Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Good Morning Roosters! Tutorial for New Pattern

Whelp...it looks like I messed up my blog post.  All I wanted to do was edit my Good Morning Rooster tutorial and somehow it posted it as a new post.  Just wanted to let you know that this post was originally done in October but my editing messed up the date!

For several years now, I've been wanting to do a rooster design.  This is a design that I drew up and then put aside a few years ago.  It's time to introduce the finished, "Good Morning Roosters!"

Way back, 12+ years ago, one of my first attempts at making a penny rug was  a beautiful rooster design.  I had purchased the pattern online from a designer (whose name I won't mention).  I cut out all of the pattern pieces...which were MANY and then attempted to stitch it together.  I gave up very quickly because I discoverd that the pattern pieces didn't fit how they were supposed to fit.  The pattern only had the front picture to go by with no clear instructions of which feather should be placed first or even where all of the feathers went!  I was so disappointed and sad that I had wasted my precious wool on something that I wasn't able to finish.
  I still have that pattern and all of the precious wool pieces sitting on a shelf in my wool room.  I learned from that poorly written pattern though. When I write the instructions for my patterns, I always include a pattern layout guide which shows exactly where each and every piece is to be placed.  I know, first hand, how frustrating it is to try to figure out poorly written pattern instructions.
In this case,for this "Good Morning Roosters!" not only do I have a layout guide with exact placement instructions, I'm also including a step-by-step tutoral to make it even easier and less intimidating for those who are less experienced at working with wool!
As always, this is a copyrighted design, created by ME, Cath's Pennies Designs.  If you wish to make it, just buy the pattern!  Please don't steal!

"Good Morning Roosters!" Candle Mat Tutorial

To start, I traced the backgound scallop shape onto freezer paper, ironed the freezer paper onto my black wool and then cut it out.

The roosters and sunflowers need to be centered on each of the 8 scallops.  To make centering easier, I stitch in some temporary basting to mark each scallop into a pie section.  With a ruler and chalk pencil, I drew lines on the backside of the black wool, across the wool, from point to opposite point. 
I then made quick long basting stitches along the chalked line, making sure to clearly mark the very center of the wool.
These basting stitches will be removed once all the roosters and sunflowers are stitched.
Now it's time to assemble the roosters!  I pinned the main rooster body onto the wool, lining the rooster's chest right up against the basted line.

Then I pinned the gold rooster head with the orange feather section tucked underneath.  The pattern is marked to show the exact position to place the orange under the gold so it's easy to get it placed just perfect.

And lastly, before stitching the body, I pinned the rooster's comb and beak under the head.  Note: I suggest using a lightweight fusible interfacing for the beak to keep it from fraying.  It's small and the beak is sharply pointed so the interfacing really helps.  
It's difficult to see the stitching because of the tweed colors, but I've whip stitched around all the body parts with black floss.  If you are using plain colored wool or wool felt, then the stitching will show so the instructions recommend  blanket stitching with black floss so that it looks neater or use thread colors that match your wools so that the whip stitches will blend in.  I've used whip stitches on this tweed wool because I like how it gives a slightly frayed look that resembles ruffled feathers.  The solid colored wool doesn't fray like this so blanket stitching is almost a necessity.

The rooster's wattle is whip stitched on and the eye is made with a french knot.

Now comes the really fun part... the feathers.  Keep in mind that this might look difficult but it's not.  All the feather will fit and I'll show you exactly how they fit!
I've started with the top two feathers.  The green feather is tucked under the gold and the green feather is arched almost right up against the rooster's comb.  Make sure the feather tips don't extend too far into the pie section next to the rooster...otherwise it infringes on the sunflower leaf space.
                                                    The feathers are whip stitched in place.                                                        

I forgot to take pictures as I stitched on the rest of the feathers so now the pictures are showing how this looks using plain colored wool with blanket stitching. 

                                  So, the red feather is placed in position, just slightly overlapping the gold feather and the green feather is stitched directly underneath.  For this plain colored wool, I blanket stitched around the edges but for the tweed wool, I just whipped stitched the edges.

The last three feathers have a black backing added to them since they will be hanging over the edge of the mat.
So I placed the black backing under each feather and blanket stitched all around the edges to attach.  (The tweed wool is also blanket stitched to secure the backing. 
Here's the finished rooster done in tweed.

This is the finished rooster done in plain colors.

Now for the sunflowers.  To center the sunflower stem perfectly in it's space I placed a ruler across the scallop, from tip to tip.  That space measures 5" so the half/middle point of the scallop is 2 1/2".  

I marked the 2 1/2" with a chalk pencil...

Then again with the ruler, I lined the ruler up with that mark and the center of the black background. I drew my chalk line for the stem.
I stem stitched up the chalk line to create the sunflower stem.

I recommend using lightweight fusible interfacing for the sunflower since the petals are so small.
The sunflower pieces are pinned together ... the main sunflower petals, the green sunflower petals and the sunflower center.  They are all whip stitched in place. For the solid colored wool, I whip stitched the green petals and blanket stitched around the gold sunflower petals.

The leaves are stitched on and now all the basting stitches are ready to be removed!
Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures to show how I attached the red background, but it's pretty easy without pictures.  The purchased pattern will give the complete instructions for adding on the outside background.
And there is the finished candle mat!
The pattern along with wool and a wool kit will be ready to sell tomorrow.  It's really really exceptionally pretty when finished so check back tomorow to order this pattern.  
I will also be sending a newsletter out in a couple days so if you're not signed up to receive it, just click on the newsletter signup button over there on the left sidebar.
Thank you ladies!
Happy Day!


Anonymous said...

I have a friend who's just moved into her new home-this will make a perfect gift for her! I'll look for it tomorrow-thank you, Cath!


Lois--Huckleberry Lady said...

Another cute candle mat!!!!

How the heck are ya???
Been busy here. Got in a consignment store in Aug and sales on etsy...needless to say, no idle hands here. I miss blogging. I check in every couple of days. Have pics downloaded to write on my own but now blogging seems to be on the back burner. :(
Be on the lookout, I'll write someday...

paulette said...

Adorable!! Another winner!!

Bari Jo said...

You are amazing!!! Thank you for all your tutorials! They are such a huge help! :O)

Kif Huffman said...

How did you do the roosters that were solid colors at an angle? or is the background cut different? Super cute, love your work! Ready for more patterns :)

Caths Pennies said...

Kif, your blog settings don't give me your email address so I can't reply to you personally. Hopefully, you'll come back to this posting so that you can see my reply.
The roosters for both the tweed and the solid colors are positioned exactly the same. The solid color mat just doesn't have the red background added.