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Fusible raw edge applique. What are your techniques?

Fusible raw edge applique. What are your techniques?

Old 12-11-2016, 04:22 PM
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Default Fusible raw edge applique. What are your techniques?

I want to make a quilt of vines with a variety of petals from many fabrics. It's an old type of design, but I can't find a photo at the moment to show what I mean. I'm experimenting with fusibles and stitches, and plan to run them through the washer and dryer a few times to see how they survive. However, I hate reinventing the wheel, so I thought I'd ask for some tips from quilters who have "been there, done that".

For example, what's your favorite fusible to use? So far I have tried C&T's wash-away, which I ***love*** for turned edge invisible machine applique (here is it on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1571209190/ ) and Misty Fuse (I iron it to the fabric between sheets of parchment paper). Is there something else I should try?

So far I like my usual invisible machine applique stitch best (5 tiny straight stitches on the background, then 1 stitch into the applique). On turned under applique I use a really tiny bite (.6mm width), but it seems to me that a wider bite looks fine on the Misty Fuse. What type of stitch and what stitch settings do you like best?

And then there is thread. I am not a big fan of nylon or poly monofilament for machine applique these days. Right now my favorite is Superior's Bottom Line in the silver color Bob recommends as blending with everything. It is a pretty fine thread (60wt, I think), and I figure polyester thread will hold up very well over time. Plus, it doesn't stiffen fabric. I have some 100wt silk thread that I tried last year on some samples, but I'm leery of using silk thread because it can deteriorate over time. Anyway, I'm wondering if there is any other fine, strong, almost invisible thread I should try out. Is there any color that blends with everything?

Finally, how well does raw edge hold up over time? I plan on machine washing and machine drying this quilt quite often.

Any comments appreciated.

Edit: I should add I am planning to cut out the petals out of fused fabric with my Accuquilt Go! so I will not need to trace anything.

Last edited by Prism99; 12-11-2016 at 04:27 PM.
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Old 12-11-2016, 04:32 PM
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I'm not a fan of raw edge with anything that gets washed--although your method of sewing it down sounds great. (I like Bottom line too, although I also find Superior's monopoly works well and is not stiff) A friend has used Misty Fuse to hold down the applique piece but not brought it all the way to the edge--she turns under the edge, irons the piece with Misty Fuse on the center back and then machine stitches around the edge of the turned edge--hope that makes sense---looks like turned edge, holds in place well and like you, you can't see her machine stitches either.
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Old 12-11-2016, 05:31 PM
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​I used Wonderunder on machine applique flower baskets about 10 years ago. The buttonhole stitch I used to go around them is still holding but the fabric edges are frayed after lots of washing.
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Old 12-11-2016, 06:22 PM
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In searching the web I found this place where the quilter did some testing on 10 different fusibles:

In my experiments so far, I like a double layer of Misty Fuse best. Think I will try 3 layers as well. The real test will come with the washing machine and dryer. My hope is that increasing the layers of Misty Fuse will decrease the fraying of the edges. It's really easy to use multiple layers of Misty Fuse; just layer everything together, sandwich between layers of parchment paper, and iron. I peel off the parchment paper while the layers are still warm.

One thing I am finding with the Go! is that I am getting the best results using Misty Fuse with the fabric side next to the die, fused side next to the mat, one layer at a time. When I cut the fabric fused to the C&T applique sheets, I also got the best results with fabric side down and a single layer; however, even with that, the C&T tended to have a couple of threads uncut with each pass.

What I've done with my machine applique stitch is to shorten the length and increase stitch width (compared to what I like best for my turned-under edge machine applique).
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Old 12-11-2016, 09:52 PM
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For raw edge, I use either Misty Fuse or Pellon 805 (Wonder Under). I window it (see Pat Sloan's demo here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_m84NtcyUk) regardless. Pellon is heavier, but seems not to fray quite as much. It does produce a noticeably stiffer end result, but sometimes I don't mind that.

I only use cotton thread for applique. For some reason, I always end up with a lot of issues with thread breaks when working with poly or mono threads for applique. I pick colors that match the applique piece & usually like doing a scant 1/8" (2mm or a little less) blanket stitch. It is dense enough to keep the edge fairly secure through multiple washings ... which is the most important aspect to me as I primarily make baby quilts. I've worked with both a Gutermann 50/3 & Aurifil 50/2 cotton thread. I must say that I do love, love, love Aurifil. It comes in so many colors & always produces a stunning result.

Honestly, I was so reluctant to have to change threads so often for my applique, but it really didn't take a ton of extra time & I was so happy I did it. I used the same threads for quilting each of my appliques as I did for the appliqueing & it turned out really nice.

Grey thread will blend the most of any color if you really don't want to change threads at all. Otherwise, I've found that http://www.hawthornethreads.com/threads/aurifil usually has the best deals on the 200m Aurifil thread & they stock every one of the colors. One thing I will share is I would not ever use the variegated or sandblasted colors for most appliques because they variations of the color/saturation will show up differently against the fabric & can make it look like you missed stitching certain sections. For some reason the LQS'es around here often suggest variegated threads as something that will "match" print fabrics, or multi-colored applique piecing; I haven't been successful with them for that purpose.
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Old 12-12-2016, 03:24 AM
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I do wool applique and they say that a product called SOFT FUZE is the way to go for all applique.
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Old 12-12-2016, 06:13 AM
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I always use a close zig zag stitch because of the edges
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Old 12-12-2016, 06:19 AM
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No matter what you do the fraying will show through the stitches. Ask me how I know.
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Old 12-12-2016, 08:07 AM
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There is a version of Mod Podge for fabric that is supposed to help prevent fraying of fabric edges. There's a whole discussion on it in this thread on the Forum from June:

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Old 12-13-2016, 06:50 AM
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Prism, Superior now is carrying a 100 wt. 100% poly thread. It just came out a short while ago and the quilters that have tried it are raving as it buries itself so that it is barely visable. I just got my first cone, so I can't vouch for it myself, but the ones who have used it are raving about it.
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