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Embellishing Brocades Part 2: Creating 3D Appliques - TWO METHODS!

With so many gorgeous brocades in our stores, we thought it would be fun to share some ideas how to work with them.  While beautiful on their own they can become even more interesting and multi-dimensional in just a few steps!
 
Creating 3D Appliqués METHOD 1:  Raw edge appliqué
 
Step 1:  Layering your fabrics
Choose a brocade fabric that has well defined motifs.  Choose a lightweight fabric for your backing.  We have chosen a silk organza to help add body but no bulk to our appliqués.  Other tightly woven fabrics such as lining or lightweight cotton would also work.
 
 
Choose the motif that you would like to use from your brocade.  Cut around the motif with a large allowance on all sides.  Cut a piece of the backing fabric the same size as the brocade piece.  Layer these on top of some tear-away stabilizer.  Using many appliqué pins (flat head) and keeping your work very flat, pin through all three layers.  
 
Step 2:  Stitching
Choose a stitch that you want to use to finish the edge of your appliqué.  You may want to choose a narrow satin stitch or something more decorative.  Choose an embroidery thread in a colour that blends in to your brocade fabric.  If your fabric is multi-coloured, you may want to experiment with a multi-coloured thread.  Your bobbin thread should match your backing fabric.  Test your stitch on a small swatch of your three layers to make sure you are happy with how it looks.
 
   
  
Keep your work very flat and stitch around the edge of your motif, removing pins as you go.  Keep the needle in your work when you need to pivot at the corners.  When you get to the end, pull your threads through to the back of your work and tie a knot.
 
Step 3:  Remove Stabilizer
 
 
Carefully remove the tear-away stabilizer.  Try not to put too much tension on your stitches as you go.
 
Step 4:  Trim
 
   
  
Using tiny scissors with sharp points, trim away the allowance to create your appliqué.  Be very careful not to cut into your stitching.  Press your completed piece carefully.  
 
Step 5:  Apply
At this point, you may want to embellish your appliqué with beads or sequins.  Once you are happy with your appliqué you may simply stitch it in place or use a decorative button to hold it in place. 
 
Creating 3D Appliqués METHOD 2:  Seamed-edge appliqué
 
Step 1:  Layering your fabrics
Choose a brocade fabric that has well defined motifs.  Choose a lightweight fabric for your backing.  We have chosen a silk organza to help add body but no bulk to our appliques.  Other tightly woven fabrics such as lining or lightweight cotton would also work.
 
 
Choose the motif that you would like to use from your brocade.  Cut around the motif with a large allowance on all sides.  Cut a piece of the backing fabric the same size as the brocade piece. 
 
    
Using many appliqué pins (flat head) and keeping your work very flat, pin the two fabrics right sides together. 
 
Step 2:  Stitching
      
   
 
Set your sewing machine to a fairly short straight stitch (we used 2.0).  Stitch along the outside edge of your motif removing pins as you go.  Keep your needle in your work if you need to pivot around corners.  Once you have stitched all the way around your motif, overlap the stitching by a few stitches and backstitch.  Trim your threads.  
 
Step 3:  Trim
 
   
  
Trim the seam allowance to approximately 1/4”.  
 
 
Carefully trim outside corners close to your stitching.  At any inside corners, clip toward the corner taking care not to clip the stitching.
 
Step 4:  Turn and press
 
  
Using tiny scissors with sharp points, clip into the centre of your backing fabric.  Cut a hole large enough to turn your appliqué right-sides-out, but not too large that you end up with a huge hole in the back of you appliqué.  
 
   
  
Turn the appliqué right-side-out through the hole in the backing.  Carefully roll out the edges at the corners.  
 
 
Once you have rolled out the edges, carefully press. 
 
Step 5:  Finish and Apply
Hand-stitch the opening closed at the back of you appliqué, trying to keep the appliqué as flat as possible (this stitching will not show once your applique is in place).  At this point, you may want to embellish your appliqué with beads or sequins.  Once you are happy with your appliqué, you may simply stitch it in place or use a decorative button to hold it in place.
 
 

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