Sunday, January 11, 2009

A break from serious stuff 2

My second project was birds. I like birds.

I didn't bother finishing my first attempt as it was clearly misshapen, this was my second. Felted wool, stuffed with sewing scraps. The wool is coat-weight, so I just butted the fabric edges up against each other. Two identical pieces for the sides and head, and a bullet shaped piece for the bottom. The point of the bullet only came just up the front of the bird. The body was too slender and it didn't stand up at all.

I lengthened the bullet shaped piece to come up to just under the chin. The body looks right now, but the head is too small, at least for a corvid, which was what I was going for.

I also changed the stitch. I had been using herringbone, but since the thread only crossed the seam on top of the fabric the seams kept collasping inward if I pulled them too tight, making it hard to get the edges of the cloth to butt up against each other closely. I used the same stitch as used on baseballs here, not sure what it's called, other than 'baseball stitch'.

Expanded the head, tail's too short, and I didn't bother closing it. Melton wool, with baseball stitch. The green thread is tapestry wool. Stuffed with some indigo dyed unspun wool that got felted in a too-hot indigo dye bath.

A comparison shot which reminds me WAY too much of an old picture I have of dead corvidae laid out in a tray together.

This was my first attempt at a sewing it in a thinner cloth with an internal seam. I wanted to do a bunch of them as gifts and for my own Christmas tree, but ran out of time. Next year.

Black cotton twill, wood bead eyes, stuffed with warp thrums that were too short to use for tapestry weaving. I didn't add any seam allowance to the pattern (same as for the purple raven), to see how much I would lose in appearance. Looks more like a jackdaw than a raven. When it was nearly done I realized I was losing so much in the tail it almost disappeared, so I added on a piece on the bottom of the bullet shaped piece and made the top piece with a long wedge to be inserted into the seam that runs down the middle of the back. I'm not sure about the shape on the end itself, but I like the wedge bit. Would also mean being able to make tail feathers of a different colour than the body if I wanted.

A comparison between the two methods using the same pattern.

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