For a few years now, I've been making Star Wars gifts for my brother's birthday or Christmas. So far I've made Chewbacca (from Draw! Pilgrim's pattern), a Wampa (with removable arm!), Maz Kanata, and a Death Star mini quilt. Sometimes I save sharing them until Star Wars Day on May the 4th, but I just couldn't wait to show the latest: A Stormtrooper Doll.
When I went to see Rogue One back in December, I hoped I would see something that would make a good handmade gift for him. So imagine my delight when I caught a glimpse of the Stormtrooper doll that young Jyn had, which was soon picked up by a Death Trooper.
It would be safe to assume that Jyn's doll was made from wood or perhaps even stone. And in fact, someone has created a tutorial on Instructables for making one out of clay. I wanted to do something a little more in my style, so I went with felt.
The idea behind this was obviously to make a version of the Rogue One doll. But it also works as a way to make just a Stormtrooper. Of course there are several variations, each with different specific names, but you could adapt the pattern for a better match on those.
This particular pose reminded me of when Finn has his first moment of questioning his role within the First Order in The Force Awakens. It would actually be really fun to make a version with a Finn head and then a separate helmet!
I'm playing with other ways to use this pattern idea to make more characters, but those will have to wait. For now, let's make a Stormtrooper doll!
You will need:
White and dark gray or black felt
Black embroidery floss
STORMTROOPER DOLL PDF PATTERN
Cut 2 heads and 2 bodies from white felt. Cut 4 of each of the arm and leg pieces from white felt. Cut 4 hand and foot pieces from dark gray or black felt. Those all use the pattern pieces.
You will also need to cut dark gray or black rectangles to hold everything together. Cut 2 of each of the following: .75in x 6.5in for the arms, .75in x 7.5in for the legs, and 1.5in x 2in for the neck.
Trace the details from the head and body onto tracing paper and embroider them with back stitch and satin stitch. For the mouth area, I used a more open satin stitch. You can fill in the other elements on the helmet too, if you want. I talked about doing that, but ended up leaving them open.
Carefully tear away the paper when you're finished.
For the arms and legs, sandwich the dark gray or black strip between the different elements. It works best to start at the hand or foot end. Make sure that the end of the strip is down about .5in in the hand or foot. Stitch around the shape with running stitch and 3 strands of black embroidery floss.
Add the rectangles next, leaving a small gap between the sections, and finally add the top piece with the angled end. This is the same basic process for all four limbs. With all of the stitching, try to hide your knots between the layers of felt.
Pin the arms and legs in place between the layers of the body. The gap between the body and the top section of the limbs should be the same as the gap in the other sections.
Start stitching at one of the arms, then go down and around until you reach the top. Leave the neck open.
Stuff the body so it is full, but not too firm. You may want to work the stuffing in toward the front, so it ends up between the dark tabs from the limbs and the white of the body. The dark felt won't show as much this way.
Place the two neck rectangles in the neck opening and stitch across to close the opening and hold the neck in place. This double layer of felt will help your Stormtrooper's neck stand up as much as possible.
Stitch the layers of the head together, leaving an opening at the bottom that is wide enough for the neck to fit. Stuff the head about the same density as the body.
Slide the head over the neck tabs and stitch across the opening and through the neck.
Now your Stormtrooper is ready to play! Or maybe sit on a shelf if you're like my 23-year-old brother. And the good news is that even though this is a pretty floppy doll, it's able to pose quite well, and that includes sitting up on its own.
Happy Star Wars Crafting!
Quick note: Normally, I'm happy to share my patterns for both personal and cottage-industry/small business use. However, since this is a fan-art pattern based on characters I don't own the license to, I don't recommend selling anything you make with this pattern. We don't want anyone running into legal trouble!
Want to make a quick and easy handmade Valentine? I designed this printable so you can use it as a stitching card or leave it just as it is for an even faster last-minute card.
Stitched or not, it doubles as a Valentine or as a simple bit of art. Because we all need a reminder that we're loved, right?
To make the stitched version, you will need:
Embroidery floss or size 8 perle cotton
YOU ARE LOVED STITCHABLE VALENTINE PDF
Print the PDF on card stock and cut out the rectangles.
Use a needle to poke a hole at each end of the dashed line on the heart. For the flowers, poke a hole in the center of each flower and at the curve of each petal.
Embroider over the flowers with lazy daisy stitches and matching thread. As you tack each petal down, come up and go back down through the same pre-punched hole. Stitch around the heart with running stitch.
I used size 8 perle cotton for mine. I also usually just make a large knot on the back (big enough that it doesn't accidentally pull through the hole), but you can hold the ends in place with tape if you'd rather.
Now you have a handmade Valentine that's also some fun art to hang on the fridge or tack up on the wall!
Happy Hearts Day!
Wheek! I'm seriously becoming a full-on crazy guinea pig lady. But I can't help it. Any time I share a photo of my sweet piggy pets online people have the sweetest things to say, so really it's their fault for encouraging me.
Speaking of encouraging, not long after the photos of Captain Cuddles and Lieutenant Nibbles made their way into my Instagram and Twitter feeds, my friend Heather borrowed one to make a meme. A meme of Nibbles reminding me to get back to my stitching.
Whenever I get distracted from my stitching work, I now think of my furry friend and her stern, but helpful words. You should be stitching. (My furry friend being Lieutenant Nibbles, not Heather...)
More memes followed, and now it's becoming a thing where I start to picture my piggies saying cheeky things about sewing and embroidery. In the event that you need some guinea pig stitch coaching, I thought I'd share these images here. Feel free to share them online if you'd like!
Cuddles is using the Force on that last one. Do guinea pig Jedi mind tricks work on you?
If you have any suggestions for guinea pig captions (perhaps we need some sewing/fabric ones?), please post them in the comments!
Just after my guinea pigs came to live at my house, I started sketching up an embroidery pattern of them. It took me a while to finally finish it, but it's in my shop now! For just $2.00 you get two variations on the pattern so you can stitch a smooth or curly piggy, wheeking out for a yummy snack!
Hello, February! Hello, hearts and pink and red and lots of love!
This month Captain Cuddles and Lieutenant Nibbles have all the heart eyes because their not-so-secret admirer presented them with a box of Valentine carrots! I'm pretty sure the real piggy pals would go absolutely nuts if I gave them a gift like this.
Scroll down for the links to downloadable wallpapers for February! And here are a few things for your February, that I created and shared at other blogs in January:
These felt conversation hearts are embroidered with messages, but they also make a crinkling sounds as you play with them! Find the tutorial at Hello Bee!
Embroider a special message for your honey! My Always Bee Mine embroidery pattern is good for Valentine's Day, or anytime if you're a fan of bees, honey, or hexagons.
Planning a Valentine's Day party or need a little treat for your kids to give to friends? This printable game at Handmade Charlotte is good for a candy favor, or with other items that are allergen-free!
Now, how about those calendar wallpapers? Download them and add them to your device. There's just one size for computers, because it should be large enough to accommodate most screens.
And so I don't forget to pass this along, the guinea pigs want to wish you a very wheeky Valentine's Day!
Around Valentine's Day, love is in the air. And that means hearts. Lots of them!
But I think love should be in the air all the time. As a follower of Jesus, I believe that everyone is loved by Jesus and that He wants me (and all His followers) to love everyone, always.
I'm calling this heart full of hearts design Helping Hearts. Why? Because when lots of hearts work together in love, they can show even more love. In this case, the Helping Hearts tee you see (and other styles, as well as prints) helps refugees.
100% of the profits from the Helping Hearts items benefit Preemptive Love Coalition. You get cute Wild Olive gear that spreads a message of love AND a tangible way to show love!
Plus, through February 14, 2017, receive FREE SHIPPING on orders over $45 ($80 international). Use coupon code VDAYda383b. That's valid on all items in my Threadless Artist Shop, not just this new design.
As I was working on the new tee design, I got to thinking that it might be something fun to color too. It's not a highly detailed design, but I like the idea of coloring love in many colors. Color and pray or think about how you can help others in love. Use it as an opportunity to talk with your kids about the importance of loving everyone, always, and what that means in everyday life. If you were so inclined, you could even go crazy and embroider this.
By the way, this is labeled as "for personal use only" but that just means I don't want you to sell this artwork. Please feel free to make as many copies for any purpose that is loving.
Be a helping heart. Love.
Sometimes you hear some words that you hold onto. Sometimes you need to hold onto them as a reminder. Sometimes they are the comfort you need. Sometimes they are exactly what you want to express. And as I've said before, I tend to want to make these words into embroidery patterns.
"Be my everything" are the words that have been playing in my head lately. They sound like something you say to your sweetheart and so it seemed logical to add some hearts to this design. It's perfect to stitch for a Valentine's Day gift for your special someone.
As a single gal, I'm stitching this for myself.
I know what you're thinking. "She wants to be her own everything?" While I suppose there are some who would try to make this be a thing, that's not what this is about for me. I'm stitching this for myself as a reminder of something for which I strive, and often fail.
You see, the words "be my everything" are part of a song that was in a church service recently. The song "Everything" by Tim Hughes is simple and it captures my desire for living this life with God. With Jesus. I encourage you to look it up and read through all of the lyrics, but here's a small sample:
God in my hoping
There in my dreaming
God in my watching
God in my waiting
Be my everything
There in my dreaming
God in my watching
God in my waiting
Be my everything
Of course, even though I want Him to be my everything, I let myself get in the way, making things about me and what I want. It's not always bad or wrong, but it does often distract me from Jesus as my everything. So I'm going to be stitching these words so I see them throughout my day. And so I can stitch my prayers for this right onto fabric and thread.
Whether you want a reminder for your own heart or a message for the one who holds your heart, I hope you enjoy stitching up these words!
I don't have much to post right now, though I'm working on it. In the meantime, I'm just gonna leave these colorful things here for a bit of inspiration.
Related: I love rainbows of color. They are a constant reminder of a promise.
Do you love making things out of felt? Of course you do! Felt is so much fun to work with and use for making adorable things. Today I'm happy to show you two felt kits with some of the cutest patterns around. They're also quite different, as one is a Star Wars kit and the other is for folk woodland animals!
I don't buy kits too often, because I have a lot of felt around here already. Buying a pattern is usually all I need. These two kits, however, have some features and special items that make them stand out from many of the kits you see, and they're worth buying the bundle.
For full disclosure, these kits were sent to me from their publishers/creators, but even though they were provided for review, I was a fan before they came my way. Starting with the Star Wars Felt kit...
Even though her name doesn't appear on the outside of the box, this kit was designed by Aimee Ray, of Doodle Stitching fame. When she showed it in her Instagram feed, I was instantly smitten with the patterns. After all, I do love Star Wars crafting! Then I saw it at my local Barnes & Noble and very nearly bought it. When the publisher offered to send me a kit, I may have squealed a little.
Inside the kit, you get a booklet with all of the project instructions, pattern stencil cards, felt, stuffing, embroidery floss, and a needle. All you need extra are scissors, a marking pencil, tracing or tissue paper and a finer needle if you want. While the felt isn't high-end, it is a nice quality.
The booklet shows a photo of each Star Wars character you can make, and along with the description and materials list, it also gives a difficulty rating. I love that the rating is given in Star Wars terms, and this Jedi Knight level Yoda makes it a mid-level project.
With this kit you can make Han Solo, Wicket the Ewok, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia Organa, Yoda, Chewbacca, Darth Vader, C-3PO, R2-D2, and Boba Fett.
The written instructions are easy to follow, as is the diagram that shows you how to embroider the designs. This also serves as the embroidery pattern, which you transfer to the felt with tracing paper. You can definitely see Aimee's super cute style shining through!
Instead of trying to trace or cut out pattern pieces, they come as stencil-like cards. I love this because it makes it easier for kids to work with. I think you'd get the best size if you punch out the pieces and use those as your templates, and I think that's what's intended. But if you trace within the openings on the cards you would never lose all those pieces!
I haven't made any of the figures yet, but I'm gonna see which tracing method I like best.
Bottom line: This kit is worth the price for the patterns and instructions alone. Yes, it's a small booklet, but if it were published in a larger format and still only had these 10 designs in it, I wouldn't flinch at the asking price (especially Amazon's great price!)
If you or someone you know loves Star Wars, this is a felt kit you need!
Another kit I received is for making Heidi Boyd's Woodland Animal Ornaments. This is actually a supply kit that you can purchase to accompany the Woodland Animal Ornaments PDF pattern.
I kept seeing these super sweet animals in Heidi's Instagram feed (do you get the sense that I spend too much time on Instagram?), and sending all the hearts her way. Who wouldn't? Woodland creatures with folk-style embellishment are too cute!
And then she asked if I'd like a set to make for myself. Thank you, Heidi!
The supply kit includes wool-blend felt, embroidery floss, stuffing, glass beads, die-cut felt flowers, pins, and a needle. As with the other kit, you would also need scissors and a marking pen of some kind.
These are basic supplies, but it's this little bag that makes the kit special:
It may sound silly, but when I looked at the kit, I was struck by the brilliance of the tiny supplies.
Part of the charm of the floral folk design is in these flowers, which would not be simple to cut out. Yes, they are sort of in the pattern. But the instructions recommend die-cut flowers (and suggests how to get them) or substitutes.
And do you really want to buy a bag of approximately 1,739,284 beads just to make a few ornaments? That might be an exaggeration, but you get the idea.
The simplicity of buying this kit along with the pattern has huge appeal. I'd also point out that this is everything you need for seven ornaments (perfect for any time of the year). And you're buying them from an independent maker. Bonus points for that.
So tell me...do you like to work from kits whenever possible?