Tuesday, 28 June 2011

I Felt My Heart Skip

I had fun making my kiddie art book, and it inspired me to use the same techniques on a  slightly more adult project. I'd been putting off making felt bookcovers since my favourite supplier of printed felts* went bust (sob!), but decided this way I could decorate the fabric myself rather than relying on pre-decorated material to do the hard work for me. This 'Craft Ideas' book is the result (not for me - I've moved on from a craft ideas notebook and now just have a wall covered in post-its and pictures - I sit in front of it to sew and so it serves as inspiration towards current projects as well as idea store for future ones). It's all felt with a  couple of buttons and a ribbon closing. I decided to keep the needlework decoration to all simple backstitch, as I thought with such an eclectic colour range and a pretty organic, unformed image, if I added another element of 'random' by using too many different stitches it would be rather overwhelming. There's a tiny patch of longstitch, but otherwise I kept the actual embroidery techniques simple, allowing the patterns and colours to yell out loud.

The cover is removable, I've put it onto a kraft notebook because the thickness of the book allowed me to add spine buttons, and the rounded corners mean the corners of the cover won't wear out too quickly
Bookcovers made with printed felt

Noodle x

*If anyone happens to know of a good stockist for printed felt - not just spots and stripes but all kinds of prints in a good colour array, I'd really love to hear about them. I really enjoy working with felt - because I'm lazy and hate hemming, mostly, so am very much missing my beloved printers

Jazz Hands

Front cover
I love buttons (oh, you'd noticed?), so when I came across these awesome button hands I had to get them, and came up with this monster drawing book as an excuse to use them. Happy Days.
It's a really basic book-cover, over a paperchase kraft book (one of the cool ones with both white and brown paper pages) in standard A5 size so when the kids use up all the paper they can just put the cover on a different book, or on a lined exercise book once they get old enough to be learning to write.
The whole thing is felt, so it was really easy to make - just cuttin + stickin really. I started off using uhu textile glue, but quickly ran out and had to switch to uhu extra gel (Uhu are my favourite glue brand atm, for  good variety of reliably high-quality product and ease of availability. Plus it's a cool word to say.), which did a better job anyway as it was easier to spread accurately and gave a firmer grip. Hurrah for serendipitous discovery. 
Back Cover
Once I'd stuck n glued to my hearts content I got mad with a needle to decorate with a smidge of embroidery, sewing on the buttons to give my monsters jazz hands, and adding a ribbon closing. I kept the stitchwork purposefully a bit swonky (or that's what I'll tell myself), to give a sort of off-beat look to go with my palette of brights on grey.
I used more felt to make slots on the front to hold some mini felt pens - this caused the base fabric to ruck up a bit and so the cover is a bit short over that section, which is really annoying. I think that's because I was using a really big eye'd needle (to get enough strands of embroidery thread through it) and so had to really pull to sew, and I think that process, repeated over for each stitch, ruched up the fabric a little and got it out of line.
Oh well, live n learn eh?


uh-dik-shunNounDefinition: the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming, as narcotics, to such an extent that its cessation causes severe trauma.
Origin: Traced to Roman law, under which addiction was a ''formal giving over by sentence of court; hence, a dedication of a person to a master.''  This notion of relinquishment of control by the addicted person is the central feature of many lay and professional definitions. 

Alternate Post Title; Beware The Wonder Knitter.
It'll take over your life, and eat your button stash. You have been warned.
Noods x