Just in time for the Christmas season, I’m very excited to share with you my latest amigurumi creation. Meet Wynne’s big sister, Charlie the Bunny.
She’s a larger version of Wynne, crocheted with a 5mm hook, and much chunkier yarn. The nice result of this is really the magic of crochet. Merely by changing these two elements, you get a whole new result, without a needing a new pattern.
Charlie is much more suited to being thoroughly played with, dressed and undressed. Can I just talk about the adorable combination of tiny ginham and Liberty Lawn? The tiny scale is just a perfect match.
Her clothes have overlocked and reinforced seams, and have press studs closures that are easy for little fingers to use. Elegant bloomers trimmed with more lace complete her ensemble. Another sweet feature is two rows of buttons on the back, for a mock double breasted appearance, with stud closures underneath. Those teeny tiny buttons…eek!!
And of course, no bunny is complete without an accessory. This satchel is able to carry everything an adventuring bunny needs. It’s made from 100% woolen felt, with a velcro closure. The strap also opens up with a press stud closure, because Charlie suffers from an adorably large head, and needs this function to get her bag over her head. LOL.
Charlie also has a removable headband, with either a felt flower, or two felt bows. I had so much fun coming up with these accessories…it was hard to stop!
Last but not least, my love of making miniatures is truly expressed in Charlie’s bed, a linen diamond tufted headboard, and vintage inspired bedlinen. Tiny patchwork is a challenge, but sooo gorgeous when it’s done…I could totally see myself in this bed!
Charlie is 28cm tall, and available to order in my shop now. Orders are filling fast for Christmas. Happy browsing!
This story starts several months ago. One of my friends over on Instagram, whom I admire and respect greatly for all of her efforts to our crafty community, mentioned almost in passing that she’d had a brush with cancer. I’m talking of course, about Lisa from A Spoonful of Sugar, one of our favourite Aussie bloggers.
My own family has had this shocking and unwelcome news thrust upon them several times in the last few years, and only last year my mother in law was diagnosed with lung cancer, despite never having smoked in her life. It is a huge life event to deal with, and changes you forever.
Almost exactly the same time, I saw also on Instagram, that a small group of friends around the world had collaborated to make a special quilt for Ange’s little daughter who was having surgery. It was such a lovely idea to surprise someone with something like that, it got me wondering if anyone was coordinating anything for Lisa.
I put out my Insta feelers, and asked a few discreet questions, and ultimately ended up using Megan as my sounding board. We discovered that nothing had been planned so far for Lisa, (at least that we could find out about)and she was all like ‘Let’s do this!!” It was amazing that Megan and I were the perfect team, tho we’ve never met each other. She turned my scratchy quilt scribbles into a firm plan and made it happen!
We brainstormed styles and colours and fabrics that we knew Lisa really liked, and also started approaching some of the talented Aussie quilters we have in our community. The response was overwhelming…even though everyone is hugely busy juggling work and family life, everyone was super eager to pitch in.
But not only that, we were overwhelmed at the generosity that poured in. Alisha from Ministry of Fabric, as well as making blocks, offered to supply the small florals for the front joining squares, and the backing and binding fabrics. They are adorable, soft and pretty, totally feminine.
And our great secret sewing project began…we dubbed it ‘the Sugar Quilt’ in private, but on Instagram, we hash tagged it #ssshsewing and #ssshquilt. Look them up and you can follow the journey from start to finish.
It was all about small florals, Japanese fabrics, and natural linen, to make a restful, comforting final result. Martina from Ava&Neve supplied the essex linen, another generous sponsor.
Twelve of us each made two blocks, finished at 10″ square of any design that we wanted. Boy did those girls go to town!! There were some amazingly unique designs, and as they flowed into my post office box, the excitement was building. My two blocks were simple granny squares, using Atsuko Matsuyama prints.
Making a secret project right under someone’s nose, is really fun…Lisa was regularly liking and commenting on our photos, but had absolutely no idea what was going on! I was hugging myself with delight 🙂 and as more and more blocks arrived, I could see that we were really making something special. It was looking amazing.
Here’s the finished quilt top, about to go off to be quilted, which brings me to the other amazing part of this quilt.
Megan introduced me to a most amazing free motion quilter, Kellie, who transformed this pretty quilt top into an elegant lady, breathing layers of character and personality into it, that took her absolutely hours and hours. Hop on over to her blog, to see loads of pretty pics of all her details. Kellie looked at each block individually and decided exactly what was needed to make it sing. I was overwhelmed that she would provide so much of her time gratis, and she relished the task!
One thing in particular that blew me away, was the free motion script around the entire border of the quilt…all perfectly executed and sound advice from Jane Austen!
Kellie then sent the quilt back to me to have its binding added. Here’s 7.5m of Sevenberry floral goodness. It was perfectly suited. Notice Kellie’s gorgeous quilting details throughout…her encouraging words calmed my nerves even though I bind quilts regularly!
And without further ado or waffle, here is our finished quilt, that we are all very proud of. It blends together very seamlessly, especially considering that we never met each other and only saw pics of each other’s blocks. It’s been held up here by my mother-in-law in her beautiful wildflower garden…
Each of us embroidered name tags to go on the back of the quilt, and these were each a work of art in themselves! Apologies that some of these are slightly blurry. I was rushing to get this sent off at the post office after my home state was hit by a massive storm!
My personal favourite was Kellie’s tag…such a true representation of her wonderful personality…
Here is my partner in crime, Megan’s from the lovely blog Dolly Henry.
Alisha’s from the lovely fabric shop, Ministry of Fabric.
Anorina’s from her beautiful blog Sameliasmum.
Annabel’s of @belloquacity.
Peta’s of the blog She Quilts a Lot.
Naglaa of @quiltymamaof4
Michelle’s of the sweet blog Cole&Taffy.
Sedef’s of the lovely blog Down Grapevine Lane.
And I do apologise that I inadvertently didn’t get a nice shot of Ange’s label. You can’t see that clearly, but she appliqued a sweet hexagon onto it.
Therese’s of the lovely fabric shop Love that Fabric.
Terri-anne of @lizzierosesews.
And here’s mine…
Here it is all packaged up…so fun to send off such a nice surprise to someone!
And another pic of the finished quilt blowing in the wind…
So it was just wonderful to be part of something so special. I made new friends, and felt so blessed by the whole process and community myself. An amazing experience.
You can read all about Lisa’s reaction on her blog here.
Hello, and welcome! Today I’m sharing the tutorial for this cute Patchwork Teddy Bib that I originally showed you last week here…so let’s get started! I recommend reading right through before you begin 🙂
- 12 in square (30 cm) piece of essex linen in natural
- 6 scraps of different fabric coordinates
- 13 in (33cm) square of batting
- 13 in (33cm) fabric for backing
- scrap of fusible interfacing
- scrap of wonder under
- metal or plastic snap for fastening
- perle 12 thread for quilting
- decorative button
- water erasable fabric marker
- basic sewing supplies
Download and print out the pattern supplied. Cut out all pieces, and join the Bib top to the Bib base. Seam allowances are 1/4 in (6mm) throughout.
1.For the beginning of this bib, we are just going to cut out strips the sizes stated, and join them together.
Cut a piece of linen 9 in x 9 in (23cm x 23 cm), for the top part of the bib, and a piece 3.5 in x 9 in (9cm x 23cm) for the lower half.
2. Cut 6, 2 in (5cm) squares from each of your fabrics, and sew them together into a long strip. I used a selection of tiny ginghams, Japanese florals, and Melly and Me’s Snug as a Bug text print.
3. Join the top and bottom strips of the linen onto each side of the strip of patchwork squares. Mine aren’t very neat!
4. Layer your piece of batting behind this, either attaching with pins or spray basting. Hand quilt along the top and bottom edges of the strip of squares. I rule a line using water erasable marker about 2mm away from the seam, and use this as a guide to get my quilting straight. It helps a lot! The perle 12 weight thread is just great to work with, as it doesn’t tangle or snag like other embroidery thread will.
5. You can choose to add your teddy face now, or go on to finish the bib, and add it at the end. I put mine on first but either works fine.
From the left over piece of linen, cut out the oval for the teddy face, and a piece of linen slightly larger than this. Press the linen around the edge of the oval to make a smooth curve. I use the liquid starch method for this. Cut a scrap of batting slightly smaller than the oval.
Fuse the Wonder Under to a 2 in square piece of linen, and fuse the interfacing to a second 2 in square of linen. Take the backing off the Wonder Under, and fuse that to the interfacing, so you have two pieces of linen joined together with interfacing inside. Trace two teddy ears on this piece. Sew these along your traced lines, hand quilt as per the picture, then cut out close to your stitching lines.
6. Position the teddy ears on the fourth and fifth squares as per the photo, and pin. Check that the position is correct by sitting the oval over them and checking that the ends will be well covered when the face is in place. Machine stitch ears down 3mm from ends.
6. Place teddy face onto the join between squares 4 and 5, making sure the ends of the ears are covered. Pin. Start stitching down the face with needle turn applique, using a neutral coloured thread.
7. When you are about half way around, carefully remove your paper oval, and insert the little oval of batting. Finish stitching the oval down.
8. Now you are ready to start assembling the bib. Place your piece of backing fabric right side up, layer your top linen and batting section right side down, on top of this. Pin together around the edges. Place bib pattern on top of this, aligning the centre line with the centre of the patchwork squares, and also aligning the patchwork strip section. Trace pattern onto batting. Sorry, I didn’t get a clear pic of this part.
Stitch along your traced lines, beginning at the bottom left curve, and continuing right around, leaving an opening approx 3 in across the bottom for turning through.
Trim 1/4 in away from stitching line, and clip internal curves so that they will sit flat. Carefully turn through to the right side, taking your time and easing out all the tricky top curves.
9. I roll the seam edges between my fingers to get them nice and smooth. Press well. Sew up the turning hole using ladder stitch, then hand quilt around the entire edge, approx 1/4in away from the edge. I also stitched in the ditch along the edges of the patchwork.
10. Trace teddy face features onto the oval using a water erasable marker, and embroider with the perle 12 weight thread. Any blue traces of marker left can be removed with a damp cloth. Hand quilt around the edge of teddy’s face. Add decorative button if you wish.
11. Attach metal snap to top of bib flaps. You can also use a button and button hole if you don’t have any of these.
Your Patchwork Teddy Bib is now complete and ready for spills and stains! I just can’t wait to see this smeared with avocado and mashed banana…
I hope this has been useful…if you do happen to make one, please share on instagram using the tag #patchworkteddybib, and tag me 🙂
Sometimes I really forget to appreciate the beauty that is all around, and am too busy rush, rush, rushing on to the next thing.
So the other day, while I was doing just that, I was hurrying to wrap a present that we wanted to get in the mail, and my daughter pulled some old wrapping paper out the box and said, “Mum, you could stitch those pictures!”
And I stopped, and looked.
Everything else went out of my head that day. I had to stitch some of those adorable little animals. And the Animal Pals Snack Mat was born. A combination of old world ticking stripes, crochet lace, and freemotion applique. I’ve had the biggest crush on ticking stripes for ages now, and knew this would be the perfect little project to start using them on. The fabric is thick and should be able to take all the stains that chubby hands will dish out to it.
I’ve added lots of hand quilting for the lettering and plate outlines, and around the picture frames of the animals. It’s so relaxing to sit and do…I’m always a bit sad when it’s finished.
Little lamb’s facial details are hand quilted as well, and topped off with perfect little 4mm buttons. I bought a large pack of these recently, and am going through them really fast! This girl loves her miniatures…
Lamb’s pal is a zebra, complete with stripy ears and muzzle, and just a touch of aqua yarn for a mane.
My second little project, which was going to be more of a quick photo prop, then turned into another labour of love to complement the snack mat. I was pretty pleased with how it turned out. And yes, I do get distracted easily…
I drafted my own bib template, after not being happy with any of the shapes I could find online. I’ve made mine a little ‘curvier’, remembering all my own babe’s sweet apple cheeks and dimply elbows!
There’s more of my favourite neutral essex linen, little florals and checks. This Teddy Bib has a needleturn applique face, raw edge ears, and lots of more hand quilted details. And backed with ticking stripes, of course.
I’ve now written up the tutorial for this little cutie… And next week I’ll get back onto my large to-do list, but trying always to stop and be thankful for the little things.
Hooley dooley…I’m a Great Aunt!! If this doesn’t make me feel old, not much will these days!
So I’d like to share with you my special little creations that I’ve made for my new grand-nephew Toby…a cute amigurumi sheep, and a monogrammed pillow, so he’ll never forget what his name is.
First up is the sheep, a gorgeous free pattern from Lanukas. This is a lovely simple make if you can do basic crochet stitches, however the level of difficulty increases dramatically when you add fluffy yarn. I used Spotlight’s Beetle for the lower feet, face and ears, a nice all rounder cotton/acrylic, and I was all good for that part. For the fluffy body, I used Sirdar Snuggly Snowflake. It was exactly the look I was after, but it made for terribly hard crochet, as the fluffiness of the yarn means you can’t see all of your stitches clearly. I had just about every stitch marker I owned hanging off it, just trying to keep track of them. I ripped it out several times, despite doing this, as I seemed to miraculously increase and decrease constantly.
So if anyone ever thinks things like this come easy, I am certainly not one of those people…most of this is just dogged determination…not to let little sheep beat me! I still don’t think I actually did get this correct in the end, as I never did get an accurate stitch count, but when I stuffed the little critter, he turned out evenly thank goodness. And we forgave each other.
Then I just couldn’t make sense of Lucia’s pattern for his little face, and no matter how hard I tried, it just wouldn’t look like the picture! So I just made that up too lol. If you are finding making your face hard, and would like my edits to the face, I’ll add them into this post.
My kids are still laughing at this softie, and calling him a yeti, a Pokemon, and several other characters I know nothing about. O well.
Here is Toby’s little pillow, made with Melly&Me‘s Teddy Bear’s Picnic fabric, by Riley Blake Designs. I might just be a little bit in love with all these designs!
His name is appliqued with recycled denim, and top stitched to resemble jeans…my favourite way to make a little boy’s pillow. I then enlarged and embroidered the teddy designs from the fabric (and one little bird) and added a tiny little button for the belly button. I used a DMC Perle 12 for this, and just happened to have the perfect match in my stash. The pillow also has the cutest little teddy bear ribbon tag.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my little sheep and pillow…and maybe even get inspired to make a sheep, or one of Lucia’s other patterns…they are very cute too!
It seems as if the ‘drawing with thread’ craze is sweeping the sewing world at the moment. This is a largely due to an amazing new book just published by the talented duo Minki Kim and Kristin Esser called Sew Illustrated. It involves taking an image, be it a photograph, sketch or artwork of virtually any kind, and transforming it into a stitched picture. For anyone has a love for sewing, and is also even slightly artistic as well, this is something you can do.
I’ve been doing this style of thread drawing for a couple of years now, and only just feel like I’m scratching the surface. The more I do, the more addictive it becomes, and the more possibilities arise. I love the puzzle of working out what layers go down first, and working out how it all fits together.
Here is a little floppy bunny that I sketched the other day, using some of the new Tilda fabric line. It turned out just adorably, the perfect little fellow drying on a line.
Then being on the kick that I am on, I turned this into a pincushion with a few pintucks and a cute little button. So much fun! Doesn’t my $3 thrifted basket just look divine with it? I love it when I find unexpected props around the house.
My second little pin cushion that I want to show you, is a mixture of sewing illustration, and embroidery. I simply drew a flower pot freehand, and added a few stalks of lavender. The more random and messy you are, the more natural it looks. And really, there are no rules with this type of art…mix up as many techniques and disciplines as work for you! My only regret was that I didn’t have any dried lavender on hand to add inside, but I do have some lavender essential oil which I think I will use to give it a gorgeous smell. And there’s just something about that natural essex linen that adds the perfect rustic charm to any project.
I might have just ordered another 5 metres of it!
I’ve been playing catch-up again with these blocks, but none the less, enjoyed the roller coaster process that is patchwork…Sometimes when I’m in the middle of it all, getting bamboozled by all the tiny pieces, I ask myself, why am I doing this? But when it’s finished, I’m pleased I’ve stuck at it, and proud of what I’ve made.
And I have learnt so much while doing this quilt, and this will be the first large pieced quilt that I’ve ever done! I’ve just been making this up as I go along, with a pastel, romantic colour palette in mind, and have managed to so far get most of the fabrics from my stash.
Some new introductions to my stash were block made from Lecien’s Flower Sugar Fall 2015. I only bought a charm pack of this, and I couldn’t quite get all the pieces cut from the 5″ squares, so I totally cheated and joined some together for one of the segments…can you tell? Well yes, you can see it if you look really hard, but I was pleased with how I made it work!
This block has foxy face fussy cut for the centre, and while I’m not sold on this colour combination, it does tie in with the rest of the colour scheme of the quilt. The foxy print is one from Spotlight, as is the small mint and white spot, and the floral is another new one from Clothworks called Cats in the Garden. I’ll probably reserve judgement on this one until I can lay out the whole quilt together.
Slightly off on a fussy cutting tangent, but a couple of weeks ago my sons bought a new toy…a 3D printer. This was the first time I’d ever seen such a thing, and even though this is not an expensive one, it can print virtually anything you can dream up and is so amazing to watch! This pencil holder is printed guys!!
So of course, now I can see fussy cutting templates in my future, printed of course! You can buy transparent plastic for it, and my boys say they’ll print anything I want…for a fee!
I’ve saved my favourite block of these three for last, as I just love Little Red in the centre, peeking out from behind the tree…It goes so well with just a hint of Sevenberry floral, and a tiny Yuwa floral
I have some more fabric ordered for my Chain blocks, and am really motivated to get them all done!
I had a request recently, for a squeeze frame glasses case…this was a new project for me, as I’d never used these frames before. They are essentially two flexible strips of metal joined at either end with a watch pin (or at least that is my summation of them). I really had to buy one before I understood how it worked properly…
So they need a channel sewn for each strip to go through, just like a draw string pouch. So pretty easy peasy!
I had a lot of fun designing the front of the case. I had a french, shabby chic style in my head, and sketched this flower…
I ended up stitching each of these shapes onto interfacing and turning them through, and appliquing them that way, rather then a straight needle turn. The stem of the flower is a tube turned through as well, and I think that method gives a beautifully even stem all the way down.
I used my favourite low volume combination of essex linen and small florals. The petals are a sevenberry floral, and the centre of the flower is a Yuwa print. I hand quilted around the edge in a pink perle 8 cotton, and added a cute french tag, and some pink crochet lace in the side seam. The back is quilted in a diamond pattern, which is my very favourite design at the moment.
I decided that I didn’t want the edges of the squeeze frame to show, so I hand sewed the gaps around the frame, and I really like how it’s now hidden inside.
Here’s a little glimpse of the pink gingham lining inside…
Welcome back today for the announcement of the winner of the Wynne bunny!
I’d like to sincerely thank everyone who entered for their support and encouragement…I’m so excited that you love my bunnies so much! I would really love to be able to give one away to each and every one of you!
First, I hope you’ll bear with me (or is that bunny with me?) and take a look back on how the Wynne bunnies started off.
Their little bodies coming together…
To little clothes in the making…
And my Wynne bunny was even a special model for me and posed for me, as I sketched her, and then stitched her as a sewing illustration, and submitted her in Make Modern Magazine’s #miniminiquilt contest on instagram…
And very happily, the judges liked my mini, and I was one of the winners picked! I won a little fabric voucher from Minki Bear & Me…such a sweet little fabric shop! This is Wynne reclining on the fabric that arrived this week!
She’s getting quite the little poser now, what with pictures being stitched of her, and being famous on the internet! I’m trying to be careful that her head doesn’t get even bigger…
So with the fun of winning still fresh in my mind, and without further rambling, the winner of the bunny of their choice, is Brianna @B_fab, who said she’d really love a Paperboy Wynne. Congratulations Brianna! I’ve sent you an email, but if for some reason you don’t get it, contact me here, and your little Wynne, complete with satchel and tiny newspapers will be on it’s way to you very shortly!!
Thankyou again to everyone else who entered!
My Wynne bunnies are available to purchase exclusively through Ava&Neve, if you find you didn’t win, but just can’t live without one. Stop by their beautiful shop and also check out the large range of Liberty prints they have to offer, and collection of other Liberty inspired gifts and accessories…
Have a great day…
This story begins with my passion for Liberty fabric, a new love for amigurumi, and then meeting Martina and Narelle of Ava&Neve, who are so passionate about Liberty that they have their own Liberty fabric store. I knew that I wanted to develop a special little character to showcase these gorgeous fabrics, and they were happy to share my vision.
I’m so excited to introduce you to a special little bunny today! [Giveaway now closed.]
Wynne is the end result of much hard work…as anyone who has developed a new pattern from scratch will know. The culmination of much excitement, then frustration and unpicking, then repeat, and repeat again, as many times as it takes.
Eventually you get to meet a whole new little personality, as amigurumis take on a mind of their own.
Wynne’s name came to me as I was perusing lists of children’s names, and immediately I saw the little face, and personality coming to life. Wynne’s name suits a boy and a girl, and so I’ve named both the Wynne Bunnies.
Here are my first girls…sweet little poppets dressed in Liberty smocked dresses, with pintucked hems. Aren’t they just the sweetest?!
They are wide eyed and innocent, exploring their world with great wonder and joy. They love catching butterflies and making daisy chains. In fact, they’ve been picking flowers to do just that.
Wynne has a lot of dreams and aspirations as well. Here she is longingly trying to reach up to her Grandma’s sewing machine. She’s a little bit too small for it right now, but she can’t wait to get started on fashion design with her beloved Liberty prints.
Wynne’s twin or male counterpart, is an equally cute little character. Here he is selling newspapers on the street, with noble ambitions driving him…he is a country boy at heart, and loves fishing in the stream for trout in true Huck Finn style. But don’t be fooled by this innocent face…he might also catch a toad while he’s there, and has mischievous plans for it!
Paperboy Wynne has a jaunty outfit made from lovely Liberty lawn, and his little bag and newspapers are all handmade.
There are many more adventures awaiting them and if you would like to purchase your own Wynne bunny, they are available in strictly limited quantities exclusively through Ava&Neve. Wynne comes standing displayed in a clear acetate tube, with his/her own swing tag.
And here is your chance to WIN a Wynne bunny for yourself!
I am giving away a boy or girl Wynne randomly selected by Rafflecopter. Leave a comment below telling me which is your favourite Wynne bunny and follow the instructions to gain as many entries as you can. Entries are open world wide, and close midnight 26 July. Winner will be drawn Friday 28 July, and announced on Instagram and here on the blog.
Ali lives and crafts in the Adelaide Hills. Thanks for stopping by!