How to Create Shadow Appliqué



This gorgeous christening gown, “Augustine,” was designed by Arlayne Monjay and is one of the featured gowns in our Best of Sew Beautiful Christening Gowns book. With Celtic and Christian motifs used as design focal points, rich silk satin, silk dupioni, organdy and lace, this special gown is nothing short of exquisite. One of my favorite details on the gown is the lovely shadow appliqué inserted within the lace windows. Shadow appliqué is an always-beautiful technique that applies fabric shapes to the back side of sheer fabric, thus creating a shadow effect. Below, follow our guide for creating shadow appliqué as seen on the “Augustine” gown. NOTE: For these instructions, organdy is used for the base and top fabric. The appliqué designs are cut from silk satin and are adhered to the organdy layer with Steam a Seam 2® double-stick fusible web.

1.  Trace the appliqué designs in reverse, if applicable, to the paper side of the fusible web. Follow the manufacturer’s directions to adhere the web to the wrong side of the silk satin.

2.  Pin the paper template, with appliqué designs, onto a lace shaping board. Place a layer of organdy over the template and pin in place to prevent shifting.

3.  Remove the remaining paper back from the fusible web and stick the appliqué onto the organdy. Steam a Seam 2 allows you to move the appliqué, if needed, before permanently fusing it in place.


4.  Place another layer of organdy on top. The appliqué pieces will be sandwiched between the two layers of organdy (fig. 1). Stitch around the shapes with a small straight stitch (fig. 2). Fuse the appliqués to the organdy following the manufacturer’s directions. Trace and stitch the details on the appliqué shapes. Areas that do not have silk satin fabric, but require detail stitching, may be straight stitched by hand or machine (fig. 2).


The Best of Sew Beautiful Christening Gowns is marked down to just $9.14 through Tuesday, Sept. 30 as part of our National Sewing Month celebration sale! This book is pull of patterns, templates, instructions and inspiration for a variety of lovely christening gown styles, as well as some great christening accessory items.


We have 30 specially selected products on sale for $9.14 the entire month of September in honor of National Sewing Month — click here to see a list of all products included in this offer!