Saturday, January 12, 2013

Here a Leaf, There a Leaf - A Sewing Tutorial

So it's that time of year again....I spent the last 2 weeks getting ready for CHA (Craft and Hobby Convention in CA.) and deciding what I wanted my designer showcase to look like...I really love what I do. It really does make me happy (when things are working out right and my family is happy)! I have gone to CHA twice now and have been so blessed because of it! You can read about my trip in 2011 and last year in 2012. Because of CHA, I have had the great opportunity to work with Anna Griffin, Inc and designed some patterns for her, and just last year signed with F+W Media to write my first book (which is done and due out Sept this year).

For my table this year....I decided I wanted to make these HUGE leaves and grabbed all the Amy Butler green/blue fabrics I've been hoarding forever, and made 11 of them for my table. They are approx. 12" without the stem...and maybe 15" with. All you need is a ton of fabric (doesn't have to be leafy colored), and some natural cotton batting, and pipe cleaners as I still call them...despite everyone calling them chenille sticks now. I used 5 pipe cleaners per leaf (how many you use, depends on the size of your leaf).

Here's what you do if you want to make some of your own..

Sew the leaf all the way around from one corner on the stem, to the other, leaving the end open for turning. Notch the rounded edges to reduce bulk once turned right side out.
Carefully turn the leaf right side out, pulling the tip through, and supporting the skinniest part of the stem to avoid it ripping or tearing at the seams.

Once turned out, prepare the pipe cleaners by connecting two together at the very end 1/2". Twist them together (pliers work) so they lay flat, not twisted together straight up. Connect 4 pipe cleaners together for each leaf (approx). Insert the center of the pipe cleaners into the stem opening, all the way up to the tip of the leaf.

As you push the pipe cleaners to the edge, pin it in place to prevent shifting.
Place a smaller pipe cleaner up into the stem, and pin it in place to appear as the center vein (be sure to curl the very tip of the pipe cleaner and flatten it, to prevent it from poking through or snagging the fabric. Tuck the edge of the stem inward, and pin in place.
Carefully sew all the way around the leaf edge to sew the pipe cleaner into place. Then sew a very long skinny oval around the center vein. Be careful not to accidentally sew the pipe cleaner. If the needle hits it just right, it will break it and then the leaf will be floppy.
Thanks for coming by my blog. I can't wait to show you all the fun and gorgeous stuff from CHA! When I get home I will also post a pic of all of the leaves so you can see them all together and get an idea of what you can use them for! Don't forget to post pics of your kid giddy projects in the flickr group, for possible feature on my blog.


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