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Mini templates create perfect applique shapes

by Jennifer Houlden

The fun part is here! Not that piecing and quilting aren’t fun but I do enjoy making designs with applique and today I’m going to use four different shapes to create some applique. These mini templates create perfect applique shapes for my charming Christmas runner.

Yesterday I quilted the runner with straight stitching and vertical and horizontal lines using a 30 weight variegated thread and it turned out wonderfully.

Now to get started with the applique. These mini templates from Sew Easy come in 4 different shapes – diamond, triangle, pentagon and hexagon. If you remember on Monday I said I was going to use each template to fill in the blocks and border with different designs and color.

mini templates in 4 shapes - hexagon, diamond, triangle & pentagon on a blue cutting mat

Sew Easy mini templates

These templates can also be used for piecing miniature quilts as well as for English paper piecing. Each shape has 8 different sizes with the seam allowance added and marking holes for sewing. I’m afraid that I’m not into miniature quilts and so I decided that these templates will be perfect for applique.


I’ll start with adding the diamonds to the borders. I’ll need the same fabrics that I used for the sashing and some fusible web such as HeatnBond.

The smallest template is the one I’m using since the border isn’t that wide. I’ll need to cut a strip of fabric and add some fusible to the back of each piece.

white paper which is fusible web on back of assorted green, red & gold pieces of fabric on a blue cutting mat

Fabric strips with fusible added

I then cut the fabric with the fusible to 1½″ so that the template can be placed on the strip and used for cutting the shapes. The first shape will require a cut on both sides and then just one after that to make the rest of the diamonds. Either a 28mm or 45mm rotary cutter will work with these templates.

Diamond shaped template on a piece of gold fabric on a blue cutting mat

Cutting the first diamond

The diamonds look great on the border.

red, green & gold diamonds fused to the border of the runner

Diamonds in the border

The rest of the templates are cut the same way as the diamond from strips of fabric.


Originally I was going to make a snowman with the pentagon and ended up making snowflakes with the hexagon.

I used the smallest template for the smaller snowflake and I cut off the seam allowance to make a ¾″ hexagon which is the finished size of the smallest template if you were to sew them together.

hexagons in gold forming snowflakes on a cream fabric

2 hexagon snowflakes


The triangle shape is perfect for a tree. I found that as the templates I used increased in size they tended to slip on the fabric and my thumb wasn’t enough to hold them in place. So I added a ruler/template grip which is just a little round disk that sticks to the back of the template. It can be removed and repositioned quite easily if need be. This little grip worked like a charm and made cutting much easier.

A stylized tree from triangles.

A tree made with green triangles on cream fabric

The triangle tree


I used two of the pentagon templates to make the wreath. I like the shape of it.

2 pentagon shapes in red to make a wreath on a cream background

The pentagon wreath

With all the pieces cut I can now fuse them to the background. Notice I ended up taking the center hexagon out to make an open holed snowflake.

Cream colored runner with red, green & gold applique shapes in the form of diamonds, snowflakes, tree and wreath

The runner with applique shapes in place

I had to pin each shape in place so that it wouldn’t move or shift when I fused it. For this I used glass headed pins so that they wouldn’t melt under the hot iron.

box of glass headed pins used to pin shapes to cream background

Glass headed pins to secure applique pieces

The mini templates create perfect shapes for applique on my charming Christmas runner and they’re all ready to be stitched and embellished tomorrow.

This is part 4 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 3:  3 methods to tie off quilting threads

Go to part 5: 3 ways to embellish a charming Christmas runner



Rose Santuci-Sofranko December 17, 2016 - 9:13 pm

Such a cute Christmas tree design. Thanks and God bless!

Davina Borlik December 17, 2016 - 7:32 pm

Lots of wonderful things on here. Will have to come back and explore more.

Wendy R. December 16, 2016 - 3:17 am

Oh I would love the hexagon templates! I’m kind of obsessed with anything hexie at the moment. Your pentagon wreath is too cute as well!!

Susan Rogers December 15, 2016 - 1:05 pm

really like these template especially the ease of marking points ands seam allowance

SarahJ December 15, 2016 - 8:04 am

Great ideas. Working in shapes brings a quilt to an extra level.


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