Pin projects cut out, waiting to be stitched!!

It’s continued to be a rather busy week, with all kinds of random things calling for attention. Finally on Wednesday morning, I managed to lay and cut out the ‘fixins’ for a few more pins. If you notice in the photo that I am definitely trying to mix it up with materials; you’ll see some vinyl, as well as cotton batiks, and I especially used a lot of felted woven wool. For some reason, there have been those who are skeptical that wool can be used effectively in any projects. I also know that a lot of shops will carry woven wools on the bolt (or in smaller pieces), but have not yet chosen to carry wool felt, so accessibilty is a factor. I think that ‘felt’ conjures up images of the .25 sheet of acrylic felt we used to get at the Ben Franklin craft area – great for all those crafty kid projects. You know, the ones with untold sequins, pipe cleaners, glue, little pompons, etc. BUT that felt was horrible for any projects of more sophistication. Thankfully the resurgence of wool and understanding it’s qualities, gives us a chance to show felted wool at it’s best.

Amy Brickman hat pattern with pin (don’t you love the sunshine?!)

I love picking out the fabrics, colors, materials, etc. for these pins. There are just endless possibilities, each one seemingly ‘better’ than the last one. And the best part is that each one really only takes about a day to finish, so it’s nice to have a short project with satisfaction at the end of the day. I also spend time considering the different ways these pins can be used. I tend to be a person who generally doesn’t wear a lot of jewelry or accessories (I know, kind of strange for someone who has always been making those very types of things….and since I work at home, there rarely is a need to ‘dress up’ much anyway!). So I look for other ways they can be used and presented. Earlier this fall, I found a cute hat pattern by Amy Brickman and worked it up in wool with a silk lining: perfect setting for a pin – and you can change it out as you please. I sent this hat/pin to the National NOnWoven booth in Houston for display. I have a few other ideas up my sleeves, so stayed tuned!

This pin is made with ALL felted woven wool, with the exception of the vinyl applique (tan print)

This last photo shows a pin that is made using only felted woven wools – with the tan print applique being a vinyl cotton print. I fused two layers of wool together and it works up wonderfully. So if you are having difficulty finding non woven wool felt, but have access to woven wools, you have no excuse not to try and make a pin!! I will say that there may be a few wools that do not felt up particularly well (please make sure you are using 100% non washable wool when you felt), but most will do well, especially when fused in a double layer. This adds firmness and the edges can be kept clean and crisp. Some coating wools get quite thick by themselves and may not need to be fused. I will be posting a tutorial on pin construction techniques in the new year. First I have a few more patterns to draft! Right now I’m off to get stitching….mmmmm should I do the blue one or the purple one first???

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