Sunday, April 18, 2010

How penguins are born

Even though I’ve never been busier with non-creative matters and I had not planned on creating anything this weekend, something happened in the eleventh monkey factory. I just felt an overwhelming urge to sew after not having touched a needle for two full weeks. I couldn’t and didn’t want to stop myself. I put my never ending non-creative business on hold and made these:
And I took pictures along the way to show you my work process, from sketch to softie.
It always starts with sketching a design. I look at a lot of pictures of the real animal and determine the most important features to include in my design, so that it can be easily recognized. Then, I cut out the shapes that make up my design and transfer them onto cardboard.
I have to imagine how I’ll sew everything together to determine which shapes need to be cut out. Each shape usually represents a different color of felt that I’m planning to use. Once I have all my cardboard shapes I hold them over felt and cut around them.
I spend a considerable amount of time choosing different colors of felt, buttons and thread to make different versions. Once I’m happy with the color combinations and I’ve cut out all the felt shapes, the fun can begin! I sew everything together, trying to remember to add an eleventh monkey label and loop for the cellphone strap.
Before I close the softie, I stuff it with lots of polyester filling. I use pointy things to stuff the more difficult areas like the wings in this case. I like my softies really fat so lots of polyfill is used. Then, finally I sew it closed, hide the knot, add the cellphone strap and spread the filling around evenly. And that’s how penguins are born!

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