Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My Week of Applique…

Last week at this time, I was an applique virgin.  Yes, I was…OH I had done a lot of machine applique…but never the REAL thing…NO not me!!  So last Wednesday at Quilting in the Clubhouse I took the plunge and did the dirty deed…!

I did four different applique techniques before I found the moves that were just RIGHT for me.

I started with the traditional needle turn applique where you baste down the shape and needle turn as you go…it was good but the corners were tricky…(I guess I’m not as flexible as I once was..)

I moved to fusing freezer paper on the back and tuning the edge as you go and then pulling the paper through the last little space…(hmmm…getting more enjoyable….)

Then I fused light weight interfacing, cut in the shape and used as a template, turning the edge as I stitched…the act of applique was getting more enjoyable…(practice…practice…practice)

Finally on block 4 I fused TWO layers of freezer paper together then fused it to the back of the fabric and used spray starch to to adhere the edges down….(I heard music and saw fireworks!!)  I have found my technique!!

My technique is messy~ AND I had to go and buy a little iron and a can of spray starch…but a small price to pay for satisfaction….  Besides I had a JoAnne’s coupon!

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And be warned…this technique is not for the faint of heart…I had a burn within 10 seconds of beginning….NOT to mention a bad cut from the metal serrated edge of the freezer paper…but I just call them battle wounds and wear them with pride!  Notice the labelling…YIKES!  I guess they DO put them there for a reason!

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So there you have it!  They are looking a little primitive…

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…but sweet none the less!  The little middle squares still need to go on each basket.  I will do that when I get REALLY good at corners.

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Only 294 to go!!  Sure hope I live to a nice ripe age!! haha

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Have a wickedly wild Wednesday and Happy Quilting!~P

31 comments:

Lizzie said...

Wow, what a great beginning and I will follow along to see how many of those baskets you get done. that is a daunting task. I have thought about doing that quilt myself until you see the number of baskets. They look great! Lizzie

Darlene said...

I can relate to your 'applique journey' - tried the same and a few more and didn't care for them UNTIL I learned the method you're using. It's my favorite! I think your baskets are looking terrific - keep going. LOL

Strlady said...

I saw someone at my retreat a couple of weekends ago using that technique. Unfortunately I didn't ask her what she did with the thick freezer paper. Do you use it more like a template than anything else?
Do you iron the thick freezer paper onto the wrong side of the fabric and then spray starch your edges in - then remove the paper before you start the applique?
I vote for a tutorial!
:)

Barb said...

Wow...your baskets look great!

Stray Stitches said...

Wonderful beginning! I'm getting ready to take the leap into hand applique myself. Not sure which method I will use yet. Thanks for the inpsiration!!

WoolenSails said...

Looks like too much trouble for me, but that is why your pieces, look so beautiful, you really put the extra effort in them.

Debbie

grendelskin said...

Congratulations, you're off to a lovely start! Thanks for the review of methods, I'm taking it to heart.

John'aLee said...

Your blocks are beautiful. I prefer the way you are talking about too. It is a lot of prep work, but it is so nice when it is all done and you just get to start appliqueing on.
By the way, you must try out Mary Ellen's Best Press Starch. So much better than what you find in the stores. There are 3 different scents and it leaves no white residue. You can find it at quilt shops.

Elaine Petrik said...

Your baskets are great Paulette!

I, too, had a rough start with applique. Needleturn was hard for me but when I learned the back basting technique it was a "match made in heaven"!

I LOVE it now!

I also learned at a Jo Morton retreat about different techniques for making stem or handles. The clover bias tape maker is good but for handles you can't get a clean bend without a little puckering. That's when she showed us "Perfect Stems" by Karen Kay Buckly. WOW, they are fabulous!

Thanks for sharing your beautiful baskets...lots more to make but they are looking fabulous!

Hugs,

Elaine in SLO,CA

Gran - Knot-y Embroidery Lady said...

Great post. It is so great that there are different methods to learn and to find the one that is right for you. Your baskets are beautiful - your tlc shows.

Beth said...

I use the freezer paper and starch method too. This is the best method for me. It just takes some practice. I have a Clover craft iron, it's a mini iron, not the kind on a handle. When I heard they were going to stop making them I bought an extra for backup. After you get the hang of it, it's easy and you won't get burned. Do you use a stylus of some sort to turn the edges?

Janet said...

Love your baskets!

paula, the quilter said...

Erin Russek has a wonderful post on the tools she uses in her applique. Everyone has their own way of doing things and I have a combination of them. I do like to use the templar when I have a lot of the same shape, though.

Anne said...

Hi Paulette,
That's my favorite method of applique too. You might want to get Pearl Pereira's (P3 Designs) DVD on the method. It's invaluable. You can pause it and restart and it's worth it's weight in gold. I still refer back to it if something isn't going smoothly. I don't think you'd be sorry if you got it. Oh, and I also use 3 pieces of freezer paper. Makes for a really sturdy template.

Hugs, Anne

Betty said...

I too am just beginning to do hand applique. I have tried the same steps you described and also like the spray starch technique the best so far. I am happy with my progress but do need to improve on my points and sharp corners. Everyone tells me that this will come with paractice and more practice. Your baskets are looking good.

Anonymous said...

You've made a great start! Keep up the good work! I know 300 (!!) sounds daunting but it will go faster than you think because this is such a great carry around project! I was surprized at how quickly I finished all of mine -- and wait unitl you see how gorgeous your quilt will be!!!

Cindy N. said...

Your baskets are looking super!! I found back basting works great for these little baskets, this way the baskets are done as a whole, no seperate handle, and the little square is done easily as well!! Im not so great at explaining it, but its simple and no extra tools are required!!

Brenda said...

I have never heard of this method of applique. Maybe I would like applique more. Your projects always inspire me. I would love to see how this method of applique works. I received the flag pattern the other day. Thank you.

Lee said...

what a great start. I will have to investigate this applique method more, sounds good. Can't wait to see more baskets, 294 really?

Lori said...

Woo-hoo! An applique convert!! What worked for me at the beginning has evolved, so be sure to continueing trying new ways.

Karen said...

I'm so happy for you, applique really changed the direction of quilting for me and led me on a brand new path. Beware, baskets are addictive, I know!

Anna said...

oh Paulette, I love the baskets and besides...anytime women of our age can have the word virgin in the same sentence as something referring to us...well it's cake in my opinion! LOL

Poppyprint said...

They are looking great!!! I learned to applique "the Piece 'o Cake Way" and I really like it (books and a DVD are available). I find my left hand gets tired from the gripping of my applique piece and holding the seam allowance under, though. I think I need to try and relax more when hand-appliqueing. It's supposed to be relaxing, right?

Karen said...

You have cossed over to the dark side! I like applique but have yet to find the method I like. Your baskets look gorgeous. With 294 blocks to make you will be an expert appliquer once you have finished. Go Paulette!

Allie said...

Yay Paulette! I'm so glad you found a method that works for you!! I tried needleturn and it's just not for me - my fingers aren't so nimble anymore. I'll stick with fusible, lol! Your baskets look great!

Heartsdesire said...

Your baskets are looking lovely. It's so nice to find a method that works for you. I've not done any applique. I use Wonder Under when need be and then hand stitch using the blanket stitch. Someday I'll try the real technique. I wish you could include a tutorial. It's always easier when the method can be seen. Good luck with all those blocks. You definitely won't run out of any hand work.

Elyte said...

Congratulation on your persistence. I do like your preferred method, which I found on a blog somewhere. It works a treat.

Nanci said...

Wahoo for you, but imagine if the sewing machine had been invented first? We'd be doing traditional work on the machine!
I just have fat fingers and my friend Helen has tiny hands that fly over fiddly stuff like this. Good for you!
Love the baskets!

Anna said...

Nancy...your concept is funny and fascinating! For me I have settled on Roxanne's glue baste-it and needle turn. The glue take no time at all and with a spritz of water dissolves.

Karen said...

I thought it was a mistake to read that Paulette was doing applique. The real kind of applique! Good for you. I recognize the Blackbird Designs baskets. You can do that little square by tracing the outline onto the top of your fabric piece, cutting within that leaving seam turn under allowance, and cutting into the corners seam allowance.

Janna and Mike said...

Paulette, does needle turned mean all your raw edges are turned under??