Colorful Poppy Embroidery

Posted by on 7 July 2020 | 0 Comments

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A few weeks ago I made my pansy applique block as an embroidered block. This is how it looked....

Joan commented on my post asking if I was planning to add color with either thread painting or colored pencils. It had crossed my mind at the time but I had opted to keep it simple and use colored thread to outline it only. This week, I thought I'd expand on that idea with another block - I chose my poppy block.

As with the previous block I traced the design onto my fabric using my lightbox but with a couple of differences. I didn't trace the round flower applique center but instead the embroidery stitching lines that are shown on the layout guideline. I also didn't trace the line through the center of the leaves as I wasn't sure I wanted those to be stitched at this time.

poppy tracing

Tracing the embroidery lines in the center

There are a number of different ways this can be colored - crayons, color pencils, paints, fabric pens, Silva Paintstiks, or thread painting. Today I've decided to use one of the least expensive - crayons. I'm using just 4 colors - 2 greens, a red and a black.

poppy 4crayons

Four colored crayons

Next, I pressed a piece of freezer paper onto the back of my fabric. This will stabilize the fabric to make coloring easier.

As you can see, it is wise to test the crayons on a scrap piece of the fabric first. I started out with my darkest green for the stems but soon discovered it wasn't as dark as I'd expected. I didn't have a darker green so added a little back to darken it and get closer to the color I wanted.

Black crayon added to the right section of stem

The stems were done first and then the leaves and flowers. For these, I outlined each section then colored inward making the color lighter toward the center.

poppy outlining

Outline the edges first

poppy filling

Then fill-in adding less crayon as you move toward the center

It's really important not to make a hard line of color - as you can see in the photo above, the petal on the left needs more color added to avoid the hard line between the darker area and the lighter area. Compare it with the photo below.

I'm liking where this is going so continued on.

poppy block colored

poppy block colored

My poppy has the color completed..... here's how the back looks...

poppy backside

If I wanted a paler look, I could use the back!

After all the coloring has been added, it is time to use a hot dry iron over the crayon to seal in the color into the fabric. It's a good idea to use a cloth over the crayon just in case the color comes out - which it often does!

poppy pressing

You can see some of the color has come off onto the cover sheet (top half)

Once this is done, I add batting and backing and head over to the sewing machine.

Instead of using different colors as I did in the pansies, I'm going to use black only to outline all the pieces. I'm really happy with the result!

poppy block finished

My finished block

How about giving it a try yourself? You might have your own block or if you'd like the poppy pattern, you can find it here: BOW Poppy Block

Note: You may have noticed that I used the design reversed to the original pattern. You can do this too by simply tracing from the wrong side of the template. You will need a light source to help you see the lines.

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