Five tips for better appliqué (+ giveaway!)

From the moment I started quilting, I’ve adored appliqué. My first quilt included five hand-appliquéd hearts. I still recall those warped, wonky symbols of love (and not in a good way). But I didn’t care. It was my first appliqué experience, and I fell in love with the rhythm and unhurried pace of the technique.

I’ve gotten better over the years, mostly because I’ve read up. There are many appliqué artists to learn from, but one author who has helped me refine my technique is Susan Taylor Propst. She makes her home in Colorado now, but she spent ten years in England refining her skills. While there she completed City & Guilds in Patchwork and Quilting (City & Guilds is an organization that awards professional qualifications). She also received a Higher National Certificate in Textiles. Her achievements sound so romantic, don’t they? I love British flair.

Susan is known best for her quilting flower patterns. In her new book, Nature’s Beauty in Appliqué, she brings her artistry to items that can be displayed throughout your home—not only on the wall. (Let’s face it. If you put the work in, you want to show it off. Everywhere. Who’s with me?) See her gorgeous work at the bottom of this post.

Susan’s new book explains how to appliqué by hand, but she also shares fusible techniques if you have the need for speed. And there’s a special bonus for the speed-obsessed: If you love a project but don’t have time for appliqué, Susan’s included alternate projects that use fussy-cut motifs, preprinted panels, and other pretty fabrics in place of the appliqué. Each project does double duty. Nice touch.

I scoured Susan’s books and her site for a few of her smart appliqué tips.

1. Knotting your thread. "It’s best to use the thread as it comes off the spool, because it provides smoother stitching and less tangling. By threading the needle first, and then cutting the thread, you don’t lose track of which end should be knotted." (Who knew?!)

2. Silk vs. cotton thread. "I use cotton thread for two reasons. First, I like to have the thread match the fabric, and I use cotton fabric. Second, I am not convinced that silk is as durable as cotton (based on seeing old quilts where silk thread has disintegrated)."

3. Effect of lighting on color. "When I select fabric, I want the combinations to look good in all rooms, daylight or nighttime. I try to work during the day and pick what looks good in natural light; then I close the curtains and turn on the fluorescent light to make sure everything still looks good together."

4. Nip fraying in the bud. "A bit of glue can often keep your fabric from fraying. Use a pin or needle to apply a small amount to problem areas, such as sharp inside points. Or, use a washable glue stick to apply the glue to the back of the fabric. Apply it only within the seam allowances of your appliqués, because glue can change fabric appearance. The freezer paper on the back should prevent the glue from getting outside the seam allowance. Be a bit stingy with the glue though; if you apply too much, the fabric will become stiff and more difficult to manipulate. Allow the glue to dry before appliquéing."

5. Removing freezer paper. "Use tweezers to help remove freezer paper from behind appliqués. If the paper is really holding on, dab some water on the fabric. It will soften the paper so that it can be removed."

Thanks for the tips, Susan!

So, what’s your appliqué story? Do you prefer fast, fusible results or decelerated handwork? Do you have a smart appliqué tip to share? Leave your story in the comments and you could win a copy of the Nature’s Beauty in Appliqué eBook! We’ll choose a winner one week from today and let you know by email if you’ve won. (You can also purchase Susan’s book here, and if you do, you also get to download the eBook for free right away.) Good luck!

Comments for this post are now closed.

Thanks to all who entered the drawing to win the Nature’s Beauty in Applique eBook! The randomly chosen winner is Connie, who said:

“I love all types of applique. Right now I’m doing a piece of wool applique. Any type of applique is a relaxing time. The projects shown are absolutely awesome, I would love to win the book."

Connie, we’ll email you a special coupon code for your free eBook. Congratulations!

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Swan wall hanging. (Look at the shadow of that swan. Undeniably wall worthy.)

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Iris Table Runner.

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Tulip Place Mats. (A great beginner project.)

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Hosta Cushion. (Look at the quilted ridges in those leaves!)

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Campanula Neck Roll.

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Daffodil Tote Bag.

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Ivy Zippered Case.

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Petunia Case.


180 Comments (leave a comment)

  • I love to Applique’both by machine and by hand. I do prefer hand applique’ of the two. My tip: when using silk thread….knot the thread at the eye to keep it from coming unthreaded every time you take a stitch. I once gave away a fortune in silk thread because of this problem. Now it’s easy. Hold the thread on your index finger with a small tail, lay your needle over top of it with point up, wrap thread around once while holding thumb aand index finger together over needle and pull thread till it stops. Voila, a small knot at the eye. Now knot the other end and your all set to go!

    —Linda Pyke on March 30, 2012
  • I’m all about instant gratification. Raw edge fusbible here!

    I can attest that tip #1 works. One of my mentors taught me that trick. Makes handwork tangle-free.

    Jean F on March 30, 2012
  • I am pretty new to applique. Though I have quilting 12 years, I am never really likedituntil recently when I discovered back-basting method of appliqué. I guess my tip wouldbe that you should splurge for really good milliners (straw) needles because they do make a difference in your stitching.

    KimWest on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique, am proficient with fused and machine satin stitched. Lately I have been doing more hand applique using the back basting and freezer paper methods. My tip: for machine satin stitching, adjust your bobbin tension, so that your bobbin thread does not peak up into the top.
    My Bernina bobbin holder has an extra whole for the thread so that it is tighter. Makes a lovely stitch on top.

    —G Britten on March 30, 2012
  • I like doing turn-under applique by hand; fused applique always feels too stiff and weird to me! I took a wonderful Hawaiian applique lesson once that helped me in all my applique projects. I don’t have any tips except be patient and go slow!

    Marie on March 30, 2012
  • I love the speed of fusible. Between working 2 jobs and sewing, I need all the help to get things finished that I can get! I’m so new at it that I don’t have any great tips…other than read, read, read all you can from the experts!

    —Christi on March 30, 2012
  • I am fairly new to applique, but so far, I really like hand applique. It is soothing to do, and I get quite a sense of accomplishment when it works out well. But I look forward to exploring other methods.

    —Trudi J on March 30, 2012
  • I like both kinds of applique – I think it depends on the project as to which one I do. Before sewing, I lay out my pieces and take a picture. Not only is this useful to refer to, but it also gives a reducing effect, so I can see the overall project and how the fabrics play together.

    —Carol Y on March 30, 2012
  • These are wonderful! Love the variety of rejects and the excellent appliqué. My tip would be to use a fusible product to trace the shape, iron on, and use the button hole stitch on your sewing machine to appliqué. It works for me!

    —Lesley on March 30, 2012
  • I love handwork. It helps me relieve stress and makes for a peaceful spirit.

    —Cindy Luedeman on March 30, 2012
  • I’ve always been a fan of fusible machine applique, but recently ventured out of my comfort zone to give hand applique a try. I took a class that used heat resistant mylar templates, starch and mini iron to prepare pieces for the applique process. Enjoy doing the hand stitching, but looking to a different method of prepping the pieces for stitching. Going to give needle turn a try. Thanks for the hint of knotting silk threads at the eye, will save on frustration. When doing machine applique, I like to stitch through all the layers (including the backing) to give the applique a little pop and saves some on the quilting to do.

    —T. L. Hauge on March 30, 2012
  • I do not do applique as often as I hope to when I retire but I love the zone you can get into when it all falls into place – perfect project, beautiful piece of fabric, peaceful environment, dedicated me-time. An amazing instructor at one of the nicest quilt stores in my area suggested having a damp piece of sponge nearby when doing applique. Once the needle has been threaded, run the piece of thread between your finger and the sponge – the moisture softens the thread and eliminates twists in the thread. This little trick has helped me stay in the zone with no frustrating tangles to deal with.

    —Lynn on March 30, 2012
  • I prefer to use fusibles and machine stitch the appliques down. There are some times, though, that I like to hand stitch using the blanket stitch. My machine does not have the blanket stitch.

    Janet

    —Janet S. on March 30, 2012
  • I love to do needle turn hand applique. I have done fusible for arty quilts, and have used freezer paper in several ways. But needle-turn is my favorite method.

    Nancy on March 30, 2012
  • Love hand appliqué but needle turn challenges me. I use the freezer paper glue stick method and I like to position my pieces to be appliquéd with a dot of glue stick. Very sparingly. Pinning can creat a ripple and busting is just not my thing.

    —Susaninfl on March 30, 2012
  • I love looking at anything done by hand. I do applique both ways and what makes up my mind as to what technique I use is howmuch washing and wear will on the finished product. If it is on a sweatshirt I will use the machine method but on a lovely bed quilt I will use the time to do it by hand as my quilting on the quilt is by hand.
    My tip would be to read your pattern ‘carefully’ and clip when you are in an outside or inside curve. Be careful how far you clip, if you have a tuff out use a little glue and a pin to secure it in place.
    Enjoy the pleasant feeling of working by hand.

    —Heather Andrews on March 30, 2012
  • either way, love applique … but not yet very good at it. have worked each project with a new method, following instructions. am more or less a beginner and have no tips yet.

    ritainalaska on March 30, 2012
  • I’ve tried raw edge fusible and was not happy with it as it is so hard to get the needle through the fusible that the stitches don’t look as nice as I’d like. I tried the starch method too & am not really enthused about it either. So for now I am doing needleturn. I want to try the freezer paper on the top method for my next project.

    —Carmen Wyant on March 30, 2012
  • I had a problem really liking applique, until I discovered it’s calming effect! When I am in a hurry to complete a project I go to my machine. But when I need to unwind, calm down or just rest I hand applique.
    Already I have learned a few new things from this email and have found new answers to seek. For instance, whatever is back-basting? The search goes on! Love it!

    —Dell Martinez on March 30, 2012
  • I prefer hand applique and have found that threading up several needles prior to beginning to stitch will keep you from losing the rhythm one estabishes having to stop and thread another needle.

    —Rita Goff on March 30, 2012
  • Love the patterns, especially the Hosta!
    I design a lot of quilts, but I love designing baby or childrens quilts. Because I don’t know how they will be treated, I use Elmer’s School glue or a glue stick to stick the pieces down then either satin stitch or use a blanket stitch to applique them down. If I want a raw edge look, I glue them down then quilt them on the long arm.

    Sharon Spingler on March 30, 2012
  • I have tried almost every method and there is a good one for each application. I love Soft Fuse for fusible – gives a softer finish.
    My hint for fusible is to cut away a window before fusing so it’s not stiff. For both fused and hand applique cut away the background so the batting can puff up the applique. It looks so much better.

    Karen D on March 30, 2012
  • I prefer hand applique. I, too, am new to applique. I have completed small projects using blanket stitch. My tip is for left handers following right hand instructions. Do a sample piece before attempting the actual project or block. I have found that it a challenge to follow instructions and stitch with a left hand in a right hand world. I think I could really use this applique book and looking forward to reading the other applique tips.

    carol thomas on March 30, 2012
  • I enjoy needle-turned appliqué because it is soothing for the soul and is very portable. I recently took a needle-turned reverse (2 fabric) appliqué project with me on a trip to England. No little pieces, just 2 fabrics, thread, tiny scissors, and silk thread. All was very portable, airplane friendly, and always "at the ready."

    —Linda Jewett on March 30, 2012
  • I gain personal pleasure from doing needle turn applique. It’s a slow process for me but I love the planning, prep and hand stiching. If I need to make something as a gift I’ll use a faster method. I haven’t done much machine applique and what I did was very "primative" to say the least. I read many blogs gaining useful info on all the techniques and believe that multiple methods can be used within the same project in able to get the work finished and looking presentable. I love learning new techniques! There are no applique police unless possibly the project will be up for judging. I haven’t gotten to that level yet.

    —Linda Carhill on March 30, 2012
  • I like any type of applique, but my favorite is hand applique. I’ve taken it on many trips while waiting in doctors offices, it is so portable. The best thing I learned was taking that extra stitch at the tip of leaves to get a better point.

    —Edie G on March 30, 2012
  • That looks like a book I gotta have 🙂 I like both hand and machine applique. I recently was in Hi and took the Class at the Museum. The thing I learned….and duhhhh it seems so simple, when you baste, for hand applique,baste at 1/4 in. so that when you turn under the basting will be your guide, and help the turn stay under! Simple easy ….why didn’t I get it sooner???? Guess no one ever splained it like that to me before. I just love it!! I used to just baste in the center, now I do it right.

    —vickie van dyken on March 30, 2012
  • I like hand applique for the lovely results, but sometimes don’t want to spend the time. Thank goodness for fusible–but definitely with the center of the fusible cut out to eliminate the stiffness. I’m currently planning a hand applique project for passing the time on a trip, and hope to do it needle turn, which is a new skill for me to master.

    —Susan Arnold on March 30, 2012
  • I have tried both ways to applique and I must admit I prefer fusable as the appliqued pattern stays put whilst I stitch it so I don’t get mishapen results.I adore the Tulip placemats and the Campanula neck roll.As I have spinal problems this would be ideal for me and I shall definitely do this project should I be lucky enough to win. Thank you for the chance.

    —Dawn Mason on March 30, 2012
  • I love hand-applique. It forces me to slow down. And with my hands busy, my mind is free to wander…

    Cindy on March 30, 2012
  • These appliqué works are really fantastic, a beautiful combination of fabric choises, appliqué and quilting! I’m really just learning, so I,m going to benefit from the tips you,ve all shared, and try to apply them to a "tree-of-life" panel I’ve just pieced and want to complete with some appliqué.

    —Inger Maria Martinson on March 30, 2012
  • I prefer fusibles and to machine sew the edges of the applique. Thanks for the tips.

    —MoeWest on March 30, 2012
  • I haven’t done much applique, because even though I’ve tried it, it scares the heck out of me! I could really use this book! LOL!

    —Nancy B from Many LA on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique-any kind. There are design possibilities available in applique unlike any other medium. I use a glue stick to dab a tiny bit on the applique to secure it in place so I don’t have to use as many pins. Depending on how big the piece is I may still use a small applique pin or two. This looks like a wonderful book-a must have!

    —Marie Atkinson on March 30, 2012
  • My first recommendation is to be patient with yourself. With my first project I sewed my shirt into my applique, yikes! At first I was really disappointed and feeling pretty stupid. Then I laughed and showed my husband. It was pretty funny. I am always gun-ho when I start a new technique. But I also value the advice of those "who have gone before me". So my second piece of advice is to ask the talented people in your guild (like the one who won @ the last quilt show), sewing circle, church or quilt shop what is the one thing they think is important to someone just starting out with applique. Then write it down. If you ask too much you will not remember and lose the "pearls" they have to offer. Later go back with any problems you encounter and do the same.

    —Karen Brennan on March 30, 2012
  • Karen, I’ve done the same thing, except I sewed my applique to my pants. (And I’ve done it more than once.) I’m with you–laugh, unpick, and move on!

    —Jenny on March 30, 2012
  • I enjoy both hand and machine applique. Hand applique can be very relaxing and is portable. Fusible machine applique allows for more complicated designs and is fun to do. This book has some great projects and the photos are beautiful.

    —Maureen on March 30, 2012
  • I really enjoy slower hand applique. It is a peaceful, calming activity that gives me great pleasure. I think about the person who will receive the piece and pray for them as I work on the project.
    Shirley
    beekeeper5(at)bellsouth(dot)net

    —Shirley Strait on March 30, 2012
  • I do both fusible and hand applique depending on how quickly I want to get the project done. This looks like a wonderful book. I would love to win it.

    —Susan Griffith on March 30, 2012
  • I love the look of applique and have done it for years. The method I use depends on the project. I use the fusible method for wall hangings, stitching the appliques down with a narrow satin stitch or blanket stitch depending on the look I want. For baby or bed quilts I use the hand applique methods. I think needleturn appliques have a more raised look than fused appliques, and the end result is less stiff. The stiffness doesn’t matter on wall quilts, plus fusing is much quicker. I also cut out a ‘window’ on the fusible web before ironing it to the fabric to help achieve a softer feel.

    I suggest using as soft a fusible as possible…lite Steam-a-Seam 2 is good, and it’s slight stickiness on both sides allows you to position the appliques before pressing.

    Also I like to use an applique pressing sheet for pressing together fusible applique designs with several overlapping pieces before ironing them to the background fabric

    —Victoria Miner on March 30, 2012
  • Wow. Beautiful projects! I love fusible-raw edged/machine finish (like McKenna Ryan) and freezer paper hand finished (like Pearl’s P3 Designs). I also like Eleanor Burns non-woven fusible interfacing technique and use both machine applique and hand applique with this method. Only applique I’m really not too fond of is traditional needle turn!

    —Sally on March 30, 2012
  • Hand-appliqué always terrified me. I was perfectly happy making sharp corners, even seams, etc. Occasionally I’d dabble with fusible and wool appliqué (even taught classes on techniques and embellishment of both). I finally broke down and learned to needle-turn and I love it and the friends I’ve made as we’ve all struggled in classes to learn the best techniques.

    I love replicating historic quilts (actually I’m best at the "starting part") and have found peace and joy in the simple one stitch at a time repetition of hand appliqué.

    —Kathy Gruwell on March 30, 2012
  • My hands don’t allow me to do much hand applique. I starch my steam allowances on freezer paper and then applique by machine with a really small zigzag or blind hem stitch. I’ve been drooling over this book. Would love to win it.

    —LeAnne L on March 30, 2012
  • Decelerated handwork – I am only a beginner, but it is so relaxing! This book would give me some really cool projects!

    —Sharon Buford on March 30, 2012
  • I like to do both hand and fusible applique. I like to use the fabric folding pen along the edges that are turned. It makes turning them so easy.

    —Millie Lloyd on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique, am the fast and furious type. Have learned that Steam A Seam is THE BEST, it creates a ‘good’ fuse’ plus is flexible not stiff like most other products. I have a blanket stitch on my sewing machine that allows me to adjust the stitch size and create a stitched edge suitable for the size of the applique I’m working on. Steam A Seam Lite is the best product!!
    Sylvia

    —Sylvia on March 30, 2012
  • Oh, what gorgeous applique pieces. I am one of those down and dirty get it done with fusibles appliquer myself. Too many beautiful things to make, and not enough time to make them all. Fuse on!

    —Nancy on March 30, 2012
  • My very first quilt was a twin-sized, blanket-stitched applique quilt. It was an ambitious project for a first quilt, but I still love that quilt 10+ years later. Now I enjoy all forms of applique, but I still have a fondness in my heart for blanket-stitch applique.

    Tammie on March 30, 2012
  • I have just recently begun to applique. I tend to like fusible, but not with raw edges, but sewn down with a decorative or satin stitch. I love applique for the realism that can be achieved in the images.

    —Donna P on March 30, 2012
  • I love doing appliqué by hand! I just wish I had more time… I love all the pieces by Susan, they are beautiful. I took 4 appliqué classes before I really "got it". Perseverance, patience and practice is the key!

    —Diane on March 30, 2012
  • I haven’t done very much applique, but, learned a trick from a gal who has appliqued for a long time. Use a dryer sheet on the RIGHT side of fabric, then cut out applique piece with seam allowance. Stitch around appliques piece, cut a slit in dryer sheet, turn inside out and finger press & "fiddle seam into submission". You are then ready to either hand sew or machine sew piece into place. I have tried this and it worked for me.

    —Janet Frank on March 30, 2012
  • OMG I need this book – if only cuz it’s beautiful!!! Look at her Irises … oh my gosh .. I can almost smell that wonderful crisp lemony scent that only an iris can have …. and I think of my mom.

    —Sandie on March 30, 2012
  • I have only done one project w/ applique – looking to do alot more! it was so fun! thanks!

    —Lee on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique! By hand is my very favorite. I prefer it over the other faster methods. Hand work is relaxing and frees the mind to meditate.

    —Linda in Maryville, IL on March 30, 2012
  • I love hand applique. I use freezer paper in what most people would consider backwards- I lover the freezer paper on the right side of the paper and the baste the seam allowance down, through the paper. It works especially well on large background pieces.

    —Mary Ann Harpe on March 30, 2012
  • I used to call applique the "A word" then I discovered templet free applique, some call it back basting. I love it! I saw it on Simply Quilts many years ago. I was able to just about finish a block every chemo treatment for my Give Thanks quilt. It was very portable and didn’t require alot of putsy stuff.

    —Edith Scherr on March 30, 2012
  • Gotta say I like fast, fusible results because I like intricate applique, fancy cuts, etc. But I’m up for learning anything new!

    —Sandy on March 30, 2012
  • I love hand applique because I can pick it up and work on it for just a few minutes at a time. I don’t always have the time to work on a larger project, but I can find a few minutes here and there to do some applique!

    —Susan on March 30, 2012
  • I WISH I could applique that well. I mostly do fusible because it is quick & easy, but would love to get the courage to try some projects like this.

    Pam Cope on March 30, 2012
  • I LOVE applique, but due to arthritis & scleroderma I’m limited to machine stitching 🙁 But there are enough options that I still have choices 🙂 I read about the dryer sheet trick recently, & have a perfect project for it, longhorns & bluebonnets! Another technique for raw edge with a twist that is "free motion quilting" from Sue Olsen @ DogGoneQuilts.com, it’s fun too.

    Tracy on March 30, 2012
  • I have made quite a few projects with fusible appliqué. I am just working on a needle turn hand project. It is coming along well. It would be great to have more tips from this book. It looks like it has many wonderful projects. Thanks for the chance to win.

    Ariane on March 30, 2012
  • I guess fast & fusible; at least the 3 quilts I’ve made involving applique’ used fusible interfacing & satin machine stitching. They were all baby quilts for friends. The first one was a quilt for a friend who had both parents die while she was expecting her first child. I wanted the quilt to be special and she was doing her nursery in a safari theme so I wanted to echo her theme & colors. So I went to Michael’s and got flat wooden animals to use as my "templates" for cutting out the fabric animals. I played around with them on the copier until I got the size I wanted. Anyway, there may have been an easier way to do it but I didn’t know it if there was; this was my first ever quilt and because of the circumstances I had my heart set on making it with applique animals to match her theme. The second quilt also matched the friend’s nursery which was a flower theme. I just drew the flowers freehand (very simplistic) on paper and used them as my templates. The third quilt had bird & branch & leaf appliques. That one was more tricky because some of the pieces were really small; I could have used a few "tricks of the trade" on that one! Anyway, thanks for chance to win the book….looks like it would be very educational for someone like me!

    —Rhonda H. on March 30, 2012
  • Rhonda, what a wonderful way to show your friend how much you care. And you just gave all of us a new "trick of the trade"–using wood motifs at applique templates! Great idea.

    —Jenny on March 30, 2012
  • I prefer the traditional freezer paper method when appliqueing. although I have used fusible backing on some projects.

    —Joan Rodriguez on March 30, 2012
  • Because I have little time, I prefer "slaplique". Slap it on there and stich it on the machine. When, or is it if, I grow up, I want to be able to do it the beautiful way…..

    —Luanne Corts on March 30, 2012
  • What I learned that saves me time for more applique is to keep multiple needles nearby in a cushion and leave each color thread in the need for the project. Less time spent threading the needle.

    Mary on Lake Pulaski on March 30, 2012
  • Looks like this will be my next purchase. I so admire those that can do
    hand applique so quickly and have the patience. There has to be a trick to percise points! I keep trying!!!

    —Liz O'Neill on March 30, 2012
  • I like to do hand applique – needle turn after pressing outline with my fingers or using toothpick to help turn edges under. Beautiful patterns – I would love to win this book. Thanks for the opportunity.

    —Sheila F. on March 30, 2012
  • I love the speed of fusible and raw-edge applique, and the look of needle turn. I love Susan’s work and would love to win this book! Thanks for the chance!

    —Susan on March 30, 2012
  • I had only attempted applique a couple of times until recently, and now I am finding I like it more and more! I don’t do hand applique… I’m afraid I don’t have the patience right now… but maybe one day soon I will attempt it. But I LOVE seeing other people’s beautiful creations! And my Mother In Law does the MOST beautiful hand applique!

    Love Susan’s artwork, truly gifted!

    Lindsay Mattison on March 30, 2012
  • I LOVE all kinds of applique but my favorite is needleturn. We were lucky to have a gal named Lucy Brown in our local quilt guild who was a marvelous appliquer. She generously shared her techniques. Even with lots of practice I’m still striving to reach her skill level!

    —Kathy Gaines on March 30, 2012
  • I love to do appliques – my goal is to do one day a Baltimore quilt – I now mainly do flowers and small ones -beautiful work

    —Francine on March 30, 2012
  • I really like applique. Not crazy about raw edge, although I attempted one for our son-in-law (coffee-Mckenna Ryan). I am making a soft book with lots of applique techniques for our grandchildren, but it is mostly satin stitched or blanket stitched. This book would be a very good challenge for me. Thank you for sharing her beautiful work.

    —Mary on March 30, 2012
  • I absolutely love appliqué, the look is so elegant. My forever favorite is needle turn tho’ I have done fusible as well as freezer paper techniques. When I can sit with my hand appliqué in my lap I get into a sort of Zen zone where troubles and worries are gone.
    I can do so much more express so much more, with hand appliqué than with piecing I think it will always be my favorite.

    —Shari W. on March 30, 2012
  • I just learned needle turn applique, and I am surprised at how much I enjoy it! These are some beautiful projects, thanks for sharing them!

    —Pat V. on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique but could never get the hang of it. Recently a friend showed me the back basting method and I have been getting much better at it!

    —Sandy A in St. Louis on March 30, 2012
  • My tip – draw your pattern onto a square piece of clear vinyl. Overlay your vinyl onto the background fabric; lay your fabric pieces onto your background underneath the vinyl. Pieces end up exactly where you want them.
    I love the calming effects of appliqué. Yoga relaxation every moment of your spare time and anywhere you go! I’m an old fashioned gal who has fallen in love with the genre/projects in this book. Love flowers and nature. A soul-mate’s calling. Would love and appreciate this book so much… I have fond memories of my mother tending the Iris flower bed. I would grace my table with this runner and my house with the others.

    —Brenda Wright on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique and recently finished a quilt ‘just for me’ (it only took about 3 years to complete… inbetween other gifts!). It was the first time I used a Lapel glue stick and it worked beautifully for needle turn applique, I only wish the tubes were bigger because I went through about 5 of them (my quilt is smaller than a lap quilt).

    —Michele T on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique! I love the projects that are shown from this book — just peautiful!! I like to use fusible web to make raw edge applique that I then stitch down on the machine. I also really enjoy doing applique with the embroidery machine.

    —Marilyn Snow on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique in all forms and find it soothing in the evening with a good cup of tea and an Ott light for my old eyes. The trick I found is using a fine, finger smoothed, line of Liquid Stitch for the pointy corners or potential fray areas since it dries clear and soft. The best part is when you press the finished product it fuses to background; just that little extra gives you peace of mind that it won’t come loose (fray) if you have to launder the project several times over the life of the piece. Thanks for the exquisite creations to peak our creativity. The swan reflection is inspiring.

    —Dianne Deaver on March 30, 2012
  • I love raw edge with fusable. It’s quick, easy and even my grandkids can do it.

    —RITA on March 30, 2012
  • I have been afraid of applique, but I love what you do. I made a pillow like one you did but the applique make your pillow pop and now I want to try it. Thank you for the great hints I think this book will be a must have

    —Nancy Bonnette on March 30, 2012
  • The flowers in this book are wonderful! I’d love to use these patterns. While I have done fusible applique when in a hurry or with something that needed extra staying power, I prefer the look of hand applique. And I enjoy doing handwork. I took a course in needleturn and have tried the back basting method as well but have returned to the freezer paper on the bottom method. It seems to work best for me, if I can starch the edges before stitching. That way when I need to remove the paper, the last part of the edge has a crisp turned edge, so it’s easy to finish it off.

    —Carol C on March 30, 2012
  • I really only do fast and fuseable applique now….I used to do it all by hand. But just can’t keep up that way. The new techniques have spoiled me…lol

    I love what I have seen from this book…want to win this…lol
    Thanks for the chance.

    Marjorie on March 30, 2012
  • I love all this Lady’s designs and would be thrilled to win her book. I really enjoy handwork and needle-turn applique and have even learned to make perfect circles of any size using lightweight fusible interfacing…what a neat trick. Even if I’m not lucky enough to win the book, I most likely will order the e=book. Thanks to Martingale for gathering all these wonderful designers for us to enjoy. 😀

    Linda Horton on March 30, 2012
  • I love applique. So far i have done fusible but want to learn to do hand applique. My biggest laugh was fusing my applique piece to my iron. My friends need the laugh.

    —Sharon Meyer on March 30, 2012
  • I have done mainly machine applique to date and only because I haven’t developed the courage to do hand applique. It is on my list of things to learn and do since I love the looks of many applique quilts. The designs in this book are absolutely lovely.

    Just one thing has slowed me down a little is most instructions are for right handed people and I am very definitely left handed especially in hand work. I get very tired of turning instructions around for my being left handed.

    —s hadley in soggy WA on March 30, 2012
  • I’ve never done applique before. That swan wall hanging is so gorgeous I just can’t stop looking at it!

    Jennie P. on March 30, 2012
  • I like both types of applique. Fusible is great for what I think of as more "fun" items while I like needle turn for heirloom things. My tip is to have a small bag set up with needles, thread, scissors, etc. to carry a portable project. You can take a project with you to fill in any dead time, like waiting at the dr’s office. It helps pass the time and is so relaxing. The book has some really beautiful projects.

    —Susan L. on March 30, 2012
  • I have only done a little hand applique and it’s not my favorite. I did make a wedding quilt and machined appliqued using a fusible and then machine stitching over the edges. My life hasn’t slowed down enough to do a lot of hand applique, but I am sure I could enjoy it also.

    —Rita Scott on March 30, 2012
  • I love both hand and machine applique and even fusible(though I always machine stitch it down. It depends how quickly I want the project done. I use the back-basting method almost always when hand appliqueing. I love Susan’s books and would love to win her new one.

    —Sherri G on March 30, 2012
  • I prefer needle turn applique but there are rare instances when raw edge is the best for me. Thanks for a chance to win what looks to be a great book.

    Jeanne from Missouri on March 30, 2012
  • I have grown to love hand applique! My favorite method so far is back basting. I went from a seamstress, most of my life, to a quilter, over 10 yrs. ago, & now, all I want to do is quilt, in one form or another. I am still a major machine quilter, but there are times I just want to sit elsewhere & do something relaxing, by hand. It’s also portable, so wherever we go, I can take my handwork along with me! I can’t just sit either, wherever I am, my hands must be busy with something, so hand applique does it for me! I love her new book, if I do win one, I know I will end up buying one, somewhere down the line!

    —Nancy on March 30, 2012
  • I don’t quilt, but I use applique on garments, pillows, wall hangings, etc. I really like designs from nature. I usually use fusibles to make items.

    —Pat Hayrynen on March 30, 2012
  • I love hand applique but the last lot of quilt I have been doing were straight cut and sew quilts. I am exploring machine applique at the moment and am trying to teach my mother to applique. My tip is to back baste and practice practice, practice. Just remember to number those pieces if you have several with similar shapes. It is so good to have a project to take everywhere.

    Simone on March 30, 2012
  • I like most methods of applique.. The method that I’ve used most often is the fusible interfacing method– where you sew around the outer edge, then turn the fusible and fabric right side out, iron down and stitch. I prefer to hand stitch– I just like the look better than machine applique. I have just recently gotten my courage up to give needle-turn applique a try, and think that it could become something that I will love! Also, I am very interested in trying back-baste applique.. And I really love the comfy-looking frayed-raw-edge applique too… Guess I just love applique! Thank you for sharing those handy tips– and for giving us a chance to win that beautiful book! 🙂

    —Gwen Windham on March 30, 2012
  • I love love applique in any form. I learned last year how to do needle turn and love it the most but do work with soft fuse some when I need something a bit faster. I would love to win this book.

    Mandy M on March 30, 2012
  • My most challenging applique experience was when I was a good bit younger. I was asked to make a quilt for my sister’s friend who was expecting a baby (there were no ultrasounds back then). I chose a neutral gender design of little baby clothes on a clothesline. There was a good deal of applique, but I was way ahead of schedule, so not worried. Then, just as I was finishing and feeling so proud of myself, we found out that she was expecting twins! The second quilt was not quite so enjoyable. My tip is that if you have a deadline, get that project started pronto. You never know what tomorrow brings. Love the tips and have learned alot from just reading others posts!

    —Patty J. on March 30, 2012
  • What works for me is stitching the applique to a used dryer sheet (right side facing the sheet) and then clipping a slit in the center of the dryer sheet piece and turning the applique right side out. I then either stitch by hand or machine depending on the mood I’m in and where I am.

    —Margaret Fitzgerald on March 30, 2012
  • My favorite way to applique is needle-turn. I work at it very slowly and painstakingly, but I enjoy every minute of it and am happy with the results.

    —Susan Kellam on March 30, 2012
  • I’m working on my first applique project. It’s hand applique and I am thoroughly enjoying the process. I enjoy the rhythm of the hand stitching and its portability. I like that I don’t have to sequester myself in the sewing room in the evening. I’ve been turning the seam allowances in with glue over a water soluble paper template which does not get removed until the end, when it washes out (I hope!)

    —Jennifer P on March 30, 2012
  • Oh, I so want to learn how to applique – I’m not very good at it…and I think it is beautiful…I love the photos that you’ve shown…I’d love to do all of them!!!!

    nhsarab at yahoo dot com

    sara on March 30, 2012
  • This book will be a great addition to my Applique Book Library. This book has great instructions that can be used by the beginner as well as intermediate and advance users whether they hand or machine Applique. My Tip for anyone thinking about starting an Applique Project is to purchase this book and use it as a guide.

    Sheila W. on March 30, 2012
  • Hand applique has always fascinated me and I find it very peaceful to sit and work on a hand applique piece. Love how tiny some applique quilters stitch. I am always looking for tips on how to improve my technique!

    —Diane Caton on March 30, 2012
  • I’ve never done fusible but would love to try it. For me applique is all about practice makes perfect. The first pillow I made took me six hours. Now I’m finished after 45 minutes.

    —Claudia on March 30, 2012
  • I, too, haven’t really done applique work, but these samples are stunning. I like the the advice on reading up on the technique, and giving it a whirl.

    —Jusa on March 30, 2012
  • I love hand applique. I normally use the overlay with needleturn method, but if the block needs it, I’ll use back basting, starch and press, whatever is warranted.
    I think it is so much more forgiving than piecing.

    Eileen Keane on March 30, 2012
  • I enjoy hand applique, but have also given fusible machine applique a try. I’d love to win Susan’s book.
    Thanks,
    Judy

    —Judy Forkner on March 30, 2012
  • I’ve tried all the Applique’s methods. I have hand tremors and quite often my needle turn under becomes needle turn out really quick. For me, the fusible applique’ works best, so far. I think, applique’s is beautiful and admire those of you who can do it. For myself, I keep on trying and nothing stops a determined person. I’d love to win this book and learn what back basting is. It sounds like something me and my shaky hands could handle.

    Keep smiling.

    Lynnita Shipman on March 30, 2012
  • Wow–that swan is amazing, and the rest of the examples are outstanding as well.

    I’ve done applique only once, and I used fusible, which I had always thought I wouldn’t. But I’m happy with the results and at the same time I’m ready to take the next step.

    Thanks for the chance to win this lovely book, and thanks to Susan for her excellent tips.

    —Beth on March 31, 2012
  • I prefer needle turn for a few reasons: no fusible to stiffen fabric, portability, and turned under edges. I really enjoy the process as well. I just took a class on back-basting method and will definately give this a try. Susan’s work is stunning and I’d love to learn her techniques.

    —Wendy on March 31, 2012
  • I love hand appliqué and find it so relaxing to work on. I use the freezer paper method, although I would like to learn the needle turn method without the paper. Susan’s projects in this book are lovely and I would love to make those tulip placemats – they’re so striking.

    —Donna on March 31, 2012
  • Just had carpel surgery and can’t wait to get back to applique! Before this surgery I had do machine applique; it’s been a long time since I did hand and there are so many good tips these days! Love the tips you published! Thanks!

    mickie on March 31, 2012
  • I am a beginner quilter so my applique technique is in the learning process. I love the ideas shown and the book looks great.

    —Phyllis on March 31, 2012
  • I love Sue’s books, also love hand applique so soothing and you can take it anywhere.She is sotalenened and a great teacher her patients are excellent. I do love a challenge and will try anything different.

    Roxane Sullivan on March 31, 2012
  • When creating a child’s quilt, I have used colouring books for pattern inspiration. The pattern lines are usually simple, consequently, ideal for applique.

    —Nellie on March 31, 2012
  • I love the speed of machine applique. I use the Dawn Cameron-Dick method for a more traditional look, but am also happy with fuse and stitch methods.

    —Gloria on March 31, 2012
  • Looks like an inspiration-filled book.

    —Tesuque on March 31, 2012
  • I enjoy appliqué in all forms. Often the type of appliqué I use will depend on the project and its end use. For things that I know will receive a lot of washing and abuse, I will use a machine or fusible appliqué. For special items I like handwork, sometimes needleturn and sometimes using other hand methods, such as freezer paper or wash-away stabilizers. My hand appliqué method can even very within the project depending on the size and shape of the motif.

    —Nancy (Cat Lady) on March 31, 2012
  • My 2 favorite tools are a toothpick (it grabs those stubborn threads of fabric and forces them into submission as you tuck them in) and straw needles (yes, they bend easily and I even break a few, but the thin-ness of them makes it worthwhile.) Her applique is wonderful. Would love the ebook as my Nook is a great tool for having quilt resources readily at hand.

    —Pamela Reim on March 31, 2012
  • i like fast fusible

    —linda on March 31, 2012
  • I love hand (needleturn) applique. It is so relaxing to me. I usually do at night while I watch TV with hubby. I have been basting the piece down (cutting thread ahead of where I am appliqing) and thus don’t use pins which always get in the way. I use Ami Simm’s invisible stitch.
    The book projects look great. If I don’t win, I will order one.
    Thanks

    —Nancy in IN on March 31, 2012
  • I have done some fusible – but am not crazy about the results — I would love to learn to hand applique without any fusible anything —hand work is very relaxing.

    —Louanne on March 31, 2012
  • I have done fusible, starch method and hand applique. I like the starch method or the fusible method because they both finish up faster than by hand. The starch method does resemble hand applique to a degree. Any way you do it, I like the look of applique!

    Bonnie on March 31, 2012
  • When I was about 12 years old my mother taught me how to do crewel embroidery. I enjoyed doing the work and loved the results. Since then my needle talents have improved greatly. Many of my quilts have some applique but I have yet to try the beautiful artistic flowers and leaves as seen in Susan’s book.
    Thank you
    Wendi

    —Wendi Morris on March 31, 2012
  • I prefer back basting for needle turn hand applique, and I use Aurofil cotton threads for strength and color matching…There is something so satisfying about slowing down and making time for hand work. I am always trying to improve my work and this book would certainly help me to continue doing so. Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy of the book.

    —Darcene on March 31, 2012
  • These are beautiful designs! I haven’t done much applique work but would love to try these.

    —Karen Buchs on March 31, 2012
  • I started to applique in 1990 with needleturn and have never lost my love of it. I have decided to learn backbasting this year but it will still be needleturn on top! It so very, very peaceful to sit and stitch
    I would consider myself beyond lucky to win Susan’s beautiful book. Once I saw the swan on your website – we had five "poor-man’s" swans, Chinese geese, on our lake we live on for years.
    Thank you for the chance, Janet

    —Janet on March 31, 2012
  • I love raw edge and needle turn applique, depending on the project. I love these designs and hope I win, thanks for the chance!

    —Susan on March 31, 2012
  • I just love the appliqué by hand and by machine. Of course I work, I applied to the machine for the short time that this requires.
    A few days ago I took a course with Deborah Kemball and become fascinated with quilts and techniques.
    Regards,

    Yasmin on March 31, 2012
  • I like to applique too..have done all kinds. This book looks awesome, would love to own it.

    jean on March 31, 2012
  • I love raw edge applique and fusible applique, because now I love fast and easy. My pride and joy is my one and only hand applique quilt done many years ago.
    I will be purchasing this book. It looks to be a beauty for my library.

    Bev Andersen on March 31, 2012
  • Not sure what kind I like better never really tried it
    would love to learn

    —Dorothy on April 1, 2012
  • I love fusible and hand applique. They both give great accent to a project. With hand applique, I will have less chance of fraying if I clip just before I needle turn. Starching the fabric and using some fabric glue to help also. This book looks wonderful. I would love to try some of her projects.

    —Sharon on April 1, 2012
  • I have been doing fusible applique because hand turned scares me. Maybe with this book as inspiration, I can overcome my fear!

    —Erin on April 1, 2012
  • Although I normally choose speed (fusible appliqué and machine quilting), I find hand sewing is relaxing. It’s been ages, but I’ve done a little needle-turn appliqué and was surprised at how easy it was. But I like using freezer paper, too, depending on the shapes. I’d love to win Susan’s book — it’s on my personal wish list.

    —Lorna on April 1, 2012
  • I love needle turn applique. I like to use freezer paper as a pattern, using the copy function on my printer for speed. I would love to win Susan’s book. It is always great to see how someone else does things.

    —Renee on April 1, 2012
  • I just started applique and found the fusing method a help to my confidence.

    The sewing process is so calming.

    —Janet on April 1, 2012
  • I have tried some fused applique but mostly I like needle turn. The fist time I fused an applique I was so excited. I went to the store picked out some fusiable, picked up fabric and off to the house I went. I got my pattern out and drew it on the paper, placed it on the fabric Ironed it down like instructed. It was so easy!! I thought now that this was great. I went to sew an edging around the applique and I could not get the needle thru the fabric. WHAT IS GOING ON? I did not know at that time about fusiables. Since then I have done my homework and know more now but I still prefer needle turn.

    —Tammy Hempel on April 1, 2012
  • The fusing method still looks neater than my hand turned under attempts, but I love handwork, so I would love to learn proper techniques & then practice them!

    —Barb Dawson on April 1, 2012
  • I have tried fusible applique and did not come out so well. I am very interested in learning how to do it right. Sounds like a good book for learning. Hope I win.

    —Donna Rae on April 1, 2012
  • Applique is one technique that I want to learn to do – both needle turned and fusible. For all handstitching I use tip 1, and it does work. I can tell the difference – less fraying and the stitches are smoother. Tip of what not to do: I’ve attempted applique of patchwork, and would say that this is not a place to begin because the seams can really make it difficult and frustrating to do needleturn, especially points on diamonds! I guess this is why I want to win this book – so I can actually learn how to applique correctly.

    —MarciaW on April 1, 2012
  • All types of appliqué fascinate me. The most recent style I am trying to perfect is sewing raw edge appliqués with my sewing machine.

    —Sharon Carbine on April 1, 2012
  • Just Loved This !!!!!

    —Susan Hedrich on April 1, 2012
  • I prefer hand applique, but I do machine raw edge applique on baby quilts for our church quilt ministry. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Sallie on April 1, 2012
  • I love hand applique, it is very theraputic. My tip would be to buy the best quality cotton fabric, thread, and needles you can find.
    That will make a world of difference, especially when you are first learning to applique. Once you have a good feel for it, then try other types of fabric and thread.

    I love this book, thank you for a chance to win it.

    —Elizabeth Perryman on April 1, 2012
  • I like both machine and hand applique — which technique I use generally depends on what the project is and what it will be used for. I once took a class in needle turn applique and it was so helpful!

    —Lisa Marie on April 1, 2012
  • I’m still learning so much about applique but so far I prefer fusible.

    —Crystal on April 1, 2012
  • I’m new to applique but not to quilting. Its taken me 40 years to work up the nerve to try it and I think I have a new favorite. I’ve tried fusible, and although I love the fast results, I’m terrible at sewing around the outside of the shapes on my machine. I like the way hand applique looks much more. I even like the slower pace of the handwork.

    —Nancy McFall on April 1, 2012
  • I love all types of applique, right now I’m doing a piece of wool applique. Any type of applique is a relaxing time. The projects shown are absolutely awesome, I would love to win the book

    —connie b on April 1, 2012
  • What beautiful examples of Applique! I would love to win Susan’s new book. Jand applique is my most favourite form of quilting. I love everything about the process of applique and usually don’t hurry through any of the steps. I’ve tried fusible applique and enjoy it as well.

    —Linda Webster on April 1, 2012
  • I’ve become a fan of hand applique. Like to use sizing instead of starch, and use both, heat resistant Templar plastic and/or freezer paper, depending on what I’m trying to achieve. The hand needle work is very satisfying and peaceful. It gives one time to meditate and just enjoy the process. Being portable is also a big plus since it can be taken anywhere!

    —Frank Figueredo on April 1, 2012
  • I love the look of hand applique but with small children I only have time for machine applique.

    —Ginger on April 1, 2012
  • I love extra super fast appliqué, meaning I don’t even use fusible, just a dab with a glue stick to hold it down just long enough to machine stitch around the edges. But I also love hand appliqué, so it just goes by what I feel like.

    Beautiful finished pieces in the that book! I’m sure I’ll have to read it.

    Emma TMcG on April 1, 2012
  • I love to applique. I think my favorite is needle turn but am always looking for new methods and ideas. I would love to win her book.

    Thanks,

    Avon

    —Avon Bingham on April 1, 2012
  • I’m still finding my favourite appliqué method. I like glue based turned over edges, but they can be difficult to stitch with the paper in the way, and then having to remove the paper can be a challenge. I don’t mind machine appliqué as it’s quick, but I like turned over edges better.

    Mishka on April 2, 2012
  • I have been quilting for just 12 months and have tried all types of patchwork in that time and my favourite is applique, doesn’t matter which style. At the moment I am doing a wallhanging on felted wool, A book on applique would be wonderful.

    —Di Brown. on April 2, 2012
  • I have been quilting for many years and my 1st quilt was an applique. But I haven’t done many since. So I am relatively new to this and look for what tips I can find

    Margaret on April 2, 2012
  • I prefer hand applique. I often end up with a mess when I try to use fusible web. However there are times when the fusible look works well and I’m trying not to get the fusible all over my iron, ironing board, hands and every other surface… Thanks for a chance to win this great looking book. Love the tip about threading the needle first!

    Janet on April 2, 2012
  • I have to say as being new to applique, I do what’s easiest. It’s all about not getting too frustrated for me!

    —robin on April 2, 2012
  • I love all applique. I got tired of using either a satin stitch or the blanket stitch on machine applique, and discovered the ‘invisible’ applique method. I cut out freezer templets and cut the fabric 1/4″ larger and starch the cut seam allowance to the freezer paper. I then use monofilament thread and a blind hem stitch. The stitching in almost invisible and is a fast way for an almost like hand done look. I am also doing a hand applique quilt. Both are fun depending on the reason for the quilt and the time crunch. One ‘invisible’ quilt is for a baby boy, so this is one I would not hand applique, but the invisible gives it almost that look with the stability/strength of machine applique.

    —Kim on April 2, 2012
  • I love applique, but i’ve never done any of the new methods of applique and could really use the help to learn new techniques. I’d love to have this book. Thankd for the chance to win.

    PJ on April 2, 2012
  • I prefer hand appliqué using the freezer paper and starch method. I just make sure I shrink my freezer by ironing it before I make my templets and I use three layers of freezer paper for the templets

    —Nancy on April 2, 2012
  • I have only machine appliqued and am still working on perfecting the look. My very first project was also hearts that I put on a baby quilt. This book would be a fantastic teacher to help me learn from an expert. Thanks for the giveaway!

    —Cheryl Sedlar on April 2, 2012
  • I love, LUV the look of applique! Prior to my husband retiring, I found myself enjoying "turned-under" applique, for I love the look. Well, since he is with me constantly I’ve noticed everything takes more time, which means less for me. Thus, ;D faster raw edge applique has been what works for me lately, but I still am drawn to "turn under" and do desire to return to it. And I shall.
    Wow, the designs in this book giveaway are fabulous! The placemats are already a given to make!

    —Jackie Roisler on April 2, 2012
  • My biggest hint is to find a good needle. I prefer straw, but try a number of different types and make sure they are good and sharp.

    —Kristin M on April 2, 2012
  • I love applique and this book looks awesome! I have done applique several different ways and there is a time and place for all of them. My favorite though is needle turn. I love doing the handwork and it totally relaxes me.

    Thank you so much for a super giveaway and a chance to win an awesome book.

    usairdoll(at)gmail(dot)com

    —usairdoll on April 2, 2012
  • I love the relative speed of fusible applique and machine stitching but love to see the stitches develop by hand under my needle. When I am fabric shopping I will often purchase an extra skein of black floss for a project, that way I seldom run out.

    —Charlie DiSante on April 3, 2012
  • I love applique though I haven’t done much of it. My biggest problem was fear until I had to make this quilt that had applique in it. My tip would be "just do it!" and the fusible applique is really quite easy.

    Thanks for the chance! I have two of Susan’s earlier books and just love to look through them.

    Angie SoCal on April 3, 2012
  • I just love all Applique!

    I so love to see your beautiful work it tells a story of your love for

    natures bountiful inspiration.

    Thank you for taking me to those wonderful places!

    Judith

    —Judith Sargent on April 3, 2012
  • I love to applique both ways but my favorite is hand. I use to say I can’t do that but I had a good friend show me how to do needle turn and after that I was hooked
    Thanks for the great giveaway

    —Sharon Ingalls on April 3, 2012
  • I have always enjoyed doing handwork so hand applique is right up my alley. My pride and joy is a snowman quilt that is a combination of my imagination and ideas from several patterns. Although I sometimes do the fusible applique if I’m in a big hurry, the hand applique is still my favorite. I don’t know that I have any special tips, but do know that the key is practice, practice, practice – and if you are a beginner, use patterns with larger pieces and gentle curves. As you improve your work you can use smaller pieces and sharper corners.

    —Donna Kay on April 3, 2012
  • Fusing applique is what I tend to do now… I seem to have a growing collection of batiks, prints and textures that can be a starting point for me to create a new project.

    —Kath on April 3, 2012
  • I am always drawn to applique quilts and enjoy machine applique. I hope to become proficient in hand applique, as well. My granddaughters and I made a quilt with appliqued stars on it for their little cousin (my grandson.) Their favorite part of the process was the machine applique, with the buttonhole stitch.

    —Marjory on April 4, 2012
  • Way back when our three kids were in grade school, I would wish that our kids would try sewing/designing with fabric. One day our oldest, Steve, came home with an assignment for a "map of Virginia" – and anything goes. He asked if he could sew a map. We were off and running. he dug in my stash and came up with map colors, background, and water fabric. I did not sew one stitch of that map. I helped him with little practice pieces, and was around and watched him. He fused the pieces on, and embroidered around the raw edges. he embroidered city and town names,using buttons for locations. He made a key, and fused a compass rose. He worked so long and hard on that map. His teacher asked if she could keep it. I said no. It is hanging in our hall, over the mitten box. Does it hang flat? No. Is it crooked? and simply made? Yes. It is priceless – I see it every day and smile. I hope he will let me keep it always.

    —Sally Watson on April 5, 2012
  • I love to applique by hand. It gives me something to do with my hands while watching TV (really listening not watching), and when it is all done I have something beautiful to put on my walls or give as presents.

    —Elaine Baumgartner on April 5, 2012
  • I love to hand applique. It give me something to do with my hands while watching TV (really listening, not watching) and when I’m finished I have something to put on my walls or give to my many friends who can’t quite understand how anyone can enjoy doing it. If they would try I’m sure they would be hooked just like me.

    —Elaine Baumgartner on April 5, 2012
  • I love the portability of applique. Feel like I’m on roller skates at times to keep up with the 4 yr old son, so I love anything that I can create on the go. I hope to do more applique, and am trying to think like my son when learning new techniques. Soaking information up like a sponge with no fear. Well, at least I can try…..

    —Nancysue on April 5, 2012
  • I never tried any appliqué before. I want to learn. Thanks.

    —Hueisei on April 5, 2012
  • I love applique as it is the perfect take along project for vacations!

    —Diane Sales on June 3, 2015

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