How to make an initial or number applique pattern in Microsoft Word - Step by step tutorial

There are different things you can do when looking to make your own initial or number applique to iron onto a t-shirt.  You can find free number or letter patterns online, but it’s a pain to find them and then you’re stuck with whatever font that person liked.  You can also make your own.  I’m going to show you how to do that today.

First, go into Microsoft Word (I’m using 2007 but you should be able to find what you need in any version).  Type in a number or letter, enlarge it, and play around with the fonts until you get the look you want.  For this example, I used Arial Rounded MT Bold.  If your fonts are boring, you can also easily download new ones for free here!  It’s fun, but addicting looking through all of the cool fonts.  Beware.  :)

Note:  You could print it out like this but it would use up a lot of ink.

Next, highlight your number, right click, and click “font”.

This box will pop up.  Check “Outline”.  Click “OK”.

Now your number is outlined and you can print it out!

Then trace it onto your fusible interfacing (I use Wonder Under) and cut it out.

To see exactly how to make your applique step by step, see my tutorial on how to make an applique tee or onesie.

Here’s an example of how it looks after it’s been traced onto the Wonder Under.

Don’t forget to trace your number or letter backwards onto the smooth side so that when it’s ironed on and all cut out the right side of your fabric is facing forward.  Don’t worry, though – sometimes you just mess up.  I’ve done it a few times and had to re-trace my number.

Here are a bunch of appliques I made at once.  :)  The regular tie pattern came from here.  And there’s the 3!

And here it is after I ironed it on and stitched around it.  :)

Hope this inspires you to make your own applique t-shirts and onesies!  It’s very easy!

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17 Responses to How to Make Your Own Initial or Number Applique Pattern With Microsoft Word

  • I am so doing this! Well, I’m pinning it to my “must makes” board, anyway. LOL!

    I figured it had to be easy, but I didn’t know what steps to take to get started.

    Thanks so much for the post!

  • thanks for sharing! This is going to be fun to try out!

  • Freezer paper works to do this too! I make my baby monthly onesies with the number on it!

  • you make this look doable! :) What fun for birthday tees – I always buy mine but never find exactly what I want. Now I see I can probably handle making my own.

    Thanks for linking this up to the Sunday Showcase!Hope to see you link up this weekend on the Sunday Showcase. Looking forward to seeing what you have to share.


  • This is so cute and your tutorial is so thorough! Well done! I am a new follower and would love for you to link up at my Savvy HomeMade blog party at

    I look forward to blogging with you!

  • Great tutorial! Love it, thanks for sharing.

  • Thank you so much for this!!

  • so I was in search of some really nice clean numbers for appliques and I came across your site, such a simple thing and you gave me exactly what I needed.
    Thanks so much for just being out there!!

  • Thank you for posting how to create the appliques! My daughter is 19 and she is going to a Halloween party tonight. Her costume needed appliqued numbers, and they are hard to find! I came across your tutorial, and it helped so much!

  • Thanks so much for the easy directions. Even I think I can do this. I thought perhaps ideas from coloring books would also work as appliqués. Same idea different source. Thanks again!

  • Hi, I have been searching on-line for some printable fonts needed for a project. During my search I stumbled on your posting on how to make your own fonts using Word. Thank you so very much for this posting. Not only did you save me time but money as well. Have a nice day!

  • Hi, I too have been searching for applique alphabet for children’s items when I came across your site after what seemed a very long search indeed. Thank you ever so much for sharing your idea and for a succinct tutorial.

  • I’ve spent the last several days looking for the “just right” font for my applique and your tutorial ended my hunt. Thank you so much!

  • Thank you so much for sharing this! You are awesome for helping!!! I don’t sew much at all but decided to make cooking aprons for my 5 grandchildren (all under 8 years) for Christmas and thought putting the letter for their first name on the front would be really cute then came finding the letters – WOW you really really saved me.

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