LQS offered a back-basting class I decided to take the plunge. Class participants were encouraged to get a copy of Back-Basting Applique Step by Step by Barbara J. Eikmeier. The book has been a good source of techniques and tips, and I've appreciated having an extra teacher to help me along at home.
Back-basting is sometimes called "template free" applique. The applique shapes are traced onto the wrong side of the background fabric. The fabric to be appliqued is positioned on the right side of the fabric, covering the shape traced on the back of the fabric. Using a large needle and a heavier-weight thread, the applique shape is basted to the background fabric. The large needle (such as an embroidery needle) and heavier-weight thread (such as glazed hand-quilting thread) create perforations in the fabric which then make it easier to do needle-turn applique.
On the right side of the applique piece, the excess fabric is trimmed away from the applique shape. The basting thread is snipped and pulled out a few stitches at a time as the raw edge is turned under and appliqued in place.
So far, my applique pieces are a bit wonkier than I like. I definitely think practice will help improve the accuracy of my stitching. I like the technique because the prep time is shorter than other applique methods. It doesn't take much time to get everything ready to begin stitching the applique shapes.
I've been enjoying some Slow Sunday Stitching today as I attempt to improve my back-basting skills. It's been too hot for much slow stitching - sitting under a quilt while I stitch the binding or do some hand-quilting is not a fun activity even in an air conditioned house! I'm going to keep practicing my back-basting technique and maybe someday I'll be sharing a finished project.
Linking up with more Slow Sunday Stitchers and enjoying a piece-ful Sunday evening!