Layer up embroidery and appliqué to make Jenny Blair’s fuzzy sloth friend
Combine appliqué with embroidery to stitch this sleepy rainforest champ
26 x 26cm (10 x 10 ") mint cotton fabric
26 x 26cm (10 x 10 ") white cotton fabric
100% wool felt in mottled grey, white, dark grey and blush pink
Embroidery thread (we used DMC stranded cotton in B5200 (white), 414 (dark grey), 955 (light green), 911 (dark green), 963 (light pink), 3708 (dark pink), 3824 (apricot), 3078 (yellow))
Iron-on interfacing Erasable fabric marker
This little guy is living his best rainforest life, hanging out and snoozing, so we’re nabbing a leaf from his slow living book and taking our sweet time to stitch him.
Yep, a sleepy, smiling sloth is always a winner, but it’s the savvy use of wool felt that’s got us truly sold on this beautifully detailed hoop. It adds touchy-feely texture, making the sloth all kinds of fuzzy, and allows you to fill large areas full of solid colour without having to satin stitch for days.
Use three strands of embroidery thread throughout, and turn to page 97 for a handy stitch guide.
01 Using the template on page 97, mark the pattern for the flower border and the vine onto the mint fabric with the fabric marker.
02 Using the templates on page 97, trace the sloth body, face and eye pieces onto the paper side of the iron-on interfacing. Iron the body piece onto the mottled grey felt, the face piece onto the white felt and the eye pieces onto the dark grey felt, then cut the pieces out.
03 Remove the backing from the felt pieces, then position them in place on the mint fabric using the image as a guide. Iron the pieces in place, then use the fabric marker
and the pattern on page 97 to mark on the sloth body details.
04 Lay the mint fabric right side (RS) up on top of the white fabric and place both pieces inside the embroidery hoop. The white layer will brighten the mint shade and hide any dark threads at the back. Embroider the eyes using white thread and straight stitch.
05 Using dark grey thread, embroider the nose with satin stitch and the mouth with straight stitch, as shown.
06 Embroider the arm and leg creases with dark grey thread and backstitch, then use dark grey thread and straight stitch for the claws. Use white thread and French knots to add the dots, and white thread and fly stitch to embroider the chevron details, as shown.
07 Using the templates on page 97, trace two of each flower shape onto the paper side of the iron-on interfacing. Iron them onto the blush pink felt, then cut them out.
08 Iron the felt flowers in place on the mint fabric, referring to the image as a guide. Using apricot thread, chain stitch around the outer edge of the large flowers.
09 Using dark pink thread and the image as a guide, create a stamen effect on the two large felt flowers with French knots and straight stitch, then fill the bottom section with satin stitch. Using dark green thread, add the stems of the flowers with straight stitch and fill the leaves with fishbone stitch.
10 Using dark pink thread, chain stitch around the outer edge of the remaining border flowers, then fill them in with light pink thread and satin stitch. Use apricot thread to create stamens with French knots and straight stitch, then fill the bottom sections with satin stitch.
11 Add straight stitches in dark pink thread on top of the smallest
border flowers to complete them, using the pattern as a guide.
12 For the vine, use dark green thread, and begin by stitching along the length in backstitch to create one row. Stitch another row of backstitch directly next to the first row, aiming to stagger the stitches slightly so a brick-like effect is created as shown. Repeat this for several rows until the area is filled. Using light green thread, backstitch the stems of the creeping leaves and flowers over the top of the dark green vine.
13 To finish the vine, use light green thread and satin stitch to create the base of the flowers, and dark pink and straight stitch to add the felt flower details. Add three French knots in yellow thread alongside the vine, referring to the image for placement.
14 For the rest of the border details, following the stitch guide pattern on page 97, embroider the suggested leaves and stems in backstitch using light green thread. Fill one half of the leaf with backstitch in the same brick-like style as the vine in Step 12, and add a straight stitch down the middle in dark green thread.
15 To complete the embroidery, add the remaining leaves using fishbone stitch in dark green thread. Add the lazy daisy flowers in yellow thread and the French knots in dark pink thread.
16 To finish, trim the fabric into a circle roughly 2cm ( ") larger than the hoop. Sew running stitch around the edge of the fabric and then pull the thread tight to gather it. Knot the thread to secure.
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