I do my applique by hand using the needle turn technique. I’ve not really done fusible machine applique, but understand the general principles IE: unless you are doing needle turn, your set up/prep/all that good stuff will be completely different and the tutorials will probably be useless to ya......but hey, maybe, just may-be, you'll be motivated to at least try needleturn (try it you might like it).....i know it's the 'A' word in some circles....but wouldn't it be nice to carry your finished HAND applique quilt to your guild's meeting and beam proudly while saying, "i did the applique by hand" i guarentee you'll get a couple "Owwws" and "Ahhs".....unless your guild is a hand applique guild....then be different and do it by machine *giggle*
anywhoooo- moving on....
From the background fabric cut one 33” square. We will trim this down later and i'll tell you the size then.... Applique tends to ‘shrink’ the background, so we aren’t cutting it to size yet.
I used scraps and stash for my pieces. I do recommend using nothing smaller than fat quarters for the bias stems. I cut my bias strips from across the widest part of each fat quarter (corner to opposite corner). You’ll only need one from each fat quarter or you can cut all four from the same fat quarter- it’s your quilt! I used four different fabrics for each curved long stem, and one fabric for the straight stem of the large flower.
(i'm going to share a story: i only use chalk pencils now. i used a water soluble pen (the blue one) to mark quilting lines (back when i was hand quilting everything) and when i got done and washed the quilt to remove the lines- where all the marks were bleached out. noticeably bleached out...just saying...)
A light box can be made from a glass top table simply be placing a lamp under it. If you have a wood table, pull apart the leaves and place a piece of Plexiglas across and put a lamp underneath…a large window and tape works too…
*see photo below before marking stems*
this picture is after i marked using the lightbox, the lines totally don't show when photoed on the lightbox....
I used two clover bias tape makers.
The curved stems are 3/8” wide, cut at 7/8”….i used the clover maker # 9.
The straight stems for the larger flower are ½” wide, cut at 1” using the clover maker #12. I use bias for the straight stem for durability on the raised edges.
this picture, or the 1/4 block drawing from the pattern pdf.
After I have all the stems placed and securely glued, I run a basting stitch through the center of all stems. This is because we have pieces (the leaves) that go under them and they will be used to place those pieces and the glue won’t hold them through the applying of all those pieces. I only use glue to temporary hold what I can applique at that time.
now you're ready to start appliqueing the whole block. here's the order:
- (see the leaf tutorial here) applique all leaves. the reason we placed our stems first is to make placing the leaves easier. it's like building a house, the stems are the foundation we build the rest of the walls on.
- applique the edges of all the stems. remove the basting stitches as you go.
- the 4 large corner flowers in this order- (referring to the assigned letter of the pieces from the pdf pattern found here) D-B-A-C
- then the 8 smaller flowers in this order: (referring to the assigned letters from the pdf pattern) H-F-E-G