Tuesday, 12 November 2019

How To: Sew Felt Mushrooms & Toadstools!

This week I'm sharing some fun autumnal crafting projects: tutorials for sewing felt mushrooms and toadstools then using them to create an awesome autumn wreath.

Today you'll learn how to make the felt fungi, then I'll post the wreath tutorial on Thursday.


These felt mushrooms and toadstools are so easy to make! You can use them to decorate larger autumn craft projects, or add brooch clasps or ribbon loops to turn them into brooches or Christmas ornaments.

 
If you're making Christmas decorations why not give them some extra sparkle by adding beads or sequins to the toadstools, or using metallic embroidery thread for the mushrooms. You could also decorate the backs of your toadstools as well as the fronts, or use the space on the back to embroider the year you stitched them.

This tutorial originally appeared on The Village Haberdashery's blog - visit their shop for lots of crafty goodness!


You will need:

The template sheet provided (click here to download and print the PDF)
Red, white and dark brown felt
Matching red, white and dark brown sewing thread
Light brown embroidery thread
Toy stuffing
Sewing scissors
Embroidery scissors (these are great for cutting out felt shapes!)
Sewing needles and pins
Optional: air-erasable fabric marker pen, a pencil


To make the toadstools: 

1. Use the templates provided to cut out the toadstool pieces (as marked on the template sheet). Pin each paper template onto the correct felt colour, cut around it carefully with embroidery scissors then remove the pin. Don’t throw away any scraps of white felt as you’ll need them to decorate the toadstools. Both sizes of toadstool (large and small) are constructed in the same way.

2. Place the two white toadstool pieces together. Starting near the top of the cap, begin sewing the edges together with whip stitch and white sewing thread. Sew down the stalk then up the other side, stuffing it gradually with small pieces of toy stuffing. Continue sewing up around the cap, leaving a small gap at the top. Stuff the cap with more toy stuffing then sew up the gap with more whip stitches.

Tip: use the closed blades of your embroidery scissors or the point of a pencil to gently poke the stuffing into all the corners of the toadstool so it’s evenly stuffed. 


3. Use embroidery scissors to cut out an assortment of small circles from the white felt scraps. You could cut these freehand (they don’t need to be perfect circles!) or use an air-erasable marker pen to draw circles on the felt and cut them out.

Arrange the circles on one of the red cap pieces. For a natural-looking toadstool, make sure your arrangement isn’t symmetrical. One by one, sew each circle in place with white sewing thread and an X of two stitches.

Tip: don’t position the circles too close to the edge of the cap - remember you’ll need to sew around the edge of the cap in the next step. 


4. Sandwich the stuffed toadstool shape between the two matching red cap pieces. Start stitching where the cap and stalk meet, sewing up and around the cap until you reach the top of the stalk again. Use whip stitch and matching red sewing thread, joining the edges of the red felt so the white felt cap is completely hidden inside.


5. Continue whip stitching across the bottom of the red cap, sewing through all the layers of felt and stuffing and pulling each stitch tight. Turn the toadstool back and forth as you sew, so you can make sure your red stitches aren’t overlapping onto the white of the stalk. Finish your stitching neatly at the back.


Variations: for a slightly different look, you could use whip stitch to attach each felt circle instead of an X of two stitches. You could also use white seed beads, white sequins or even small white buttons to decorate the toadstool caps instead of using felt circles. 


To make the mushroom: 

1. Use the templates provided to cut out the mushroom pieces (as marked on the template sheet). Pin each paper template onto the correct felt colour, cut around it carefully with embroidery scissors then remove the pin.

2. Sew and stuff the two white mushroom pieces, using the method described in step 2 of the toadstool instructions (above).


3. Position the brown mushroom cap piece (A) on the white mushroom cap piece (B) and pin it in place. Use dark brown sewing thread and whip stitch to sew along the bottom edge of the brown felt shape. Remove the pin. Turn the cap pieces over and carefully trim the excess white felt above the line of stitching, as shown below right.


4. Place the white stalk piece on the cap pieces as pictured below, so the top of the stalk slightly overlaps the bottom of the mushroom cap. Hold or pin the layers of felt together and whip stitch along the top of the stalk with white sewing thread.


5. Cut a piece of light brown embroidery thread and separate half the strands (so, for six-stranded thread use three strands). Switch to a larger needle if necessary and backstitch around the top of the stalk, sewing flush with the edge of the felt.

Then use an air-erasable fabric marker pen to draw several lines radiating from the top of the stalk. Sew along each line with backstitch and more half strands of light brown embroidery thread. Don’t sew all the way to the edge of the white felt – leave a small gap at each end of the lines, as shown below. If you don’t have an air-erasable pen just sew the lines freehand using the photo as a guide.


6. Place the embroidered mushroom on the stuffed mushroom shape, lining up the stalks. Starting at the top of the stalk, sew down the stalk and around it using white sewing thread and whip stitch to join the pieces together.

Then add the brown mushroom cap piece (B) at the back and begin stitching up around the cap. Start with white thread, switch to brown as you sew around the brown felt, and then switch back to white again on the other side of the cap.

Finally, sew along the bottom edge of the cap at the back of the mushroom (don’t stitch through all the layers as in step 5 of the toadstool instructions) then finish your stitching neatly.


This tutorial is for non commercial use only: you can use it to make as many mushrooms and/or toadstools as you want for yourself or as gifts, but please don't make any for sale. You may borrow a couple of photos if you want to blog about this project, but remember to credit me and link back to this page on my blog, and do not reproduce my entire tutorial / share my templates on your site. Thanks!

Enjoyed this free tutorial? Buy me a "coffee" and help support my blog!


Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

P.S. Subscribe to my newsletter for a monthly free pattern and visit my crafty tutorial archive for lots more free projects.

Visit my shop to buy my printable PDF sewing patterns:

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Heads Up: I'm Retiring a Few More Tutorials from My Archive!

As the title of this post says, I've decided to retire a few more tutorials from my blog.

The rest of my archive of free crafty tutorials will remain as it is, but the tutorials for this set of Christmas ornaments will soon be vanishing from my blog, being revamped, and reappearing as a printable PDF pattern in my shop (thus helping to pay my bills! hurrah!).


1. Angel Bauble.

2. Reindeer Bauble.

3. Snowman Bauble.

4. Santa Bauble.

5. Jingle Bell.

6. Button Heart.

7. Stripey Stocking.

and 8. Sparkly Star.
 
All of these projects will be removed from my blog on or after December 1st, so if you'd like to make them for free please get any instructions and templates/patterns printed out or saved before then!

The PDF versions will be in my shops in December. All the free tutorials here on my blog are intended for non-commercial use only, but you are very welcome to sell any items made using patterns purchased from my shop as long as you make the items yourself and credit me as the designer.

Friday, 8 November 2019

Grab a crafty bargain!

I'm having another clear-out, and have posted lots of leftover craft supplies, stitched project samples, and other bits and bobs at bargain prices over on Instagram.

https://www.instagram.com/lauralupinsells/

Head to lauralupinsells to see all the details!

The UK postage shown for each item is for it posted solo. I'll combine postage for items bought together - you can send an approximately shoebox sized parcel weighing up to 2kg by 2nd class post for just £3 in the UK, so most packages won't cost more than this to send (yay!). If you're elsewhere in the world, let me know your country and I'll check the postage for you.

Don't have an Instagram account but spotted something you fancy? Send me a message via my contact form.

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

A Year of Wreaths: November Felt Holly Wreath Tutorial

This month's wreath is nice and simple!

Perfect for crafting during a cosy winter evening in, or a lazy weekend, this bright holly wreath will add a pop of colour to your decor this winter or Christmas.

the finished holly wreath

The yarn-wrapped wreath is decorated with a ring of felt holly leaves and red felt ball “berries”. I used bright red yarn to wrap my wreath for a cheerful look but this design would also look great on a pale background (perhaps a white yarn or strips of a neutral fabric?). I love the 3D effect of the felt balls but you could cut small red felt circles, or use red buttons instead.

This tutorial originally appeared on The Village Haberdashery's blog - visit their shop for lots of crafty goodness! I've been sharing all the seasonal wreath tutorials here on my blog as the year has progressed - just one more to go next month... 

You will need

The template sheet provided (click here to view, download and print the PDF)
A 30cm polystyrene ring wreath base
Yarn to wrap the wreath (I used 2 balls of Rico Essentials Cotton DK in Red)
Dark green felt
8 red felt balls
Dark green stranded embroidery thread
Sewing scissors
A sewing needle and pins
A glue gun and glue
A heat-proof mat for the glue gun
Newspaper to protect your workspace from any glue drips

To make the wreath:

1. Wrap the wreath base with your chosen yarn. I used two balls of Rico Essentials Cotton DK in Red which gave my wreath a lovely sheen.

wrapping the wreath base with yarn

Secure the yarn with a knot at what will become the back of your wreath. Begin wrapping the yarn around the wreath base, passing the ball of yarn through the hole in the centre of the wreath as you wrap the yarn around the outside. Hide the loose yarn end under the yarn as you wrap, and make sure that you’re not leaving any gaps where the white wreath base shows through. Continue wrapping, gradually covering the whole of the wreath base, and switch to the second ball when needed.

Wrapping the wreath takes a while, so I highly recommend wrapping your wreath while watching a film or some episodes of your favourite TV show.

Once the whole wreath base has been covered with yarn, tie a knot securely at the back and carefully trim the loose end so it won’t be visible when the wreath is hung up.

wreath base wrapped with yarn

2. Use the holly template to cut out eight leaves from dark green felt.

felt holly leaves

3. Cut a length of dark green embroidery thread. Separate half the strands (so, for six-stranded thread just use three strands) and sew a curved line down the middle of each leaf as shown. I used backstitch but you could sew a line of running stitch if you prefer.

embroidering the holly leaves

4. Arrange the leaves on the wreath so they’re evenly spaced, with small gaps between them. Secure each leaf with a pin.

adding the felt holly leaves to the wreath

5. Add the felt balls between the leaves, using a pin to hold each ball in place.

all the pieces ready to be glued to the wreath

6. Use a glue gun to attach the leaves and felt balls to the wreath.

Remove the felt balls and set them aside. One by one, glue the leaves: begin by moving the pin to one end of the leaf, lift the other end of the leaf up then apply glue underneath it. I added glue in the centre of the leaf itself but you could add the glue to the wreath base instead. Carefully press that section of the leaf in position on the wreath, remove the pin then glue the other end of the leaf. Once all the leaves have been glued, carefully glue the felt balls in position adding a dab of glue to each ball then pressing it in place.

IMPORTANT: take care when working with the glue gun as the glue gets very hot! Always place it on a heat-proof mat when not in use, and use newspaper or other scrap paper to protect your workspace. Work slowly, squeezing the gun with care to control the amount of glue you’re using and keeping your fingers out of the way of the hot glue.

Hang the finished wreath directly from a hook or a nail, or hang it using a leftover piece of the dark red yarn.


This tutorial is for non commercial use only: you can use it to make as many wreaths as you want for yourself or as gifts, but please don't make any for sale. You may borrow a couple of photos if you want to blog about this project, but remember to credit me and link back to this page on my blog, and do not reproduce my entire tutorial / share my templates on your site. Thanks!

Enjoyed this free tutorial? Buy me a "coffee" and help support my blog!

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

P.S. Subscribe to my newsletter for a monthly free pattern and visit my crafty tutorial archive for lots more free projects.

Visit my shop to buy my printable PDF sewing patterns:

Tuesday, 1 October 2019

A Year of Wreaths: October Cosy Cat Felt Wreath Tutorial

This month’s wreath is all about cosiness: curling up with a colourful blanket, like this cute sleeping kitty!

sleeping kitty wreath

I’ve stitched a grey cat but you could easily customise this wreath and make a cat that looks like your own pet - switch the felt colour, add some felt patches, and use embroidery thread to add stripes or other markings. You could also sew the sleeping kitty onto other things (maybe a bag or a cushion?) or use the cat’s head templates to sew a cute cat brooch.

This tutorial originally appeared on The Village Haberdashery's blog - visit their shop for lots of crafty goodness! I'm sharing all twelve seasonal wreath tutorials here on my blog as the year progresses.

You will need:

*The template sheets provided (click here to view, download and print the PDF)
*A 30cm polystyrene ring wreath base
*Wool blend felt in assorted colours: grey and pink (or your chosen cat colours) plus three colours for decorating the wreath (I used dark purple, light purple, and light blue) and a contrasting shade (e.g. white) for the Zs.
*Black and white embroidery thread
*Pink and grey sewing thread (to match the felt)
*Toy stuffing
*Sewing needle and pins
*Sewing scissors
*Embroidery scissors for cutting out small shapes
*An air erasable fabric marker pen (optional but very helpful!)
*A ruler and pen/pencil
*Fabric glue or other strong craft glue
*A glue gun and glue
*A heat-proof mat for the glue gun
*Newspaper to protect your workspace from any glue drips

To make the wreath:

1. Use the rectangular template provided to cut the felt strips for wrapping the wreath. You'll need 24 strips in total, so cut 8 of each of your three colours or (to make a wreath exactly like the one pictured) cut 12 of one colour (dark purple) and 6 each of the other two shades (light purple and light blue).

2. Lay the strips on top of the wreath in colour order (if you're copying my wreath, every other strip should be dark purple, with the light purple and light blue alternating between the dark purple strips), overlapping them slightly so that none of the polystyrene ring base will show through at the edges of the wreath.

When you’ve added all the pieces and are happy with the arrangement, insert pins to hold the felt in position then turn the wreath over. One by one, wrap the felt pieces around the wreath inserting pins to hold the felt in place.

covering the wreath base with felt strips

The back of your wreath will now look something like this:

securing the felt to the wreath base with pins

3. Use a glue gun to secure the ends of the felt at the back of the wreath. Work on one piece of felt at a time, removing the pin(s) holding it in place and folding the felt back slightly. Carefully add a dab or two of hot glue to the wreath base then very carefully press the felt down into position.

IMPORTANT: take care when working with the glue gun as the glue gets very hot! Always place it on a heat-proof mat when not in use, and use newspaper or other scrap paper to protect your workspace. Work slowly, squeezing the gun with care to control the amount of glue you’re using and keeping your fingers out of the way of the hot glue.

Tip: you may find it helpful to test glue a couple of scrap pieces of felt before you start, so you can see how much glue you need to use to hold each piece in place.

Once the glue has dried, turn the wreath over and remove the pins from the front. The front of your wreath will now look something like this:

felt secured to wreath base with pins

4. Use the templates provided to cut out the cat pieces from felt: two body shapes, two head shapes, two pink ears and one pink nose.

pieces for making the felt cat

5. Sew the ears and nose onto one of the cat head shapes, sewing them with whip stitch and matching pink sewing thread.

add the ears and news to the felt cat

6. Cut a length of black embroidery thread and separate half the strands (so, for six-stranded thread just use three strands). Use the black thread to backstitch the cat’s eyes and smile, then add three very small stitches on each of its cheeks.

I used an air erasable fabric marker pen to draw the markings onto the felt first then followed the ink lines when stitching. If you don’t have an air erasable marker, just sew freehand using the photos as a guide.

embroider the cat's face

7. Use half strands of white embroidery thread to add the whiskers. Sew the whiskers with backstitch, using the air erasable marker (if you have one) to draw guide lines for your stitching.

embroider the cat's whiskers

8. Place both cat head pieces together (so the decorated side is facing upwards) and sew them together with grey sewing thread and either blanket stitch or whip stitch. Then place both cat body pieces together and sew them as well.

finished felt cat face
felt cat face and body ready to assemble

9. Use the templates provided to cut out six Zs from white felt (one of each size). Using embroidery scissors will help you cut out the small shapes more precisely. You can hold the paper templates to the felt as you cut around them, or use an air erasable fabric marker to draw around the templates then cut along the ink lines.

felt Zs

10. Cut four felt rectangles measuring 7 x 2.5cm and two felt squares measuring 2.5 x 2.5cm. Use a ruler and an air erasable fabric marker to draw straight onto the felt, or use a ruler and pen/pencil to draw paper templates. I cut these pieces from grey felt but you could use any colour you have spare as they will be hidden behind the cat in the finished wreath.

felt pieces ready to sew

11. Sew the felt pieces together to form a box. Use whip stitch and matching sewing thread to join the long edges of the rectangles then add the squares on each end. When you’ve sewn three sides of the final square, stuff the shape firmly with toy stuffing then sew up the gap.

Tip: add small pieces of stuffing at a time, pressing it down into the shape with your finger.

stuffing the felt shape

The finished shape will look something like this:

the felt shape, stuffed

12. Use the glue gun to attach the shape to the bottom of the wreath, as shown. Add plenty of glue to one of the long edges then press it into position on the wreath. You’ll be using this shape to support the cat, so make sure it’s positioned towards the front of the wreath.

add the felt shape to the wreath

13. Arrange the cat pieces and the Zs on the wreath, as shown, with the Zs getting larger as you move up the side of the wreath. When you’re happy with the position of all the pieces, pin them in place.

arrange the felt pieces on the wreath

14. Carefully glue all the pieces into position, removing the pins as you work. Use the glue gun to stick the cat to the wreath base and the stuffed felt shape. Then use fabric or other strong craft glue to attach the Zs (these are a bit too small for using the glue gun!).

Hang the finished wreath with a matching piece of yarn or ribbon, or directly from a hook or nail.

finished sleeping cat wreath

This tutorial is for non commercial use only: you can use it to make as many wreaths as you want for yourself or as gifts, but please don't make any for sale. You may borrow a couple of photos if you want to blog about this project, but remember to credit me and link back to this page on my blog, and do not reproduce my entire tutorial / share my templates on your site. Thanks!

Enjoyed this free tutorial? Buy me a "coffee" and help support my blog!

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

P.S. Subscribe to my newsletter for a monthly free pattern and visit my crafty tutorial archive for lots more free projects.

Visit my shop to buy my printable PDF sewing patterns:


Tuesday, 3 September 2019

A Year of Wreaths: September Embroidered Oak Leaves Wreath Tutorial

This month’s wreath design celebrates the arrival of autumn! It features berry red yarn, a bit of sparkle, and a cluster of felt oak leaves stitched with the opening line of John Keats’ famous poem ‘To Autumn’: “Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness”.

autumn oak leaves wreath
embroidered felt oak leaves
 
This tutorial originally appeared on The Village Haberdashery's blog - visit their shop for lots of crafty goodness! I'm sharing all twelve seasonal wreath tutorials here on my blog as the year progresses.

You will need:

The template sheet (click here to view, download and print the PDF)
A 30cm polystyrene ring wreath base
Some dark red yarn (I used two balls of Rico Essentials Soft Merino Aran yarn, in Brick Red)
Beige wool blend felt
Dark red stranded embroidery thread
Gutermann Metallic Effect sewing thread shade 36 (or other gold/copper coloured embroidery or sewing thread)
Some sewing thread (any colour will do)
White tissue paper (or tracing paper, or baking paper)
Sewing scissors
Sewing needles and pins
A fine dark pen
A glue gun and glue
A heat-proof mat for the glue gun
Newspaper to protect your workspace from any glue drips
Optional: embroidery scissors (these are great for cutting out felt shapes)

To make the wreath:

1. Wrap the wreath base with your chosen yarn. Secure the yarn with a knot at what will become the back of your wreath. Begin wrapping the yarn around the wreath base, passing the ball of yarn through the hole in the centre of the wreath as you wrap the yarn around the outside. Hide the loose yarn end under the yarn as you wrap, and make sure that you’re not leaving any gaps where the white wreath base shows through. Continue wrapping, gradually covering the whole of the wreath base, and switch to the second ball when needed.

Wrapping the wreath takes a while, so I highly recommend wrapping your wreath while watching a film or some episodes of your favourite TV show.

Once the whole wreath base has been covered with yarn, tie a knot securely at the back and carefully trim the loose end so it won’t be visible when the wreath is hung up.

wrapping the wreath base with yarn
 yarn-wrapped wreath base

2. Use the templates provided to cut out the leaf shapes from beige felt.

felt oak leaves

3. Trace the words on the template sheet onto pieces of white tissue paper (or tracing paper or baking paper) with a fine dark pen.

poetry ready to stitch

4. Position one of the words on its corresponding leaf and secure it with large tacking stitches.

lettering template attached to the felt leaf

5. Embroider the letters with dark red embroidery thread and backstitch, using half the strands of the thread (so for six-stranded thread just use three strands).

embroidered lettering

6. Remove the tacking stitches then carefully tear away the paper – you may need to use a pin to remove any remaining small pieces.

felt oak leaf with embroidered word

7. Use Gutermann Metallic Effect Thread to stitch veins on the leaf, freehand. Sew a line up the centre of the leaf, sewing between the lettering. Then add lines to each “point” of the leaf, as shown. You could use backstitch for this but I used running stitch, sewing a line and then sewing back along it filling in the gaps between the stitches.

Tip: this metallic thread is easy to sew with, but I’d recommend cutting a shorter length of thread than you’d usually work with to make sure it doesn’t tangle. If you're using stranded embroidery thread, just use a couple of strands for the embroidery.

using metallic thread to embroider the oak leaf
embroidered felt oak leaf

8. Repeat steps 4-7 to embroider all the leaves.

9. Position the leaves on the wreath and pin them in place.

adding the oak leaves to the autumn wreath

10. Use a glue gun to attach the leaves to the wreath. One by one remove the pins and add a small amount of glue to the back of each leaf, pressing it carefully in position on the wreath base.

IMPORTANT: take care when working with the glue gun as the glue gets very hot! Always place it on a heat-proof mat when not in use, and use newspaper or other scrap paper to protect your workspace. Work slowly, squeezing the gun with care to control the amount of glue you’re using and keeping your fingers out of the way of the hot glue.

Tip: you may find it helpful to test glue a couple of scrap pieces of felt before you start, so you can see how much glue you need to use to hold each piece in place.

felt oak leaves on an autumn wreath
felt oak leaves on an autumn wreath
felt oak leaves on an autumn wreath

Hang the finished wreath directly from a hook or a nail, or hang it using a leftover piece of the dark red yarn.

This tutorial is for non commercial use only: you can use it to make as many wreaths as you want for yourself or as gifts, but please don't make any for sale. You may borrow a couple of photos if you want to blog about this project, but remember to credit me and link back to this page on my blog, and do not reproduce my entire tutorial / share my templates on your site. Thanks!

Enjoyed this free tutorial? Buy me a "coffee" and help support my blog!

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

P.S. Subscribe to my newsletter for a monthly free pattern and visit my crafty tutorial archive for lots more free projects.

Visit my shop to buy my printable PDF sewing patterns: