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Pivoting Outside Curves

Smooth stitching of appliqué shapes is all about understanding needle position and pivoting.

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Pivoting Outside Curves


When appliquéing, position the presser foot so the left swing of the needle is on the appliqué and the right swing of the needle is just on the outer edge of the appliqué, grazing the foundation. Stop at the first pivot point with the needle down in the fabric on the right-hand swing of the needle. Raise the presser foot, pivot the fabric slightly, and begin stitching to the next pivot point. Repeat as needed to round the entire outer curve.

To help you know when to pivot, mark the edges of circular or oval appliqué pieces with the hours of a clock; pivot the fabric at each hour.

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