Parchment Paper Magic – Easy Way to Transfer an Applique Pattern

In my sewing and art quilting projects, I use a lot of applique, raw-edge applique in particular.  It is a simple and really effective way to add interesting color and design.    If you haven’t used this technique often, the whole “applying fusible web and getting the pattern onto the fused fabric” part can seem a little tricky.  But really, it is not!  Especially if you use this parchment paper technique.  No reversal of images! No cutting and tracing all the pattern pieces!  Check it out:


  • Fusible web – I used paper-backed fusible web, Pellon Wonderunder, but you could easily use a fusible web like Misty Fuse with no paper backing – no paper backing needed for this project!
  • Pattern to transfer – Anything you draw or print can work as a pattern as long as it has clear lines to trace onto your fabric. For this example, I printed text in a large font on the outline setting.  I also used text, so that you can see nothing needs to be reversed when using this technique!  So much easier!!
  • Fabric for your applique
  • Background fabric
  • Parchment paper – the key to easily transfer!
  • Pencil or dark thin marker
  • Scissors

Location and Time:

This is definitely a sewing room project, or at least an ironing board one.  Time wise, this will depend on the pattern you a transferring.  A simple shape could take less than 15 min.


Step One

Apply a piece of fusible the size of your pattern pieces to your fabric: Cut your paper-backed fusible to size. Use a hot dry iron to iron the paper side of the fusible to the back of your fabric. I try to iron it really well, until you can see some of the glue melting to the paper backing a bit.  If using fusible web alone, apply it to your fabric using parchment paper or a silicone pressing mat.

Step Two

While the fused fabric is cooling, trace your pattern onto parchment paper with a pencil.

Step Three

Once the fused fabric is completely cooled, peel the paper-backing off. If all goes as planned, the paper-backing should peel right off leaving a shiny surface on the backside of the fabric.  If the fusible does not stick to the fabric, re-iron and let cool again.  Sometimes, if I am impatient and don’t let things cool long enough, the paper-backing will come off in little pieces, taking longer in the end.

Step Four

Place the side of the parchment paper with pencil lines against the backside of the fabric (the side with fusible) and iron the parchment paper to the fusible.  The pencil lines will transfer to the fusible and the parchment paper will peel right off!

Step Five

Cut out your fabric pieces and fuse them to your background fabric using a hot iron on steam setting. To line up my letter placement here, I placed my background fabric over top of my pattern.  I was able to see the pattern lines through my light fabric and could line everything up.

Step Six

Now you are ready to stitch!  Easy-peasy, right?