Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Applique Method

This is my absolute favourite and the only method I like to use for appliqué "freezer paper and liquid starch". I promised in a previous post that I would show how I do my appliqué.

1. Trace all appliqué shapes onto dull side of freezer paper (reverse shapes as needed).
2. Cut out each shape on traced line.
3. Iron on "wrong" side of fabric (pictured above).
4. Ruff cut a generous 1/4" around each shape. You're not looking for that prefect 1/4" here.
Here are all the supplies I need for preparing my shapes.
a. Liquid Starch
b. Clover Mini Iron
c. Seam Ripper
d. Small Saucer
e. Artist Brush (available at dollar stores)

5. Spray a small amount of starch in the saucer and add a couple of drops of water.
6. Take the artist brush and dip in starch mixture.
7. On the right side of fabric shape, using the artist brush wet the seam allowance with the starch mixture (without soaking the fabric)
8. I use the seam ripper in my left hand and the Clover Mini Iron in my right hand.
9. Using the seam ripper to hold the seam allowance while ironing with mini iron. The iron will dry and press the seam allowance to freezer paper side.
10. Continue around shape until seam allowance is all flipped in and starch has dried from ironing.
The seam allowance will stay flipped over because of the starch. Hold the iron for a few seconds to let the iron dry the fabric. I use the iron on the hottest setting but be very careful it gets VERY HOT. The best part is that if you don't like how your shaped turn out ie points showing up around the circle, you can re-wet and start again. Be careful with this as the freezer paper doesn't stand up with wetting too much. That's the reason I tell you to wet the right side, it keeps the water away from the freezer paper as much as possible.
Here is what it looks like when the seam allowance is all dry. The smaller circle is where I've taken out the freezer paper. You can see how it holds very well. Now you are ready to place on your background fabric and start attaching the applique shapes.
See the star has some funny ends showing. I'll trim these just a little and then when I hand appliqué I will use the needle to push under the remainder of the ends sticking out. I've used this method for all kinds of shapes and sizes, even tiny circles.
Here is my layout ready for pinning or I like to use Roxanne's glue to hold in place. I only use a few tiny drops around the seam allowance and no pins to get in my way. This block is part of a kit I bought at The Quilted Crow....oh I guess a couple years ago now. The best appliqué thread I've found is called Invisafil and it's truly invisible when you sew with it. People don't believe me until they give it a try and then are totally amazed at how you can't see the stitches. The other nice thing is that you don't need every colour, I've been using one colour for all the shapes and it doesn't show.

A small update on my 9-patches....15 of them completed...

Happy Stitching.


Unknown said...

Thanks Wendy, now I know what to spend the extra $$ in my wallet on...lol... Will now go and check out the website for the thread.

Debi said...

Thanks for sharing your applique method. I always like to try new techniques. I have never gotten the hang of needle turn, so this technique may work for me.

Karen said...

I love this pattern. I just bought a kit for it and am anxious to make mine, especially after seeing yours. Do you hand or machine applique. Going to try this method. I usually do needle turn. Thanks - karen

Darlene said...

This is exactly the method I use with a few differences. I trace onto the shiny side of the freezer paper with a fine tip marker then iron it onto the dull side of another piece of freezer paper - this will provide extra stability to the paper. I've never added water to the starch - great idea. I use a stenciling brush and instead of a seam ripper I use a stiletto.

I'm definitely going to try the Invisafil thread - what an excellent idea. Which 'color' do you use, Wendy.

And, by the way I love that project you've prepped - it's great!

Thanks so much for the excellent tutorial. :-)

Vicki W said...

Thanks for the applique tutorial! Your applique is beautiful.

Libby said...

Although I recently switched to needleturn - I love this method of applique. It is surely a no fail method.

Carole said...

Thanks Wendy for showing your method. I may just try that for machine applique. I tend to use water soluble glue to hold the edge down. The paper helps stabilize the shape as I sew around using a blind stitch. I do like your method for stars. I sometimes have difficulty with the needle turn method when it comes to stars. The block looks lovely! What pattern is that? For thread, I like silk. I only have the basic colours and it works out great for me! Thanks for sharing!

Melanie said...

I love your block-- I'm completely tired of burning my fingers--- Santa is bringng me one of those irons. I've always flirted with them...You've proven they're worth it...

Rose Johnston said...

Thnx Wendy, that looks easier than tacking them... love the applique u used as an example!!!

Knot Garden said...

Great instructions and photos, and that block looks like a really nice pattern.

Pam said...

Great tutorial. Do you take the paper out from all of the pieces before you stitch them down?

I just do the needle turn applique. I've heard of people using glue on the fabric to hold the seam allowance but never spray starch. I think that would be much better than glue and make a nice crisp edge for stitching. Good idea.

Andrea said...

I tried this method a few years ago but was so heavy handed with the starch that the paper was practically welded on and I couldn't get it out. I don't have much success with needleturn so may try this again with a bit less starch - lol !

Beertje Zonn said...

Thanks for sharing your applique method.
Kind Regards,


Anne Ida said...

Thank you so much for a great tutorial, Wendy! I'll have to try this technique sometime!

...and I guess I'll have to wish for a mini iron for my birthday *lol*

Nicole said...

Fantastic tutorial Wendy! I have been struggling to master that method lately. I think the key item I was leaving out was the seam ripper. I was getting frustrated, the edges were not cooperating, my freezer paper was disintegrating, and worst of all I was melting my gel manicure! I will give it another go, thanks to your terrific lesson.

swooze said...

Thanks for sharing your process. I will be on the lookout for this thread.

Nan said...

Wendy! What a truly marvelous tutorial! I have never been inclined to try this applique method, but I most certainly will now! Your instructions and photos are perfect!
Thank you so much for sharing!!

Judy said...

So do you remove all the paper before you stitch down? That's always been by hesitant with paper is having to cut the background to ge tit out. I'll try this with removing the paper on some of my circles and see how I like it! Thanks!

Laura Lynn said...

I just found your blog and it is wonderful! I've been planning on doing a small applique quilt hanging as a "break" from doing teddy bears. Your tutorial has inspired me to actually do it! Thank you!

Leanne said...

Great Tutorial thank you very much I have just used it for a wall quilt and even the small leaves turned out well. I will have to look for that thread I wonder if it is available in Australia.

Stef said...

Love this method! I finally conquered applique, with freezer paper, of all things!

Anonymous said...
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Shontelle said...

Thanks for the great tutorial. I am keen to give this a go. What type of needles do you recommend for applique?

Anonymous said...

Thanks soooo much for such a wonderful tutorial
and for taking the time to putting it together and sharing it !
I'm just beginning to venture into quilting/patchwork/applique world and this is definitely one of the methods I will be trying out 1st.

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Great applique tutorial Wendy! I do my applique the very same way, however, I use 3 sheets of freezer paper (all fused together) for each shape. It holds up better with the water & starch and you can use it at least 5-6 times on each project.

cyniree said...

This is David Taylor's method.

Pine Valley Quilts said...

Thanks for sharing, I use this method also and find it works well when stitched down by machine and you really can't tell the difference.

Unknown said...

This is a great tutorial! I hope it is ok but I linked it to my blog : )
XO Frances

yelto said...

I was taught to use two layers of freezer paper as it will be stiffer. You have a great tutorial.

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