From: Ontario, Canada
Well, Lisa, I really wouldn't say I do a lot of digitizing. At least, not digitizing that I actually use to stitch out on anything other than test pieces. Just recently I did a peacock feather which I did stitch out onto a computer sleeve for one of my daughters. That took some playing with to compensate for the foam of the sleeve and I rather enjoyed the challenge. Can't really say that I have a favourite type of design. If I see a picture or drawing that takes my fancy I'll digitize it just for some practice. I play around trying different techniques, fills and stitches. I have trouble drawing stick men so need to depend on other people's artwork. Although I did do a pretty nice (if I say so myself) heirloom type of design which I did without artwork.
Now for your blanket stitch problem. The direction that the stitches point depend on which way around the object you place your nodes. Try making a circle setting your nodes in a clockwise direction and then do another in a counter clockwise direction and see the difference it makes when you generate stitches.
If you've digitized something and the stitches point the wrong way, you've got a couple of options. First one is to right click and then select edit. Then up at the top click on NODES then click Reverse Nodes Order. Generate stitches and the blanket stitch should be pointing the right way.
Second option is from in the parameters panel. Up at the top of the panel, just under Width is Mirror Sides with a box beside it. Put a check mark in the box and generate stitches.
To get the smaller stitches, you need to play with the width and min/max length values taking them down in value.
Hope I've helped. Have fun.