Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Buttonhole or Blanket Stitch Flowers

On the original antique Baltimore Garden Quilt, flowers on two of the blocks were appliqued with a buttonhole or blanket stitch. The stitches were made along the raw edge of the red fabric (no turnunder).

This flower was made with two layers of red fabric - you can see where the top layer has worn.
I was able to make some photos using a loupe to see the fine detail on the antique.

Some of these little flowers would be difficult to applique with a turned under edge, but quite easy to buttonhole stitch.

On my reproduction Baltimore Garden Quilt, and to write instructions for the book, I tried my best to replicate the same effect. The top two layers of this flower were worked in hand, the bottom layer stitched directly to the quilt block.

The applique fabric pieces are raw edge, but there is a thin outer line of iron-on fusible underneath the edges to prevent fray.

My stitches are a single strand of DMC floss. However, you could use more strands, and space stitches farther apart -- it would be just as lovely, and just as secure with a bit of iron-on fusible. Complete step-by-step details, photos and graphics explain my methods in the the book, Baltimore Garden Quilt.

Happy Stitching!
Barbara M. Burnham

(c) 2013 Barbara M. Burnham. All rights reserved. Reproduction of any kind is expressly prohibited without prior written authorization.


  1. Your detail steps really made making these flowers fun! I have only done one block but looking forward to the others that use this technique!

  2. I think you reproduced it beautifully! Nice to see the original work - thanks for the photos.

  3. nice to see the original and yours in one post,
    thanks for sharing


Note: Comments are moderated at this time.