I’ve always struggled with the Valentine’s Day holiday. I love the idea of showing my kids extra love and having them show love for friends and family, I just think it’s important to show care and love every day of the year. I feel like Valentine’s day was created to spend money on candy, presents, and expensive dates. So I’ve just never been really into it. I have made a couple of things in the past, but honestly, our Valentine’s decor and tees are few and far between. This year I decided to make myself a very subtle Valentine’s sweatshirt that I could wear anytime of the year without it screaming holiday attire. I was inspired by butterflies in the shape of a heart, so I decided to make a butterfly heart applique. I loved the idea of the butterflies looking and moving like real butterflies, so I didn’t want them to be fully attached or ironed on. I wanted the wings to have lots of movement.
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I chose to sew with purple and gray because gray is one of my favorite colors and purple is a subtle nod to Valentine’s day. I based this idea off of an episode from Project Runway where one of the designers places cut fabric flowers all over a dress with snaps. I’ve always wanted to recreate that look, and I finally did it for myself. I used both snaps and sewing, but the snaps make it a fun no-sew project! The snaps also give a little bit of a glittery look from far away.
This project is really great for scrap busting your knits! I used four 12 inch by 12 inch pieces of fabric and got lots of butterflies. It was great to use up scraps I have in my stash!
- Sweatshirt or tee (I made the Halifax Hoodie, but a RTW tee or sweatshirt will work well.)
- Knit fabric (I used French terry, rib knit, lace, and jersey)
- Cricut Maker*, fabric scissors*, or rotary cutter and mat*
- Snaps and snap tool* or sewing supplies*
- Free Butterfly cutting template
- Gather all your supplies.
- Cut out all your butterflies. I cut 3 inch butterflies from the dark gray French terry, rib knit, and lace. I cut 2 inch butterflies from the striped jersey. I cut ten to twenty butterflies of each color.
- I created a free public file of my butterflies on Design Space that you can use. It’s basically four different colors and layers of butterflies. 3 of the butterfly layers are the same size and 1 layer is smaller with more butterflies.
- If you want to see a cutting process here’s a quick video.
- Interface the back of the shirt where the butterfly heart applique will go. (I took this after I sewed and snapped everything, but you get the idea.)
- Place all the butterflies down in a heart shape. I started by placing all the big butterflies first. Then I placed the lace over some of the other butterflies. Then I filled in all the holes with the small butterflies.
- The lace was stiffer than the knit fabric I used, and I liked how it made some of the butterflies stiffer.
- Pin all the butterflies in place. Pin through the wings and not through the middle of the butterfly.
- Use snaps or sewing to secure all the butterflies. I did about fifteen with snaps and the rest with my sewing machine.
- I liked the snaps because I didn’t have to sew, but my snap setting tool wasn’t made to be used in the center of a piece of fabric. It got a little tricky with the middle butterflies.
- I liked sewing because it was much faster, and I liked how the zigzag stitching looked like the butterfly’s body, but it doesn’t look quite as cool as the snaps.
- Remove the pins.
This project would be really cute with rainbow butterflies, monochromatic butterflies, or even pink and red for a really bold Valentine’s look! It’s really easy to customize this butterfly heart applique to make something you’ll really love!
There’s a bunch of other Valentine’s inspired crafts and sewing projects from some creative bloggers!
Cricut <3 Be Mine <3 Valentine’s Day Blog Hop
Wednesday 1/31 The Intrepid Thread