applique dress tutorial

Applique tutorial 03

a quick tutorial for those who asked how I applique my dresses onto my embroidered girls.  Most of the girls come from this pattern.  I applique the dress rather than embroidering it.

firstly I use bondaweb to stick my dresses down, this is because I like the raw edge but the bondaweb stops it fraying.

Because I do lots of dresses I have rectangles of fabric already bondawebbed and I just cut dresses, bunting and butterflies out of those

Applique tutorial 01

for this tutorial I've used a recent commission to demonstrate the method.  If you're just making one dress it is easier to cut the dress pattern out of the fabric and then cut the same pattern from the bondaweb and iron the bondaweb to the back of the dress.

Applique tutorial 02

It's important that you don't iron the dress down at this point as the heat from the iron would either make your other embroidery lines disappear or set permanently.  I stitch the dress in place first, if you prefer you could do all the other embroidering, the face, arms etc. and then pin the dress in place.  

Applique tutorial 04

I also use this point to match up threads I want to use just to make sure they all go well together

Stitch 001

I then stitch the dress down using small stitches around the edge, you could use a running stitch close to the edge if you would prefer a neater look.  

Stitch 006

You could also use a hoop while you are stitching the dress if you prefer.  The advantage of stitching before you iron the dress to the base fabric is a slightly softer look to the fabric, not quite so flat looking

Stitch 011

Now you can continue stitching the rest of your embroidery.  You can add stitching on top of the dress, I often add french knots, in this case I added a line of stitching to look like a ribbon emphasizing the empire line of the dress.

I hope this little tutorial answers everything but if not please ask away in the comments section below