Rainbow Applique FREE Templates
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Free Pattern :: Rainbows and Raindrops Applique

In Spring 2015 I designed a cute little applique pattern for Issue 12 of Love Sewing magazine

If I look back at my instagram and pinterest ‘likes’ so many of the pictures I’ve clicked like on a are rainbow colours. I guess my psyche is trying to tell me that I’m a Spring/Summer person, rather than an Autumn/Winter kind of girl! Spring this year has been somewhat slow to arrive, it really is time for some sunshine and perhaps some temperatures about ten degrees!

Rainbow Applique FREE download

I really love an applique t-shirt for children, much nicer than the character ones (that they love so much!). So, I thought it would be fun to design an applique project along the rainbow theme.

Below you will find step by step instructions and a link to download the applique pattern pieces. Find yourself a plain t-shirt, some scraps of bright fabrics and you are away!

Rainbow T-shirt Emily


Materials Required:

:: Plain t-shirt
:: Bondaweb
:: Cotton in the following colours
– Red 3.5” x 6”
– Orange 4.5” x 6”
– Yellow 5” x 5”
– Green 2.5” x 4
– Dark Blue 2” x 3.5”
– Pink 1.5” x 3”
– White 3×4”
– Light Blue 3”x3”
:: Stabiliser such as Stitch and Tear
:: Thread in colours to match cotton fabrics

Prepare Pattern Pieces

Download your FREE Rainbow Applique Pattern Pieces.

Trace all pattern pieces onto the paper side of the Bondaweb (remembering to reverse the cloud shape) and roughly cut out (about 1/4” from the pattern line).

Iron Bondaweb shapes onto the wrong side of your fabrics and cut out precisely/along the pattern line.

Arrange all of the pieces on your t-shirt. Layer the Rainbow Stripes on top of each other, starting with the red/largest first.

Iron in place the Rainbow and the Sun, putting to one side the Cloud and Raindrops for the time being.

Attach stabiliser on the inside of the t-shirt.

Stitch in Place

When you are stitching make sure that you don’t sew through both layers of the t-shirt!

Sew around the Centre of the Sun with a zig-zag stitch. Stitch around the Sun’s Rays with a straight stitch close to the outer edges. See pic below.

Pic A Sun stitching detail blog
Sew around the edges of the Rainbow stripes with a zig-zag stitch, changing thread colour for each stripe. This may seem like a pain, but it will be worth it! Consider using a mid grey thread in your bobbin, rather than changing it each time. Just test your stitching on a scrap of fabric first to see if you need to adjust your tension as you wouldn’t want the bobbin thread showing on the right side. See pic below.

Pic B Sewing the rainbow blog

Position the Cloud over the bottom of the Rainbow and the Raindrops under the cloud. Iron in place.

Sew Cloud in place with a zig-zag stitch. I’ve used a grey thread so that it gives a bit more definition to the cloud edges.

Sew the Raindrops in place with a straight stitch close to the outer edges. See picture below.

Pic C Cloud and Raindrop blog

Tidy Up Your Work

Pull all threads through to the inside of the t-shirt, tie off and cut away excess thread.

Remove excess stabiliser from the inside of the t-shirt.

That’s it, you’re all done!

Some Other Ideas…

How about sewing some or all of the design onto a bag or onto a cushion?

You could scale up the size of the rainbow and use just that part of the design on a t-shirt – super cute! Alternatively, try enlarging the cloud a little and cut out lots and lots of raindrops.

Share your Makes

If you use the pattern then don’t forget to show me how you have got on. You can send me a picture or tag me on social media.

Happy Sewing!

Get a Copy of the Rainbow Applique Pattern

The free pattern is available to download from the shop as a pdf. You can print off and get sewing straight away!

  • Rainbow Applique


    Applique t-shirts are just so cute and making your own is a great way to make something unique.

    Your FREE pattern includes digitally drawn pattern pieces and the blog post features step by step instructions for adding this design to your own t-shirt.

    You can of course use the design for any number of other projects. You could make a cute little wall hanging, a window rainbow, or add it to a cushion or a tote bag.

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Comments (3)

  • Hi. Thank you for such a lovely free pattern. I have downloaded the pattern but I cannot see any cloud pieces to trace on the download. I wonder if you can help me please. Thanks. Regards, A.L.

    Mrs LANE
    • Thank you so much for letting me know! I have updated the file and sent out to everyone that downloaded a copy

  • you are right, there is no pattern for the cloud.

    Marilyn Littlewood

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