A few months ago I stitched a bunch of stuffed owls made from old sweaters. They were made very primitively. The stitches were mostly uneven (on purpose). I liked them, but I figured it would take someone that could appreciate that look to love them. Seems I found several people who appreciated that look. I sold all my owls at a recent craft sale. One customer even asked if I would make a butterfly.
I started out by making the pattern. I folded a standard sheet of card stock in half and sketched half of a butterfly. I cut out the shape through both layers. Once unfolded, the whole shape of the butterfly was revealed. I wanted the butterfly bigger, so I laid the shape on a scrap of wallpaper and traced it an inch larger. I decided the smaller shape would be a nice layer to the top. I made additional patterns for the wing patches and the spots.
At one time or another, I had purchased a box of fabric at an auction. When I got it home, I was surprised and pleased to discover quite a few pre-cut 4-inch squares in the bottom of the box. At the time I wasn’t sure what I would do with them, but with fall craft shows just around the corner, I dug through the box and pulled out all the squares that I thought would work for fall. I considered, arranged and stitched until I came up with a seasonal design. Checkered pumpkins.
Things You Will Need:
Fabric scraps ( Live on the edge and choose colors that are completely unexpected.)
Hand-sewing needle and thread
Black crochet thread
Long soft-sculpture needle
Stick from your yard
Silk fall leaves
Hot glue gun
Yep, my fabric choices may surprise you.
Using an even amount of two different fabric designs, I arranged 28 squares in a 4 x 7 grid.
I sewed the squares together using a 1/4-inch seam allowance.
After the seams on the back were opened and pressed flat, I folded the checkered fabric in half with the short ends together and the right side on the inside. I then sewed the short ends together. This created a tube.
Without turning the tube right side out, I sewed a running stitch around one open end and gathered the end closed.
The checkered bag was turned right side out and stuffed.
Thread approximately 2 yards of the black thread onto the long needle and knot the end. Insert the needle down through the thumb hole of the pumpkin and out the gathered center of the bottom. Bring the thread up along the side of the pumpkin to create an indented spine. Repeat until you have made six evenly spaced indented spines around the surface of the pumpkin. Finish with a knot on the bottom of the pumpkin.
Head out to your yard and find a stick about the same thickness as your thumb. Break or cut it to measure about 5 inches long. Burrow you finger into the thumb hole and down into the stuffing. Squirt hot glue into the hole. Insert half the length of the stick into the well.
Tie a couple strands of raffia around the stem, and hot glue silk fall leaves to the base of the stem.
Yes, I am an obsessed junking junky. I have local freecycle posts delivered to my email, but I had never taken advantage of the free offers until last week. The posting that changed it all was for a free “surger”. Yep, that’s how they spelled it. I have always wanted a serger. I have a mini Singer serger, but it really doesn’t cut it. It works like, and gives the same results you would expect of a toy.
After an email to the owner clarifying it was indeed a sewing “serger”, I said I wanted it. We set up a time to meet and she gave me the address.
The house belonged to the lady’s father-in-law. He had been in a nursing home for several years and the house had been closed and uncared for…WITH ALL THE STUFF STILL IN IT! They were going through things they wanted to keep, giving stuff away and trashing what was left. Their ultimate goal was to get the house ready to be sold at auction.
I’m not a wimp when it comes to my junking adventures, but I have to admit that I had a few pausing moments. But wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.
She showed me the serger. I was very excited…until I noticed there was no foot pedal or power cord. This started the hunt for these necessary items. The woman and I dug through boxes, under furniture, and inside closets and drawers. Everywhere I stuck my hand had mouse poop, shredded something, or both. Eewww! The house had no electricity. It was dark, dirty and hot. The dark only made sticking my hands into the shadows even more of an adventure.
We never found the pedal or cord, but I took the serger anyway. I’ll give it a few months. If I can’t find a match, I can find the trash as easily as she could have. So, this could have been considered a bust, but I did manage to find a few other junking treasures. I brought home two headboards, a box of thread and a few other crafting odds and ends. The headboards will be used to make benches. I also snagged a tripod for my son’s camera.
All in all, I figure the junking adventure was a success. I may not have gotten what I intended, but in actually going, I did score some great things.
Note to self: Keep wet wipes and hand sanitizer in the car at all times. (shiver)