Stitching Cats

I haven’t made a lot recently, as I have been finishing up a couple of craft courses I took this year.  However, I have got around to practising free machine embroidery again.

I’m very fond of pets, and regularly doodle my cats, Harry and Fizz.  I decided to have a go at designing some more cat images to frame or turn into cards.

I like the use of appliqué to add another dimension to the stitched cat, as shown on the far right.  However, I like the simple line drawing on the left, and am reluctant to add any shading or colour to it.  The middle images are coloured in with fabric dye sticks and paints.

They are all very different in style!  The middle ones are much more cartoon-like.  However, the tabby and black and white cat are much more personal, as they look like Harry and Fizz!

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Personalised Cards!

Last month, I made a couple of individualised cards – one for father’s day and one for someone to give as a leaving card.

The leaving card was personalised by adding the name of the perosn leaving the workplace.  I used those fabric felt tip pens to colour it in.

Linda card

The father’s day card was personalised because it’s always been an ongoing joke that my dad is good at Tetris.  We would bring tons of stuff on holiday as kids and he would meticulously work out how to use the space in the car effectively to fit it all in!  The design is based off an image I saw online.

fathers day

Recent inspiration – Jane Hunter’s ‘Haud Oan’

Since learning some free machine embroidery this year and combining it with appliqué, I have found it to be a great outlet of creativity.  However, when I heard the news on 24 June regarding the EU referendum, I found it very difficult to produce anything.

Jane Hunter’s new piece ‘Haud Oan’ is a great inspiration as a result.  She created it as a form of therapy to deal with the news that day.

I like how all of the yellow “remain” threads are held taut as they hold on in the direction of the centre of the EU.  The blue “leave” threads have no tension and fall loosely to the bottom of the frame.  It seems to symbolise how parts of England, Wales and Northern Ireland have voted to cut their ties from the EU.

It’s a great piece because it’s so simple yet effective in its message.  It’s matter of fact about the situation, and communicates the vote clearly away from words.  The fact that it doesn’t include any words helps me relate to it because I found it difficult to find any words to discuss the EU referendum on the day for a while.  Moreover it simply shows how this vote has created such divides in the UK.

Completed PHD: Pyjama pattern from The Makery

After a review of my work practices, I decided that it was time to stand up and confront my PHDs (projects half done)!

The list of incomplete projects is threateningly high so I decided that this list needed to be dealt with (or at least cut back a bit!)

pattern

Enter Simply Sewing Magazine’s exclusive pattern from The Makery – pyjamas.  I think I began this pattern last August and then became distracted by a looming deadline for something else.  I’d cut all the pieces out and even sewn a couple of sections for the shorts but then put it away until now.

This project has been a good introductory one for tackling the PHDs because as the cover of the pattern boasts, it’s an “easy sew”.  I was a bit thrown off by the shorts being made out of two pieces instead of four, but once I got my head around it, the pattern was even easier than anticipated.

I haven’t done much gathering, and I feel  that it shows on the final piece.  However, as they are pjs, this doesn’t matter much and it’s been a good way to practise gathering as a skill.

The gathering works well for shaping, and personally I think the fit is good for this make.  I could have done with cutting the ribbon for the shorts waistband a little longer than instructed.  I needed assistance for fitting the straps as well.  Overall, a lovely weekend project!

final pieces