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A Bustle & Sew Publication Copyright Š Bustle & Sew Limited 2017 The right of Helen Dickson to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form, or by any means, without the prior written permission of the author, nor be otherwise circulated in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser. Every effort has been made to ensure that all the information in this book is accurate. However, due to differing conditions, tools and individual skills, the publisher cannot be responsible for any injuries, losses and other damages that may result from the use of the information in this book.

First published 2017 by: Bustle & Sew The Cottage Oakhill Radstock BA3 5HT UK www.bustleandsew.com

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Hello, and welcome to the latest collection of Bustle & Sew patterns - a collection of fresh and uncluttered designs that use both hand embroidery and applique techniques. There are projects to suit all ability levels and I’ve also included chapters on machine applique and embroidering fur that I hope you’ll enjoy as well. I have been sewing all my life, whilst Bustle & Sew is now nearly nine years old, and over that time whilst fashions and trends have come and gone my love of stitching has remained constant throughout though the patterns I create have definitely changed over the years. I love the fresh, clean look of modern design trends, and I do hope you’ll enjoy making the projects from this book as much as I have enjoyed collecting them all together Happy stitching!

Helen x

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Contents Applique Made Easy

Page 6

Adorable Alpaca Hoop

Page 29

Trio of Cactus Cushions

Page 11

Two Mugs with Succulents

Page 32

Chic Pompom Cushions

Page 14

Bear in a Hat

Page 35

Wilderness Bear

Page 17

Rosie’s Houseplants

Page 40

Cactus Pin Board

Page 21

Stay Home Pennant

Page 45

Applique Leaf Cushion

Page 25

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Applique made Easy!

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Each month in the Bustle & Sew Magazine I try to include projects using a variety of techniques - including different kinds of applique - most usually freestyle machine and also hand finished (though not turned edge - sadly I don’t really have the patience for this, enjoying the quick results that other techniques can give me). Freestyle machine applique in particular gives great results in a remarkably short period of time - perfect if you’re working to a deadline or if you’re making lots of handmade items for gifts this Christmas. I know many people are a bit nervous of trying this technique, I was most definitely among them, but now I love working in this way and view my sewing machine in a whole new light as means of creative expression, not simply a method of joining pieces of fabric together. Over past issues of the magazine we’ve featured some very talented makers in our “Meet the Maker” who take this technique to amazing heights but you don’t have to be an expert to achieve really nice results. And even nicer, you don’t need any expensive equipment for this technique as you’ll almost certainly have everything you need already. You’ll need your sewing machine of course, but it doesn’t need to be an expensive complicated model. Indeed, this is one instance where simpler is better as you’ll only need to use the basic straight stitch option. You will

however need an embroidery or darning foot for your machine. This holds the fabric in place for each stitch whilst allowing you to move your work in all directions so you can “draw” with your sewing machine needle. I’ll come back to machine applique later on, but for now I thought it would be good to begin with some more general hints and tips that apply to both machine and hand embroidery. Before beginning your project it’s important to take time to look at the design carefully and work out how the pieces fit together, where they overlap, and where it would be best to begin building up your design. Where pieces overlap you will need to cut extra on the bottom piece to avoid any gaps appearing in your finished work. Once you’re clear in your mind about the process of building your design then it’s time to choose your fabrics and then begin tracing your shapes. If you become really enthusiastic about applique you’ll find yourself hoarding even the smallest scraps of fabric in case they come in useful for one of your creations. Almost all sorts of fabrics work well, including scraps from previous projects, old clothes or treasures from thrift or charity shops. I prefer working with natural fibres as you can be sure they won’t melt when you fuse your shapes to the background if you’re using Bondaweb. (Be sure to test first if you’re in any doubt).

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Fabrics with a small print are great for more detailed elements, whilst you can choose parts of large swirly designs to add visual interest to large shapes that might otherwise be a bit boring. Do avoid very heavy or thick fabrics though as they may be difficult to stitch and will also add unwanted bulk to your design if you have a number of layers. You should also avoid stretchy fabrics as well as those with a very loose weave as they will fray and distort - remember you’re not finishing the edges in either of these techniques. Quilting weight cotton is a great choice, and felt works extremely well too. Have a rummage around the bargain bins at your fabric shop for nice remnants as many designs will use only very small amount of each print. Choose a medium weight fabric for the background as it’s going to need to support a lot of stitching. It should be either plain or discreetly patterned - if the pattern is too bold then your applique will simply “disappear” into the background. It must be non-stretchy and natural fibres are nicest to work with. Consider furnishing fabrics, cotton twills and ducks. If your project is going to need washing, then be sure to wash everything before you begin to avoid spoiling your work through unexpected shrinkage. Iron all your fabrics before beginning to work.


Starting to stitch: Before you begin to stitch do be sure that all your shapes are firmly ssecured in place - if you’re using Bondaweb, then you need to hold your iron over the shape for 10 seconds.

For hand applique I like to use two strands of matching embroidery floss (or you could use a different thread if you prefer) and work small stitches at right angles to the edges of the shape. Blanket stitch is also a great choice. Hand stitching gives quite a different feel to your piece - the little badger and fox above are hand stitched - I think it

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gives a softer-looking, less defined finish. Machine stitching on the other hand clearly defines the edges of your shapes and is also extremely hard-wearing - in my experience the fabric is more likely to tear or wear than the stitches to come loose!


If you’re new to freestyle machine applique then it’s a good idea to practise before beginning your project. Being able to confidently outline your applique shapes is crucial to your success. It isn’t hard, but does take a little getting used too as it has a very different feel to “normal” machine stitching. You have to imagine that you’re drawing around the shape with your sewing machine needle, but instead of moving a pencil over paper, you’re moving the paper - or in this case the fabric - around your pencil or needle. It feels really odd to be moving your fabric in all directions, so don’t expect to become an expert straight away. Don’t give up though as like most skills, the more you practise, the better you’ll become. When using this technique you’ll need to fit the darning or

embroidery foot to your sewing machine. This will help stop your fabric puckering as you stitch and will also protect your fingers as you move your work around freely. You also need to drop your feed dogs. When these are up in their normal position they grip and feed your fabric in a straight line beneath your needle as you stitch. When they’re dropped you can move your fabric in any direction. The method of dropping your feed dogs will vary between machines (in some you may even have a plate that covers the feed dogs), so if you’re at all uncertain then it’s a good idea to check the manufacturer’s guide. I haven’t found it necessary to alter the tension on my machine for freestyle stitching, just make these two easy adjustments.

Cactus Cushion Trio Pattern

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When you’ve done this, then simply thread your machine in the usual way. Normal sewing thread is absolutely fine for this technique.

Hint: Use a darker thread in the needle and a paler colour in the bobbin. This breaks up the stitching line and gives a less heavy and solid effect. You can hoop your fabric if you wish, but I don’t generally do so, finding that a medium weight fabric is substantial enough to move around without puckering or slipping. Drop the foot (to maintain the correct needle tension) and lower the needle into the fabric before you begin to stitch. This isn’t an essential step, but I find it gives me more control.


Combination of hand embroidery and freestyle machine applique on my Wilderness Bear pattern

Make sure you move your top thread out of the way - if you accidentally stitch over it then it’s really hard to pull it free from the stitches. Set your machine to straight stitch. The length doesn’t matter as you will control the actual length of your stitches by moving your fabric around. Begin to sew slowly. Move your fabric around the foot to create some scribbly lines - don’t worry too much about the effect - this is only a practise piece, but think about how it feels to use your machine in this very different way. As your confidence grows you can increase your sewing speed to a nice steady middling sort of pace so that your stitched lines will flow smoothly. The combination of how fast your needle moves, and how quickly you move your fabric will determine stitch length.

When you feel comfortable with your needle speed and with moving the fabric in different directions, then try outlining some simple shapes with your needle. You can try freehand (which is a very similar technique to free-motion quilting if you’ve ever tried that) or draw shapes onto your practice fabric to stitch over. Remember you can move your fabric in any direction. Outlining a shape twice is very attractive and there’s no need to be too neat - you don’t to go back over exactly the same line of stitching for the second outline - you’re aiming for a nice scribbled effect. As your confidence grows try more complicated shapes and don’t be afraid of “getting it wrong” you’re only practising at the moment. When you’re stitching your actual project, sometimes you

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may find it helps to draw in stitching details with a temporary fabric marker pen for example the lines on the left hand cactus on the previous page were drawn in before I machine stitched them. I also like to add hand stitched details to my freestyle machine applique pieces - rather like the spines on the cactuses on the previous page. I think that adding touches of hand embroidery makes your piece both more personal and also rather special - quite unlike anything you’ll find in the shops. And finally - don’t forget to relax and have fun! Choose good quality materials for your projects as working with cheap and nasty fabrics will give poor results, and much frustration along the way. Happy stitching!


Trio of Cactus Cushions These cushions are great fun to make and look very effective scattered on your sofa. They use raw edge applique techniques with a few hand embroidered details on two of the designs to give them that extra special finishing touch. You will need a good variety of green felts and it’s good to use the same shades in all three cushions so they look, as they are meant to be, a set. They don’t have inserts, but are stuffed in the same way as softies, so be sure to use washable stuffing if you think you may need to launder them. Finished cushions are around 15” tall.

● Yellow and black stranded cotton floss

Materials

Succulent

Cactus with flower

● Two 17” x 12” pieces of neutral coloured medium weight fabric

● Two 16” x 12” pieces of neutral coloured medium weight fabric

● 7” square cotton fabric for pot

● 8” x 6” cotton fabric for pot

● Assorted pieces of different coloured green felts for leaves - check out the template for the exact sizes needed for the different leaves

● 8” square green felt ● 7” x 3” light brown felt ● 6” squares orange and light pink felt ● Small scrap purple felt

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● 6” squares orange and light pink felt

Materials

● Small scrap purple felt

Cactus with flower ● Two 16” x 12” pieces of neutral coloured medium weight fabric

● Yellow and black stranded cotton floss

Succulent ● Two 17” x 12” pieces of neutral coloured medium weight fabric

● 8” x 6” cotton fabric for pot ● 8” square green felt

● 7” square cotton fabric for pot

● 7” x 3” light brown felt

● Assorted pieces of different coloured finished line of stitching won’t be too solid and harsh) go around the edge of each shape twice. Don’t be too neat, you’re aiming for a sort of scribbled effect.

Method ● Trace the shapes onto the paper side of your bondaweb using the full size reversed templates. Pay particular attention to how they overlap and where necessary allow a little extra for the overlap when tracing your shapes (1).

● Use your temporary fabric marker pen to draw the curved lines on the cactus with flower and go over each line twice to delineate the cactus shape. ● When finished erase temporary fabric marker lines and press on the reverse.

● Build up your plant shapes centering them on the appropriately sized rectangle of background fabric. For the cactus with flower and tall thin flower position the soil first and build the plant on top of that.

● Using three strands of floss add hand embroidered details to the tall thin cactus and cactus with flower. The spines on the tall cactus are fly stitch and those on the flower cactus are cross stitch worked over the machine stitch lines using black floss. The flower also has a few yellow French knots at its centre.

● Make sure you are totally happy with the positioning of your shapes before you fuse them into place. Be sure to use a hot iron to protect your felt when fusing the shapes. I also turn over and press again from the back to be certain they’re absolutely secure.

● With your temporary fabric marker pen draw quite loosely around the shape of the plant, keeping between 1” and 2” from the edge of your design. Cut out the shape.

Note: The succulent is quite a complex “build” and overlaps the pot so I cheated a little by fusing the top part of the plant, then lifting up the bottom leaves (their tips were fused) in order to push the pot shape beneath them. (2 and 3)

● Place your second rectangle of fabric face up on a clean flat surface and your appliqued cactus face down on top. Pin or baste, then cut out the cactus shape from the second rectangle using your work as a template.

● Cut the cactus flower in two pieces, tracing alternate petals (4) and then overlapping the pieces (5) to form the single flower (6).

● Machine stitch the two pieces together around the edge with a ¼” seam allowance, leaving a 3 - 4” turning gap at the bottom.

● I used pinking shears to cut the centre piece of the flower as I think it gives a nice effect, but this is optional.

● Trim seams, clip curves. ● Turn right side out and stuff. Close stuffing gap with slip or ladder stitch.

● Fit the embroidery foot to your sewing machine and drop the feed dogs. With a dark thread in the needle and a pale colour in the bobbin (this means your

● Your cushion is now finished.

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Chic Pompom Cushions Another popular interior design trend that shows no sign of going away is the use of pompoms to decorate all kinds of soft furnishings and here we’ve used large handmade pompoms to decorate two cheerful applique cushions that would be perfect for a baby shower, nursery or child’s bedroom. These are very simple handappliqued designs, and would be a great child’s project too. Rabbit cushion 14” x 20” and fox cushion 18” square.

Materials For the rabbit cushion

● 14” x 20” cushion pad

For the fox cushion ● One 18” square and two 18” x 13” rectangles background fabric - I used a dark grey marl wool blend felt

● One 14” x 20” and two 14” square pieces of background fabric - I used a grey marl wool blend felt

● 14” x 9” fox red felt

● 10” x 16” white felt

● 9” square white felt

● 6” square pink felt

● 4” square pink felt

● Small scraps black and/or dark grey felt

● Small scraps black and/or dark grey felt

● Pink, white and black stranded cotton floss or other suitable thread for applique

● 18” square cushion pad

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● 6” square pink felt

Materials

● Small scraps black and/or dark grey felt

For the rabbit cushion

● Pink, white and black stranded cotton floss or other suitable thread for applique

● One 14” x 20” and two 14” square pieces of background fabric - I used a grey marl wool blend felt

● 14” x 20” cushion pad

For the fox cushion

● 10” x 16” white felt

● Apply ears and features in the same way.

Method

● Secure the edges with short straight stitches worked at right angles to the edge of the shapes using two strands of matching floss.

● Trace the templates onto the paper side of your Bondaweb and cut out roughly. Fuse to your felt and cut out carefully making sure the edges are nice and smooth. Alternatively as these are large pieces and will use a lot of Bondaweb, you could trace around the shapes and cut out, then use a basting spray or pin in place while you stitch if your cushions are going to be mainly decorative. Otherwise I do feel that Bondaweb makes the applique stronger and harder-wearing.

● Stitch mouths in three strands of black floss using back stitch and add tiny white stitches to each eye for a little “sparkle”. ● Press lightly on the reverse. ● Place face up on a clean flat surface and place the back pieces on top (hemming one short edge of each if you’re not using felt. In this case put the hemmed pieces face down on top of the main panel) so that they overlap at the centre forming the envelope closure.

● Peel off the paper backing and position your shapes on the front cushion panels aligning the bottom edge of the shapes with the bottom of the panel, so that the edge will be taken into the ¼” seam allowance.

● Stitch around the edge with a ¼” seam allowance. Clip corners and turn right side out.

● The rabbit is very straightforward as it is just a single piece. I built the fox in three pieces, first applying the lower body, then the white bib and finally the top of the head. You could if you preferred simply cut the body as a single piece, and applique the bib over the top but I thought it looked nicer this way. If you do cut in three pieces then remember to allow for an overlap and cut a little extra for this at the top of the lower body and bib.

● Make your pompoms. You will need 8 for the fox cushion and 10 for the rabbit cushion. ● Glue or stitch pompoms in place around the cushion edge, one at each corner and one in the centre of each side (fox) and one in the centre of the top and bottom edges and two equally spaced on the sides (rabbit).

● When you’re happy with the positioning of the shapes fuse into place with a hot iron protecting your work with a cloth.

● Insert pads. ● FINISHED!!

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Wilderness Bear This little bear is keen and eager to set off on his very first adventure and I’m sure that he’ll have no shortage of young explorers happy to oblige! He features a hand embroidered tummy which is appliqued to his round felt body. His nose is also felt and his eyes are embroidered so there are no little pieces to cause a choking hazard. I’ve stitched his headband and feather very firmly to his head and I’m sure my young grandson will enjoy playing with him. The wilderness bear measures approximately 14” tall (excluding his feather!)

● Bondaweb

Materials

● Embroidery foot for your sewing machine

● 18” x 20” grey marl wool blend felt

● Toy stuffing

● 12” square cream felt

● Stuffing stick - this can be as simple as a bamboo skewer with the point broken off and the end frayed so it “grabs” the stuffing as you insert it.

● 2” square black felt ● Scraps of coloured felt for feather and headband.

● Fabric glue

● Stranded cotton floss in black and 4 bright colours (make sure your colours work well together and with the felt you’ve chosen for the headband and feather)

● Temporary fabric marker pen (optional)

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● Position your applique pieces on the body front and pin or secure with temporary fabric adhesive if you prefer.

Method

● Fit the embroidery foot to your sewing machine and drop the feed dogs. With black thread in your needle and a pale colour in your bobbin stitch twice around the edge of each shape. Don’t be too neat, you’re aiming for a sort of scribbled effect.

● Mark the pieces that need to be cut from cream felt onto your piece of felt. Do not cut them out yet.

● Return your sewing machine to “normal mode” ready to join the body pieces together.

● Now transfer the embroidery design to the cream tummy piece you’ve marked and work the embroidery. It’s much easier to do this before cutting out as it would be very hard to hoop up the tummy panel once cut. Be very careful not to stretch or distort the felt in your hoop.

● Before joining them, again with 3 strands of black floss, embroider the eyes with satin stitch and the fur with straight stitches. You can’t hoop up for this, but the stitching is quite straightforward and as the felt has a bit of body to it (as my mum would’ve said) you should be ok to do this without a hoop.

● The embroidery is worked in back stitch and three strands of black floss, then some coloured straight stitches were added to the arrow and a few coloured French knots to the wigwam. (1)

● Place your body pieces with right sides together and pin or baste. ● Join the pieces around the edge with a ¼” seam allowance leaving a 3” stuffing gap along one side (beneath the arm).

● When your embroidery is finished press lightly on the reverse. Still do not cut out the shape.

● Clip curves and corners, then turn right side out and press.

● Trace the nose shape onto the paper side of your Bondaweb and cut out roughly. Fuse to your black felt with a hot iron and cut out carefully.

● You will see the red lines marked on the template between the paws and body. With the bear right side out machine stitch along those lines - this just gives a little shaping and definition to the bear’s paws and lower arms rather than it just being a blob.

● Position the nose on the muzzle shape you’ve marked on your cream felt and fuse into place with a hot iron, using a cloth to protect your work if necessary. Stitch the vertical line using 3 strands of black floss and back stitch.

● Stuff your bear firmly. Do take your time over this and don’t be tempted to push in large pieces of stuffing to fill this fairly large softie quickly. This will only lead to a rather lumpy and unattractive effect. Insert small pieces of stuffing and push them well into all the corners, especially the ears and lower limbs. Fill the main body in the same way,

● Now - at last (!) - You can cut out your cream pieces for applique. Also cut out the two main body pieces from the grey felt, remembering to add ¼” seam allowance all the way around.

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● Glue the small feather shape to one of the larger shapes. Stitch the centre of the feather either by hand or machine using black floss or thread - this is purely down to personal preference. I stitched mine by machine.

● turning it round and round in your hands as you insert the stuffing to make sure you’re achieving a nice shape. You can also mould the body with your hands as you go. Stuff your bear quite firmly, but don’t overstuff so the seams are strained and the felt stretched. Firm is good though, as the stuffing will compress over time and you can’t go on an adventure with a wobbly and floppy bear!

● Now glue the second feather shape to the back of your two pieces - this will cover the back of your stitching and give a nice neat finish.

● When you’re happy with the stuffing close the gap using ordinary sewing thread and ladder stitch. It’s easiest to do this if the area next to the stuffing gap isn’t too firmly stuffed to begin with, then as you close the gap keep inserting more small pieces of stuffing and push them into place with your stuffing stick.

● Cut a ¾” x 12” strip of fabric for the headband. ● Decorate with some geometric shapes (I used diamonds) and a little stitching using the same coloured flosses that you used for your tummy panel.

● Your main softie is now finished - time for his headband.

● Stitch the feather in place to the centre back of the headband.

● From your scraps of coloured felt cut two large feather shapes (the outer line of the feather template) and one small feather shape.

● Wrap headband around head and stitch securely into place. Stitch the base of the feather to the head too so it stays in place through even the most action-packed adventures!

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Cactus Pin Board This is a really simple hack of a cheap cork pinboard, easily available from shops and online - I purchased mine from UK supermarket Tesco. It was a boring brown square when I brought it home, but a lick of white chalk paint and some cheerful applique have transformed it from a bit of an eyesore into an attractive board that I’ll love having on my kitchen wall to keep all those cards, telephone numbers and other useful pits and pieces that have a tendency to wander if not securely pinned down! Board measures 40 cm (16” square) ● White chalk paint or emulsion

Materials

● Embroidery foot for your sewing machine

● 40 cm (16”) square cork pin board (another size would be fine as long as there is room for your applique!)

● Bondaweb

● 14” x 12” white felt (this will be the base for your applique cactuses)

● Temporary fabric marker pen

● PVA glue

● Glue gun - for attaching hanging loop if desired.

● Variety of green fabrics and felts for the cactuses ● Small scraps of pale pink felt for the flowers ● Black stranded cotton embroidery floss ● 10” twine (for hanging loop - this is optional)

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● With two strands of black floss work rows of cross stitch along the lines you stitched on the plump round cactuses.

Method ● First paint the front and sides of your pin board with your white chalk paint or emulsion. You may need several coats to stop the brown cork from showing through. Leave to dry fully.

● Work fly stitch to represent the spikes on the taller cactuses. ● Press again.

● Begin to build up your cactus design on your white felt aligning the bottoms of the front shapes with the bottom edge of the white felt. You may find it easiest to mark the outline of the design onto the felt first to indicate the positioning of the pieces.

● Now cut out the design leaving less than ¼” white felt border all the way around except - don’t try to cut down between the two cactuses that lean in towards each other, just dip in at the top (see below).

● Trace each piece onto the paper side of your Bondaweb using the full size reverse templates. Cut out roughly and fuse to the reverse of your fabric or felt then cut out carefully. Peel away the paper backing and position on your white felt, beginning with the back plants (1). Fuse into place with a hot iron, protecting your work with a cloth when you are happy with the positioning. ● Usually I wait until the end before machine stitching, but as this is quite a large, complex design I stitched the pieces as I went along (2). To do this, fit the embroidery foot to your sewing machine and drop the feed dogs. With a pale thread in your bobbin and a darker colour in your needle go around the edge of each shape twice. Don’t try to be too neat, you’re aiming for a sort of scribbled effect. Continue building up your design in this way (3) until complete.

● Make sure the paint on your board is completely dry(!) ● Attach your applique to the bottom left hand corner of the board with your PVA glue. ● If desired attach a hanging loop to the top back edge of the board with your glue gun.

● Press work lightly on the reverse. ● Draw in lines on the round plump cactuses (4) with your temporary fabric marker pen. Machine stitch these lines.

● Hang and admire!!

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Applique Leaf Cushion Hands up everyone whose Mum had what we used to call a Swiss Cheese Plant gathering dust in the corner of their living room oh, so many years ago now! Monstera deliciousa is the correct name for this plant which originates from the Amazon rain forest. And the reason for those huge leaves with holes in - that’s to help them catch whatever light is available where they grow far beneath the forest canopy. This is a really design that relies totally upon your skill in cutting out the leaf shape - so I’ve included quite a few hints and tips to help you do this. Sized to fit a 16” pad, but can be resized very easily if you wish. The cushion cover has a simple envelope closure at the back.

● 12” square dark green felt

Materials

● 10” square light green felt

● One 16” square panel of main fabric for front of cushion. Chose a medium weight cotton fabric - rather like a Kidston cotton duck if you are able as it will need to support the weight of your applique and also be robust enough to stand up to the wear and tear of use. ● Two 16” x 12” rectangles of fabric for the back of the cushion.

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● Bondaweb ● Embroidery foot for your sewing machine


move your shape around the shears as you close the blades together.

Method ● Join the two parts of the full size template together and trace the leaf outline and the outline of the veins (which I’ve filled with light green to make it easier for you to see) onto the paper side of your bondaweb.

7. Try to re-open the blades for the next cut at a point where you change direction. This will make it much less likely that you’ll get a jagged edge. 8. To cut the holes, make a small cut in the middle of the hole, then cut to the outline and around.

● Fuse the bondaweb to the reverse of your fabric or felt. ● Now cut out the shapes. The success of your whole project depends upon doing this carefully and accurately - so here are a few hints and tips you might find useful …

● When you’ve cut out your leaf shape position it in the centre of your front panel and fuse into place. ● Cut out your leaf veins, position and fuse in the same way. Make sure you’re absolutely happy with the positioning of the veins before you fuse to the leaf as you won’t be able to move them afterwards.

1. Be very accurate when tracing your shape as you will rely on these lines when cutting out your leaf. 2. Fuse carefully, pressing with your iron rather than moving it backwards and forwards in an ironing motion. Make sure all parts of the shape are fused securely to your fabric.

● Fit the embroidery foot to your sewing machine and drop the feed dogs. With dark thread in your needle and a paler colour in your bobbin go around the edges of the shape twice. Don’t be too neat, you’re aiming for a sort of scribbled effect. (See photos on next page)

3. Make yourself comfortable before beginning to cut. You won’t get the best results if you aren’t happily settled and able to concentrate properly.

● When finished, press lightly on the reverse.

4. Use the largest scissors you feel comfortable with and make sure they’re nice and sharp. I use my large fabric shears for all but the very tiniest of shapes. I used only my fabric shears to cut out this leaf.

● Hem one long side of each of your smaller rectangles (for the reverse of the cushion) ● Place your front panel right side up on a clean flat surface. ● Place your back panels face down on top aligning the unfinished 16” sides with the sides of your front panel. The hemmed edges will overlap by 4” in the centre to form your envelope closure. Stitch around the edge.

5. Concentrate on your cutting technique. I am right-handed so I hold my fabric in my left hand and my shears in my right. Begin cutting at a point or angle. 6. Open your shears fully and make a long slow careful cut. Do not try to move your shears around the shape, rather

● Turn right side out and press again. ● Insert pad. FINISHED!!

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Adorable Alpaca Hoop A long time ago now I was lucky enough to be able to visit the beautiful Andes Mountains in Peru and, as well as Machu Picchu (of course!) saw lots of small mountain villages - and herds of alpacas too! The memory of this experience will remain with me forever, and so I particularly enjoyed creating this little alpaca hoop. The applique is very simple, and the embroidery isn’t particularly difficult either. I completed my alpaca in just one evening. Shown mounted in 8” hoop.

● Bondaweb

Materials ● 10” square background fabric (I used a dusty pink linen blend) ● 7” x 6” cream or white felt ● Small scraps pale brown felt ● 2 ½” x 2” printed cotton fabric ● Stranded cotton floss in cream, pale brown, black and a selection of colours that work well with your printed cotton fabric.

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● Temporary fabric marker pen ● 8” embroidery hoop


stitches, then simple chain and/or back stitch would work well too.

Method ● Using the reverse template trace the alpaca shape onto the paper side of your Bondaweb. Cut out roughly and fuse to the reverse of your felt, then cut out carefully. Begin with the cream felt - or main body shape (1). Peel off the backing and position in the centre of your background fabric but don’t fuse yet.

● The pompoms are turkey or ghiordian knots, or you could use clusters of French knots, or simply work them in satin stitch if you preferred.

Turkey or ghiordian knot stitch diagram

● Now trace, fuse and cut out the muzzle, ears and hooves in the same way, allowing extra for them to underlap the cream body shape (2) apart form the front ear which sits on top of the main shape. Peel off paper backing and position, but don’t fuse yet. (3) ● Repeat the above steps with the floral fabric for the alpaca’s blanket. When you’re happy with the positioning of all your applique shapes fuse into place with a hot iron protecting your work with a cloth. ● Using two strands of cream floss for the main body and blanket and two of light brown floss for the muzzle etc, secure the shapes to the background fabric by working short straight stitches at right angles to the edge of the shapes.

Pekinese Stitch

● Using your temporary marker pen mark in lines for embroidery. ● Now work embroidery using two strands of floss throughout. The eye and nose are black satin stitch and the mouth is back stitch. ● When you have finished stitching press your work lightly on the reverse, being careful not to flatten your stitches and then mount in your hoop.

● The girth is basketweave stitch (see tutorial on the Bustle & Sew blog) and the blanket edging is buttonhole stitch. ● I used whipped chain stitch and pekinese stitch for the cords around the alpaca’s neck, but if you don’t want to try these

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Two Mugs with Succulents Succulents remain a popular trend this autumn, and I have planted two lovely enamel mugs, brought back from a birthday trip to Prague a long time ago, with two lovely spiky green plants. And I like them so much I thought it would be fun to stitch them too, though I have changed the colours a little to fit in with current design trends. To make a bit of a change I’ve mounted them on 4” artists canvas blocks, though they would look great displayed in small hoops too.

Materials

Method ● Transfer the design to the centre of your fabric using your preferred method.

● Two 8” squares white background fabric (you need extra to wrap around the backs of the blocks to secure) ● Two 4” artists’ canvas blocks

● Stitches used are back stitch, chain stitch, French knots, satin stitch and basket weave stitch.

● DMC stranded cotton floss in colours ecru, 310, 420, 841, 945, 3766, 3824, 3852

● If you’re unfamiliar with basket weave then you might find my Little Stitching Bear tutorial useful. Just click here to download.

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● I have randomly scattered black stars around the mugs - their positioning is up to you they are simply 5 stitches radiating from a centre point.

Stitching Notes: ● Use two strands of floss throughout except where otherwise stated..

● The “soil” in which the succulents are growing is French knots. The stripy mug is all brown, but the heart mug has a mixture of colours. Work knots with different numbers of twists so they look more random.

● Work the leaves of both succulents in a selection of green flosses - choose a good mixture of shades and alter the angle of stitching on each leaf so they reflect the light differently.

● You may find a long needle useful for the basket weave stitch. Work the diamonds on the stripy mug picture before outlining them with pink chain stitch. The chain stitch is worked in a SINGLE strand of floss.

● The main body of each mug is ecru satin stitch. The stitches will be longer than perhaps you might use normally, but this is OK as the pictures are for display only. If you plan to work this design on an item for use then you might wish to consider another type of fill stitch.

● When you’ve finished stitching press well and mount on the blocks. Turn the fabric to the back and secure with your staple gun pulling it tight but not taut and being careful not to distort the design. Work from the middle of each side outwards and mitre the corners, trimming away the excess fabric.

● The mugs and the top of the fabric are outlined in black back stitch. Work this at the end of the project.

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How to Embroider Fur: Bear in a Hat Hand Embroidery Project 35


You will need: ● 10” square white linen, cotton or other non-stretch fabric suitable for hand embroidery. Don’t use anything lighter than a quilting weight cotton as it will need to support quite a lot of stitching. ● DMC stranded cotton floss in colours 310, 352, 436, 437, 640, 945, 3023, 4124

I have always loved stitching fur, though I know some people are a bit put off by a technique they consider might be difficult and/or time consuming. I won’t deny it does take a little while, but though the results are impressive, it isn’t really difficult to do. You need very few colours to make your fur look convincing - the fur on my little Bear in a Hat uses only 3 shades of brown and - a bonus for me(!) - Your stitching doesn’t need to be too neat either ! You do need to give your project some thought before you begin though, but once you’ve done that then there are only a few basic principles you need to follow. This little bear also uses a variety of embroidery stitches for his coat and hat - back stitch, blanket stitch, cross stitch, chain stitch, French knots, ghiordes (or turkey) stitch and satin stitch. If you don’t want to try your hand at stitching fur, then he’d look nearly as nice with his face and legs simply outlined in back stitch, as are his coat and hat.

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The first principle of realistic fur is getting the DIRECTION of your stitching correct.

Method ● First transfer the bear design to the centre of your fabric. It is full size and also provided both the right way round and reversed to suit your preferred method of transfer.

● Below is another picture of the bear with arrows indicating the direction in which you should angle your stitches.

● Use two strands of floss throughout and use colours according to the diagram below.

● You can see how the fur on our bear (above) is all directed away from the nose. Imagine smoothing him - you never smooth an animal from tail to nose as that would ruffle their fur the wrong way - always nose to tail.

● Hoop up and take a good look at your soon-to-be furry bear. If you have a pet, then take a look at him or her too. - always away from the nose.

● The only variation on the “away from the nose” rule is around the eye. Fur radiates away from the eye so you will need to blend the directions of your stitches together to take account of this. Don’t be tempted to simply stitch around the eye in circles - fur doesn’t grow like this at all.

● Take notice also of how your pet’s fur overlaps so that the fur nearest the nose lies on top of that further down the body.

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● The second important thing to think about before you even thread your needle is shading. Below is the original watercolour of our little bear:

The second principle of realistic fur is getting the SHADING correct. ● We will be using three shades of warm brown floss for the bear’s fur. 436 (dark), 437 (medium) and 945 (light). From now on I will refer to them as dark, medium and light rather than by their numbers. ● Abandon any thought of stitching along the outline (as you will do for the coat and hat). Our bear is fluffy, not hard or smooth. Outline stitching is for hard or smooth edges (generally). Work your stitches at a slight angle to his limbs as though the fur was falling softly. ● Begin with the dark brown and work the shading around the tops of his legs where the coat casts a shadow and along the bottoms of his rounded feet. Fill the shape completely with dark where the shading is most intense, but leave gradually increasing gaps between the stitches so you can blend in the medium brown as the colour gradually becomes lighter.

● Ignoring his coat and hat and looking simply at his fur you can see that the shading gives his fur substance and shape. It’s darker where there are shadows or the limb is further away and lighter where the body catches the light, for example on the top of his head. ● This is the effect you are aiming to achieve with your needle and thread. You’ll work darker stitches where the fur is in shadow and, blending as you go, work towards lighter stitches where there are highlights

● You also need to have a fairly solid line of dark fur (again remember the direction of your stitches) between the legs so you can tell the bear has two legs, not one very large one! Be sure to alter the lengths of your stitches slightly too - again natural fur is not completely even.

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the effect you’re achieving - this will simply add to the texture and richness of your fur (up to a point that is!) ● Next stitch his face. I find it easiest to work the black parts of the eye and nose first (adding the highlights later) as this means I can work right up to them with confidence. ● Work the face in exactly the same manner as the legs, beginning with the darkest brown around the neck area and shading upwards, working in the pink cheek (I used the pink part of the variegated floss 4124 for this to save adding another colour to the list). I also think using too many colours can make your work appear a little “bitty” so I try to keep to the minimum as much as I can.

● As you stitch it’s a good idea to keep a picture of the finished bear - or the watercolour original - close to you as it’s easy to lose track of the effect you’re trying to achieve. ● Continue in this way until the legs are finished, gradually shading from darkest unmixed brown to the palest colour. Be sure to mix your stitches well on the boundaries between colours, and again no hard straight lines. Try not to leave any gaps at all between your stitches, you can overstitch quite a lot if you’re unhappy with

● Remember to direct your stitches away from the nose, and blend in the radiating stitches around the eye. ● The final part is to add a shine to his nose and a tiny white stitch to give his eye a little sparkle.

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Rosie’s House Plants! My daughter is an excellent cook, bakes wonderful cakes and is pretty nifty with a needle. But one area that defeats her is the care of plants! The only house plant that has ever survived for more than a few weeks is a cactus and last time I saw her that was looking in need of rescue too! So I thought I’d stitch this little hoop of plants especially for Rosie, as even she will have no trouble at all keeping them looking nice the whole year long! This is a great project for using up any leftover greens too. Shown mounted in 10” hoop.

reading that mustard is the latest design trend so why not consider using this in place of pink perhaps?

Materials ● 13” square white background fabric. I used white felt for my hoop just to make a change from cotton or linen and I quite like the contrast of the slightly fuzzy surface of the felt with the smooth embroidery floss.

● Black floss

● Stranded cotton floss in shades of green I used four shades, light, medium and dark in a cooler green and a light yellowish green. ● Light and dark pink floss - again the exact shades don’t really matter. Or I’ve been

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● Guidance for working the more complex stitches follows.

Stitching Guide ● Please see diagram on previous page for details of stitches used. Use two strands of floss except where specifically stated.

● Carrying your floss across the back of your work is fine with felt as it’s quite thick. Do beware though if you’re using a lighter weight fabric as the black floss is more likely to show through to the front.

● All the pots are outlined in back stitch.

again on the same side as you do with satin stitch - just make a very tiny stitch on the back of your work. This makes basket weave a very economical stitch to work floss-wise.

Basket Weave Stitch ● With two strands of floss begin on one of the end squares and first work your vertical stitches. They should not be placed too closely together as this will make it (a) difficult to weave your needle in and out and (b) won’t leave much space for your horizontal stitches to show and you’ll lose the nice chequered effect of working with two colours.

● Keep your stitches nice and vertical - do watch out for any tendency for them to start to lean to one side as this will also spoil the effect you’re seeking. ● When finished fasten off your thread and change to your second colour. Come up in one corner and start to weave your

● There’s no need to carry your thread across the back of your work to come up

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Basket Weave Stitch ● With two strands of floss begin on one of the end squares and first work your vertical stitches. They should not be placed too closely together as this will make it (a) difficult to weave your needle in and out and (b) won’t leave much space for your horizontal stitches to show and you’ll lose the nice chequered effect of working with two colours. ● There’s no need to carry your thread across the back of your work to come up again on the same side as you do with satin stitch just make a very tiny stitch on the back of your work. This makes basket weave a very economical stitch to work floss-wise. ● Keep your stitches nice and vertical - do watch out for any tendency for them to start to lean to one side as this will also spoil the effect you’re seeking. ● When finished fasten off your thread and change to your second colour. Come up in one corner and start to weave your needle through the vertical threads I find it easiest to reverse my needle and pass the eye through first . This means I am much less likely to pierce the existing stitches and/or fabric as I go. It may not work for you but it’s definitely worth a try! ● When you get to the end of your row, pull the thread through fairly firmly (but don’t yank too hard) and then with the blunt end of your needle push the thread into position so that the horizontal rows lie against each other. Don’t push too hard though, simply touching is sufficient. ● Then take your needle back down through the fabric, make a tiny stitch, approximately the width of your floss and then come up again and go back the other way.

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● When you’ve finished the last row you can comfortably fit in you may want to adjust the way the horizontal stitches lie so that the background fabric is evenly covered. Again you can gently move them with the blunt end of your needle.

Bullion Stitch

● These do need a little practice to work successfully - the key is to keep tension in the thread you’re wrapping round both as you wrap and as you pull the needle through the loops. The steps are as follows: ● Bring your needle up through the fabric at the point marked with the arrow above and then take it back down at the required length of your stitch and up again at exactly the same point as before (7). ● Don’t pull your needle right through, but leave it lying on your fabric and twist the thread around it. Six or seven twists are about right. ● Place your left thumb upon the twists and pull your needle and thread through your fabric and also the twists as carefully as possible. Now pull your needle and thread away in the opposite direction. This movement will force your little coil of thread to lie flat in the right place. Tighten it up by pulling your working thread, then reinsert your needle at A. This should also be the end of your bullion knot if you’ve chosen the correct number of twists to fill the space.


Basket Weave Stitch ● With two strands of floss begin on one of the end squares and first work your vertical stitches. They should not be placed too closely together as this will make it (a) difficult to weave your needle in and out and (b) won’t leave much space for your horizontal stitches to show and you’ll lose the nice chequered effect of working with two colours.

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Stay Home Pennant March, as the saying goes, often comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb or should that be the other way round? Anyway, whatever the weather, if you’re a bit of a home bird like me, or know somebody who is, then you’re sure to love this embroidered pennant that makes a great alternative to displaying your work in a hoop. Finished pennant is 7 ½” wide x 12” long (approx) and features a fairly simply floral design as well as the motto boldly worked in black floss.

● 14” white cord for hanging

Materials

● Temporary fabric marker pen

● 14” x 8” main fabric. I used a nice medium weight linen as I love the slightly open texture. ● 12” x 8” backing fabric or felt - I used a wool blend felt as I thought it made my pennant a little more substantial - simply because the linen I chose has quite an open weave. ● 9” length of ½” wooden dowling

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● DMC stranded cotton floss in colours 310, 552, 743, 747, 792, 967, 988, 3041, 3340, 3705, 3712, 3816, 3862


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Method ● First work the embroidery for the front of the pennant. The design is given full size and also reversed to suit your preferred method of working. Position it 2 ½” up from the bottom edge of your fabric and centrally widthwise.

Notes on Stitching ● The script is worked in 310 using split stitch. Make very small stitches around the curves of the letters and concentrate on keeping the outline smooth. ● The block capitals are worked in long and short stitch, though you could also use split stitch if you prefer. ● Small spray (under lets): flowers are radiating straight stitch with a centre of small French knots. I find it easiest to place stitches at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock and then fill in around them to keep my radiating nice and even. The buds are bullion stitch and the leaves are satin stitch worked at angles to an imaginary centre vein. The stems of the light blue buds are worked in a single strand of floss. ● Large spray (at bottom). The veins on the large blue leaf are worked in back stitch using 3 strands of floss. ● When you have finished stitching press your work lightly on the reverse being careful not to flatten your stitches.

Assemble your Pennant ● Gently fold your front piece in half widthwise and press with your hands at the bottom to mark the centre point of the bottom edge.

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● With your temporary fabric marker pen mark a point 3” up from the bottom edge on both side edges of your fabric. Then join the bottom centre point to these side points with your marker pen to create the point at the bottom of the pennant. Cut out. ● Repeat with the backing fabric. ● Place backing fabric and front panel right sides together aligning the bottom points (the front panel will be 2” longer than the backing fabric). ● With ¼” seam allowance stitch around the edge of the pennant leaving the top open. Clip corners, turn right side out and press. ● Turn ½” of the front panel towards the back along the top edge, and then turn under again by another 1”. Topstitch along the edge to form the channel for your dowling. ● Insert dowling and knot cord onto ends. ● Finished!


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Trio of Cactus Cushions Templates are full sized and will need joining together. They overlap to help you do this. They are also reversed for tracing onto the paper side of your Bondaweb.

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Chic Pompom Cushions Templates are full size and will need joining. They overlap to help you do this.

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Wilderness Bear The templates are full sized and will need to be joined together (the image below is to help you do this). Please add Ÿ� seam allowance to the main body pieces. The embroidery design is full size and also reversed to suit your preferred method of transfer.

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Cactus Pin Board Templates are full size and will need joining. They overlap to help you do this.

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Leaf Applique Cushion Template is full size and reversed for tracing onto the paper side of your Bondaweb

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Applique Alpaca Pattern is full size and also reversed for tracing onto the paper side of your Bondaweb

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Two Mugs with Succulents Pattern is full size

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Bear in a Hat Pattern is right size and also reversed to suit your preferred method of transfer.

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Rosie’s House Plants Hoop! Template is actual size and will need joining. The two pieces overlap to help you do this.

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Stay Home Pennant Template is full size and also reversed to suit your preferred method of transfer.

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Simply Modern Stitching  

Welcome to the latest collection of Bustle & Sew patterns – a collection of fresh and uncluttered designs that use both hand embroidery and...

Simply Modern Stitching  

Welcome to the latest collection of Bustle & Sew patterns – a collection of fresh and uncluttered designs that use both hand embroidery and...