Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland







One of my videographers thinks that computerized sewing machines have more computer power than the first Apollo Spacecraft. That no doubt is an exaggeration, yet in 1979 when I started in business I would have never dreamed that a machine could embroider and stitch with a touch of a button!

Today I’d like to showcase a unique way of using your embroidery machine. You’ll learn how to create an easy, very usable project—a pincushion—that can be totally stitched in the 4″ x 4″ embroidery hoop. Consider the project as embroidery, patchwork piecing, and traditional sewing—that’s quite a feat!

Embroider, Quilt, & Sew—All In The Hoop

  • First, select and precut fabrics for the project.
  • Print out the “cheat sheet” that goes along with the embroidery.

Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland



  • Transfer the design to your computerized machine.
  • Hoop a fusible stabilizer, fusible side up, and stitch out the first color—the placement lines.

Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland



  • Place a square of fabric over the middle placement guideline.
  • Follow the prompts and let the machine stitch the needle and thread embroidery design.

Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland



Now for the patchwork steps:

  • Align the fabric strips along the outer placement guidelines.
  • Press the start button, the machine will stitch an exact 1/4″ seam.


Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland



  • Sew-press-sew-press. It doesn’t matter if the stitching is in an embroidery hoop, the same mantra applies.

Featured is a mini-iron and a pressing pad that Sharen, my co-worker, made following the instructions in the book, Piece in the Hoop. (Notice the pressing pad under the stabilizer.)


Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland



  • Add fabric strips easily, just follow the “cheat sheet!”

Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland

  • After all the patchwork pieces are added, cover the embroidered/quilted piece with the backing for the pincushion.
  • Stitch the last thread color—it stitches the outer edges. It’s perfect!

Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland

Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland



  • Remove the fabric from the hoop.
  • Trim away the excess seam allowances; turn right side out, and stuff with batting.



Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland







This design, plus 39 others, is found in the book, Piece in the Hoop, by Larisa Bland. Larisa included 20 projects in the book—what fun! Plus, the book includes a video.

Piece in the Hoop Nancy Zieman Larisa Bland

Bye for now,

Nancy Zieman The Blog

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