softies

Adorable chick pattern – free tutorial with downloadable pattern pieces from whipup contributor Tania.

About the designer: Tania Ennor is a mother of three, wife to one, graphic designer and craftster of the, (let’s be blunt about it), obsessive kind. Visit her blog: Myrtle and Eunice.

This pattern free for you and yours. Please do not sell or distribute Chickummyjig softies or this pattern without prior permission. www.myrtleandeunice.com © 2009 Tania Ennor

easter chick tutorial

Finished size (body only) 185mm x 170mm
Download the PDF of the pattern pieces right here.

Materials:

  • Cotton fabric for the body (240mm x 200mm)
  • Contrasting cotton fabric for belly and wings (270mm x 170mm); legs: (75mm x 200mm), small piece of fabric for beak
  • Felt: outer eyes and feet (100mm x 140mm), inner eye (75mm x 40mm), comb (80mm x 80mm)
  • Sewing thread to match body fabric
  • Embroidery thread to match felt (optional)
  • 2 buttons
  • 100% wool stuffing or polyfill

Instructions
Notes: The pattern allows for a 1/4 inch seam allowance, except for the seam-free felt pieces

  1. Trace pattern on to tracing paper, pin to fabric and cut out pieces. You will need 2 x body shapes, 1 x belly, 2 x legs, 4 x wings, and 2 x beak. The felt pieces include: 1 x comb, 2 x feet, 2 x outer and 2 x inner eyes.
  2. For each leg, fold fabric strip in half lengthwise, right sides facing and sew. Sew the foot end closed and trim off excess at the corners. Turn both leg pieces right side out and iron. Pin the feet to each leg, toes pointing up and sew using a tight zig zag stitch along the ‘heel’. Stuff legs to 3/4” from the opening.
  3. For each wing, pin two fabric shapes, right sides facing and sew around the curved edge, leaving the end open. Trim excess fabric at corners and snip carefully along curved edges, perpendicular to the seam. Turn all pieces right sides out and iron. Wings are not stuffed.
  4. Pin both beak pieces, right sides facing and sew leaving the two edges, marked ‘A’ on the pattern, open. Trim corners. Turn right side out and iron. Fold in half as indicated on the pattern and iron.
  5. Pin outer eye pieces to body and using embroidery thread, blanket stitch in place. Do the same for the inner eye pieces. (or alternatively, machine stitch all eye pieces).
  6. Placing one body piece right side up, pin one leg in position, pointing toward the middle of the body (see Diagram 1). With right sides facing, pin one side of the belly to the body shape, in effect ‘sandwiching’ the leg. Sew, ensuring you begin and end at the point where stitching on the other side of the belly will begin and end. Do the same for the second leg and body shape. Trim excess fabric where the belly seams meet and carefully snip the fabric along the curves.
  7. Pin the beak, comb and wings in place, pointing them in towards the body, remembering which way they will face when the body is turned right side out, (refer Diagram A on the pattern). Sandwich everything between the two right sides facing body shapes and pin. You will probably need to manoeuvre the legs and feet out of the path of the sewing machine. Sew, securing the beak, comb and wings in place as you go. Leave an opening (as marked on the pattern) for turning right side out and stuffing.
  8. Using a stuffing stick (or chopstick), push stuffing into the body firmly and evenly.
  9. Sew the stuffing opening closed using a small whip stitch. Sew the buttons on for eyes.

easter chick tutorial

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Closet Monsters: Stitch Creatures You’ll Love from Clothing You Don’t by John Murphy. Lark Books (2010)

John Murphy, after the huge success of his previous books Stupid Sock Creatures, has done it again and made a whole slew of new creatures, this time monsters made from your recycled clothing.

The monsters in this book are seriously cool (you can get an idea of the type of creatures by checking out John’s creature gallery on his website). John is also incredibly ingenious with his use of materials, and about a quarter of the of the book is taken up with how to use various parts of clothing in your monsters design as well as lot of techniques for cutting up clothing and sewing all the body parts. For example the neck of a turtle-neck sweater makes a pretty cool mouth for a monster, as does a zipper pocket from a pair of cargo pants and saved shirt pockets and collars can be used to great advantage in the monsters body.

Patterns are given in the project pages, but you will have to enlarge these using a photocopier or graph-paper, but as they are reasonably basic shapes this should not pose a problem. These same project illustrations give you instructions on cutting out the pattern from your piece of clothing, thus getting the most benefit from recycling. About 8 pages are devoted to each project with really in-depth instructions and how-to illustrations. And for many of the projects you will appreciate this as some of them are quite complex – think monsters with many appendages and strange shaped body parts.

For me though this book is a bit of a revelation – its not like I lack imagination or access to cool ideas – but the guys in this book seem more imaginative and interesting than many I am seen in a while.

[Read an interview with John Murphy here and go to his website and explore his many other critters here]

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September/October brings change of season, and fresh starts and frivolity and seriousness too. So for a break from whipup realtime I am introducing a few weeks of guest bloggers to liven up your crafty experience. To bring you something fresh, and hopefully invigorate you to make and do and be and think! Its going to be a fun few weeks so come along for the ride.

Today I want to introduce you to Jodie from vintage ricrac. Jodie is another fellow aussie gal, an impeccable crafter and great all round gorgeous person. I have been lucky enough to meet Jodie a couple of times and listen to her talk and she is as fabulous and inspirational in person as she is on her blog.

My name is Jodie and I blog at www.vintagericrac.blogspot.com where I make toys and not-toys. I used to sew with selvedges and now I don’t. I wish I had more time to spend in the sewing room.

Hi, I’m Jodie.

Apart from the crazy need to dream up little back-stories to all sorts of inanimate objects, especially toys, I also love the crazy terms given to a group of things. Did you know a group of turtles is called a bale ? Neither did I!

These teeny turtles have been haunting my blog for a very long time. When Kathreen asked me to do a guest post here on Whip-Up I knew the turtles were the way to go! These guys are super tiny and super-cute. You can find full downloadable instructions and pattern sheet [below] to make a whole bale of turtles for yourself. All you need is some felt, embroidery thread and a Best of the 80′s soundtrack and pretty soon you’ll have a party!

Pattern Pieces For Party Turtles

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Little Birds: 26 Handmade Projects to Sew, Stitch, Quilt & Love (Design Collective) Published by Stash books, C&T Publishing (June 16, 2010).

awwww, having seen this book around the blogs I was intrigued – especially as I hadn’t heard of this publisher before either – turns out Stash is an offshoot of traditional quilt publishers C&T Publishing – who have seen a need in the craft blog world and filled it with fun and folksy and simpler projects suitable for beginners/intermediate crafters who are younger than their usual readers. So about this book – its a collective of designers who have each contributed a bird project – great simple and sweet idea – I thought it might be too much – all those birds – not much variety – but turns out I was wrong – with as many bird designs as materials and techniques – there is lots in this book to love.

How about a peacock or a stork made from recycled sweaters, with hand stitched vintage fabric elements (design by Amy Adams), or a very dapper looking owl (image above) made from tweed and tapestry fabric (design by Eleanor Bruce), I particularly loved Mildred the dove (image above), with her little felt bag full of baguettes, she is made from felt and her adorable face is embroidered (design by Samantha Cotterill). As well as little softies like these three mentioned, there are also a selection of embroidery designs, quilts, pillows and even a clutch purse. All the templates are included in the back of the book (they do require enlarging on a photocopier), so there is much here to enable you to mix and match your designs and create your own little bird.

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Zombie Felties: How to Raise 16 Gruesome Felt Creatures from the Undead by Nicola Tedman and Sarah Skeate, Andrews McMeel Publishing (August 10, 2010)

The next in what is proving to be an exciting series on unusual and small felt critters – the first book ‘Felties’ I reviewed here and gave it a big thumbs up. This book is even better! My kids love it – they laughed while flicking through it and then immediately went to their felt stash (yes they have a felt stash) – no finished projects yet they need some help with the stitching (but not much). The projects as in the previous book are all really simple and immediate. They require minimum skills and materials and all achievable hour or two projects – so not daunting at all.

Plus these little critters are fun – witty and clever – you have your classic zombie (pictured here), you need tiny amounts of felt stuffing plus glue and stitching and a few beads, sequins and cord – thats about it. There are multiple variations with zombie pets – we loved the dead ducky – great gruesome descriptions too: “Ducky died a long time ago at the shooting range-you can see the bullet holes. Since then, he’s passed into a different state of being altogether. And it’s not one where he’s going to be welcome sharing anybody’s bath.”

The zombie bunny is great with a slit in his tummy and red embroidery floss guts spilling out. Pumpkin head has pink button brains coming out of his head – there is even a Michael Jackson ‘Thrilla’ Pop zombie.

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