Decorate a Nap Towel for Kindergarten with Appliqué
Congratulations, you have a little one who is off to school! Do you have a Nap Towel for Kindergarten listed on the school supplies list?
I wanted to give my children an extra special school nap towel and thought it’d be cool to add fabric appliqué to the towel. I’ve made two of these towel nap mats- one in 2004 and the other in 2008; these towels were used for MANY years after kindergarten was over!
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This project is a great kindergarten craft project! Kids can help choose a fabric theme or appliqué design that shows what their interests are; and help pick out appliqué letters that spell their name! Appliqué fabric can be of cartoon themes, sports or any other theme special to your child.
Materials needed for DIY Kindergarten Nap Towel
Towel– washed and dried
Fabric pieces– these could be fabric scraps or newly purchased fabric
Applique Paper– Use this with fabric (I’ve always used Heat-N-Bond brand)
Applique Designs– Preferably ‘Iron-On’
Basic Sewing Supplies– Including an Iron
Add Applique Letters to the towel make your child’s name
Directions for adding store bought appliqué to the Kindergarten Nap Towel
1- Think about where you will place the appliqué pieces
2– Preheat iron and place the towel on the ironing board.
3– If the store bought appliqué has a backing over the adhesive, remove the paper backing.
4- Place applique design pieces on the towel and apply iron on top of the appliqué paper. The heat from the iron will heat up the adhesive which will then stick to the towel.
5- Follow directions on packing for iron temperature and approximate time for ironing.
Let applique pieces ‘cool’ before moving the towel.
Directions for drawing handmade appliqué designs
Put your creativity drawing skills to work when you draw out your designs on the appliqué paper.
Use the paper side to draw out your designs. You may want to include extra space around your design if you plan to add some stitching to your design, after it has been ironed/fused to the towel.
One IMPORTANT thing to remember when drawing most designs; make sure to draw them BACKWARDS on the paper and this will ensure you have letters/numbers facing the correct way when ironing them on the towel. You can see in the photo below that I drew the ‘J’ backwards.
You can also just iron appliqué paper to the back of a themed fabric and then cut around images on the fabric.
Ironing the appliqué paper to the fabric
After your drawing is complete, you will iron the appliqué paper to the WRONG side of the fabric. (The paper side will be facing towards you and the shiny adhesive side will face the fabric.)
Follow the package directions for iron heat settings and approximate time for pressing.
I place my fabric right side on the ironing board, position appliqué paper on the fabric, and iron right on top of the appliqué paper side. If you choose to iron with in the opposite direction like shown in the photo BELOW, make sure heat-n-bond paper is a bit smaller than your fabric. (Don’t want sticky stuff on your iron!)
After pressing, I check to make sure adhesive has stuck to the fabric, you can then decide if you need more pressing time.
Let the fabric COOL for a few minutes, then you’ll be ready to cut out your designs. (Keep paper on the fabric until you are ready to place designs on the towel.)
**You can place an appliqué pressing cloth over designs to prevent any sticky residue from getting on your iron
Cutting appliqué paper designs from the fabric
After fabric has cooled, you are ready to cut out your designs from the fabric!
You may have cut out your paper designs before placing on the fabric for pressing. If so, you are ready to proceed to the next step!
Peel away appliqué paper from the fabric
Place design pieces on towel (adhesive side facing towel) and IRON
Just a reminder, Follow package directions for iron heat setting and pressing time.
Double check that the designs have indeed stuck to the towel, give extra pressing time if needed.
Let everything cool before moving towel off the ironing board.
Most store bought appliqués and the Heat-n-Bond are machine washable/dryable. You can be done with this project at this point OR add some reinforcement stitching to the outer edges of the appliqué design pieces.
Be sure to check out my ideas for embellishing towels for the kitchen or bathroom!
Add stitching to your appliqué designs for extra reinforcement
I like to make sure the appliqué designs will stay on the towel. The adhesive is awesome but I want the reassurance that the designs will NOT come off the towel.
You can straight stitch around each design, you could also do a satin zig zag stitch. The satin stitch is when the zig zag stitching is VERY close together- you’ll adjust your stitch length to make this happen.
You can match a thread color to the towel for your bobbin thread if you’d like and use a color matching the fabric for the top stitch. I use the same color of thread. I’ve noticed that because of the towel ‘fluffiness’ the back; the thread hardly shows PLUS kids aren’t picky!
CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve just completed decorating a Nap Towel for Kindergarten!
Thanks for reading and Happy Simple Sewing to You!
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