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Thread: I'm entering unchartered territory

  1. #1
    Junior Member Ethel A's Avatar
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    I've never appliqued, really. I sorta have, but I used floss around the shapes (that's what the pattern called for) and now, I want to learn how to hand applique without seeing the stitches. I don't know if I'm making any sense.

    Anyway, with fabric on sale at Joann's, I bought some green fabric for stem and leaves (two complimenting shades) and two shades of complimenting pink fabric (for flowers). I hope I don't fail at this miserably. And, if I do, at least I know I didn't pay "quilt shop" prices for the fabric. I think I can find some tutorials online, but if you know of any simple-to-follow tutorials and templates, I welcome your suggestions. The project that I would like to work on is a square to place over my coffee table. Perhaps something that is 36 x 36.

    This is also my opportunity to learn how to hand-quilt. I $uck at this (excuse my language). I'm hoping to join the local quilt guild after we land in Florida this summer. I hope someone there can mentor me; or I can find a local quilt shop that will hold classes on this.

    Anyway, I'm excited and scared at the same time. I welcome your suggestions and tips. For example, why is it important to cut your fabric at a 45-degree angle to the selvage? By doing this, can you really manipulate the fabric to move in a circle or curve?

    Thanks again!

  2. #2
    Junior Member Ethel A's Avatar
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    Wow!!!!!! Thanks, Loretta!

  3. #3
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Wish I could give you advice but applique really scares me. Let me know how you do.

  4. #4
    Super Member quiltwoman's Avatar
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    Hi Ethel. Don't get discouraged before you start. My tip/hint is get the right tools. I find longer, thinner needles (like millners) are more flexible and allow smaller stitches. Finer thread (silk) is a beauty to work with and probably the MOST important tool of all, thimbles. I use 2 different sized old brass ones with thimble pads on other fingers. I also prefer a small pair of scissors. There's nothing more frustrating than working so hard only to cut your background.

    Good luck and hang in there. You can do it! :wink: :wink:

  5. #5
    sajackson's Avatar
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    I use the freezer paper and glue method. I trace the pattern on freezer paper then iron it to the back side (now I do the front side - I eliminated the removal step) I cut the fabric 1/4 or slightly larger around the pattern. Iron the "seam" fabric to the back of the piece. Then using a glue stick you can "glue" your seam to the freezer paper.

    Your applique piece is ready to sew down.

    I'd be happy to help you with any questions...I LOVE to help others HUGS

  6. #6
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    GOOD LUCK! I can't wait to see what you make

  7. #7
    Junior Member Ethel A's Avatar
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    Thank you for all of your suggestions and encouragement. I went to Barnes and Noble, this morning, and found a great book on applique. I didn't buy it, but I read on some of the 'basics.' One of the lessons I read about was how to make 'stems' out of fabric cut on the bias. It doesn't look all that hard to hand-applique, to be honest. It's the machine applique that intimidates me. But, without practice, I'll never be able to master any technique, right?

    I have the freezer paper, my fabric, the washable glue. I'll need to get some bias bars, I think...but I'll only invest in those if I'm really struggling to make a nice, even stem.

    I'll also need to invest in millners needles (I've never heard of those) and some silk thread and thimbles. I think I may have some of the finger pads. I'll have to check. I'm so excited!!! I can't wait to try my hand at this. This will keep me busy, this summer.

  8. #8
    sajackson's Avatar
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    NO NO NO not the bars! there is a little tool I use from clover...I LOVE it!

    http://www.joann.com/joann/catalog.j...PRODID=prd2791

    If it comes in the width you want I'd recommend these! I use one for stems and it so much easier than the bars.

    ONE other suggestion I think I cut the strips 3/4" I spray starched them first - let them dry - then iron them so they are stiff. When putting them through the "maker" the stiffer material was easier to work with.

    HUGS

  9. #9
    Junior Member Ethel A's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sajackson
    NO NO NO not the bars! there is a little tool I use from clover...I LOVE it!

    http://www.joann.com/joann/catalog.j...PRODID=prd2791

    If it comes in the width you want I'd recommend these! I use one for stems and it so much easier than the bars.

    ONE other suggestion I think I cut the strips 3/4" I spray starched them first - let them dry - then iron them so they are stiff. When putting them through the "maker" the stiffer material was easier to work with.

    HUGS
    OOohhhh! And, they're on sale!! What width do you cut the fabric? Do you cut it 3 x the finished width? Twice? (say, if I wanted 1/2" wide strips, what width do I cut my strips before running them through the bias-strip maker?

  10. #10
    Super Member Shemjo's Avatar
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    I'm piggybacking on this so I can learn also! Thanks for all the good info! :lol:

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