Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Embroidering on Swimsuits

I love swimsuits.
I love applique.
So, of course, I love appliqueing my swimsuits!

And... you guys!!!... it's so easy.
I get questions all the time about how to do it... and, honestly, when I started thinking about doing it, I googled like crazy and came up with nothing. So, here's hoping this will help somebody else.

Go for it. It's so fun. It looks so cute.
Here's some examples of ones I've done.

Start by ironing heat and bond onto the wrong side of your fabrics. Use a low heat, no steam setting and let the heat and bond dry completely. It should not be warm when you peel the paper backing off.

Then prepare your hoop by putting some cut away stabilizer in there. Make sure it's nice and tight.

Next you're going to put it in your hoop and stitch out a few stitches of your design.
This just helps me with placement. I put a pin in my swimsuit where I want the top of my design to go.

Spray a light layer of temporary adhesive on your hoop and make sure it is completely dry and tacky before 
placing the center fold of the swimsuit on the center of your hoop. Remember to line up the center fold with the arrows on your hoop and making sure that the top of your design lines up with your pin.

Open out the fold and press it onto the spray adhesive.
Pin all around the hoop~ Do not stretch the fabrics and use very sharp pins.

Start stitching your design, be very careful when trimming~ those fabrics are easy to cut through.

I have only used zig zag designs on my swimsuits. I'm scared to use anything with a satin stitch for fear that it would tear the fabric or make little holes. These zig zag ones work great. Lynnie Pinnie has a bunch available on her site as well as Planet Applique. For this anchor one, I just used the tackdown and underlay stitches and skipped the satin stitch. That method may not work for every design, though.

Now remove from your hoop, un-pinning carefully and trim the cut away as close as possible on the back.

Then you can iron on some knit tricot interfacing on the back of the design or fully line the swimsuit to keep the itchies off your kiddos skin. I lined my suit (but I think it may have reduced the amount of stretch and made my suit too small.... ) Check the stretch of your lining against the stretch requirements on your pattern and make sure you have the greatest degree of stretch going the right way.

Construct the rest of your suit and admire your work! Too cute, ey?

Please, let me know if you try it and upload some pictures to the flickr group!


BConky said...

Good tutorial

faviola said...

Do I have to use swimsuit fabric to make the applique??