Friday, July 27, 2012

Working Ribbon Embroidery Roses on Applique' Blocks

(And this pattern is this month's FREE Pattern:  leave a comment and follow me to enter the drawing.)

Here's the block from my pattern, "Strawbonnet Sue".  The applique' and other embellishments are all finished and I've chosen some silk 4 mm ribbon to use for flowers in her hat and bouquet.  I'm going to make roses.  The first step is to draw the five spokes for the threads that will be the foundation of the flower head.  

Ordinarily, I avoid using an embroidery hoop on applique' because it can damage the edges of the pieces.  But, you'll need one with this little project because you have to keep turning your piece.  So, using a good, strong thread, sew the spokes as shown.

Each bouquet.....

....has four roses.  You can make more and add other embellishment but, for the purpose of this demonstration, I'm just doing four.

Thread your embroidery needle with a length of the silk ribbon about 12 to 15 inches long.  It's important to use an embroidery needle, because you need an eye that is long enough to hold the ribbon flat.

To secure the ribbon in the needle, pierce the end of the ribbon about 1/2" from the end which you threaded through the needle.

Then, pull the little loop knot through.....

until it's snug up against the eye end of the needle.  This will secure it so that it won't come out of the eye while you are working.  You can do the same thing with most thread, even double strand embroidery floss.

Come up at the center of one of the stars and, working in a counter-clockwise direction, slip the needle under a spoke, then, over the next spoke; then, under a third spoke.  Pull the ribbon moderately snug toward the center.  Continue around the spokes, over one and under the next.

Don't worry about how the ribbon twists.  Just let it do it's thing.  It's all good.  Keep going around.....

....and around.  When you've covered the spokes, go down under the flower to the back and tie off the ribbon with a couple of half-hitches under a thread and trim the tail end to about 1/4" to 1/2" in length.

Begin another flower with the same or a different color.....

going around and around....

and completing all four.

Here are the finished roses.  They are sturdy, don't you think?

There's a place for a rose on the hat, too.  You can see, I've drawn the spokes for this one, bigger than those in the bouquet.

Also, I'm using 7 mm silk ribbon for this one.

Once again, you go round and round, over, under, over, under.....

over, under, over, under.......

....until the ribbon covers the spokes.

Here she is with all the roses finished.

With some of her other friends in the quilt.  These blocks are done with two-sided fusible (Wonder-Under) under the pieces, which are, then, attached at the edges with a buttonhole or blanket stitch.  I use this method when I make my samples, but include instructions for freezer paper applique' in my patterns.  I believe freezer paper applique' is a great method for beginners and almost guarantees a successful applique' experience.

The hat band is make from 1/2" strips cut and folded by a little tool made by Clover.  You run the strips through the tool and iron them so the edges are turned under, then, blind-stitch them in place.  I use a few little drops of basting glue to hold them in place while I stitch.

This is very easy and I hope you'll try it.  Write to us here when you try it and let us know how it went.


  1. What a great tutorial can't wait to try it!!

    1. Well, it's easy, for sure. And almost fool-proof, so I hope lots of stitchers will try it out. Thanks for coming by. Hope your summer is turning out wonderful for you and your family. Kathie

  2. Beautiful! Thank you for the tutorial!

    1. Hi Linda: Thanks for stopping by. I think it's a great little embellishment. I learned it a year or so ago and have used it in two quilt projects, now. Kathie

  3. I always wondered how to do that! Thanks for a wonderful tutorial!

  4. It's easy, really. I figured it took 60 roses for the Strawbonnet Sue quilt. Not too bad, really, while listening to some great music and visiting with stitching sisters......thanks for coming by. Kathie

  5. I haven't done this in you inspire me to try again...only now I will have to have glasses...beautiful work!

  6. You are welcome. I'm always looking for stitches that will work with Sue and all her dresses. So many Sues, so little time.

  7. This looks so easy. Now I can embellish my Sue's too. Thanks.

  8. Thank you very much :) I love roses and can't wait to try this.


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