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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Magi #1 gets some BLING!

Many needlework projects call for individual beads or charms. But how often do you really get to jazz up a project with a glitzy chain of Swarovski crystals?

Check out the bling on Magi #1!Bling2_31Jul2011This length of chain is very similar to the one found here, except the crystals used here are only about 2mm across. They are attached by simply couching between the crystals.

There are actually two strand of crystals on Magi #1 in Dorothy Lesher’s The Magi.  Here he is in all of his glory. Can you find the other crystals?


This is the reason I love taking classes. You never know what new technique you'll learn that you can use for any number of future projects.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Applique on Canvas, Made Simple

Who knew that appliquéing a fabric to congress cloth (a common 24-ct canvas) would be so simple?

Step 1: Start out with a slightly stretchy, non fraying fabric.

I am completely sold on the Sensuede that came in my kit for The Magi. As its name implies, it’s a faux suede. It’s soft, yet not very stretchy, comes in great colors, and does not fray at all. (And I just learned that it’s made completely from recycled polyester fibers.

Step 2: Cut out the shapes to be appliquéd from the fabric.

It doesn’t sound like it, but this is really the most complicated part. For this project, we started with a cutting out a paper pattern that was “roughly right”.  That pattern is then flipped over and traced on the back of the fabric/Senseude. This “roughly right” shape can then be cut from the fabric.

Appliques29Jul2011Then, spend an hour shaving tiny pieces off of it to make it exactly fit the desired shape. No, I’m not kidding. It really took me an hour. Who knew? I ended up with two precisely trimmed pieces of fabric (see left), but there was a LOT of trimming. See? Here’s the scrap pile!


Step 3. Stitch it to your canvas using teeny tiny stitches, spaced as closely as they need to be.

In my case, this didn’t have to be very close. My stitches are about 3/8” apart, since I have some embellishment to add later that will help hold the Sensuede in place.


Surprisingly, the stitching took a total of 15 to 20 minutes for both pieces. The advantage of using a non-fraying fabric is that you don’t have to turn under the edges.

That’s it. It’s really easy!

Magi #1 is getting there. Just a bit more embellishment, and he’ll be done!