> The hardest part of applique is turning under the edge so that small
> points look good. Recently someone told me that she never turned under
> the edges. she said that after using a fusible bonding material to attach
> the applique, she either used a buttonhole stitch around the edges or some
> other stitch.
> So, doesn't the edge look ragged if you do that? Or, maybe it might look
> good until you have to wash your quilt. Obviously, if this method works
> all of your appliqued pieces will look much more precise, plus it would
> take much less time. Has anyone out there had success not turning under
I don't think I'd like to hand-stitch through a fused applique; however,
Harriet Hargrave in her book on Machine Applique describes this technique
using a machine buttonhole stitch. This type of applique is not as hardy
as turned-under edges and cannot take a lot of machine washings and general
abuse. There are no ragged edges to speak of because the fusible bonds the
threads at the edge to each other. Another consideration is that the fusible
definitely changes the feel of the applique, making the fabric stiffer. If
you want to try this technique, I would definitely recommend using Steam-a-Seam
as the fusible, as it has the softest hand and tightest bond of any fusible I
have tried so far (much better than Wonder Under or Heat'n'Bond Lite). But I
would still sew it by machine; too tough on the hands.
There are a number of different methods for turning under seam allowances.
Have you tried them all? There's likely to be one method that works better
for you than others, especially if there are multiples of the same shape.