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Video 14: Using Fusible Web

See how to use fusible web in appliqué quilt projects.

Fusible web can be a great tool for doing fusible applique. And understanding a few simple rules about how to best use it can make your applique finished quilt look even better. When you're buying fusible web you want to make sure that you purchase a type that says sewable. It's often sold as a lightweight sewable fusible. And you want to make sure that's what the package says., because as you finished the edges and stitch through it, a heavyweight would be too difficult for you to put your needle through either by hand or machine. So make sure you get lightweight sewable. Then when you unroll the package, you'll notice that there's a paper side to it and sort of a tacky or sticky side. When you place your fusible over the pattern, you want the paper side up. That's what you're going to trace your pattern on. So place your fusible over the pattern, trace around your shape and then cut it out not on the drawn line, but just sort of a rough cut around the outside. One thing with fusible is it can tend to get stiff if you have a lot of your shapes filled in. And you would like, I'm assuming, to have more of a pliable quilt in the end, not so stiff. So here's a trick for making that happen. Once you've got your pattern piece roughly cut out like this, you want to cut out the center. So what I do is just use my scissors to trace the inside of that and remove the center, but don't discard this yet. I make sure before I clip it out that I make a little X mark, and you can see my little X's from my pencil there. And that's because when I get ready to press it, I sort of have this doughnut shape. I want to press on the wrong side of my fabric with my fusible shape. So 'm going to place that down. But you can notice that once it's a doughnut, it can get distorted pretty easily. That's where you extra piece comes out. I place that X there, so I know exactly how that center piece fits back in. And that helps me to know that I've got my shape and my edges in the right alignment. Before I get ready to fuse, I'm going to lift that out of the way, and then I'm going to press following the manufacturer's instructions. And you don't want to slide your iron. You do just want to lift it up and press it down to create that bond. And get all your edges firmly adhered. So I've done that also over here. I can set aside my center shape and reuse it for something smaller. And now I'm ready to cut out that shape. This is the point at which I'm going to want to cut directly on my traced line. And the reason that we cut it out originally from the paper with that rough cut is because we want this cut to by the one that's most accurate on that line. What that does is allow you to have fusible web all the way to the edge of your piece. If I had cut that paper out originally on the line then I might have a few stray threads along that edge But this way, I'm ready when I get ready to adhere it to my foundation, with the web going all the way to the edge. So at this point then, I'll be able to tear off the paper after I have the shape all the way cut out. It leave the adhesive. I'm ready to turn it over and press it again on that foundation. Fusible web can be a great way to do applique. Give it a try.