Saturday, August 09, 2014

Shark Week: Applique

Late one night while working on 'Black, Blue, Shark!' I decided I'd like to finish the top piece with needle-turned applique. Which I'd never done before. I've seen a few videos of how to do it but in order to refresh my memory I'd have had to go out into the loungeroom where my laptop lives and that would have led to lounging around instead of getting stuff done. So I just went for it.

I traced the wave shape onto a piece of paper and drew out where I wanted them to be. I then connected the lower edges of the two layers of fabric with fusible webbing so they'd stay put while I worked, leaving a kind of flap unconnected where I was planning on making the wave shapes.

They're fused just below the drawn line.
 My next step was to cut the waves out of freezer paper and attach them under the top layer of fabric so I'd have an edge to use to help me turn the seam allowance under.
The original template was actually cut out of my receipt from buying the blue solids.
 And now for the scary unknown part: stitching. I probably didn't choose the easiest shape for my first attempt at something like this(it has sharp points, as well as inner and outer curves), but I'm kind of known for running before I can walk. :P
I'd like to say I got better as I went along but that would be a lie. I'm pretty sure the way I was stitching it was wrong but even the next morning when I was continuing I remained too stubborn to go check out how to do it properly.And I still haven't checked(because I am a stubborn, "I'll figure it out myself" kind of person!) I'll definitely study up before trying next time, though.

My first appliqued wave. I like to think the rippledness of it makes it authentic. :P

After I'd finished a whole wave shape, I gently opened up the fused layers to remove the freezer paper template. I meant to trim off the fused parts when I was done but I forgot. Oops! I remembered when I was basting and had gone too far to want to go back, especially as I barely noticed the extra bulk.

To be honest, I like the back of the appliqued section way better than the front. :P
 I don't really trust that my stitches are secure at the best of times (it's my old fear of the unknown again) but this applique piece doesn't look trustworthy at all! So after all that work on figuring how to kind of do needle-turned applique, I'm probably going to quilt over the top of it to make sure it's secure which means I may as well have just done raw-edged fusible applique. Have I mentioned before how much of a doofus I am? :P

Next time on Shark Week, we finally get to best part: the Totally Awesome Shark!


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