How to Applique Felt

By Louise Jones
Mix felt with other fabric to get a variety of textures.

Adding applique to soft furnishings and clothing can spruce up old looks or add a person finishing touch. Because felt is a fabric that does not fray or unravel, it is perfect for using in applique. This is because felt is created by meshing together wool fibers rather than by the normal fabric-making process of spinning fibers into yarn and then weaving yarn into fabric. Felt comes in a vast variety of colors and is easily obtained at craft shops.

Felt can be cut with scissors or with a rotary fabric cutter.

Draw or trace the shape you want to applique onto a piece of paper. It's much easier to get the template right on paper before applying to the felt and saves expensive mistakes when cutting the felt. Cut the paper template along the lines of your drawing.

Pin the paper cut-out onto the felt, and cut the felt to match your template.

Pin the felt onto the part of the fabric you want to applique it to.

Thread the needle with the embroidery thread.

Sew through both layers of fabric at the edge of the felt. You can use a variety of stitches. A simple running stitch, where the stitches run in a straight line through both fabrics, or a zigzag stitch are most common. When using a zigzag stitch, try to alternate between sewing through both fabrics and just sewing through the base fabric.

Tip

You can experiment with making your own felt by washing old and unwanted wool sweaters on a high temperature wash.

Warning

Do not wash commercial-made felt in washing machines.

About the Author

Louise Jones has been a technical writer since 2006 and is the director of a technical writing company, providing literature for U.K. construction firms such as MITIE and Balfour Beatty. Her work also appears on various websites, focusing on business and technical articles. Jones has a postgraduate certificate in education and has been trained in information technology. She studied English at Cambridge University.