Yay! I'm finally ready with my next thing to do with embroidery! I was inspired to make this after seeing this mobile. To me, it screamed "make an embroidered mobile!" Originally, I was thinking that the hanging pieces would just be stitched on canvas and backed with perhaps a print? Or felt? And maybe there would be one or two things per string. But then as I continued, it became a different project. One that uses my Ice Cream Socializers pattern. Here's what I've made:
And here's how I've made it!
I started out by making pattern pieces that were basically trimmed around what would be embroidered. I used a pattern rather than just trimming so that all would match up. Then I cut out the pieces from felt. My mobile has a cone, three scoops of ice cream and a cherry on top. So I cut two cones, six scoops (each a different flavor/color) and two cherries.
Then I stitched all of the patterns on. To stitch on felt, I print out my pattern, trim it down and stitch through the paper and the felt at the same time. I made sure that I was stitching a regular and a reverse side for each scoop, cone and cherry. The scoops and cones were similar, but the cherries were obvious. Pay attention to the shapes...you'll be happier later. Also, I did mine with regular paper, but thin tracing paper is much easier. There are other options too, but I like tracing paper.
When I'm done stitching, I carefully tear away the paper. I'm especially careful around the french knot eyes.
Once all of the pieces were done, I started assembling. Using crochet thread (or a lightweight string) on a needle, I tied one one end to the back stitching of one cone. Then I also threaded it under the stitching at the top of the same cone.
I continued in this way on the scoops of ice cream, looping the string around the back stitching so that it wouldn't be able to slide on the string. Try not to notice that I used knots (GASP!) on the backs of the faces.
After all scoops and the cherry were in place and secure, I stitched the second side of each piece to its mate. To do this, I used two colors of thread (something I just saw from Jenny Hart), two strands of each color. I wanted both sides to be represented (you don't want your blue Superman ice cream feeling bad!). Then I just whipstitched around the edges, being careful around the mobile's string.
And that's it! I'll hang it with a loop of the extra string at the top. The best part is that the flavors change with a breeze (which they were doing frequently while trying to take this picture!)....so yummy and cute!
I think there are a lot of possibilities with something like this. Like in the mobile that inspired this whole thing, you could have things hanging from a single stick or dowel rod, or you could have more than one. You could have different sized embroideries that balance, with only one thing hanging from a string.
The biggest thing, I think, would be to be sure that your embroidered pieces were stiff enough to remain flat when hanging. So either stitch onto something stiff, or back it with something like canvas or felt, or you could even add some stabilizer sandwiched in the middle.
No matter how you make this, I think you'll love having your embroidery hanging in a new way!