I don’t know exactly where I first saw this idea, but I just remember glimpsing this image while browsing all different blogs one day….
…and then cataloging it away in my brain for another time. It turns out that it was a post by none other than Vickie Howell of Lark Craft. She’s so crafty! Anywho….I decided, after much browsing and consideration, that this was the route I would be taking for my mom’s Valentine’s Day gift.
For years I have been crafting some sort of heart shaped Valentine to give to my mom. She has a huge basket filled with stuffed cloth hearts of all shapes and sizes. Along with that collection she has heart shaped rocks, a crocheted anatomical heart, wire wrapped hearts…you name it, I have made it or hunted it down for her annual gift of love. This year, as I did for 2009 (see here), I wanted to create something special from me and my Little Guy. So, I used the idea above to transform some plain cotton canvas into a sweet heart felt (no pun intended) Valentine. Here is how it all went down:
It started with a crafting cheat that I found while searching through the embroidery aisle at Joann’s Etc. “Stitches as quickly as if you were drawing a picture” got my attention right away. And, while I knew it was against my nature to go about a project this way, I also understood time was not on my side since I was making this purchase on the 10th for a gift due on the 14th. Shew! I know, I always cut things way to close and they just end up being late. Better that, than never, right? Okay, so back to the rest of this project.
I pulled together the materials I would need. I had to purchase a small to medium hoop for this project, but the fabrics were from my stash. I started with a soft creamy flannel, but ended up having to use a heavier cotton canvas. I also started by placing a sheet of scribbled art over the fabric and I attempted to clamp it in the hoop too. I figured this would make following the pattern REALLY easy.
All it did was end up in the way, ripped to shreds and when I tried to remove the bits that stuck under the stitches the stitching just came out with the paper. So, I ended up letting him use a pencil to scribble directly on the cotton canvas. The punch embroidery tool was pretty easy to use and get the hang of, but it put a lot of wear and tear on the fabric. Also, the stitches seemed to come out easily with the softer fabric, hence the switch to the cotton canvas. I was so glad I used the multicolored embroidery floss, since it mimicked the way the Little Guy had scribbled, with dark and light areas where he changed pressure.
Once the embroidery portion was completed I cut around it in a heart shape and used the embroidered piece as a template to cut out the backing fabric. At the last minute I also decided to add some vintage black and white crocheted trim to the edge. First I sewed it around the cotton canvas piece and then I put the right sides together with the backing fabric and used the stitch line as a guide to sew the front and back together. After a little snipping of the curved edges I turned the whole thing right side out, stuffed it with polyfil, then stitched up the edge by hand.
I don’t know, I may be a tad bit biased, but I think it came out rather nice.