One of my favorite ways to create seasonal outfits for my kids is with appliques. Sew a pennant banner, necktie, bow tie, nautical, or other applique onto a plain white top and you’ve create a cute, customized piece. Wanting to make something cute for the kids to wear this fall, I started brainstorming applique ideas. What says fall better than pumpkins? So here they are–pumpkin appliqued tops!
• sewing machine
• basic sewing supplies (scissors, thread, seam ripper…)
• fabric (These lovely orange and green fabrics were purchased from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.)
• t-shirt or infant bodysuit
• iron-on fabric stabilizer (I use Heat N Bond Lite when I’m going to be stitching around the appliques. There is an ultrahold type that will adhere permantly without sewing if you’d like a no-sew option. I personally think sewing around the appliques gives them a more polished look though.)
• iron and ironing board
• thread-end glue (optional)
• pencil and paper to freehand a pattern or the template below
1. Gather your materials and take a few moments to read the directions on the package of iron-on stabilizer.
2. Cut out a piece of fabric big enough to cut your pumpkin from it. (Tip: I like to work with a piece that is large enough to cut out several appliques just in case I want to go back and make more later.) Cut out a piece of iron-on stabilizer that is slightly smaller than the piece of fabric.
3. Place the non-papered side of the stabilizer onto the wrong side of the fabric and iron the two together.
4. Using your template, trace a pumpkin onto the papered side of the stabilizer.
5. Cut the pumpkin(s) out.
6. Follow the same process from steps 2-5 to make your leaves.
7. Peel off the paper from the back of your pumpkin applique. Place it in the desired position on the t-shirt or infant bodysuit. Iron over the pumpkin to adhere it in place. Stitch around the perimeter of the applique. (Tip: Do not backstitch like you normally would when sewing.) When you get back to where you started, finish sewing and snip the threads in a way that you’re left with long thread tails that can eventually be knotted together.
8. Turn to the inside of the top and tug on the two threads on that side. You’ll see a loop appear with each one. Insert a seam ripper into the loops and pull the two threads from the front of the shirt to the inside. Tie all four threads together making sure to knot them several times. Snip the excess thread tails. (Tip: If desired, you can even use a thread-end glue on the knot.)
9. Peel the paper off the back of a leaf and iron it in place.
10. Stitch around the leaf.
11. Follow the same process from step 8 to pull and secure the loose threads through to the inside of the top.
12. Now it is ready to be worn or gifted! Isn’t it cute?!
Happy sewing and happy fall!
Jennifer is a wife, mommy, and former teacher who left the classroom to stay home with her three little ones. She’s an avid crafter who loves to dapple in all things creative. Through blogging she’s found a way to share her love of craftiness and spread a little happiness. She blogs at The Life of Jennifer Dawn.