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Thoughts and experiences with raw edge applique.....

Thoughts and experiences with raw edge applique.....

Old 11-09-2014, 04:44 AM
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Most of my quilts are appliquéd using a fusible and small blanket stitch. I've never had had one come apart yet!
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Old 11-09-2014, 04:55 AM
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Raw edge is the only type of applique I do. How the quilt is going to be used determines how I finish the edges. If it's a wall hanging I do a straight stitch with invisible thread right along the edge. If it's for a bed quilt I do blanket stitch with either matching or contrasting thread depending on the look I'm going for. I have also used a straight stitch on a bed quilt applique and I like the way it looks after it's been washed. I don't ever use a satin stitch. I don't like the way it looks.
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Old 11-09-2014, 05:19 AM
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Since there are a variety of ways to finish raw edge applique, I think the question might be which finish is most appropriate for which type of quilt. I've had satin stitch and blanket stitch hold up just fine with laundering. Personally I would only use the straight edge stitching with a wall hanging that was not intended to be washed.
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Old 11-09-2014, 05:56 AM
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I have done raw edge applique on baby quilts that get washed a lot. I used a fusible to secure the applique and then did a tight decorative stitch around the edge. My machine was older so it didn't have a blanket stitch so I just picked another stitch that looked fine. You can also do a small zig zag if you don't have a blanket stitch on your machine. The applique looks crisp and neat even after washing. I did quilt over the applique as well as some of them were quite large. I'm usually very fussy about things being finished but this worked for me.
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Old 11-09-2014, 07:22 AM
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My mantra for sewing is, "if my machine can't do it, neither can I." I have been blessed with talented machines. Not me, the machines.

I also like applique. And another confession, I like to experiment. And to cut to the chase so if you don't want to read the rest of this verbosity you can get the no-frills message: If you have interesting stitches available to you, consider busing them for raw edge applique. And consider threads that will unite the design with the feel of whatever you are piecing. Now keep reading if you have the inclunation. Otherwise, I wish you a gentle day with time to sew.

I finished a Halloween quilt top (UFO to date) and had lots of bits and pieces left over. Ha! Play time! Flag, pillow, pillowcase, totebag - who knows - just a finished square to this point. But a rather unprepossessing square. Ah, applique to the rescue. A large, black "Boo." Wonky cattiwampus placement. My usual method for securing applique - place on background and sew around very close to the edge - pins, small stitches, loosened upper tension in case of extreme need to rip.

My elderly Bernina 1630 has a respectible number of interesting built-in stitches and the capability of altering them (wider, longer, 180 degree rotation, etc.) I picked a stitch that attracted me for this Halloween experiment, manipulated the stitch, and picked thread - varigated. Note: When all was said and done, I decided the thread pick was important - like the stitch pick. Anyway, varigated embroidery thread, Halloweenish colors.

Back to the stitch issue. The one I picked looked as though I was scribbling on a piece of paper - sort of an impromptu, ratty satin stitch (forgive me Bernina). No regular width EXCEPT on one side and no regular stitch spacing; just back and forth zig zag, alfresco. Perfect for appliqueing around the edge of a big, black "Boo" on an appliqueing/piecing experiment.

My guild and I enjoyed the result. They are used to me hauling in strange things and are very gracious with suggestions and kind words.

Again, consider whatever stitches you have on your machine as well as what thread would add interest as well as attaching the applique to th background. And do have a gentle day with time to sew.

Thank you for your patience,

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Old 11-09-2014, 07:53 AM
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Thank you one and all for your very valuable input - i really appreciate all your input. I think I will certainly play with the stitch selection on my machine and experiment.
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Old 11-09-2014, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by ckcowl View Post
Since you stitch down the edges they are in essence, finished, the difference is they are not turned under. I do a lot of applique, I securily stitch my edges - I do not satin stitch (personally don't like the look) but I do use a small, tight blanket or zigzag stitch often. I have quilts that have held up well through use & laundering for years. It just depends on how you finish your edges
I agree . I do tight blanket stitch and they turn out nice. I am in process of making a double wedding ring in batiks and doing that. Works fine
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Old 11-09-2014, 10:52 AM
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My DM did all hers that way and never fused them and they fray a lot now that they are older. I fuse mine and have no problems with them.
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Old 11-09-2014, 12:02 PM
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I've used it on wall hangings for many years and have also started using raw edge applique on quilts. I recently finished a full size quilt for our DGD last Christmas (she loved it by the way), and I had flowers, hearts, butterflies and dragonflies on the quilt using raw edge applique. I finished it at 5 PM Christmas Eve and we were supposed to be at my son's by then, but I had to finish the binding first. My son grabbed the quilt as soon as we walked in the door (it was hidden in a black trash bag just to be on the safe side, he put it in the washer and then the dryer - it looked great. Since I used a fairly small straight stitch along with some small zig-zag stitches, I think it should hold up, especially since the appliques were put on using Wonder Under, so I think the appliques were fairly sturdy.
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Old 11-09-2014, 12:17 PM
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I've made 2 raw edge applique quilts, never again. I still do raw edge applique, but I use a closely spaced blanket stitch. Don't ever use homespun fabrics as they will fray beyond the stitching.
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