Friday, June 23, 2017

Barn Owl Pincushion

One of my very first pincushions had an owl on it and I haven't made any other owl ones since but recently I decided to work on another one in a different design.  I did my drawings as usual using my bird book for reference.  This is a barred owl which seems to me to be the owl shape that everyone thinks of when you say "owl".  


I cut out all the felt pieces and stitched the branch and then put it down and left it because it just didn't feel right.  When I came back to it a few days later I realized that it was the owl that was bothering me and I went back to the bird book and found myself drawn to the barn owl.  

I see barn owls sometimes.  I live in a town but there are hills, farmland and wild open spaces all around the town.  I've even seen barn owls late at night flying across the road near a piece of open land in the middle of town.  It is pretty startling to catch one in your headlights.  My daughter works at a horse barn out in the countryside and in the Fall and Winter I see lots of owls when I drive to pick her up in the dark evenings.  It always feels like a privilege, like they've allowed themselves to be seen.  


As soon as I made the decision to switch to a barn owl, the stitching came together smoothly. 


I've made a few of these now and they sell as soon as I list them.  I need to make some more.  Sometimes it would be nice to have just a few more hours in each day!






Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Sequins

I order most of the sequins I use from an Etsy shop in Australia called Pretty Craft Things.  That makes it sound like I use sequins all the time, I don't, but I do like them on special Christmas and Thanksgiving items, like the felt pumpkins below.  Look at that gorgeous sparkle!  Some are a solid color and others like these little cup shaped flowers are iridescent. 




It has been really hot here this week so I am trying to ignore that by making these little felt pumpkins.  These can be hung on a cupboard door knob (I hang one on my china cabinet door in the Fall), draped on the neck of a bottle of wine as a hostess gift, or used as napkin rings.  I also hang several on some tall sticks that I cut from a tree in the garden once the leaves have fallen and put in a wooden vase on the mantel.  


I've also made a few as custom items with a child's name on who has a Fall birthday.  They then become special personalized Christmas ornaments.  I use hand dyed wool felt for the pumpkins because it has such a nice texture and some pieces have a pattern too.  I get all my lovely soft hand dyed wool felt from fellow Etsy shop, Quilting Acres.  I have a pile of pumpkins to photograph and list and some more to finish up.  












Sunday, June 18, 2017

Pretty crocheted doilies and vintage style pinucushions

I recently purchased this bundle of little crocheted doilies in various shades of cream and white.  They range in size from about 2.5inches to 4inches and are really pretty.  The second I saw them in another Etsy shop, my brain was playing with all kinds of ideas for using them.  Search on Pinterest for doily craft ideas and you'll see lots of cool things people are making with doilies.  



I wanted to use them for making needle books and pincushions.  Part of the fun of making a new design is auditioning felt colors.  I really liked the combination below but in the end I didn't end up using the orange flowers.  They just seemed a bit too loud for this project.  


Once I made my color choices, I cut out flowers and leaves and started stitching.  



Below are the almost finished pincushions waiting for stuffing.  I usually try and save up a bunch and then find something good on Netflix and sit and stuff them and finish stitching the openings closed.



As I was choosing the color palettes the blue and mustard one was my least favorite but when the details were added, the blue needle book and pincushion became my favorite!  I was trying to go for a soft, vintage feel and I think this color combo really worked well.  









I've still got a bunch more doilies and a few slightly larger ones too and I have some different ideas for those.  These pincushions and needle books are all available in my Etsy shop.