One Outstanding App: Anatomy of a Great Applique Design

Looking for great applique designs for kids? This is what you need!

Babies and children make your laundry multiply so any applique embroidery has to hold up to not only wear but washing and drying as well. All of these things put extra stress on applique stitches and fabric. How do you make applique designs hold up through all of this wear? It starts with a good design.

The Applique Process

A placement stitch in machine embroidered applique stiches on the base fabric, showing you where the applique goes and how large your piece of applique fabric needs to be. The next sequence of an applique design tacks the applique fabric to the base fabric so that you can cut away extra fabric outside of the stitch line.

Often, I trim too close and snip the tack-down stitch or the tack-down stitch itself starts to unravel. Either way, the applique fabric is not totally secured unless you fuse it to the base fabric.

Can Basic Applique Possibly Get Better?

I am loving the extra step added to Ted Bunny and most other applique designs from Baby Embroidery Shop. They add an overlock edge after the tack-down stitch to make cutting neater and easier. Although I have not tried it yet, I believe it will also make the applique embroidery stand up to wear, tear, and laundering much better than a single tack-down stitch alone.

The color stops show red, blue, and green for every applique piece. That does not mean that you need to change your thread color each time. You can use the first thread that will be embroidered as a shortcut.

Red stitches out the placement area. Blue tacks the fabric to the base. Green adds the overlock edge to make trimming easier and prevent fraying.

That will happen for the bear applique,

the bunny applique,

and the heart applique.

The final color stops provide satin stitches to cover the edges.

Whether it is a blanket, sweatshirt, or onesie, applique designs with this kind of secured edge will prevent fraying and edge wear long term.