Machine Minute: Positioning Applique
Hi I'm Jennifer, here with another Machine Minute brought to you by Baby Lock and the Symphony machine. Do you know what the secret to great machine applique is? It's all about how you position your applique under the needle. Let me show you. When you are stitching your applique down, whether it's mock-hand applique or fusible applique, it doesn't really matter, the position of your needle when it swings across your applique is what's important. You want to make sure that the bulk of your stitch lands on the applique itself. And only the right-hand swing of the needle bites just into your applique foundation. Whether it's a big curve like this or going around curves like on this leaf, the principle is the same. The bulk of your stitch lands on the applique piece, just a bite of the needle when it swings to the right lands on your foundation. Now, I use the selvedge of my fabric to practice. When I'm trying to determine the width and length of the stitch I want, I like to keep it as small and narrow as possible, because I don't want it to overwhelm it. If you are using a decorative stitch or a blanket stitch, you might want a wider one that shows up to add a little decorative element to your quilt. But depending on what stitch you choose, you can practice stitching it out. I used the selvedge edge to pretend that the purple part is my applique and the white part is my foundation, and to judge just how far I want that needle to swing. For this particular stitch, I chose a zigzag stitch and set my width at 1.5 millimeters and my length at either 1.0 or 1.2 millimeters. This gives you a better idea of what that stitch looks like and just how narrow it is. Then, when you get ready to position your applique, practice with the foot that you've chosen, the needle and the thread type, and place a piece down for your applique. I placed this green piece just as though it were an applique stem. And then I can practice my stitch and get a feel for what line on the foot I'm going to follow and what my guide is going to be, making sure again that the bulk of the stitch lands on the green applique and just a little bit of it lands on the purple foundation. Practice will make perfect. Give it a try!