16 hours ago
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Our house has really high ceilings, and the closets take full advantage of it. Wonderful for storage, not so wonderful for actually reaching the stuff on the top shelves. I bought several plain white step stools from Target when we first moved in, so I saw this awesome step stool re-do from Prudent Baby featured on Ohdeedoh back in January with the exact same stools I had, I filed it away to await design inspiration.
Remember the lovely fabric I ordered from Daisy Janie a month or so ago? One was a gorgeous coral-and-cream pattern destined to recover my desk chair someday, and the other was a tiny little linen/cotton remnant just the right size for one of my step stools. The orange and blue matched the color scheme I'm using in the nursery, so I came up with a quick applique design for the stool instead of using paper like the original tutorial.
Note (aka learn from my mistakes): if you're Mod Podging fabric, test a scrap first to see how it takes the glue. I didn't do this, and while it's not bad, I am not entirely happy with how it worked with the blue fabric (ripped out of an old fabric shoulder bag I never use).
Base fabric, big enough to cover the top of the stool
Fabric for the applique
Marking pen or pencil
Fusible web interfacing (like Steam-a-Seam)
Sewing machine (optional)
Mod Podge or other decoupage glue
Step 1: Measure and cut the base fabric
Step 2: Transfer the applique design
Read step 3 before you cut out the applique -- your method of applying fusible web will determine whether you cut now or later.
Step 3: Apply fusible web interfacing to applique and adhere applique to base fabric
My method, because I'm a saver and hate wasting stuff, is to cut out the applique from the fabric first, then dig out all the little scraps of fusible web leftover from other projects and piece together enough to cover the back of the applique, then trim the excess (like photo above).
The easier way is to stick your applique fabric -- uncut and right-side up -- on the fusible web, then cut out the applique design from the fabric and the webbing at once. You'll end up with a negative applique, too, which could be kind of cool.
Anyway, once you have your fabric stuck to the fusible webbing, peel the other layer of paper off and stick your applique onto the base fabric.
Step 4: Sew the applique onto the base fabric
Your machine will have some variation of the picture below for zigzag:
Change the top dial (stitch width) so the horizontal direction, or zig, of the stitches is the width you like. Change the bottom setting (stitch length) so the vertical, or zag, of the stitches is how you like. Making this setting smaller will give you a more satin stitch or buttonhole look, and making it bigger will make it look like mine (or even more open).
Before you start gluing, add any embellishments you need to add by hand (I added the helicopter rotor blades, skids and the contrail by hand, since I'm terrible at freehand machine embroidery).
Step 5: Glue! And glue again!
That's it! Let me know if you have questions, and post a link in the comments to your versions!