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Madiera Applique info. by hand...again!

 
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Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 9/29/2017 6:46:29 PM   
Linda S.

 

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I asked this question a year or so ago, but am still on the hunt for instructions
on how to do the old fashioned madeira applique by hand, the kind we see on
vintage/antique linens done on silk organdy (made in Madeira). I know how to
do madeira applique hems the way we do it for heirloom sewing, but this is
something a little different.

What's different about it, is something I see on several tablecloths and runners
I have, which are very old. There is an applique (of handkerchief linen or batiste)
on the front, and ALSO an identical applique on the wrong side of the piece. These
are appliques (for example leaves or a flower) sewn in the middle of the piece....They
are out there floating around the center, all by their lonesome. Not
a hem or border (which is pretty too, but I know how to do that).

Now, how in the world someone managed to do this is beyond me! The appliques are
attached by hand hemstitching (looks like the pinstitch we do by machine) and there
is only one row of stitching around the applique...joining the applique on the back and the
identical applique on the front, at the same time!

I could easily attach one applique to the front, and hemstitch it in place, but can't figure
out how they attached two identical ones at the same time, still having the edges meet
perfectly on both sides. There is only one row of hemstitching around the appliques,
which is how I know they were done at the same time. (organdy is sandwiched between
the two appliques...one on front, one on back).

Clear as mud? LOL! If not for embroidery stitches on the front of the piece, it
would be sortof reversible.....the front and back looking exactly the same. How is
that possible? Well it is possible, because someone did it and they did it to look
absolutely perfect.

Does anyone have a clue how to do this? I emailed the Royal School of Needlework in
England, and they didn't know. Reading some old 'Fancywork' magazines, I thought
one of those sharp gals might know if anyone did, wish I could ask them but that
publication hasn't been around for a long time.

Any ideas on who I might contact? If you managed to make it to the end of this long
message, thank you very much! And thanks in advance for brainstorming with me!


Post #: 1
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 9/30/2017 3:38:49 AM   
brenda@levin.nl

 

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I can think of a way to do it easily and totally accurately. I have no idea if that is how they did it but here is my idea. (1) Put front and back pieces of applique fabric right sides together with grain lines running the same way and pin to stop shifting. (2)Trace on the design onto the fabric on one side. (3)machine or hand tack with stitches large enough to unpick easily all around the design leaving a small area unsewn so that you can cut the design out with a small seam alloeance all around it. (4)NowtTurn the stitched design completely inside out gently pressing out all the seams and clipping if necessary. (5)Now press with an iron so that when you unpick the seams you have just sewn the folds remain very clear. (6) Now pin and/or tack the designs to the right side of the organdie main fabric. NEXT Turn the main fabric to the wrong side and place the second applique piece precisely over the first one and tack (baste) it into place . IF your main fabric is not very transparant use a light box to put it over if you can beg, buy or borrow one from a doctor, dentist or photographer (used for looking at x-rays or transparencies.) FAILING rig up a makeshift one by hanging it in front of a window (inconvenient) or rigging up a bright light with a piece of glass over it (e.g. glass fridge shelf borrowed from your refrigerater) resting on some tall objects like books. Unless the main fabric is black and very thick you should be able to see through enough to position the second piece and tack(baste) all layers together very accuratley. Now you can pin stitch through all layers quite accurately.

I hope this helps

Brenda

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brenda

(in reply to Linda S.)
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RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 9/30/2017 3:45:17 AM   
brenda@levin.nl

 

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Sorry on reading my post I realize two things are unclear. You have to unpick the sewn design after you have pressed it well remebering to press under the piece you left open so that you could turn the design inside out once you have sewn it together, so you have two pieces of identical applique design mirror imaged

(in reply to brenda@levin.nl)
Post #: 3
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 9/30/2017 11:59:30 PM   
caaguirre

 

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Another thought - you might have success by stitching the two pieces together using wash-away basting thread, turning them as brenda says and then using spray starch when pressing them to dissolve the basting thread. I think you'd still end up with 2 identical pieces if I'm reading this right. Is the purpose of appliqueing on both sides to make the piece pretty on the front and the back? I've never seen this before.

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Happy Sewing, Carol

(in reply to brenda@levin.nl)
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RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/1/2017 12:40:44 PM   
Linda S.

 

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Thank you Brenda and Carol!!! That is an excellent idea, and I'm going to give it a try. And a
BIG thanks for muddling through that long description!

The base fabric for these pieces is often organdy, which of course we can see right through. If not
organdy, then very fine batiste is used for the main fabric....like this hankie I have in an old flicker
album: https://www.flickr.com/photos/60048958@N05/32658376210/

Here is another one done on organdy: https://www.flickr.com/photos/60048958@N05/9378157957/

In the past I haven't been able to copy and paste here, but thought I'd give it another try. Much
easier to understand with a picture!

I think you both have the right idea, in fact I can't imagine how else it would be done. I do notice
that the grain of fabric running through each applique is different, front from back. If that's a clue lol.

Now...to master hemstitching to catch the applique on the back at the same time catching the applique
on the front. Guess that's something that comes with practice. The thread used is soooo fine, and
appears to be even finer than Madeira 80 that we use for attaching lace and machine pinstitching.
Did they raid spider webs to get their thread? LOL! For me, it will have to be the 80 ; ) and that
will do just fine : ).

Again, a big THANK YOU!!! I have been pondering this and doing research for years, and now I
think I have my answer....thanks to the sewing detectives on the Martha Pullen forum! : )

(in reply to caaguirre)
Post #: 5
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/1/2017 8:07:28 PM   
caaguirre

 

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Oh now I see. Either of those base fabrics would be easier to place your appliques exactly right since they're so transparent. I Googled 100 wt thread and came up with lots of places selling 100 wt. silk thread. I wonder if that would work.

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Happy Sewing, Carol

(in reply to Linda S.)
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RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/6/2017 5:36:10 PM   
Linda S.

 

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Thanks again Carol! Yes, I'm sure silk thread would be helpful....and sure beats spinning spider web lol!

MoDo has been brainstorming with me on this mystery applique, and we might be on to something. She
shared a how-to book on making an "heirloom" type applique, and they used a technique I'm familiar with
but had forgotten all about it. All these little tips have really helped me think.

Your suggestion of sewing two of them right sides together with wash away thread, turning and then using
spray starch and pressing to dissolve the thread would at least yield two identical appliques. That's a
good start! Maybe if I just pencil in the outline on (transparent) fabric, that might be enough to offer
a sewing guide for the appliques. They would of course be basted together to begin with, then carefully
hemstitched (pinstitched) in place by hand.

I do have some done on fine batiste too....which might be a little harder since I can't see through the
base as well. Maybe I only need more practice. Oh to be able to sit beside someone who knows how
to do this!

(in reply to caaguirre)
Post #: 7
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/9/2017 1:15:51 PM   
ShirleyCalgary


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Remember that I am still suffering from a head cold and chest cold.... so if I understand front and back of appliqued on fabric are identical... so obviously sheer sheer fabric... cut a square x 2 identical... get some 2 sided wash away tape place top applique... if you have a light box that will help if not a glass table top outside or in bright window will work - flip it over and line up back piece lift it slightly tape in place top and bottom of fabric - flip over to front tape securely bottom part of your square - trace your design on paper... cut it out I would use a dark cardstock... cut out applique fabric with tiny scissors like sort that come with machines... ok one side done... baste outline with wash away thread nothing fancy so now you have clue where to put your cut out card stock... trace on back trim excess... now baste it with wash away... now you are ready to hem stitch or whatever... just how I would handle such an adventure in sewing lots of ways to skin a cat

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Shirley - Mom to Dickens (PuppyWuppy now known as Dicky Wicky)and Doyle (baby) and Baxter, Bella, Pistol, Cowboy, ChiChi at Rainbow Bridge
I sew on Janome 8000, 10001, 11000se, 12000, 350e, 300e, Janome 234d and Babylock Imagine

(in reply to Linda S.)
Post #: 8
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/11/2017 3:09:02 AM   
kabinsons1

 

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quote:

Remember that I am still suffering from a head cold and chest cold.... so if I understand front and back of appliqued on fabric are identical... so obviously sheer sheer fabric... cut a square x 2 identical... get some 2 sided wash away tape place top applique... if you have a light box that will help if not a glass table top outside or in bright window will work - flip it over and line up back piece lift it slightly tape in place top and bottom of fabric - flip over to front tape securely bottom part of your square - trace your design on paper... cut it out I would use a dark cardstock... cut out applique fabric with tiny scissors like sort that come with machines... ok one side done... baste outline with wash away thread nothing fancy so now you have clue where to put your cut out card stock... trace on back trim excess... now baste it with wash away... now you are ready to hem stitch or whatever... just how I would handle such an adventure in sewing lots of ways to skin a cat


Nice story thanks for it.

(in reply to ShirleyCalgary)
Post #: 9
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/11/2017 3:10:09 AM   
kabinsons1

 

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Kindly give me more story such as.

(in reply to kabinsons1)
Post #: 10
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/12/2017 5:53:43 AM   
kabinsons1

 

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quote:

Shirley - Mom to Dickens (PuppyWuppy now known as Dicky Wicky)and Doyle (baby) and Baxter, Bella, Pistol, Cowboy, ChiChi at Rainbow Bridge
I sew on Janome 8000, 10001, 11000se, 12000, 350e, 300e, Janome 234d and Babylock Imagine


Where is this Rainbow Bridge. Your babylock imagination is so beautiful.

(in reply to kabinsons1)
Post #: 11
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 10/18/2017 12:57:24 PM   
ShirleyCalgary


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From: Calgary Area of Alberta
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Google RAINBOW BRIDGE.... READ THE STORY...


_____________________________

Shirley - Mom to Dickens (PuppyWuppy now known as Dicky Wicky)and Doyle (baby) and Baxter, Bella, Pistol, Cowboy, ChiChi at Rainbow Bridge
I sew on Janome 8000, 10001, 11000se, 12000, 350e, 300e, Janome 234d and Babylock Imagine

(in reply to kabinsons1)
Post #: 12
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 11/9/2017 11:08:01 AM   
Linda S.

 

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Ellen, What is a "good start"? I'm not following you.

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RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 11/9/2017 2:37:08 PM   
Grammie


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Methinks two of these people are inappropriate.

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Grammie to 10 darlings, ages 4 to 24 years plus 1 step-darling (she is 14)!

(in reply to Linda S.)
Post #: 14
RE: Madiera Applique info. by hand...again! - 11/9/2017 5:17:53 PM   
Linda S.

 

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Joined: 2/2/2011
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Grammie,

Methinks the same thing ; ). I was giving her the benefit of the doubt before
deleting the posts. Have to hand it to this one....he/she/they made more of an effort
than most lol!

(in reply to Grammie)
Post #: 15
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