As you saw in my last post, I am working on a small project with machine applique. Whenever I do machine applique, I always use a product called Stitch in the Ditch. It's a very thin paper that comes on a roll like adding machine paper. Does anyone remember what that looks like??? Using this paper on the back of your project where the applique stitching will be will make sure that your stitches don't pucker.
This technique works great for any decorative stitching as well. Just slide the paper under the fabric whereever you are going to stitch then tear it away when you are finished. This paper works much better than a stabilizer would since a stabilizer is much stronger and very hard to remove on simple decorative stitching. Stabilizers are made for machine embroidery where there are lots and lots of stitching done in a small area which will perforate the stabilizer and make it easy to remove. The same stabilizer used on decorative stitching will yank and pull those stitches and cause distortion and frustration and does cost alot more than the Stitch in the Ditch paper.
Notice how I just added pieces where I needed to. You can also buy the paper in a 9 inch roll if you are stitching over a larger area. Try it out and see how nice your stitches can be!