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Raw Edge Applique

Here’s a quick one for you! I had a brainstorming idea this week on how to doll up a plain ol’ reusable grocery tote and give it some personality. Of course, I used scraps :) This turned out so cute, I did the same thing to a smaller tote. It could double as an Easter basket for egg hunt spoils!

I used a simple-no-fuss raw edge applique' method that is very straightforward.

I gathered my orange scraps and a few green scraps. I cut the green scraps into 1” strips and pulled the threads on the edges loose until they had nice little frayed edges.

I cut the six orange scraps into rectangles about 2½” x 4½”. I cut those rectangles across the middle in a wonky diagonal line. This is not an exact science, and it's meant to look a little random or improvised.

I made two stacks with one-half of the wonky cuts in each stack. The more wobbly they look the better!

Sew these pieces to each other and press the seams open. I ended up with roughly 4½” x 5½” of usable patchwork.

I pressed a piece of “Steam a Seam” to the back of each patchwork section. I cut these wonky too, because I planned to cut this down into a triangle, no sense wasting more Steam a Seam than necessary! I didn’t use a template to cut my triangles, I just laid my regular straight ruler down and cut what looked like a nice fat carrot. You could make these carrots any shape or size, and I bet they would look really cute. Peel the paper side off the Steam-a-Seam.

Cut several pieces from the green strips about 2½” long. I angle cut one end on each, and then pinched the bottom ends together to create almost a gathered look. I centered the carrot triangle on the front of my tote and tucked the pinched ends of the green strips under the top edge. Press the carrot in place well, so it traps the ends of the green strips too.

Now for the applique part. I like to use a triple straight stitch, so the stitches stand out and become a design element. You can see the bottom end of the left stitch line is a basic straight stitch and then it goes into the triple straight stitch. Many machines have this stitch, the needle goes forward and back over the same spot three times before moving on. I also lengthened the stitch out to 3.0 to give it a nice chunky look.

Stitch around the carrot, ⅛” from the raw edge, stitching over the green ends tucked in behind the carrot to secure them. Be sure to open the tote bag, and only stitch through the front panel, or you could have a cute but useless bag when you're done! Haha!

And there you have it! A nice big tote for the grocery store and a smaller one ready for Easter!

Happy Sunday everyone,


Follow all my quilty adventures on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Visit my Youtube channel for free tutorials and tips. If you like my patterns, you can buy them on Etsy, and here on the website.


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