Embellished Quilts: How to Attach Heavy Objects

“Actual Size” by Lynn Krawczyk

Have you ever made embellished quilts? From hand stitching to attaching metal objects, embellishments are a versatile way to create one-of-a-kind art quilts.

If you’ve ever tried to attach objects to your fabric art, you know it can be quite a challenge! If the bits you’d like to add are too heavy they can make your fabric pull and droop. And if the baubles you want to include are oddly shaped it can be bit of a task to figure out how to fasten them to your fabric art in a way that makes sense.

Here are some great tips for attaching heavy embellishments from Lynn Krawczyk so you can stop scratching your head and start embellishing like a pro:

You can use lightweight fabrics to “trap” the embellishments on the quilt. Cheesecloth and sheers work great for this. I still take a few stitches to keep the embellishment in place, but the extra fabric helps hold it in place and is great for adding layering effects to the quilt.

I find it is helpful to either use a stiff interfacing like Timtex™ as the batting layer or to use Timtex to reinforce the batting in the area where the embellishment will be. It’s a little more work to reinforce the batting, but if the item is very heavy, it will need this support; otherwise the embellishment will cause that area of the quilt to pull.

“Closure” by Lynn Krawczyk

Another idea is to place heavier items at the bottom of the quilt. You won’t have to worry about them pulling and it weights the quilt so it hangs well.

I use glue. The glue should be used over most of the surface of the embellishment to attach it. (I usually use Weldbond®; I’ve not had any damage to the fabric when using it. Fabri-tac™ and any of the glues like Aleene’s® work well, too.)

If the embellishment is metal or a somewhat solid object that needs extra reinforcing with stitching, I use clear thread to help hold it down. The clear thread is especially good if the item has no holes in it and you don’t want the thread to be noticeable. – LK

With these simple solutions, you’ll be able to take on embellished quilts with ease, unlocking endless opportunity for your fabric art! To learn more embellishment techniques, instantly download your copy of Quilting Arts Magazine Presents: Over-The-Top Embellishment for Quilts and More. You’re sure to be inspired by the outrageous embellishments, colorful concoctions, and dances with dimension.

Happy embellishing!

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P.S. Do you have a favorite embellishment or embellishment technique? We’d love to hear about it! Leave a comment below to share.

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