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Hand Applique questions

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Jerry posted on Thu, Jan 20 2011 5:27 PM

I need advice from quilters who hand applique.  I am currently working on a quilted door that is surrounded by bricks. I am making the bricks individually using hand painted batiks and will hand applique them to my background. I am not skilled in this area so my questions are these: How far apart should applique stitches be and how small should they be? I will be entering this in shows so anyone with show or judging experience would be greatly appreciated.  Also, if you could point me to some good hand applique resources, that would be great (such as youtube...etc). The reason I am using hand applique as opposed to machine applique is there will be a space in between each brick to imitate the mortar and I don't want to "travel" on my quilt top from brick to brick. I thought hand applique would work better to hide the thread. Fire away and THANK YOU!

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gini replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 6:48 PM

a good rule of thumb for  the stitches,  is they need to be half the distance of the length of your seam allowance.   a seam allowance should be a scant 1/4 inch or less.   i think and eighth of an inch is just at the border of how big a stitch should be.  the closer your stitches, the less gapies you will have to deal with.  and in a cleavage or point your stitches will get very close so as to be almost on top of each other, for better hold in those areas.   as for how small they should be;  ideally you shouldn't be able to see the stitches.   you come up from the background  fabric as straight up as you can and catch just  one or two threads of the applique piece and go straight back down.   ok that doesn't make sense.   ummm, when you take your stitch, your needle will go at an angle under the background, but as i prepare to take the stitch into the applique piece, i use my thumb to push the fabric so that the needle enters almost straight up.  i hope that is more clear.   i will take two to four stitches then give a little, and i mean little, tug on the thread to pull up those stitches,  holding the previous stitches under your thumb so they don't pucker.  and if you have done it right they will all pop out of sight.   too big  a tug and you will get puckers. 

 you should also match the size of your thread to the size of the applique material as closely as you can.  batiks are more tightly woven with small threads, so a silk thread would be ideal for the batik appliques.   with silk you don't need to match the color as closely just match the depth of color.  i can't remember the word for that, but if you have a medium colored applique fabric most any medium silk thread will do in a neutral color.   i have recently switched to 60 wt cotton thread for my applique and i love it .    so there is my one minute synopsis on hand applique.   if you have any more questions, please ask.      gini

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gini replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 6:50 PM

i'll go see if i can find a good video later tonight, if someone hasn't gotten to it before then    gini

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Jerry replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 7:22 PM

Gini, you RULE! Thanks so much for your help! I will definitely practice on a separate piece of fabric to get the hang of things before I actually applique on my quilt. I have lots of silk threads so will give those a shot. I kind of figured I'd be using silks to make the stitches as invisible as possible.

I'm definitely not looking forward to appliqueing hundreds of small "bricks" though...lol

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Nana replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 10:09 PM

Jerry

Gini is our resident hand applique queen.  She rocks.

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gini replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:25 PM

thanks you guys, and by the way, my head won't go through our door now.   

jerry, those bricks will be done before you know it    gini

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Barbara replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:27 PM

Gini, wow this is alot of info to process for a person who has never done this .think I'll save it to my favorites for reference..thanks Barbara

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gini replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:28 PM

jerry, if you silk thread is 100 wt. tie a knot behind your needle so the thread won't slip out   of the needle.   and i use a longer straw or miliners needle #11, it gives you moe control of the fabric        gini

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gini replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:35 PM

jerry, if you are using a 100wt. silk thread, tie a knot behind the needle to keep your thread from slipping off.  i use a straw or miliners needle #11.  they are longer and give you more control over the fabric.   gini

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gini replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:36 PM

is anyone else haveing trouble with really delayed posts?   some of mine, but not all,  are showing up 5 minutes after i post   gini

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Barbara replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:38 PM

Gini, I have not noticed any problems . barbara

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mars92 replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:39 PM

Jerry

Go to the gallery to view one of  Gini's many appliqued quilts or wall hangings- You will truly be amazed at the absolutely gorgeous work she does.  Nana's right she rocks and I will add she leaps tall buildings!

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Valerie replied on Thu, Jan 20 2011 11:41 PM

Yes I had that problem earlier today and actually thought one of my posts had been deleted but it was just delayed.

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I hope you guys are tagging these posts!! Great information and others need to be able to find them!!


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gini replied on Fri, Jan 21 2011 10:47 AM

thanks for the tagging reminder    i always forget   gini

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