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Blanket Stitched Bird Silhouette - Framed {Tutorial}

Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Shoe Box of Scraps. Do you sort your scraps? This shoe box holds strips...though, I'm certain I've seen some squares and other shapes in there, too.
Today, I'm linking up with Marie of Blooming Homestead. I whipped up this cute little craft especially for today's link up.

Raise your hand if you keep your fabric scraps.

{Both hands raised high in the air.}

Yeah, I have more than one box marked, "Scraps".

I do enjoy small sewing projects that I can complete in a day...an hour - even better! Thus, I keep my fabric scraps...perfect for those small projects I love.

4 easy steps! Cut. Pin. Stitch. Frame.
8 1/2 x 11 Document Frame
Fabric Scrap for the bird silhouette
Fabric Scrap for the branch silhouette
Coordinating Colored Thread
Scotch Tape

Blanket Stitch - here are a few good places to learn this technique:
Tutorial: Hand Sew Felt Using Blanket Stitch from Future Girl
Blanket Stitch from Stitch School
Blanket Stitch - hand video from Connecting Threads

Step One: Cut.
Step One: Cut
Using the thin piece of card board that came with the frame, cut our your muslin...just a bit larger than the size of the card board.

Keep that piece of thin card board. You're going to need it later and use it for framing that sweet little bird.

Tip: Iron your fabric after you cut it.

Save time and your sanity. A smaller piece of fabric is always easier to work with when ironing. No sense ironing yards of muslin when you will only be using a tiny portion of it.

After you have cut and ironed your muslin and fabric shapes, decide which whether your bird will be framed vertically or horizontally.

I chose vertically, leaving plenty of space to embroider a verse or quote later.

Step Two: Pin.
Step Two: Pin.
Pin the branch shape wherever you like, keeping in mind which direction you want your frame - vertical or horizontal.

My inspiration for this craft came from a picture hanging on my sister-in-law's living room wall. I thought the darling bird silhouette would translate perfectly from print to fabric. So, one day while visiting her, I did a free hand sketch to create my own templates. No copying or tracing - - - free hand.

This craft would have gone down differently if it was more detailed than a silhouette.

This bird is a basic shape which I encourage you to try. Doodle and sketch. Draw a bird and a rough branch and put your own signature on your craft. Own it!

Step Three: Stitch.
Step Three: Stitch.
Bird and branch pinned in place, thread your needle, grab your thimble, pour yourself a cuppa, put on your favorite show/movie, and stitch.

I recommend appliqueing your bird and branch onto the muslin. My favorite technique when doing this by hand is the blanket stitch. It is easy and pretty. I listed three places to find how-to's for the blanket stitch (see above).

I chose a coordinating pink thread for my pink bird. Unfortunately, I did not have a coordinating green for my branch. So, I chose a complimentary color of an orangish-brown.

Step Four: Frame.
Step Four: Frame.
Remember that piece of thin cardboard that came with the frame? You used it in step one to cut out the correct size of muslin. Now is when you need it.

You will also need some tape to help hold the muslin in place and keep it as taught as possible when fitting it for framing.

Tip: Before fitting your fabric bird to the frame, iron it so that it will lay smooth and look lovely hanging on your wall or perched on a shelf.

After ironing it, lay the bird face down. Place the thin cardboard face up...so that you can read the writing on it. Fold over excess muslin and tape down to cardboard.

Next, gently slide the piece of cardboard which is now steadying your fabric bird into the frame.

A thick piece of cardboard should have come with your frame. Slide this in behind your fabric bird/thin cardboard.

Finally, gently slide the frame stand...the very back of the frame into the frame.


Your lovely little fabric bird is now ready to grace your home.

Now, it's your turn...join me in linking up at Blooming Homestead.

I'm also linking up with these great craft link parties:
Today's Creative Blog
Home Stories A2Z

Better Off Thread
Then leave another comment!
  1. That's lovely! Visiting from Show and Tell.

  2. What a sweet tutorial! I love your happy, enthusiastic attitude about scraps. My arms, legs and toes are all in the air!

  3. This is such a sweet project and makes me yearn even more for spring! :)

  4. How adorable! Love birdes and this is so lovely!Thanks so much for sharing the great tutorial! Would love to have you visit me sometime.
    Have a fabulous day!
    Hugs from Portugal,

    Ana Love Craft

  5. Oh, so cutesy! Thanks for the tute. I'm pretty sure I'll use it to make one or two decorative elements for my niece/nephew-to-be!

  6. This is lovely. I especially love the simplicity of the design and your fabric choices!


  7. Love that fabric bird. You make it look so simple! Don't know if I'd be able to do it that easily but at least you make it look easy :).

  8. What a great way to use those scraps! Love this, makes me think of spring. Thanks for linking up!