Two-dimensional artwork like embroidery sometimes looks, well, flat. One way to show depth is to use variegated thread. Besides, it is really fun!

Variegated threads are available in many color combinations. Depending on the manufacturer, color changes can be structured ( or random. Some variegated threads feature several different colors while others contain several tones of the same color. They are available in different weights, ranging from 12 (heavy) to 40 (normal), and types, like cotton, rayon, and polyester.

Contrary to what you might believe, variegated threads are not just for fill areas. They are actually perfect for satin stitching in applique designs.

Variegated Threads In Applique

Part of Jumbo Applique Sampler Set, the flip-flops look especially festive when finished in variegated satin stitches sporting complementary bright colors. And the poodle is perfect in shades of pink and white, just like its fabric.

Simply baltimore funky chicken variegated Applique

Striped flower petals of Simply Baltimore Applique 2 make the design much more interesting than if they were all one color. They complement the two-tone petal fabrics without overwhelming them.

And Funky Chicken gets a little more kick with a colorful outer edge of variegated satin stitching. It works because even though the fabrics are wild, the inner applique is edged in solid colors balancing the overall funkiness.

Spring Fling Variegated Applique

These two designs from Spring Fling Applique are perfectly suited to colorful edging. Roofing on the bird house almost looks like it is edged in another fabric – really cool! And the clover couldn’t be more adorable with edging that matches every color in the fabric. Fussy-cutting the applique, to have the blue flower in the middle, makes the presentation picture perfect!

Damask variegated applique

Damask Elements gets its groove on and

dbjj tea time critters variegated

Tea Time Critters are even more adorable.

dbjj variegated fonts

Even fonts look great when stitched with variegated thread. From top, Whimsical Alphabet, Curly Q Applique Alphabet, and Bloomin Alphabet.

Give it a try, get variegated!