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DIY Crafts: Sew Beautiful Appliques
Use an Open Toe Presser Foot
My Sewing Experience
DIY crafts are very popular today. Today's sewing machines are completely different than they were when I started sewing. I used to be an expert seamstress and made my own clothes, curtains and many other things. The sewing machines were so simple to operate with a basic and simple mechanism. You threaded the machine and the bobbin and adjust the seam length and tension; and you began sewing. Technology has also taken over the sewing world.
I mentioned to my husband several months ago I would enjoy making new curtains and pillows for the boat. For Christmas I got a new sewing machine. I will have to try that again sometime. Maybe I will tell him I would like a Mercedes. I wonder if that would work.
I took a few classes at a local sewing machine shop on how to operate my new computerized sewing machine. I am so glad I did this, as I probably would have figure it all out, but it would have taken a long time. I am convinced that you need to know what to do before you begin reading the instruction manuals. The machine even comes with a needle threader, which is supposed to save time, however it took me many tries to master this simple operation.
I decided to expand my abilities and take a class in doing appliques, as I thought they would be fun to incorporate in my sewing. I guess you all know now that I dabble in many things. I have always been like this. You mention something fun to do or learn, and I am off and running. Unfortunately I did not take photos in class so I am reconstructing how to do these embroidery appliques.
What You will Need
- A sewing machine with computerized stitches
- An open toe presser foot (optional but helpful)
- Background for applique like clothes, curtains or any items.
- Different applique fabrics-microfiber, felt, denim, fur etc.
- A pattern for applique-a heart, square, letters or any chosen object.
- Fusible Web-Steam A Seam is excellent
- A pair of sharp scissors
- An iron
- Stabilizer fabric-paper with a smooth side
These are basic supplies that I used, A trip to the fabric store and inquiring about different fabrics and other supplies will add to the enjoyment of this project.
First Steps of The Applique
Here is a list of the steps will need to accomplish making appliques. These appliques make a lovely addition to your sewing projects. If this is a new experience for you be patient as it takes time to get that perfect applique. Also practicing on the sewing machine will perfect your skills.
- Press the background fabric and remove all wrinkles.
- Trace your chosen pattern on non shiny side of fusible web.
- Press the pattern piece to the chosen applique fabric.
- Carefully cut out your pattern going around the edges leaving 1/4 inch around the line.
- Peel one sheet of the two sheet fused paper so the backside is sticky.
- Trim the chosen pattern to the line you have drawn.
- Place the pattern on backside of background fabric. It will stick in place!
- The applique is ready to stitch.
- Press the stabilizer paper under the fabric you are going to attach the pattern and press to fuse together. Make sure the shiny side is face down away from the applique.
Best stitches to Use for Appliques:
- Blanket stitch is forgiving and adds a decorative touch. You can use the same color thread as the fabric or add a different color thread.
- Satin stitch is when the stitches are very close together and create an interesting effect. This takes a lot longer to sew due to the small stitch.
- A plain straight stitch works fine and is easy and forgiving.
- A zig zag stitch of any size
- Any chosen decorative stitch
FABRIC STITCHES, FABRICS AND SUPPLIES
Uses for Appliques
- A piece of clothing you already have--to dress up.
- A blanket
- A bedspread
- Place mats and napkins
- Baby clothes
- Personalized gifts for birthdays and holidays
- Wall hangings with different shapes and colors
Experiment with Stitches and Fabrics
When adding appliques to your chosen fabric, it is kind of a trial and error process. When you come to points and curves you will be adjusting the presser foot. Most of the stitches require you to line the presser foot with the outside of the applique in order to cover the outside line. With experimentation you will find what works best for you and your project.
It is really fun to try different fabrics. For my first go around I picked out a fabric with a high furry pile, a satin fabric, felt, microfiber and denim. I would suggest you choose a fabric that does not ravel as it will make it easier the first time for your experience with embroidery of appliques. You are sure to feel that this is one of the most fun DIY crafts to experiment with.
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