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Embellishing polar fleece…ideas?

susanna | Posted in Fabric and Trim on

Hi. I am making pink polar fleece mittens and scarves for my grown up daughters and would like to add a little something innovative to them as trim. I do not have an embroidery machine. I do not own a book about embellishing polar fleece. In the past, I have done mola type appliques, double loop fringe, layered flowers and leaves, and random beading on these items. I suppose I could do one of these, but am wondering if anyone has tried something else they’d like to share.

Also, is there a good book on embellishing polar fleece, or just on embellishing fabric that anyone really loves out there?

Thanks!

Replies

  1. cafms | | #1

    These are some of the ideas I discussed in a class I just gave on sewing and embellishing fleece which are really easy to do using a regular sewing machine.  There are several things you can try.   Sew on the diagonal in both directions to make diamonds or parallel to the edges to make squares.  This looks good on plain color fabric or some of the all over swirly designs to add texture or a quilted effect.  You can then use a section of a decorative stitch on your machine, or simply a bit of satin stitch or beads in the center of random diamonds or in a pattern like a checkerboard, etc.  Use a single needle or twin needles with regular or embroidery thread.  Tighten the tension with the twin needles to make the lines more defined.  Or sew in a random, meandering trail over the fabric.  The twin needles give a sort of trapunto or corded effect.     Cut 1/4 to 3/8 inch strips of the same or a contrasting color fleece, cross grain and pull the strips to make a "yarn" which you can couch down with a long zig-zag in any design you would like.  You can also knit or crochet with this "yarn" to make collars or cuffs.          I have also traced a snowflake design on freezer paper and warmed the paper on the fleece, enough to make it stick onto the fleece- but be careful as fleece doesn't take heat well.  Use pins or baste around the outside edge of the paper also. Then stitch the pattern and pull the paper off.  The design shows up really nice, though  the paper can be a bit tricky to keep in place.  I have also used stamps and embossed the fleece.  Lay the stamp  face up,  place the fleece on the stamp, spritz with water and press with a hot iron till the sizzle stops.  Don't hold it too long or the fleece may melt.  I  used the cheap, foam stamps from Wal-Mart and had no trouble.  There are really lots of things you can do - just take your scraps and play before you try it on the garment.    Nancy Cornwell has several good books out on sewing with fleece.  Threads also had some articles several years ago.   Fleece isn't terribly picky about needles so use embroidery needles with embroidery threads.  It does tend to stretch on the cross grain with dense stitching.   Hope this will help you get started.

    1. susanna | | #2

      Thank you for the ideas!

      I am going to try the cording idea for the mittens and the others as winter goes on. I had wondered about knitting with polar fleece and had mentioned it to a friend who does, and she is making a scarf from this. I'm very curious to see how it works out.

      Also, I will look into those books!

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