Applique and a Photo Quilt

Here is the project I started this week and the current state of my design wall:

Photo Quilt WIP

You may remember the t-shirt quilt I recently finished. When my niece died, her hubby sent her t-shirts to me and asked for a quilt. My sister-in-law helped with the project – it was her first time sewing anything that big.

After I gave the finished quilt to my brother and sister-in-law for delivery to their son-in-law, my brother commented to our Mom that he wished he and his wife could keep Jen’s quilt. My heart broke.

So, what is a quilty girl to do but make another quilt, right? 🙂 I am out of Jen’s shirts, so I thought I would try to make a photo quilt. This is the first time I have tried anything like this so it is a learning process. I will talk more about the fabric “paper” and the process tomorrow, but today I wanted to show you the applique piece I am adding to the quilt.

That’s right – applique!

I am in the process of watching Amanda Murphy’s Craftsy class – 20 Fresh Applique Techniques (affiliate link) – and am feeling a bit more confident in my ability to applique.

Applique Block JenTo make the letters, I used Word and printed each letter as big as I could fit on a letter size sheet of paper. I traced the letters onto Wonder-Under, pressed it onto the fabric, and then cut out the letters to adhere them to the white fabric I’m using. I learned how to do that in Amanda’s class and she gave some good tips on cutting out the pieces and getting the paper backing off the applique piece.

This name panel (above) measures 27 x 11 and will be mostly centered in the quilt top.

After I ironed the letters to the panel piece it was time to stitch around the letters. Oy! Me and blanket stitching have to spend some more time together!

Raw Edge Applique Blanket StitchI started with the J. You can see how far away I was in that first curve. I think my main problem was the presser foot I was using. I changed to an open toe foot and I could see the fabric so much easier. I did a little better when stitching the ‘e’, but don’t have a pic. By the time I got to the ‘n’ I was doing much better:

Raw Edge Applique Blanket StitchOne of the tips that Amanda offered was to use a thicker thread on the top of your piece. She uses a size 12 Aurifil for one of the projects, which she says makes a bit of a ridge. I can see how that would look good, unless you really didn’t want the stitching to be part of the design and would rather it melt into the background. I don’t have a thicker thread, but plan on buying a spool sometime to try it. No one sells that thread weight locally, so I’ll have to order it online.

Anyway, I’m pretty happy with the way the panel looks and the way the quilt looks so far. I have a self-imposed deadline to finish the quilt so hopefully I’ll have a finish to share later this week.

Raw Edge Name AppliqueTomorrow I want to share my experience with working with the fabric pieces that feed through a printer.

Today I’m linking up with Let’s Bee Social.



About Beth

I’m a wife, mother of two, and lover of all things crafty. I love to cook up new things in the kitchen and in my craft room, and sometimes get “licking the spoon” mixed up with “licking the fabric”!!

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12 Responses to Applique and a Photo Quilt

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  2. Ellee says:

    What is the name of the font you used for the applique letters? Thank you.

  3. Kate says:

    What a great idea for a quilt. I like the setting you are using for the photos.

  4. Pingback: My Experience Using Fabric Sheets |

  5. Christina says:

    This is a very heartfelt gift, and I love the idea. I can’t wait to hear about how the printing on fabric went.

  6. Lisa says:

    This is such a lovely gesture Beth. Thanks for sharing this.

  7. It will be a beautiful quilt, Beth! It will comfort them in this time of sadness.


  8. Vicki in MN says:

    What a precious quilt you are making, they will absolutely love it. You are making several people happy in their time of sadness. I agree an open toe foot helps a lot!

  9. Your brother and sister-in-law are sure to love this. I am so sorry for the loss you have all gone through, and I hope that they feel your love and support when they receive and use this quilt.

  10. Tish says:

    Your applique looks great! I’m kind of excited to hear you are working on this project and look forward to reading about your process. I’ve always wanted to make this type of quilt, but haven’t had time to research the steps behind it. This will be a wonderful surprise for Jen’s parents. I’m sure she will be with you every stitch you take. Sending lots of love on this quilting venture.

  11. acbeier71 says:

    Great job on machine applique. Amanda Murphy is so good at applique, and a great resource.
    Looking forward to seeing your progress. It’s also a lovely tribute to Jen.

  12. Shellie says:

    Beth, I just finished a pillow last week for my sister that I put a picture of her granddaughters on. It was the first time I worked with that also. It turned out really nice and she loved it. I plan to do many more projects with it!! Talk to you soon! Shellie

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