Monday, October 19, 2015

Free Tutorial - Sparkle Kitty

Hi!  Do you like teeny tiny cute things?  If so, I've created a wonderful little tutorial specially for you!  These super sweet Sparkle Kitties are fun and easy to make and can be worn as brooch pins or hair barrettes and can easily be made into ornaments, key chains or as tiny pets for your dolls.
 Sparkle Kitties measure just under 2 inches tall and are completely hand sewn.  
They make the dearest little pets!
What you'll need to make one:
::  2.5 x 4 inch felt for main body                            ::  1 x 1 inch glitter felt or coloured felt for bow
::  2 x 7.5mm safety eyes                                       ::  4 - 5 tiny flat backed Swarovski crystals
::  Embroidery thread/floss                                     ::  Metallic embroidery thread (optional)                          ::  Disappearing ink marker                                    ::  Ruler                                                                      
::  Clear drying craft glue                                        ::  Flat toothpick
::  Embroidery scissors                                           ::  Sewing needles and pins
::  Pink coloured pencil                                           ::  Tweezers
::  Polyfil                                                                ::  Orange stick or chopstick for stuffing
::  Optional:  awl, wire cutters, sticky-back googly eyes (1 each of 7.5mm and 10mm), brooch pin post, key chain, barrette with holes.   
.: Print pattern onto regular printer paper - no need to re-size the pieces.
.: Cut out pattern pieces and pin each piece onto your chosen felts.  You can choose which way you'd like your kitty to face - tail on the left or right. 
.: Carefully cut around patterns - you'll need to cut one front and one back, and one bow.
.: To mark the grid onto the felt, keep the paper pattern piece pinned in place and gently lift its outer edges, using your disappearing ink marker to mark the beginning of the lines onto the felt. Then remove the pattern piece and use the ruler to connect the lines. The grid will help with the placement of facial features in later steps.  (It's only necessary to mark the grid lines onto the front piece of felt.)
.:  Using one strand of embroidery thread, embroider the little snout, whiskers, paws, and ear tufts.  I used metallic thread to add a bit of sparkle, but that's totally up to you.
.: Being very careful, use the tip of your embroidery scissors or an awl to make two tiny holes for the eyes at the center of the X, where the vertical and horizontal lines meet.
.: Insert safety eyes with connectors at the back, making sure you slide the connector firmly down onto each post as far as it will go.
 ✿ Optional, but highly recommended:  Once you've connected the eye parts, trim the back plastic posts of the safety eyes with your wire cutters, leaving about an 1/8 of an inch beyond the washers. 
.: Embroider eyelashes at the outer corners of the eyes.
.:  Whip stitch darts on front and back of head, making sure to sew them from the back of the felt.
.:  Place front onto back, wrong sides facing and pin.  Using one strand of embroidery thread and starting at the top of the head at one of the marked lines just off center, whip stitch all the way around to the other marked line on the opposite side of the head.  The tail area is a little finicky, but take your time and go around it carefully.  Keep your stitches small, neat and evenly spaced as this helps to prevent the stuffing from escaping from the seams and gives a lovely finish to your work.
.:  Stuff the kitty, gently pushing the stuffing down into the body area and then working your way up to fill the head and ears.  Don't bother stuffing the little tail - it's impossible!!
.:  As you get nearer to the opening at the top, start whip stitching the opening closed, adding a bit more stuffing as you go to round out the top of the head before you fully close the hole.
.:  Dip the tip of a flat toothpick into the glue and draw it along the front neck area, creating a thin line of glue from one side to the other.  Use your pair of tweezers to position the flat backed Swarovski crystals onto the glue.  Try and keep them nice and straight and close together so that it looks like a tiny jeweled collar.  Allow to dry.
.:  Position the bow just below the ear, above an eye and sew in place using tiny stitches in the center of the bow.  Add a bit of colour to the cheeks by using your pink coloured pencil.  

Alternatively, you can position and sew the bow on at the neck instead of making a collar.
 .:  If you'd like to make the googly-eyed kitty, simply omit the steps of making eye holes and inserting them with safety eyes and instead, glue the googly eyes on after you've finished stuffing your kitty.  Use the grid to help with placement of the eyes.
  ✿ Optional:  To make a key chain pendant, stitch the loop of the key chain directly onto the top of the head, keeping your stitches hidden within the dart stitches.
.:  For a brooch, pin the brooch post onto the back of the kitty and stitch in place.  You can do the same with a hair barrette if you'd like.
So that's it! I hope you'll feel inspired to make one or two of these for yourself or for someone you know :) You're also welcome to sell your little creations, I just ask that you offer GINGERMELON design credit in any written description please.  And I'd love to see how they turn out so please share your pics on my facebook page:

Happy sewing everyone!! 

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Chibi Angels and Mermaids

Hello there!  I'm very excited to share some photos of the little Chibi dolls I've been working on lately.  'Chibi' is an endearing Japanese term for extremely cute, baby-like characters with over-sized heads and tiny bodies.
 These tiny angels and mermaids measure just under 5 inches tall, which makes them the perfect size for little hands to hold or for turning into ornaments!
 The mermaids...
The angels.
I just love how dainty they are!! 
 I'm hoping to have the patterns for these little sweeties ready very soon!
 As most of you know, my new book - 'My Felt Doll' has recently been published and is now available for purchase on-line at Amazon, Kobo and Indigo.  I believe it is also due for release in stores at the end of October.  If you'd like to find out what people are saying about it, please pop over and visit Abby Glassenberg's blog to read her review on my book.  I just want to say a big Thank You to Abby for taking the time to share her thoughts about it! 
Here are a few photos I took of the dolls I made for the book..
The mermaids.
The princess.
And the Woodland Girl.  Take a boo inside her little basket and you'll see a teensy, weensy hedgehog peeking out!
These are just a few of the many themes that are included inside the book!

Have an awesome week!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Rainbow Pony

Hello lovelies!!  I've been elbow deep in felt and embroidery threads lately working on an exciting project for The Land Of Nod.  Though I cannot tell you anything about it at the moment, I will definitely post a sneak peek once I'm able!
Whilst working on the aforementioned project, I had an overwhelming urge to create a little pony that could easily be adapted into a unicorn or pegasus.  I must say, it just kills me when I get ideas for other things when I'm already busy working on something, especially something that has a deadline and requires all my attention!  Anyway, I finally got to try out my idea and here's she is!
   A little Rainbow Pony!
Next on the list, a unicorn with a mane and tail made out of wool roving and a pegasus with cute little wings.
I got a lovely surprise in the mail on Friday - a copy of my new book, My Felt Doll!!  It's now available for pre-order and due to be released this October.
 I'm just so happy with how it's turned out!  Here's a look inside:
  The little Schoolgirl is my favourite!  She wears a traditional uniform, very similar to the one I wore in High School, complete with frilly socks and satchel!
 This is the Woodland Maiden.  Her little bonnet and cloak were probably the hardest outfits to design!  Oh my goodness, I cannot tell you how many different versions of them I made till I was happy with the outcome!!  There's also a dear little hedgehog (you can spot her in the bottom left hand corner) that fits perfectly into her little basket!  The Bedtime Doll and Little Mermaid are shown below.
The book also includes an illustrated stitch guide and a list of supplies and where to get them.
 Last by not least, I've had a couple of amazing weekends with my hubby so far this summer!  We spent one weekend on our little wooden boat in False Creek and another camping at Bridal Falls.
~Shelly xo