Welcome back! I’m glad you are here for the final installment of my wool appliqué series. If you are just finding me, you can find the other two parts of the series here: Welcome to Wool Appliqué – Part 1 and Welcome to Wool Appliqué – Part 2. This week, we move on to wool appliqué stitching. I will share some of my tips and tricks to make this a really fun experience for you. It’s stitching time!
Wool Appliqué Stitching
There are two standard stitches that are the most common ones used to stitch appliqué shapes to the background. The first is the blanket stitch which looks like this:
I use perle cotton thread in neutral colors. I like Valdani Perle Cotton, size 8. However, the thread that you use and the color is your choice! You can even use embroidery floss. Use the amount of strands that gives you the thickness you like.
Here’s how the blanket stitch looks on a project:
You can use threads that contrast so you get a primitive look or you can use threads that match the color of your appliqué shape so the stitches disappear or blend in.
The next stitch I often use on thin pieces, like the stems made from strips, is called the whip stitch:
I use this stitch on the thin stems because I feel the blanket stitch is too wide. Here’s how it looks on a stem:
Here’s my mini video tutorial on stitching, including stitching points and inside corners, to help with your stitching understanding:
Some Stitching Tips
Now onto some of my tips for appliqué stitching to make your experience more relaxing and fun.
Tip#1: Good lighting is essential when stitching. I like a task light that sits on the table if I’m stitching there or a floor lamp if I am stitching in a chair watching TV.
Good lighting helps you to make even stitches and saves you from eye strain! It’s even better when your light has a magnifier. That will also help. you to make even stitches.
Tip #2: To get your thread prepared for stitching, pull off a piece of the thread no longer than 18″. If you have a longer piece, there is more of a chance that it gets tangled and frayed. To prevent as much fraying as possible, I use Thread Magic thread conditioner.
It’s not beeswax and it’s acid free so it’s safe for all your fabrics and threads. I like the design of the container too. Those indentations allow you to make use of all of the product without having to dig into the container.
Simply run your thread through like shown in the photo:
Tip #3: Here is a technique you can use to make sure your stitches are evenly spaced. Mark two lines on your thumb and use that as a guide for stitch spacing.
Tip #4: Use a chenille needle for stitching.
My preferred size is #22 because it has a larger eye for easy threading. If you want a shorter needle, you can use the #24 size, but beware, the eye is a little smaller on that one.
Tip #5: When you have finished stitching a piece or you have come to an end of the thread, here is a handy way to end so there is no need to knot:
Simply feed the tail of the thread through the last few stitches on the back of the project, as shown in the photos above. This should secure it.
Now for some fun stuff! Here’s some creative stitching that can add a little pizazz to your project. Use these stitches for smaller pieces or stems if you do not want to use the blanket or whip stitch. I had some fun doing these and it also adds some interest to your project.
Here are some stem stitches:
For small pieces like berries or small squares, this is what I chose to do:
French knots in the berries add a fun dimension. The little “x” in the square of wool on the right secures the piece to the project and adds a little whimsy. Finally, for the center of a flower, I did a French knot and some radiating stitches:
So that is all for part 3 of my Welcome to Wool Appliqué series. I hope you enjoyed it and learned something new! Please leave a comment or ask any questions below and be entered into the drawing for the prize package below:
The drawing will be on Monday, January 10th. Good luck!**We have a winner! Congrats, Wendy!***