Sunday, March 6, 2011

OLD DOGS CAN LEARN NEW TRICKS!!

So the other day I was watching Ricky Tims on "The Quilt Show", he was demonstrating the Rhapsody quilting. During this session he mentioned that he uses stabilizer behind his applique. One thing I did not realize until watching his show was that he blanket stitches around his pieces in his Rhapsody Quilts.



WHAT!!! SCREEEEEECH!!!! That is me putting the stompers on the breaks. Smell the fumes?



Let's rewind that....



STABILIZER BEHIND APPLIQUE!!!!



Did I hear that right? Never heard that concept. So...I did a little testing myself.







Which one do you think has the stabilizer behind it....oh yes...don't mind the stitches...so I am not perfect....we all know that...let's go on to more important things.... Which one is stabilized and which one is not.



Do you really think it makes a difference? do you think that it is just a waste of time and money? Do you stabilize? So many questions....I need answers!!!

On Allpeoplequilts it says " What's the secret of smooth applique pieces? Using Stabilizer! Place stabilizer beneath the foundation fabric before you begin to applique. This will prevent unsightly puckers that pull at the foundation. Stabilizer is used beneath applique foundations to add support and eliminate puckers and pulling on fabric as you machine-applique. "

I DID NOT KNOW THIS!!!! WHERE HAVE I BEEN???? IF YOU ARE LAUGHING AT MY IGNORANCE, THAT IS OKAY.....IF YOU ARE NEW TO THE BLANKET STITCH WORLD, I AM SAVING YOU THE EMBARASSEMENT OF NOT KNOWING. I don't think Alex Anderson knows this, she said she doesn't stablize. Sheweee, so I am not the only one...


This turtle was stabilized.....





I have been self taught, I don't mind learning new techniques.

My thoughts on this are.....

It does make the process go alot smoother, no puckering, easier to control the fabrics and in the case of the turtle, it gave it a more polished look.

So you decide?

Then I got to thinking, people put stabilizers behind their embroidery, whether is machine or hand...so why not applique?

Let me know what ya think!!


51 comments:

Just Ramblin' said...

This is the first I have heard of adding stabilizer. I do blanket stitch all the time and never thought I needed something behind my work. Guess I will give it a try. We learn something new all the time. Was it hard to stitch through?
Thanks for sharing. Nola

Ann Marie said...

I say the top one is stabilized.

Lynn said...

I've done it both ways. In my experience the fusible you are using also is a factor. My current favorite fusible is Misty Muse and it seems to benefit from stabilizer. With a stiffer fusible, like Heat-n-Bond, I never felt stabilizer was necessary.

I don't like to leave the stabilizer on the back after I stitch though and have had problems removing the excess after stitching. Any tips on a good tear-away stabilizer that is actually easy to tear-away?

swooze said...

I think it is the top one.

SandyQuilts said...

Yep especially if you're doing it by machine ... think machine embroidery ... they always have some sort of stablizier.

If you're using tear away I suggest sprits lightly with water, wait a minute then pull it away gently.

Oh there is a wash out stablizier on the market.

Happy Stitching

Stormy Days said...

I've always used stabilizer under appliqué because I come from machine embroidery. The first time I did applique the fabric puckered a bit and I used stabilizer, fixed everything.

Fiesta said...

I too use stabalizer. It makes it look better. I hate cutting it out though

kpaints said...

Any way that makes you comfortable...that's what I say...make it easy on yourself.

Gene Black said...

I had never heard of that for handwork either. I did know you need it for machine embroidery.

I agree with Ann Marie, I think the top "Be Honest" is stabilized. I see a small difference.

Scrappy quilter said...

I've done it both ways too and prefer no stabilizer. I don't like having to remove it after it's stitched. Hugs

JustCindy said...

I have a friend who is a professional quilter at a shop. If it isn't straight stitch she uses stabilizer. I always use stabilizer if I do a satin stitch but not always when I buttonhole. I know I should.

JustCindy said...

Also, I don't think you see any pucker once the quilt is quilted.

LynCC said...

Hmm. . I've never used stabilizer for blanket stitching and not had problems. When I satin-stitch, I use cheap children's sketch paper as stabilizer. It's a dream - cheap, good support, easily removed. Might be a tad trickier to remove with blanket stitching.

But if you really did like it better with the turtle, I'll maybe try it the next time I use blanket stitch!

Quilter in the Gap said...

You are definitely not alone. I have never heard of this method either. I will also have to try this. Do tell...which of the phrases were stabilized? I say it was the bottom one.

Country Log Cabin Quilter said...

I have never used stabilizer behind hand embroidery. I only heard of people using it from other blogs and haven't done it yet. I haven't done very much machine applique and have never used stabilizer. I don't know if I will or not. Probably not, because I don't do very much applique and if and when I do it, I probably won't have any at home and won't want to run to the store to buy some. I'm curious as to what most people say, though.

Shelly - Dragon's Dolphin said...

I do machine embroidery and can't imagine doing any type of applique without a stabilizer of some sort. The stabilizer I use the most often is a fusible tear away one. Makes for an interesting concept, but it works.

Jean said...

Sounds good to me, though I haven't done it...I will try it next time. Would help keep the original block the correct size too. Like you I am self taught...still learning!

Jean said...

A question...did you use fusible interfacing?

Marls said...

I have done alot of machine applique using buttonhole stitch and do use stabilizer- was taught to do so (maybe it's a Down Under Thing)!!. I have to say it does prevent puckering.
I usually have a pair of tweezers nearby so that if bits of stabilizer stay behing after tearing it away it is easy to remove it with tweezers.

Marls said...

Back again. www.patspattering.blogspot.com is posting a tutorial at the moment using stabilizer with some tips.

Cheryl Willis said...

I dont more to time and expense then technique. I like the raw edge and organic look of a few puckers-lol

Mary L. said...

Have pretty much always used stabilizer if I am doing machine applique, preferably tear away kind. But I don't do a lot of machine applique these days. It definitely does make a difference!

Susan said...

I'm self-taught as well which means trying something lots of different ways until you're happy with the results! ;o)

Needled Mom said...

I must admit that I never thought of doing it without stabilizer. Guess it was the way that I first learned how to applique. I also use stabilizer with I do the decorative stitches on my machine when sewing as well as behind buttonholes. I am guessing that it is the first piece that has the stabilizer. Can't wait to see the answer.

Rhonda said...

I don't stabilize, my mom always does. She just adds a piece of typing paper(it's super thin, almost like tissue paper) than tears it off when she is finished.

BubzRugz said...

Barb, I don't use stabilizer on the back for applique like this ... and am quite happy with the results....
Hugz

Lizziebeth said...

I use to but I hated taking the stablizer off afterwards so I just started starching my background fabric really stiff and it works great.

Julie said...

I have only tried satin stitch applique, and find that stabilizer makes a nicer finished product, as well as helps avoid headaches in the process. In a pinch, I use a paper towel for the stabilizer, then tear it away.

Kim said...

To "be honest" I didn't think to use stabilizer either! I'll give it a try the next chance I get to sew applique. :)

Deanna said...

As I admire all who applique, I have no personal opinion on stabilizer. But, I can appreciate the "AHA" moment of learning a new quilting trick. Always exciting.

Yvette said...

I used to use a tear away stabilizer. Now that I have a built in walking foot I don't use any stabilizer at all. I think your new janome has that and so did your Pfaff. Right?? I think with the built in walking feet it isn't necessary.

wackywoman said...

Never have used it before and have taken a fair amount of machine appique classes and none have taught this way.

Kim West said...

i just started using stabilizer also (with my batik pineapples) and it was so much easier. I don't know if it looks better, but it was easier to stitch.

Hillbilly Handiworks said...

I have been using stabilizer behind applique for awhile now. It really makes it lie better doesn't it? I don't know where I heard to do that...but just like you..I'm glad I did!

Linda said...

I use stabilizer for everything. I have done it this way forever because that's what I was told to do. I have tried it without and don't like the results.

Fleurette@ Fleur's place said...

I've always used a stabilizer, a fusible tear away. Much easier to sew and a better finish.

hetty said...

I used to use stabilizer when I first started doing machine applique, but I almost never use it any more. If the background fabric is a good quality cotton I don't seem to need it. But when I do use it I use the water soluable kind. It is much easier to take out.

Tangos Treasures said...

Looks awesome!!
I think the bottom one has the stabilizer!

Crispy said...

I've heard of using stabilizer behind machine applique but you know me, it's not needed when sewing stuff by hand so only used it one time on a towel. Hated sewing through it so tossed the rest of it :0)

Crispy

Sybil said...

If I am using batiks I don't stabilize my fabric but I do with anything else.

ooglebloops said...

Never thought of it for machine applique!! Makes sense tho - since you use stabilizer for machine embroidery. Love those buttons in your previous post.

Barbara said...

Barb, I don't see a difference! So, in the end, I'd choose the method that feels best to me as I'm working, with or without the stabalizer.

West Michigan Quilter said...

I only use stabilizer if I am doing machine applique. Otherwise, I never use it and see no need for it. I guess I'm like you, never heard that I needed it. Interesting.

LuAnn said...

I really like hand applique' best, but I'm thinking that I need to try some machine applique and pick up the pace a bit. Ha! I didn't know about the stabilizer either. I guess that explains why any practice pieces I've tried by machine are puckered. Thanks for your post.

SewCalGal said...

I prefer to use stablizer if I am doing machine applique too. Well worth the extra effort. There is a large world of stablizers out there, some that tear away, some that wash away, some that are lightweight vs stiff. Everyone has their favorites. So enjoy trying different ones and seeing what ones you like.

SewCalGal
www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com

Shasta said...

I've heard of stabilizing when doing machine applique, but not hand applique. I am just too cheap to use a stabilizer, but it does have its benefits, so maybe I would on a special project.

PaTcHwOrK jEnN said...

the top one? I hand applique and don't use stabilizer. I do when I do my embrodiary.

Regina said...

I've been tempted when I applique on shirts for the kids but that's just because of the material and I keep forgetting to buy some so I haven't tested to see if it helps.

Melissa said...

I always worried it would feel stiff. Does it? Do you leave it the size of the whole square, or trim it close? I bet if I had used stabilizer behind my white squares on my St. Patrick's Day quilt, the Warm & Natural wouldn't have shown through!

Maggey and Jim said...

I have always used catalog pages,, thin,slick and it rips right out.. some remains in the blanket stitch but does not effect the look.. cheap,cheap....
Maggey

cropperbea said...

I use ricky tim's STABLE stuff behind all my applique, I mostly do needle turn applique, and leave it in there, then soak the block or whatever was appliqued overnight in water, let it air next the next day and the "glue" in the stable stuff disappears, but the fibers stay, so it's a tiny bit trapunto... Also you can stuff these sheets in the printer!!