Usually when you applique, you sew the fabric bits in place around all the edges.
But sometimes it’s fun to make them flappy. 🙂 It’s a way to add a playful element to your applique!
If you look closely at the spikes on that monster, you’ll see that they’re only attached at the base. That gives them some fun dimension – and makes them fun to play with.
I did the same thing with the teeth on this monster.
(You can purchase my Applique Monsters Quilt As You Go class on Craftsy, which teaches you to create similar monsters and includes instructions for a LOT more options for 3D embellishments!)
I’ve been working on refreshing the Peekaboo Bear quilt pattern and decided I needed to take new step-by-step photos. I didn’t want to make a whole new quilt, but Jo asked for a new pillow and that was just right.
I decided to make the ears flappy – with satin linings on the front. Oooh! Satin! Fancy! This would be especially fun to do on a baby quilt where that satin can be a soothing sleepytime thing. 🙂
Here’s what you do. . .
Cut out the freezer paper pattern as usual.
Fuse it to the back of a piece of fabric, as usual. But don’t cut the pieces out!
Instead, layer that piece of fabric with another one, right sides together. Sew around the freezer paper piece, leaving unsewn where it will tuck under another applique piece. In this case, I sewed around the tops of the ears and left the base unsewn. I removed the second freezer paper ear so you could see the stitching more clearly.
Now cut out the ears, leaving a little less than 1/4 inch seam allowance all around the shape.
Turn the ear right side out and press it flat.
Voila! You have a finished shape, ready for applique!
Tuck the shape in place and stitch it down. You’ll sew the larger piece (in this case the head) in place, right over the base of the ear. Since the rest of the edges are all finished they don’t need to be stitched down.
You have a flappy cute ear!
I use this technique most often on ears, hair and teeth, but it’s great for any little flappy bit. How about a lolling tongue on a puppy dog? Or a collar on a shirt? Or the wing of a bird? Or flower petals?
Have fun with it!