What is this applique foot of which you speak?
I’ve mentioned about a kazillion times that, for the most part, I’m a self-taught sewer. (That’s sewer, as in “one who sews,” not “an underground conduit for carrying sewage.” Dear God, is there a better term for that?) And while it can be a lot of fun and quite satisfying to figure things out on my own, I’ve found that too often, when I finally do learn The Right Way, I realize I’d been doing it The Hard Way for a long, long time.
Through trial and error and time, I figured out how to applique. I use double-sided fusible web with every applique project I do, and I’ve tried several times to do a zig-zag stitch around the outside of various appliques, but it always ends up looking embarrassingly messy. So instead, I use a simple standard stitch.
Using that stitch has always worked for me, but I really wanted to have more than one applique option. And I knew there had to be a way to do the zig-zag stitch, because other people were managing to do it without making it look like a monkey had taken over their sewing machine.
I had a specific applique project in mind that I knew would only look good with a zig-zag stitch, so I did a little bit of research and, through a combination of several blogs, learned two things. One, I should set the stitch width at 3 and the stitch length at .5. And two, I should use — wait for it — an applique foot.
I’m sorry, what now? There’s an applique foot? Seriously?
The applique foot is clear plastic, so you can see where the heck you’re stitching, especially around curves, and it has a small arrow in the front center, so you can keep the edge of the applique fabric lined up with the arrow. Beautiful.
(Edit: Check your sewing machine manual to see if it comes with an applique foot. It might be called something different, like a blind foot or an open toe foot, but it should be clear plastic with a little arrow front and center.)
I did a trial run, realized how incredibly fun and easy is was to do a zig-zag applique stitch The Right Way, and spent the rest of the afternoon working on the above project. This and the strap from yesterday’s post are part of a tote bag that I’m making for The Boutique.
It’s already received Nola’s stamp of approval. Poor thing had a rough day of napping.
I had a dream last night that I came upon another blogger who was copying all of my photographs. She wasn’t actually using MY photographs, but she was setting up her own photographs identically to mine, and I was furious.
I’d like to give a very special thank you to Jox over at The Knitted Blog for submitting my strap tutorial to Craftzine. Thank you, Jox! You’re the best!