How would you turn this shape? The question was posed on an appliqué forum recently. Apparently the pattern was designed for fusible appliqué where turned edges wouldn’t be an issue, but the inquirer wished to make the design with needle-turn appliqué. She was concerned – understandably – about the extreme inside points.
The challenge with turning inside points is that the seam allowance needs to be clipped to create the point. By the time this shape is clipped, there will be very little fabric left to turn!
The author of the post went on to wonder whether the Apliquick tools would help. Having just completed a promo video for my Mastering Apliquick class, where I claimed that “with a little practice you’ll be able to turn pretty well anything”, I thought I should put my money where my mouth is. Two other approaches for turning this shape were also suggested on the forum, so I decided to try making the shape all three ways. Here are the results.
Suggestion #1 – Lined Appliqué
Trace the shape onto light-weight interfacing and sew it onto the fabric.
Clip the interfacing to make a hole for turning.
Turn the shape right side out. It was very challenging to pull the twelve spokes through that center hole. I used long forceps, tweezers and “That Purple Thang” to pull, push and prod the fabric through the hole.
The results were not great.
Lined appliqué works better with simpler shapes and unfortunately was not up to the challenge of turning extreme inside points.
Suggestion #2 – Divide the Shape
This is one my favorite tricks – I call it “divide and conquer” and have written a previous blog post about it. Our shape could be divided in a number of ways, but I divided it by making the shorter spokes into one shape and the longer spokes into individual shapes.
I used needle-turn appliqué to stitch the six long spokes onto the background fabric.
The remaining shape has much more manageable inside points and was needle-turn appliquéd onto the block.
You have to look very closely to even realize that the shape has been divided. This suggestion worked great!
Suggestion #3 – Apliquick
With the Apliquick method, the shape is traced and cut from light-weight fusible interfacing and ironed onto the back side of the fabric. Glue is applied to the seam allowance and the fabric edges are turned using Apliquick rods.
The glue is your friend, holding those clipped inside threads together.
I KNEW Apliquick could do it!