Over the years I have experimented with and learned many different methods of applique – it sure has come in handy to know a variety of techniques. For this project I use needleturn, prepared edge with starch, and bias strips with fusbile.
For the flower , I make quick and temporary templates for needleturn. I trace individual pattern pieces on to one layer of freezer paper, cut out on the lines, and iron it to the *front* of the fabric. Then just trace with a pencil or anything – you can make the line as thick or permanent as you like, because the line will disappear as you are folding it under the piece while appliqueing. I almost always remove the freezer paper before sewing, but some prefer to leave it on as guide for the stitching line (instead of, or as well as, the traced line).
All of the stem leaves are the same, so I made a permanent template with two layers of freezer paper – sometimes I use template plastic, or laminate paper for the same job. Then just trace around it onto the right side of the fabric.
The overlap leaf has to be inserted into the flower, but not completely stitched down until the blocks are joined into their vine. So for the overlap leaf, I have used turned edge with starch – I made a template of two layers of freezer paper, that will last for a lot of leaves, iron it to the *back* of the fabric, and after applying starch (I use Best Press), fold the raw edges over the leaf with a hot iron. I leave the top point kind of jutting out, as I’ll tuck it in later when stitching down the leaf.
The stems are made with a 1/4″ clover bias maker (cut your bais strips 5/8″ wide). After forming these stems, I apply strips of fusible web, either from the pre-made 1/4″ roll of steam a seam or from scraps of fusible web left over from other projects.
For the layout on the block, I lay the background fabric over the block drawing, and sketch a light penicl line where the stem is to go. Fuse that in to place. Then, I again lay the background fabric over the block drawing and place the remaining pieces, or I just place them where I think they should be. I use little drops of glue (I prefer Appli-Glue, for its user-friendly applicator) to hold the pieces in place.