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I can’t believe how indispensable this tool is. Recently, I was stitching 24 onesies, a daunting task even when it’s not crammed into a heavy travel, teaching schedule. I think the only thing that kept me sane during the process was thinking of the new parents of twins who would eventually receive the onesies.  I know they haven’t slept more than 2 hours at a time in over three weeks so my task paled in comparison.


Back to the embroidery – the placement for center chest embroidery on onesies was simplified with the Center Chest templates from the Children’s Perfect Placement Kit.

Eileen's Machine Embroidery Blog


Instead of using a round target sticker, I used the rectangular version and placed it lengthwise on the target area.  This gave me a clear visual guide when hooping the tiny garments.


I hooped Floriani Wet ‘n Gone Tacky  water soluble adhesive stabilizer in a 5” x 7” hoop for my single needle machine. Then I scored the protective paper and remove it to expose the sticky surface.  I placed the hoop under PAL2, aligning the beam with the hoop’s centering marks.


I turned the onesie inside out and lifted the back of the shirt away from the front to expose the target sticker. Then I carefully placed the center of the target sticker under the beam.


Once aligned, I smoothed the shirt to the sticky stabilizer, working above the target and then below.


When it comes to quilting, PAL2 can multitask. I use it to find the center of a block.


And to make sure my seams are square.


I’ve been know to use it to trim blocks and cut fabric strips – all without using a ruler!  I just align the beam with a line on the cutting mat, place the fabric edge on another straight line and then slice on the beam of light. Makes large cutting jobs fly by!

Do you want to win a PAL2? Leave a comment over at SewMamaSew and you’ll be entered in their Handmade Holiday giveaway.


The winner of last week’s assignment:

Have you stopped by the Embroider This! website lately? They have a selection of linens, blanks and baby items that are ideal for machine embroidery! Stop by their website and tell us what item you like best.

Post your comment and one lucky winner will be randomly selected to win a $100 shopping spree on the Embroider This! website! Embroider This is the name you can trust for Unique Gifts, Fine Linens, and Blanks for Machine Embroidery! Over 200 Free Designs for immediate download!

Embroider This!

The winner is… Lori W.! “I love all the hankies and the boxes to give them in are a wonderful gift. All the new guest towels in all the colorful bands would make a great gift and also would be fun to keep! I seem to give most everything I make away!”

Congratulations Lori and keep something for yourself this time!




  • Gail Beam

    The PAL2 looks like a really neat tool to have for machine embroidery!

  • Barbara

    I love mine!

  • Martie

    This tool looks like the perfect thing to make my embroidery easier. Great invention!

  • Sharon

    My friend has a PAL, and loves it. I would love one too.

  • Sharon

    I left a comment over at SewMamaSew.

  • Mary

    Just what the doctor ordered 🙂

  • Becky

    I left the comment on SewMamaSew – It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Wait, do I hear a song. I’m dreaming of peace and good will for all. May all your days be merry and bright and Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas to all.

  • Barbara Rowlan Wong

    I love my Pal and would love the addition of Pal2!
    Super idea and sure makes things easier.
    Happy Thanksgiving all

  • Mary Haggenmaker

    I can see where this would be a magnificent time saver.

  • Diane Cockman

    Left my comment over on SewMamaSew. So many prizes and ideas. Thank you Eileen.

  • Carol

    Love that you have discovered other uses for the PAL2! Recently moved and this would be a great addition to my new full basement sewing room!

  • Jean

    The PAL2 would be a great addition to any sewing room….so many time saving uses!

  • Marilyn Kirby

    How I dread trying to get items centered and straight. I would love a tool like this to help me out of my misery!

  • Berenice

    Thanks for the link to SewMamaSew. That’s a site I will revisit. So much neat stuff!

  • Dale Fedor

    I’ve registered at SewMamaSew & waiting for approval. Pal2 looks like it would really help me put my design on my shirts where I would like them. And since I am a new quilter, I REALLY need help making sure my blocks are straight.

  • Ruby Ridgeway

    I got this pal several months ago. It doesn’t work for me. I can never get it to sit right.

  • judy williamson

    I would love to have a Pal 2.

  • Renee

    How were you able to keep the onesie from coming back on itself?

    • eileenroche

      Oh…you’ll have to keep coming back for that information! In the January/February issue of Designs, I’m doing a feature on baby embroidery and I’ll show three ways to hoop a onesie.

  • maria elena

    I would love to have one too, and my family would love me to have one too, so they can stop tilting their heads like I instructs them to in order to see designs perfectly straight!!

    • eileenroche

      Too funny! That comment reminds me of a student I had many years ago, who mirror imaged the word, guest, on a towel. She said she didn’t care she just would just hang the towel opposite the mirror in the bathroom!

  • Michelle Wagner

    I am sorry to post an unrelated post here. But I am in desperate need of assistance. I am trying to sew from the “Designer Handbags.” I am attempting the “Everyday Bag.” I am stuck on the corner peices. I have read, watched videos, everything, can any one please help me? Thanks so much!

    • eileenroche

      How can I help you Michelle?

  • Betsy

    I’ve been intrigued with the PAL2 and how it would improve my embroidery skills…and now it can square up my blocks? Ingenious!

  • Genelle

    I love that the PAL 2 has multiple uses. As I embroidery and quilt I am always looking for various products that will aid me in my projects.

  • Barb

    I have it, just haven’t used it yet. Sure will now I have onesies to do to!

  • Rosalyn

    I have been trying to decide if a Pal or a Pal2 would be best for me. It’s on my Christmas wish list.

  • Shirley R

    Thank you, Thank you!….. for giving us the name of the stabilizer you used for embroidering the Onesies!!! I could not wait to buy the original Pal, and Pal2 is on my Wish List. I think the Pal is the most valuable machine embroidery tool I own; I use it constantly.

    • eileenroche

      Oh that’s so good to hear! I really don’t know how I hooped before PAL – such a time-saver.

  • Nancy Borger

    really, really really want the Pal-2 !! looks like an amazing tool.

  • judit z

    Dream list #1 Pal 2
    Friend is having twins girl and boy perfect idea
    to use tool on her onsies.

    left comment on sewmamasew

    • eileenroche

      Hi Judit – our January-February issue will feature adorable projects for twins! How timely for your and your friend!

  • Kim C

    I would love the Pal-2. It looks like it would be so helpful!

  • KathyA

    A Pal-2 just what my centering problem needs. Item one on the Christmas List.

  • Jane Anderson

    I didn’t think I wanted a Pal-2, but you have convinced me!

  • Donna Schell

    I can’t wait to get a Pal 2 for Christmas. Although I could actually use it beforehand to help me make the gifts I am planning. Christmas may just have to come early for me!!

  • Kathy

    I so need one of these! I cannot line things up, no matter what I do. This tool looks great.

  • Debbie Bernard

    I have one of these. Now I know how to use it!! Thanks

  • Rhonda W

    I love my PAL!!

  • Patricia Lanter

    I am making my Christmas list.
    (1) Extra Large Snap Hoop
    (2) Pal2
    (3) Children’s Perfect Placement Kit
    (4) A Subscription Renewal for Designs in Machine Embroidery Magazine.
    I have been a good girl Santa….

  • e costello

    if you have a serger an easier way to do a onesie is to take out the side seam do your embroidery then serge it up again. that way it lies flat while you embroider.

  • Jane

    Wow, so many people mentioning the PAL2 on SewMamaSew maybe Eileen could donate two over there or give one away here… it is a tough year here in Connecticut, with two hurricanes and one blizzard and our newest snowstorm yesterday. All in 12 months…

    My wish list – 1. PAL2
    2. Designer Handbags by Eileen and Nancy
    3. A new sewing/embroidery machine with large hoops… Santa, I’ve been good…most of the time…

  • Cathy Van Daalwyk

    Just got my pal2 and it seems the support base is awful wobbly it does not hold tight. Is there something missing? I think this is a great idea but shouldn’t the screw hold it to the base tighter?

    • eileenroche

      Hi Cathy – gee I haven’t seen any issues with the PAL2’s base. Do you have the post completely inserted into the clamp? Check that the bottom of the post is past the screw. You’ll have to unscrew the screw until it is almost completely out of the clamp. Then insert the post, and turn the screw so that it firmly holds onto the post.

      • Cathy Van Daalwyk

        Eileen, just before you reply ed to my comment I made contact with your customer service and the nice lady sent me a new clamp. PROBLEM FIXED! I AM NOW LOVING MY PAL 2. Thank you!

        • Cathy Van Daalwyk

          I should tell you the hole that you insert the lamp into is smaller on the new base and the screw is about three times bigger then the original one sent.

  • Wendy

    Great tutorial – helped me to feel more confident in trying to do successful embroidery on a onesie. Looks like a Pal should be on my wishlist! I have the perfect placement set but confess I have not used it yet. I really need to get practice as my first grand baby is due next week!

  • Pam

    Friends are great but a Pal2 could be very helpful indeed!

  • susan

    oh I could use a Pal2, finally a successful way to find just the right spot.

  • MarciaW

    Thanks for the informative post! Now I’m off to SMS.

  • Mary Gordon

    Were the replies taken from both sites? I left one at the other site about using to line up features on doll faces and the trims for their clothes, but I don’t see it here. Should I have left it at both places?

    Anyway there are some wonderful suggestions here and I think it is a very worthwhile tool.


  • Chris Brewer

    I would love a PAL, it loks like it makes life so much easier. is there anywhere in australia that stocks them, as postage from the US more than doubles the price

  • jennifer

    I left my reply. Hoping i came across this post early enough to win! so many generous gifts everyone is giving away!

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  • Cordie

    Pal2. what a wonderful tool. going to be a GreatGrandma # 3 in august and have a lot of work ahead of me and the Pal2 would make everything go a lot faster and easier. Love the web site with all of the great ideas.

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  • Cindy

    This is a first for me. Still quite the newbie, but I can see how thos might be a wonderful tool to use. Thank you for teaching me new ways to make sewing easier to work fun.

  • Vivienne Westwood UK

    I think the only thing that kept me sane during the process was thinking of the new parents of twins who would eventually receive the onesies.
    Vivienne Westwood Online Shop