over the pocket several times before the HNBL sticks.  Follow the directions on the HNBL for iron temps as well as the suggested heat setting for your shirt fabric.  Steam is not needed for HNBL.


Once the shirt is cool to the touch, I peel the paper backing from the HNBL.  I work my hand towards the bottom of the pocket as I peel it away. 


Then I slip the paper out.


I pass the iron over the pocket again to adhere the pocket to the now exposed HNBL.  This closes the pocket.  I like the stability that the HNBL gives the pocket.  Not only does it give a little stability to the pocket, it keeps the puckering around the monogram to a minimum.  Oxford and other men’s dress shirts are usually made of thin fabrics, and no matter what stabilizer  is used, the weight of the thread/monogram is heavy and usually causes some gathering/puckering around the curves of the monogram.  I have found that closing the pocket helps with this as well as keeps the pocket looking nice wash after wash. 

 Now the is pocket is ready to be hooped or in my case attached to my fast frame. I use a medium cut away stabilizer and spray adhesive to attach the shirt to the fast frame.  Sometimes I float a piece of cut way under it all.  I am sure I over stabilize.

shirt 2

 With this shirt of mine, I used tone on tone for my color choice. 



 Wondering about the cuffs???  I simply pinned them to a piece of tear away that I had attached to my fast frame.  They are one of the easiest things I have ever embroidered.  

 If you have any  questions, please feel free to comment. 

How To Make a Pillow Sham (an Embroidered Pillow Sham)

Let me start by wishing you a Happy New Year.  I hope this post finds you well.   I know I have been missing in action since Summer.  School began, and I found myself embroidering almost everyday until my children went on Christmas Holiday.  It’s a good thing that I don’t have one of those blogs that get sponsored by brands that expect a post or two a week.  They would fire me. 

On to the topic…

Last year (Christmas that is) I found myself with the idea that I would give personalized throw pillows for gifts for a few lucky ones on my list.  I thought that it would be an easy gift that I could personalize with an embroidery design, family name, initials, etc…  I thought all I would need to do was to go to Hobby Lobby and pick a “ALREADY” made throw pillow sham/cover, come home and embellish it with a design suited for my recipient….EASY- PEASY, LEMON -SQUEEZY right????  WRONG!!!  All of the “already” made throw pillow sham/covers/sleeves’ openings were along the bottom edge and did not allow the pillow case to fit on the hoop of my machine in the direction that allowed my design to maximize the area on the pillow.  I’m not sure if that makes sense but I needed the design going horizontal in my hoop but the opening of the pillow was going to allow the design to be embroidered vertically on the machine which would have resulted in a design being limited in size.  I wanted to use the largest size of my designs.  My largest hoop measures something like 12″wx8″h. 

There WENT my idea of giving personalized pillows as gifts to a few folks on my list…or at least I thought. My husband suggested that I SEW a pillow sham so I could embroidery it prior to stitching the case together.  I am not sure if I have ever told y’all that I do NOT sew.  I can sew a seam in a koozie but to actually have to make something with my normal sewing machine is NOT something I can do.  I can not sew detailed instructions from a pattern. Well, that is not totally true…..I kind of can.  I JUST DO NOT LIKE TO SEW.  However, in this situation, I was either going to DIM (do it myself) or think of another gift.  The easiest solution this time was DIM with a little help from a few Pinterest tutorials in which if  you follow me on Pinterest, you can view them. Those tutorials were GREAT, but none of them gave me the steps that I needed to add an applique. I do not know about  y’all,  but I NEED the step by step visuals of EACH STEP.  At Christmas time, I did not have any brain function to engineer all of this together.  SO…..  I add those extra steps in my tutorial below for you (and I’m not going to lie when I state that this is for ME TOO for future pillow gifts).

I also need to stress that I AM NOT A SEWER FOR HIRE.  I made (and will make) pillows for my gift recipients.  THIS IS STRICTLY A TUTORIAL FOR YOU TO MAKE YOUR OWN PILLOW.  I can applique it for you if you don’t embroidery, but you will need to bring me the material marked with the center. 


1/2 yard of fabric of choice

3/8 or 5/8 double-sided hem tape

pillow insert (I used 16×16) 

fabric marker (disappearing/magic/dissoluble)

embroidery design of your choice

The given..scissors, needles, sewing machine, embroidery machine, thread, straight pins, fabric for applique, stabilizer,  possible iron

Pillow Sham

 To make a case for a 16″x16″ pillow the goal is to have a 15″x15″ pillow sham/case/cover. 

If the pillow insert was 18″x18″ the goal would be to have a 17″x17″ pillow sham.

All sides should be 1″ smaller than pillow so that the pillow is nice and “tart” in the sham.

A half a yard of material will work for one pillow as long as your insert doesn’t exceed 18″.


 Trim your yard of fabric to 38″x16″. TIP: I keep it folded as I trim it 16″ wide.

Then it could be kept folded as you cut the folded piece to 19″ so when you open it up, you have 38″ long.

 IMG_0094.JPGThen to keep the short edges from fraying and to aid in the making of a hem, I prepare the edges to be hemmed with the double-sided hem tape.

I used the 5/8″ tape. It also comes in 3/8″. ( If you use the 3/8″, you may need to cut your material down to 37″x16″.)

Run the tape along the short edges and peel away the backing.


Fold your edge with the 5/8″ tape over so you have a partial hem keeping the hem the 5/8″ of the tape.

I hope that makes sense???…..FOLD OVER 5/8″ don’t fold it over more than the width of the tape.


Do this to both short sides of the material/fabric. 

The tape will stick to your fingers. Be patient!!

Just remember it’s not super glue…LOL!!


Once I have both short edges folded over with the tape, I fold the edges over one more time so my raw edge will be sewn under.

I keep this fold 5/8″ too.


I press this fold with the iron. It would not be necessary but I like to keep the fold in place the best I can without adding another strip of tape.

A few straight pins would hold it in place too.


Once your hems are folded, stitch them with the sewing machine. 

My machine is marked with measurement so I can use them as a guide.  I stitched at the 5/8″ marking. 


Time to fold the short side to create the envelope type back so the center for the embroidery can be determined. 

Please note that the material should be right side facing down as you begin to make these folds because the next few steps is in preparation to find and mark the center for the embroidery.

 The fabric should now be somewhere between 35″ and 36″ long with 35″ being ideal.  With it being 35″, that allows for a 15″ front and the back of the sham measuring 10″ in towards the center to create the envelope type back. 

Pillow fold diagramHere is a diagram.  I hope this helps make it clearer for you.  You may find that your material is a pinch longer than 35″ so you may have one fold at 10″ and the other 10″-11″. The goal is to leave about 4-5″ on each side once you over lap them.  I have labeled the next photo for hopefully a better visual. 

Pillow picture diagram 6

My fabric was a little longer than 35″ so when I folded it in to get 15″ wide, I had an edge folding in 11″ and the other edge folding in at 10″.  This left me with a 6″ overlap and 5″ on one side and 4″ other other.  The ultimate goal is to leave 4-5″ from the overlap to the edges of the pillow.   This will allow for your pillow insert to fit in nicely and then lay nicely without a large gap in the pack. 

Now to mark the  center.

Pillow marking Center

Now that the sides are folded in to create the back of the sham, the pillow shame is measuring 15″x16″

(Remember we cut our fabric 38″w x 16″h when we started so now that is hemmed and folded we have 15″x16″). 

To mark the center, simply fold the fabric in half.  Now the fabric is 7.5″x16″.  If your using a cutting mat with measurement on it like I did, mark the center at 8



I add a few more dots along my centers with my fabric marker to help me hoop the fabric in the hoop straight. 

I also had to put an arrow with my marker to show me which way is the top.** 

** This will only matter if your folded back pieces are not an exact 10″.  Mine were 10″ and 11″ so that will matter when go to sew my sides together after it’s embroidered. 


Hoop and embroidery the design. 

Depending on the fabric a piece of “No Show” cut away stabilizer may need to be added.

  This fabric was a thinner cotton so I floated a piece of it between my fabric and tear away stabilizer. 


The sides are ready to be pinned so they can be sewn.  In this step, the right side of the fabric should be facing up. 

The top of the pillow will be folded back first.  It will overlap the bottom of the pillow on the backside of the sham so it must be folded first. 


 I like to use a yard stick to help me fold. 

This is also the step that was important for me to note which one was folded back at 10″ and which one was 11″.  ASK ME HOW I CAME TO THIS IMPORTANT DISCOVERY!!!!  You might notice that in the previous two pictures the designs are different. I’m sure  you know why….   You will get to see my blooper in the final picture of the deer silhouette pillow.  For my pillows after the deer, I made sure the folds were even, and/or I pinned it both ways:

with the top folded back at 10″ and looked at it from the front to see if the design was centered. 

 with the top folded back at 11″ and looked at it from the front to see if the design was centered. 

My goal here is to save you from bloopers, but you may not have any since  you may be a better “sewing engineer” than I am.


Once the folds are folded back with right sides together, pin it in place. 

I pinned at the hems of the overlaps. 

The sham is ready to be stitched

IMG_0110.JPGRemember I made mention of my sewing machine having the measurement guidelines? I am sure all machines do. 

I have owned two in my sewing life in which both had the guidelines.  

These seams should be sewn at 4/8″ (aka 1/2″).  If a 1/2″ seam is sewn on both sides, it results in a 15″x15″ sham.  

 It is also a good idea to do a reverse stitch over the hem areas. 

There will be a lot of tugging at these points so reinforcement will be beneficial. 



I trimmed the seams with pinking shears to limit fraying.

Now the sham can be turned inside out…over to the right side. 


It is ready for the pillow insert. 


 It will need fluffing (also known as a beating of the pillow) to fill out the sham.


It was a blessing that the blooper pillow was MINE! I really don’t mind since most things in nature aren’t perfect and as far as my husband…..

he has not even noticed that our bed has a new throw pillow on it. 


Any questions….LOL!!! Please feel free to comment or email me. 


JumBOW Dots

bow jumbo dots 2

I think of polka dots as one of those timeless-classic prints, or just dots in general have been a classic print throughout the decades.  Whether it be swiss dots, polka dots or random dots, I find that everyone has a crush on the dots.  The chevron print has become popular over the past few years but has been called a “fad” print, but dots have been around for decades.  When I saw grosgrain ribbon in jumbo dots, I knew my girl had to have several new bows.  I thought they would be cute, but I had no idea that they’d be this cute.  This ribbon is available at Girly Ribbons….and guess what????  Girly Ribbons is a Louisiana Girl!!


If you’d like to order a bow from me, please comment or contact me here on my blog. As you can see from the black/white bow above and the red/white bow below, they are not just for initials. 

To order your own ribbon, visit Girly Ribbon  at .  If you’d like to know “How to Monogram Grosgrain Ribbon” click HERE

bow jumbo dots 1

Home Sweet Home “State” Monogram Hats


 I am so proud of the way these hats came that out I have to share it with you here on my blog.   If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen my latest post on these hats.  It was actually a request from a friend/customer.  She asked for the state of Louisiana to be on her hats, and as we sat with each other talking about monograms for her other items, she had this BRILLIANT idea to add her monogram to Louisiana.  Then as I played with her initials in the state, I added a heart over the parish we live in.  Funny enough….. as I told her I was adding the heart, she laughed because she was wondering silently to herself if there was something I could add to the applique to mark her “Home Sweet Home”.

I also took the idea of putting a heart over the cities/parish and placed a fleur-de-lis over NOLA in honor of beloved Who Dat Nation and a paw over Baton Rouge for all of the tiger fans.



To be able to get the applique as close to the bill of the hat and as large as I could, I created it as a patch and glued it on the hat as I do with the raggy oval and circle patches.  If you’d like a state patch for a hat you have, you may bring me the hat or contact me for a patch. If you choose to apply the patch yourself, I will send instructions on how to apply it with the patch.  I have the designs for most of the southern states.  The heart can be placed anywhere in the state that you call home sweet home. 

I have also recently created a page on the blog under both  “DIY Projects” and “Embroidery”  on How to Monogram a Baseball Cap using Fast Frames.  If you embroidery, you may want to check it out.  

Thanks for taking the time and spending a few  minutes with me here on my blog. 


Behind the Scene of Embroidery: The Challenge of Monogramming an Over-Sized Tote

The challenged tote

In theory an over sized tote bag would be an embroiders easiest items to embroider next to a towel.  The fast frames would be used with sticky stabilizer.  The biggest challenge then would be centering the tote on the fast frame…… but not all over sized totes are created equal.  Some are lined with a liner that is sewn in the tote only along the top of the tote as shown in the picture below.  With a loose liner, only one layer can be secured to the sticky stabilizer, and unfortunately it’s the liner layer of the tote.  The layer that will have the monogram on it, will need to be pinned to secure it on the frame. (As shown in picture #5 below) 

Tote challenge 1

Then, as if the liner was not a big enough challenge in itself,  some over sized totes have pockets inside in the front of the bag and in the back of the bag as shown below.  

Tote Challenge

In some cases a tote like this could not be monogrammed with out embroidering the pocket closed, but this zipper pocket was large enough that the fast frame was able to fit inside of the pocket.

Tote challenge 3

The size of this monogrammed depended on what size fast frame was going to fit in the pocket.  I was able to use the fast frame with a 4.5 x 5.25 opening which allowed me to put a 3.5″ monogram on it nicely.  Since the monogram was of the larger size, the font was digitized using the fill stitch. This is stitch is great for totes because it’s a tighter stitch for something that will get a lot of wear and tear on it. This fill stitch does require more stitches which will cost a little more, but it creates a nicer quality of monogram as shown in the last picture.

  Tote challenge 5

Tote challenge 4


014654501b099eced3ff6cdb1072eb2dd111291af4Thank you for taking a minute to understand a little behind the scene of embroidery.