Thursday, December 11, 2014

Back Basting Applique

There are so many quilters like Dawn and Hilda , just to name two that really like back basting appliqué and do such beautiful work with this method so I thought I should give it a try.
I watched videos about how to go about it but decided I needed  a book because I am a book person and like to have something in my hands to refer to.
 Back Basting Appliqué Step by Step by Barbara J Eikmeier  was recommended and it is a good book with lots of information.  The only thing I needed more of was information about how to fussy cut your fabric using this method.
The first mistake I made was when I marked the pattern on my background fabric.  I marked it on the right side of the fabric and it was supposed to be on the wrong side of the fabric.  No problem  I said to myself it’s only marked with a pencil and that will wash out.  Not so easily done.  I did finally get the marks out after several washings with several different products.

 My next problem - I kept losing the holes in the fabric when I was stitching the pieces and so I wasn’t able to stay on the pattern line.  I used the needle and thread that was recommended .  Maybe it was the fabric I used.

I kept pushing on and did get the little quilt finished.  I may give this method another try sometime but for now I have decided it’s not for me.
Thank goodness the pieces in this project were fairly large.   I simply can’t understand  how people are able to do tiny little pieces with back basting.

I hope you are able to find a little stitching time in this busy season.


  1. Your appliqued piece turn out so well - sure don't see any problems but we are always too critical of our own work. I personally love back basting - after trying other methods, this became the right one for me. Still learning and still struggling with points no matter what I do. Will add that book to my Christmas wish list though.
    One thing that helped me because of my vision was tracing over the basted line on the front with a Bohin marking pencil. Mostly use white but sometimes the gray if fabric is light. By the time the leaf or basket - whatever - was needle-turned the marking line had disappeared but it had really made it easier to stay on the basting line. What ever method you are using, your applique is always extra special and I love seeing what you are up to.

  2. I use front basting (like back), but I stitch the pieces on with a sewing machine. I like it for certain projects because it seems faster and the stitching holes seem to last longer. But, I've also used taylor's trick (above) to make sure I can see the line. There's a write up about it on Glorious Applique if you do a search. (maybe it is the same as back basting?)

  3. Applique quilts are beautiful-just beyond my skill level

  4. It looks beautiful Nancy but shame it's not the method for you. I love back basting but I know we all have to find our own "comfort zone" :)
    Thanks for the nice words

  5. I don't like back basting either, because I don't like working back to front. Straightforward traditional needleturn is what I really like. just as well we are all different!
    But your little quilt is lovely!

  6. Tapiz muy bonito!!!!
    el libro se ve muy interesante
    gracias por compartir
    buen fin de semana

  7. Thanks for sharing your experience with the back basting. I have wondered about it also but have not tried it. Maybe I'll just take your word for it!! Your quilt is very cute though.

  8. Your piece looks very nice. I mostly use back basting but will use a combination of applique techniques-what ever seems to be easiest for that particular block. I think back basting for me seems like less prep work and a I get to the needle turn quicker. No matter what technique I enjoy them all.

  9. Very interesting post. I have been reading so much about back basting and it looks like such a good method! Will have to give it a go myself sometime and see if it would work for me or not.:)

  10. Nancy your little quilt is very cute! I've recently learnt back basting and I like it for certain circumstances, it's great for accurate placement. Like others I also mark the front, I use a frixion pen, using the stitches as the guide. I use a thick needle and thick thread, I also clip every 3-4 of the marking stitches so they are easy to pull out as you go.

  11. It took me a while to make peace with Applique all the way around! I've taken many classes over the years and for now back basting is my go to method. For me it is very comfortable. You do beautiful work, regardless of the technique.

  12. It seems like back-basting has been mentioned in quite a few blogs lately. I wasn't sure what it was so I did some research and it seemed that it would be more difficult for me than traditional needleturn so I didn't go any farther with it. Thanks so very much for your post and showing the book you purchased, your thoughts about this process and your little quilt. The little quilt turned out just great!!!

  13. I've done a few blocks with back basting - I like the accurate result but I didn't like the process. My instructions were from online blogs, maybe I need to try again with a tutor to see if I enjoy it any better.

  14. It turned out great, Nancy. I have done one, but only got to the back basting part - need to finish this. Happy New Year!

  15. Wow, Nancy - this little quilt is darling!! Back basting appliqué - never heard of it. But I am like Samplings from Spring Creek, applique is . . . One day, I am going to give it a try!! Happy New Year!!


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