How to Applique with an Embroidery Machine in 6 Steps!

Embrace the Art of Appliqueing with Your Embroidery Machine

Master Embroidery Machine Applique in 6 Easy Steps!

Embarking on the journey of embroidery? One of the most exciting techniques you can dive into is applique. Although at first glance, it might seem a bit daunting with all its steps, once you get the hang of it, it’s a breezy, quick, and delightful process! Let’s explore how to nail it using an embroidery machine.

What is Applique?

Think of an applique as fabric artfully stitched onto another fabric, bordered by a charming decorative stitch. Instead of relying solely on thread to define and fill designs, a piece of fabric steps in. This not only saves thread but also prevents designs from becoming too thick on delicate fabrics. Even though hand-crafting an applique is an option, using an embroidery machine is the fastest and most precise method. So, wondering what items can sport an applique? Or which fabrics suit it best? Let’s dive in!

The World of Appliques

You can jazz up almost anything with an applique – from t-shirts, towels, and blankets to cute onesies and trendy baseball caps. I personally love to applique such items and refer to them as base fabrics. Selecting top-notch applique fabric is vital. Cotton (especially quilting cotton), denim, canvas, and even funky choices like glitter heat transfer vinyl can work wonders. Remember to always prewash your fabric and choose the right needle, thread, and embroidery base for the best results! ✂️

Components of Applique Embroidery Design

Although each design might vary, most applique embroidery designs consist of three primary stages:

  1. Placement Stitch: This initial stitch marks the position of the applique fabric on the base fabric.
  2. Tacking Stitch: Essential for attaching the applique fabric to the base fabric. It can range from a straight stitch, a zigzag, or a combo of both.
  3. Border Stitch: A decorative finish, usually satin, to refine the edges of the applique. This ensures the fabric edges remain intact without fraying.

Three Techniques to Achieve the Perfect Applique Size

Before delving into the applique process, here are three techniques to trim your applique fabric just right:

  1. Stitch and Trim: A straightforward method involves trimming the fabric right after the tacking stitch. This works wonders for designs with a satin stitch border, masking any minor discrepancies.
  2. Pre-Cut Perfection: For those who’d rather avoid in-hoop trimming, pre-cutting the applique fabric is ideal. You can either print the applique template or use cutting machines like Cricut or Silhouette for utmost precision.
  3. Double Stitching: A bit more time-intensive, this method ensures zero risks of accidentally snipping the base fabric. It involves stitching the base and applique fabrics separately, then uniting them.

Essential Supplies to Start Your Applique Journey

Ready to craft your first applique? Gather these supplies:

  • Embroidery machine and hoop (I use my beloved Brother SE1900)
  • Base and applique fabrics
  • Embroidery stabilizer, spray adhesive, and applique backing
  • Embroidery thread, bobbin thread, and the right needle
  • Sharp scissors or snips
  • Iron and marking tools
  • Stunning applique design (I adore PattiStudio from Oregon Patchworks)

Steps to Craft an Applique with Your Embroidery Machine

Follow these steps, and you’ll be appliqueing like a pro in no time:

  1. Fabric Prep: Always prewash both fabrics to prevent uneven shrinking.
  2. Machine Setup: Mark the applique position on the fabric, hoop the stabilizer and fabric, and set your machine up for the magic!
  3. Stitch Placement: Ensure you’ve got the right needle and thread, then stitch the placement.
  4. Applique Fabric Prep: Adhere the backing to the cut applique fabric.
  5. Tacking Stitch: Once


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    Hello! I'm Monica, the creative mind behind On my blog, I delve into the world of sewing, sharing my passion and knowledge with a community of both novice and seasoned sewers. From foundational techniques and comprehensive tutorials to innovative projects and expert tips, I cover a wide array of topics to assist you on your sewing journey.

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