Sunday, February 10, 2013

Headband and Brooch

Valentine's Day just isn't complete without a fun accessory. For this project you will need felt in your desired colors, a button small enough to fit in the smallest heart, a needle and embroidery floss, and a little knowledge of some embroidery stitches (Google is rather helpful if you need some further inspiration. And it doesn't take much skill, my seven-year-old has only ever done a straight stitch once and a whip stitch once and she did just fine).


Cut out your hearts. I found it easiest to make my smallest heart, then lay it on top of the next layer and cut an equal distance around it, and repeat for all four layers. My smallest layer is probably between a quarter and a nickel in size. My hearts aren't perfect, and I could be more OCD about it (believe me, it's not a stretch), but I decided this project could handle a little bit more of an organic and free-form feel (my cheat move for everything I tend to over-perfect. Keeps me sane... or at least as sane as I am). If you need it a little less "free," you could cut out sample hearts on paper and then cut THOSE out onto the felt, or trace different sizes of cookie cutters and then cut them out, but I can pretty much tell you, it'll end up looking "free formed" anyway. Unless you take forever cutting out, have a really steady hand, and beautifully sharp scissors (seriously! All of my scissors are DULL! So irritating to discover in the middle of a project).


FOR HEADBAND (the red-bottomed one): Thread your needle with 2 strands of embroidery floss. Sew the button into the first 3 layers. This will secure all three layers so they don't shift so much on you. Then stitch the layers with whatever stitches you decide. I used a basic straight stitch and a blanket stitch. When the first two stitches are done, you can put on the fourth layer. We sewed it on separately so that the headband could slide in and save us from adding another layer for backing. I sort of made up my own stitching for that layer and made 3 x's followed by a gap. It worked out PERFECTLY because it allowed me to slide the headband in without purposely saving space. It also means if the wearer can decide to switch how she wore it (more centered, less angled) she could just slide the headband out and switch which gap to slide it through.

FOR PIN: my daughter made this for me. She doesn't have as much patience for sewing, yet. Start by threading the needle with ONE strand of embroidery floss, and keep them together when tieing the knot in the thread. This will eliminate the constant need to remind them to pull the loose strand out all the way. Then tie the knot for them and have them sew the button through all 4 layers. That way things move less for little fingers. Remind them that it only needs about 4 stitches tops to be secure. Then sew as many layers as you have the patience for. For mine, that was one and a half. When done, sew on the pin. It worked best for our particular pin to sew it into x's.



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