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Applique Beginner Tips

March 4, 2011
A reader recently asked me to post some applique tips for beginners. I am VERY VERY obviously a beginner. I am literally learning as I go.
Still, here are a few things I have learned:
1. Read your sewing machine manual. I knew that I should use a zigzag stitch, so my first tries were basic, fairly large zigzags. But when I went ahead and read my manual better, I found that there was an entire section on applique. It should me the best settings for my machine for accomplishing what I wanted to do. It really works. Just do the homework, and it will cut time.
2. Use a heat bond product. I used Heat’n’Bond. It’s not my favorite, but it definitely helps. I wouldn’t want to try and keep my pieces set to the right place without it. Plus it gives some great stability. However, next time I want to try Steam-A-Seam. It states that the fabric won’t fray, which I think would be great.
3. Use some very basic shapes at first. I am not an experienced sewer, and I tried to do a turtle. I finished the onesie, but it took me about eleventy million tries to get it. I even actually tore the applique off at one point even though I used the Heat’n’Bond. The small little pieces were just hard to work around. I recommend stick with fairly larger shapes with simple outlines.
4. I did not know this when I started doing the applique, but when you need to change directions in your sewing, leave the needle down in the fabric. Then lift up the presser foot and move the fabric around the needle. I guess that’s a pretty basic thing, but I had no idea, and it kinda messed up a couple of things. It worked a lot better to do it the right way with the needle down.
And I guess that’s it for now. Just take your time. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. And be sure to have your seam ripper handy. Because if you’re as sewing deficient as I am, you will so definitely need it. 

And if you’re an expert, don’t hesitate to give ME some tips.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. March 4, 2011 7:09 pm

    Thanks. Just got a new sewing machine. Haven't sewn in yrs. Have you used Under Wonder? Someone rec it to me.

  2. March 4, 2011 7:38 pm

    Happy Friday!!! I've awarded you an award!!! Come over to to pick it up and find the rules!!! See you soon!Congratulations and Happy Blogging!! ~Kortney~

  3. March 4, 2011 11:35 pm

    Great tips–applique is way more difficult to master than people realize!

  4. March 6, 2011 9:49 am

    I am terrified of sewing, but my Sister in Law is about to start a new quilting project, I'll let her know these tips for sure!

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