Sunday, January 22, 2012

Duo Sided Festive Table Runner

Christmas Theme - Dove represents Holy Spirit and symbol of peace

Chinese Lunar New Year Theme - Peony flowers are known as riches and honour for Chinese

When I was planning for my next project, I brought out the pre-cut fabrics for a Christmas theme table runner that I didn't get to complete it for the recent Christmas. I know Christmas had just past. But the good thing is we can look forward to the next one. Therefore, I decided to finish it with a new addition to it - making it a duo sided table runner with one side features of Christmas theme and the other side Chinese Lunar New Year.

I don't have any sketch and just made use of the sizes of fabric available. My pre-wash natural linen burlap was in square and too short as table runner for my coffee table at home. Anyway, I was too keen to start the project right away that I cut the fabric in half and joined them to form a long fabric. Then, I decided to make the scallop ends. Being too eager to see the result, I sewed it before I had the complete idea for the table runner. I painted the images after almost completing sewing it and left an opening for turning. I had to lay a piece of paper between the two layers of fabric to prevent stain on the other side. I would advice one who is going to make this table runner to paint the images before stitching it. This was my first experience to embroider with stem stitch which I did on the olive leaves and "Noel".

Stem stitch is used to embroider " Noel" & olive leaves; Doves & wings were painted with acrylic paint

The doves and wings were sequential effect of sewing the fabric birds earlier. Dove represents Holy Spirit and also symbol of peace which made them great icon for Christmas theme table runner. 

As for the Chinese Lunar New Year theme, I chose the enchanting peonies that are full of body and rich in colours as main subject. Peony is the auspicious symbol in wealth and prosperity for the Chinese. It has been used extensively in pottery designs, embroidery and painting subject since ancient Chinese. Whereby dragonfly is associated with prosperity, harmony and taken as good luck charm. Lastly, the Chinese character "Chun" which bore the meaning of spring was embroidered on the table runner. This is sure to be an auspicious table runner.  :)

Without delay, I laid the table runner with peonies facing up on my coffee table right upon completion for the Chinese Lunar New Year is drawing near. Last week I had just brought down all Christmas decors and tomorrow would be my busy day for another session of new decor.

For those of you who like to try this out, click here for template and tutorial which included a video demo of painting the peonies.

Acrylic paint for the peonies and dragonlies; stem stitch on embroidery
Auspicious elements of Chinese

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Fabric Birds

Once Upon A Time

Sew Sunny Homestyle by Tone Finnanger is a book with beautiful ideas on sewing projects and it comes with gorgeous pictures . I fell in love with it as  soon as I received the book. Its nostalgic, country and fairy tale like projects would capture the hearts of many girls. There are plenty of projects that I wished to work on but to date I have only sewed some fabric birds.

My first batch of fabric birds was made with English country style print materials. Just the way they were made in the book.  I made them for one of my fun outing in Kaka Art Market - a local talent art market in Kuala Lumpur. Some were sold, some were given away as gifts and left two I reserved for myself.

I love the colors of old French fabric and had been yearning to make something with them. The idea of a Christmas sewing project with this color scheme was just perfect. The second batch of 21 birds was made in combination of red, white and neutral colors for decoration at home and gifts to dear friends. I sewed them at home; in the car (of course, I was in it as passenger); while waiting my kids taking their music classes, in the clinic........for 1 & 1/2 months.

Friends love these birds that don't fly. Some had offered to buy them but I hesitated. I wasn't sure they are willing to pay for them when they know the price I would ask for. (Though I think my price is very reasonable) Too little it does not justify the time and effort. . So, I ended up giving as gifts for various occasions as usual.

As I am writing this post, I decided to take order from now on :) . I could use the money to buy materials and sewing supplies. For those who like to sew this on your own, click here for template and simple tutorial.

Big - RM28 /   Small - RM23
Basic bird

(excluding postage & handling)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Christmas Decor at Home

Christmas is my favorite time of the year. It's season of love. The love of God is shown with the best gift anyone could give. We exchange gifts with loves one. We prepare gifts to those whom we like to express our gratitude and even to anonymous by sharing the love of Christ.

I love the decor of this season. To have a properly done up Christmas tree is a real investment. But to handmade all the ornaments would take up years. Hence, I gradually add on new ornaments for the tree and I handmade new decorative items for my home every year.

My family was blessed with a beautiful 6 feet Christmas tree (artificial) this year from a great couple. I am so glad to receive this as the 4 feet tree I had was too short for the room.

This year my project was to make some handmade fabric birds from the book Sew Sunny Homestyle by Tone Finananger, one of my favorite designer. To collaborate with this season, I made all 19 birds in red, white and natural jute colors. I have added some embellishment on the royal family birds for a little ethnic touch. That's simply Yann's signature :)

I found great joy making these birds though I have to sacrifice some sleep, TV shows and time for my family. It took me couple of days to set up all the decoration at home in between my chores at home and caring for my family.

I know recent Christmas had just passed. But I hope this inspired you for this year Christmas. You will have ample of time to do many projects!

Check out more pictures of the fabric bird and basic guide on my next post.