Three dimensional stitchery

I love the Great British Sewing Bee, not least because it inspires me to do stuff that I wouldn’t necessarily try (or buy sewing equipment that I really need!).

I haven’t done much three dimensional or constructive sewing, other than felt animals of various sorts at school or the now famous Bob the reindeer. I have seen letter cushions before and liked the idea of them so I thought I would give it a bash.

The choice of letter was really easy as it was for a present so I set about creating a pattern with the help of a well known Sunday newspaper. Getting the proportions right was surprisingly difficult. Either the uprights were too skinny or the distance between them too large or the crossbar too thin. I can understand now why font design is such an art form because there is a lot to be considered.

Having finally reached a size I was happy with I cut out the front and back, taking a great deal of care to ensure that I got the stripes in the right place and parallel. I then attached premade bias binding around the whole perimeter of each. As a scientific exercise (probably not the best thing to do on a gift!) I sewed one binding on by my old method of using a zipper foot, and one using my fancy pants new binding foot. Unquestionably the latter produced the much better result, and it was considerably easier to use.

Deciding on the width of the joining piece of fabric also required significant thought. Once again it was important to get the proportions correct. And also to decide whether the stripe should go vertically or horizontally. My biggest mistake though was that I sewed it on all in one piece rather than creating sections which matched each junction on the letter. This meant that although I sewed it all on pretty accurately and neatly, when the two sides were joined together there was a twist in the final product.

All that said, I’m pretty pleased with it as a first attempt and the recipient liked it, so I’ll definitely be having another go.

Cat x

Making preparations

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Later this week I am going to be giving a sewing lesson to a good chum who has been bugging me for a very long time to show her how to make cushion covers with piped edges and zipped fastenings. So guess what… I had to make a trip to a favourite haberdashery shop to get ‘supplies’.

Rather worryingly, when I searched for ‘haberdashery’ near my office there were a few too many options. Living slightly outside the M25 means that my choices are all a car drive away so the prospect of so much choice within walking distance was tantalising.

I don’t have to buy any fabric though. I bought a bolt of this lovely plaid before Christmas, intending to make a set of winter cushions for my sofa. This is what we will be using as it will be very forgiving of any beginner errors. I have bought lovely red ribbon for the piping as it will be a real contrast of textures as well as some buttons to cover.

My friend has promised to buy cookies to eat as we stitch so it looks like we’ll be having a fun afternoon. If I remember to take a photo I’ll share the finished results with you.

Cat x

Day 37

Day37_Ahoy ThereWell Ahoy there!

This cushion has been sitting in its project bag for quite some time waiting for completion.  I received the base Waves fabric from Sarah Waterhouse quite a while ago but couldn’t bear to cut it up until I had an item in mind that would do it justice. I hope you think that I have achieved this.

Onto Sarah’s hand-printed fabric I have appliqued my lovely lighthouse and printed some busy seagulls.  I’ve finished it all off with some red piping and five covered buttons at the back.  It is really gorgeous, though I say so myself.

Cat x