|Pieced Scrabble Label Appliqued to Quilt Backing|
So, I researched my options. I decided to use Pellon Wonder Under fusible web to secure the applique in place prior to stitching instead of pins, and then I adhered tearaway embroidery stabilizer to the wrong side of my backing fabric with temporary spray adhesive for more support. I used the monofilament nylon thread in a size 60 Microtex needle, with cotton thread in the bobbin, and reduced my upper thread tension from 4.0 to 3.0. I used a preprogrammed invisible applique stitch on my machine (Sitch #1331 on the Bernina Artista 200/730) with stitch length and width both set to 1.0. Foot #20 gave me plenty of visibility, although sewing with invisible nylon thread is kind of unnerving because you can't see the thread -- you just have to watch the needle and trust that there is, indeed, thread in it!
Honestly, this wasn't hard at all once I got started. I'm really glad that I fused the applique in place instead of pinning and that I remembered to use stabilizer under the fabric. The most difficult part was that, unlike appliqueing small shapes onto a 10" or 12" quilt block, I was appliqueing a piece that was about 10" tall and wide onto a background fabric that was 80" x 115", and I had to bunch all that fabric up so I could keep turning it under the sewing machine until all sides of the applique were stitched down. Once I had sewn all the way around the applique shape, I threaded the thread tails through a hand needle so I could pull them to the wrong side and tie them to the bobbin thread tails. Piece of cake!
In hindsight, I probably should have appliqued the label onto one side of the backing fabric before I seamed the two fabric widths together, but this method worked just fine.
Next up: the "Drunken Dragons" quilt title, my name, and the year need to be embroidered someplace inconspicuous on the quilt top, near an edge someplace. Then the quilt top can get a final pressing and starching, and I can layer and baste the quilt top, batting and backing and get started with the quilting part.