I have 5 favorite things....
1. Felt(I love the feel and the variety of colors)
2. Beads(Seriously...need I say more??)
3. Sewing thread(SOOOO many colors and textures... I personally have over 100 colors)
5. Hair stuff!!!!
SO I am making a HUGE hair piece today.
It can also be made into a necklace, brooch, or shoe clip(however...felt does NOT clean easily so keep that in mind).
The things you will need 3 - 4 different colors of felt(depending on how big you want it).
I'm not going to make color suggestions here, simply because everyone that's read my posts knows I am NOT a color nazi.....
Everyone has their favorite colors...so have at it. I do suggest white for the center(or light yellow or orange).
You can also try and match your thread(or embroidery floss to your petals(I like to use contrasting colors...there again...it's your banana...peel it however YOU want). I use sewing thread over embroidery 90% of the time because I like that I don't have to pick apart the strands(it's time consuming.....).
You will need a needle(i recommend a quilter needle).
You will also need a good pair of scissors, orange or yellow beads(or whatever color you want)for the middle)and a beads for the outer petals. Those beads can be whatever color you want. I like to contrast them with the felt.
You will also need either Loctite glue(no smell, indoor, strong)as well as gator clips or flippable hair clips to attach the flower to.
You can also attach these to headbands.
::A note on the clips:: I've been making hair stuff for a really, really long time. I lot of people hate on the gator clips. Yes, if you pull on a gator clip it IS going to pull your hair. BUT if you want something to actually STAY in place in the hair gator clips ARE the way to go. I use the mini ones, they are a little less than an inch long.
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Step 1: Cutting the Felt Down to Size....
I go freeform on my felt.
BUT I always use a base shape to "touch base with".
In this case I used the bottom of a bottle cap(which I threw away before I could snap a pic).
But in the picture below you can see any round something can be used as the base shape.
Now ultimately what you want to do is make a large flower and a smaller flower. If you want more petals...more power to you.... Just make sure that each flower is a bit smaller then the previous.
I took my scissors and rounded one edge and met back at the circle.
I do this 4 times for each flower(I've tried five and for some odd reason I can never fit that 5th petal in...lol).
If it's easier for you cut a 4 inch square and center the circle in the middle and for the next petal cut out a 3 inch square.
That way the flowers are guaranteed to be different sizes.
For the middle I used the bead container.
Step 2: Beaded Center
Tie a knot in your thread(a pretty big knot if you are using a quilter needle like I did).
Insert needle slightly from edge.
Bring around and tie off like you would with a blanket stitch(look at picture 4 and 5...you can also google it for video instruction).
People always ask WHY do you always do blanket stitches.
When I was younger my grandmother used to sew a lot of quilts for her church bazaars.
She only had one machine and I wanted to help.
So she taught me the blanket stitch. I have hand quilted over 1000 baby blankets in my life using just this stitch to do appliques and detail on quilts. Blanket stitch isn't just for the edging. It adds dimension to your project. It binds edges securely as well. My sons quilt is 17 years old now. It went on vacations, nap times, journeys, playgrounds...and it even served as a makeshift tent. It's been washed hundreds of times. Not a single stitch has ever been replaced, frayed or come undone. It can be used on every shape, including corners. This is the reason why I use the blanket stitch. It stands tough and it's basic. Even a small child can learn how to do it(I was 6 when I started using it).
After you have that first stitch on add two beads(adding more runs the risk of it not being tight against the felt).
Insert the needle into the felt not too far from the first spot. Then wrap loose thread around the top and pull the needle thru holding it tight and keeping those beads in place.
Repeat this until you have beaded the centers edges(if you want to go a step further you can bead the ENTIRE center. It takes a little time but the outcome is lovely).
Now you make a knot and gently pull the thread thru small strands of the felt to the side that you wont be facing out.(be careful not to insert you needle thru the side when doing this or your string will show thru.
Make a little knot and then knot it again(without pushing thru the center of the felt).
Lastly you will use some loctite glue to secure the string on the back... Flatten it out with a piece of paper or your thumb.
One thing about loctite it gets hard after about 15 - 20 minutes so it doesn't stay sticky for too long.
Step 3: Flowers Up
You are going to use the blanket stitch here as well.
Take the thread and insert it so the knot is on the ugly side.
The same principle is applied here... Add two beads and then blanket stitch around the flower until your back to where you started.
Then make your knot and move to the center.
Now if you don't want to use beads and you just want to blanket stitch the flowers...go for it!
Just make sure you use a contrasting thread of floss.
If you look at the 4th picture this is a better shot of what I mean by threading thru the felt without going thru the other side.
The felt fibers are so think that you really don't have do anything but weave thru one side to reach the center and then tie the final knot.
Add some Loctite and your done with that petal.
Then you do the same thing to the last flower.
Step 4: Piecing It Together....
So now it's time to piece them together.
I apologize in advance but all 7 of the largest flowers pictures turned out crappy.
I got impatient and just pieced it together without it.
Layer the biggest one first(pretty side up), then put the smaller flower on top.
Finally add the center and secure it with thread.
What I did was simply go thru the stitches that were already on the center.
That way you can't see where I stitched the 3 pieces together. I did this about 10 times(because a small child might wear this and it could pose as a choking hazard if they removed the pieces).
Now pick the kind of clip you are going to use.
The piece that you are going to cover it with was cut out with the same shape that I made the base circle for the flowers.
Glue and secure.
Now if you use a gator clip You will be gluing the entire top portion down as well as covering the little "butt" end with this felt circle here.
The finished piece is shown and on the next page are two variations that I remembered to photograph.
Step 5: Variations.....
The first two are with the fully beaded center(see how pretty it looks!!).
The 3rd and 4th pic show one that I made into a necklace. I used jute, ribbon and buttons for the chain.
The 5th picture I used a button as part of the center and then beaded around it. I used black ribbon as the chain.
The 6th one is just a little whimsical hair clip I made for a customers daughter.....
I used the blanket stitches for the edging without beads. She loved it.
I hope you enjoyed the inscrutable.
If it's not clear, please let me know.
If I need to add something let me know.
If you have any other questions please don't hesitate to ask!!!
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