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Thread: How to applique

  1. #1

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    Hello...I'm trying to teach myself how to applique (doing "The Witch Is In" pattern and I'm stuck. I'm doing the freezer paper method and I'm at the point where I have the pattern cut, ironed on the freezer paper, cut out the fabric and now what? Do I peel off the freezer paper and then sew the shoes, etc. onto the main fabric or do I leave the freezer paper on the shoe when I sew it onto the main fabric? When I applique do I turn the raw edges under or not? The directions that came with the pattern really aren't very specific for first timers. Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    Senior Member 1234Irene's Avatar
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    Will be watching this, thanks for posting, trying to learn myself.......

  3. #3
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    A number of ways to do it.

    If you cut the fabric 1/4" larger than the pattern, leave the freezer paper on, pin the piece to the main fabric and turn the 1/4" under and do a blind stitch (by hand) to sew it on.

    If you didn't cut the fabric 1/4" larger, then take the freezer paper off, pin the piece on and sew with your sewing machine.

    I do my appliqueing by hand and do the first method. It gives a cleaner look to the finished product and leaving the paper one helps keep the pattern true......

  4. #4
    Super Member LindaR's Avatar
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    I use freezer paper also....its an extra step but I like it...I cut the freezer pattern out exactly on the lines and then iron to fabric, cut out using 1/16 to 1/4" all around. I then take the paper off the fabric and needle turn it down. The MAIN thing you have to determine is if the pattern in in REVERSE, then it must be ironed on the WRONG side of the fabric. The pattern usually tells you "All pieces in reverse" so check. good luck, so relaxing...

  5. #5

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    I've seen some appliques where the stitching shows on the fabric. How do I know if it's supposed to show or not?

  6. #6
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    when you use freezer paper- it is normal to leave a turn under amount outside each peice (did you do that? anything from 1/8"-1/4") there are lots of u-tube videos- and tutorials here for needle turn applique-
    if you are doing raw edge applique a fusable is usually used instead of freezer paper- no turn under allowance- the pieces are cut out on the lines- then fused into place- then machine stitched down.
    machine applique the stitches usually show- needle turn applique they do not- or you can use a blanket stitch if you like the look of the blanket stitches showing- blanket stitch is usually used when working with wools- heavier fabrics with no turn under.
    it all depends on how you want your finished project to look- and the products used-
    start with checking out some tutorials- videos- and deciding what kind of applique you are doing.

  7. #7
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Are you doing hand applique or machine applique?

    Freezer paper is my favorite machine applique technique. I trace the pattern on the dull side of the freezer paper, iron it to the wrong side of fabric, cut the fabric a little less than 1/4" around the freezer paper. At this point a lot of people use a glue stick to turn the raw edge of the applique; I prefer to use my finger and some old-fashioned Elmer's paste that comes in a jar (smells like mint).

    You turn the edge only on the parts of an applique that will show. Not familiar with your pattern, but my bet is that the feet would go underneath the dress. In that case, the top of the feet would still be cut beyond the freezer paper, but would not be turned under; the raw edge fabric of the feet will slide under the dress.

    What I do at this point is assemble the complete applique, using typing paper as a backing. I would machine applique the feet to the dress, for example, using a very small "bite" into the fabric. Afterwards, I tear the paper backing away and have a complete applique.

    I machine applique the entire piece to the backing. After all appliques are finished, I turn over and cut out the backing material inside the applique. Then I dip my finger in water and dampen all the freezer paper edges, to soften the paste. Once the past is soft, I remove the freezer paper from the back.

    A couple of caveats. (1) It is a very good idea to stabilize the backing fabric. I heavily starch mine before cutting the background, using a 1:1 solution of Sta-Flo and water, so I don't have to use any other stabilizer. (2) If you are cutting blocks for background, cut them bigger than required, then trim to size after you have finished the applique.

    Of course, all this advice is worthless if you are doing a different type of freezer paper technique.

  8. #8
    Junior Member frannella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CindyGruen
    I've seen some appliques where the stitching shows on the fabric. How do I know if it's supposed to show or not?
    Cindy--I highly recommend Sharon Pederson's "Rose of Sharon" video. You can catch glimpses on YouTube <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cz3ZnXNRwGk> and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kStGk...eature=related>.

    "The Rose of Sharon" video is a first rate visual tutorial on the basics, options, and techniques of applique...Very instructive. She also offers another tutorial which I haven't seen --" Applique for the Terrified Quilter, but it's on my wish list.

    I think the upshot is a quilter's personal preferences and aesthetics, and possibly a consideration of how much use/washing the quilt will get--I think turning under a 1/4-inch seam holds up better than raw-edge applique.

    Regardless, turn under 1/4-inch seam with invisible or decorative machine stitching, raw edge completely encased in satin stitching (especially suited for very small applique pieces), hand sew, etc., etc.--are all viable options. Sharon recommended a combination of techniques in the construction of the Roses of Remberance quilt featured on her video....

  9. #9
    dd
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    My applique method is different from these. I have photocopied my patterns onto index paper(stiffer), I'm doing Sunbonnet Sue and Overalls Andy.
    I lay the pattern face down on my fabric and cut a 1/4" allowance to turn under. I then turn that under with the iron with the pattern on the fabric. You may have to clip curves and points. I think sharp point like star points are the hardest. If you starch your fabric first it works even easier. When they are cool you can take the pattern out the turned under edged stays put, pretty much. I then pin them to the fabric and stitch them down. Make sure you have the pieces layered properly - feet under dress, bonnet over dress.... You can use the buttonhole stitch to applique them down, if you want but remember that is going to be seen so make sure they are even.
    You can find a book in the library with instruction too. While videos are good, I like being able to refer back to a pic when I need it. I have dial up and it just takes too long. I just finished appliqueing my SBS and now I need to sew the squares together.

  10. #10
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    wish I could help you, but when I did that pattern I did in fusible..much faster!

  11. #11

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    Okay...how did you do it with fusible? Like I said I've never appliqued before so I just chose to start with freezer paper. I'll do the other way if it's easier.

  12. #12
    Super Member leiladylei54's Avatar
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    I use "sewable" Heat and Bond. Very simple to use but make sure it's "sewable" or it will gum up your sewing machine needle when trying to applique it on.

  13. #13
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    I did the witch is in and used fusible. took me a few responses to realize you said freezer paper. so, are you hand or machine appliquing this? I vote for fusible, iron on all the pieces, then satin stitch around each piece doing those that are "under" first so subsequent satin stitching covers the ends. Clear as mud?

  14. #14
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CindyGruen
    Okay...how did you do it with fusible? Like I said I've never appliqued before so I just chose to start with freezer paper. I'll do the other way if it's easier.
    If you buy a package of fusible, the directions will be on the back of the package.

    My favorite fusible is Steam-a-Seam Light. Assuming you want to machine stitch around the applique edges, then make sure that the fusible you buy is a "stitchable" fusible. Some of the very heavy fusibles are not meant to be stitched through and will gum up your needle. All of the "lite" fusibles can be stitched through. It's only the heavy ones that you have to be careful about and read the package.

  15. #15

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    Okay....I'm gonna try this tonight. Thank you friends very much for your help. I'll let you know how it turns out.

  16. #16
    Senior Member 1234Irene's Avatar
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    Yes, Thanks, I've been watching too, lol

  17. #17
    Junior Member frannella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dd
    My applique method is different from these. I have photocopied my patterns onto index paper(stiffer), I'm doing Sunbonnet Sue and Overalls Andy.
    I lay the pattern face down on my fabric and cut a 1/4" allowance to turn under. I then turn that under with the iron with the pattern on the fabric. You may have to clip curves and points. I think sharp point like star points are the hardest. If you starch your fabric first it works even easier. When they are cool you can take the pattern out the turned under edged stays put, pretty much. I then pin them to the fabric and stitch them down. Make sure you have the pieces layered properly - feet under dress, bonnet over dress.... You can use the buttonhole stitch to applique them down, if you want but remember that is going to be seen so make sure they are even.
    You can find a book in the library with instruction too. While videos are good, I like being able to refer back to a pic when I need it. I have dial up and it just takes too long. I just finished appliqueing my SBS and now I need to sew the squares together.
    Previews (snippets) of Sharon's videos are available on-line, but they come in a DVD format you can pop into a player and watch on your TV. No vested interest, and I am mostly print-oriented myself, but sometimes it's helpful to see the process (and I don't consider myself a visual learner). There are book versions of these DVDs too. I suggested these resources because they address each of Cindy's questions about process and choices in a newbie-friendly format.

  18. #18
    dd
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    Quote Originally Posted by frannella
    Quote Originally Posted by dd
    My applique method is different from these. I have photocopied my patterns onto index paper(stiffer), I'm doing Sunbonnet Sue and Overalls Andy.
    I lay the pattern face down on my fabric and cut a 1/4" allowance to turn under. I then turn that under with the iron with the pattern on the fabric. You may have to clip curves and points. I think sharp point like star points are the hardest. If you starch your fabric first it works even easier. When they are cool you can take the pattern out the turned under edged stays put, pretty much. I then pin them to the fabric and stitch them down. Make sure you have the pieces layered properly - feet under dress, bonnet over dress.... You can use the buttonhole stitch to applique them down, if you want but remember that is going to be seen so make sure they are even.
    You can find a book in the library with instruction too. While videos are good, I like being able to refer back to a pic when I need it. I have dial up and it just takes too long. I just finished appliqueing my SBS and now I need to sew the squares together.
    Previews (snippets) of Sharon's videos are available on-line, but they come in a DVD format you can pop into a player and watch on your TV. No vested interest, and I am mostly print-oriented myself, but sometimes it's helpful to see the process (and I don't consider myself a visual learner). There are book versions of these DVDs too. I suggested these resources because they address each of Cindy's questions about process and choices in a newbie-friendly format.
    Oh, I know, I loved it when we actually had shows on TV about quilting and sewing but I don't get any show anymore. They were a great help. I've heard they are out there somewhere though.

  19. #19
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    Also, you will want your thread to match the color of the fabric.

  20. #20
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    My office mgr did the "Witch is in" for my daughter as I have called her Mrs. Witch since she was 3 yrs old, dressed as a witch and found out all you have to say is trick or treat & they give you candy!! I have an accounting office & her clients always get a kick out of seeing that hanging on her door! Very appropiate. She used the raw edge applique that I taught her. You start w/ fusible, after ironing your pieces on you go around them twice w/ black thread, the 3rd time is after you are sandwiched. By the way, she is still Mrs. Witch on the intercome and she's over 40 yo

  21. #21
    Junior Member eeraemore's Avatar
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    Thanks for helping Cindy out -- I'm also trying to learn...

  22. #22

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    I didn't get to work on my witch is in project last night like I had hoped...instead had to use up some apples so canned applesauce. Hopefully tonight I'll get to work on my witch. Keep the helpful hints coming. I really appreciate all the comments.

  23. #23
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
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    I used to hate applique.... it never turned out like I wanted. Then I learned a technique that works for me. I trace out the pattern twice on freezer paper. I number the different pieces that will be different fabrics. I cut out one of my tracings and iron them to the fabric's right side. Then I can trim about 1/8"-1/4" larger than the pattern. I use fabric glue to fold the excess under. Since the freezer paper is there, I can see exactly where the edge needs to be folded under. I have used glue sticks and liquid glue.... both work okay. I always use the same color thread as the fabric (that can mean using many colors of thread for one block) so that the thread doesn't show much and I use a small blind stitch to attach the applique to the background fabric. I LOVE doing applique now.... can take it with me to work while I wait a the doctor's office, etc. Good luck with whatever method you choose.

    I almost forgot..... the 2nd pattern that I cut out is a great guide to place the pieces on the background fabric..... it turns out looking like it is supposed to look that way.

  24. #24
    Senior Member grandma sue's Avatar
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    I found a great tutorial on freezer paper applique. It's from Shabby Fabrics. Go to shabbyfabrics.com and then go to their videos. It's a 4-part thing - most are only 5-10 minutes long but she goes step by step. Her name is Jennifer Bosworth and she's really good.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by grandma sue
    I found a great tutorial on freezer paper applique. It's from Shabby Fabrics. Go to shabbyfabrics.com and then go to their videos. It's a 4-part thing - most are only 5-10 minutes long but she goes step by step. Her name is Jennifer Bosworth and she's really good.
    I could not find the videos on this site.
    Thanks

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