How to use an Applique Detail | Sewing Term

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Add embellishments to any sewing project with the help of an applique detail. Learn the basics.

Appliqué –


  1. a cutout decoration fastened to a larger piece of material

The word applique is French, the past participle form of the verb appliquer (to put on). An applique is a decorative element added to a sewn item, such as:

  • quilts
  • skirts
  • shirt pockets
  • banners and signs
  • home decor items

Tips for Adding an Applique Detail-


  • The most common way to apply an appliqué detail is with a satin stitch. A blanket stitchherringbone and free motion stitching are also great choices.
  • When starting out, choose a simple shape. This will make the process easier as you build your skills.
  • Clip art translates well as do basic drawings, like those found in children’s picture or coloring books.
  • If your finished project will be laundered, always pre-wash the fabric(s) prior to adhering fusible web.
  • When appliqueing on knit fabric use a lightweight interfacing on the back of the knit to help stabilize. A firm base produces the nicest look when doing decorative stitching.
  • Test your decorative stitch on scrap fabric to get the desired length and width of the stitch to your liking before using it on your project.
  • For more interest and dimension consider layering applique onto itself.
  • Remember to trace letters onto your fusible web backwards so they will be going the correct direction when viewed from the front

Applique Stats-

  • Tools Needed – A design, template plastic, cardboard, or freezer paper for tracing designs, fusible web, tear away stabilizer, pressing cloth, X-Acto knife or small craft scissors, fabric, and 40wt embroidery thread.
  • Where To Find – Almost anything can be used for an applique. Clip art on the computer, or pictures in children’s coloring books. You can also design your own applique.
  • When To Use – Use an applique detail to beautify or add character to your clothing, quilts, or other craft projects.
  • Types – Clean finished edge, raw edge, and reverse applique.


Click the below pictures for additional applique projects:

This festive snow globe inspired DIY applique pillow is the perfect addition to my Christmas home decor. The cover makes it easy to pack away for next year.How to use applique scissors and free mesh bag pattern. The Sewing Loft

Learn how to Reverse Applique on The Sewing LoftSewing Machine Cover Sew Along | The Sewing Loft



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