Hello, everyone, and welcome to this month's Stitching Focus! I'm Lizzie Jones, your Stitching Ambassador, and this month I'm going to let my crazy cat lady flag fly. I've always been a cat lady, but we recently adopted a kitten so my feline fondness is at an all-time high. It's been years (almost 14!) since we've had a kitten in the house and I may have gotten caught up in a major wave of kitty fever. We have a new tower, scratching post, set of stairs to make it easier to climb up into our bed (I know)...the list goes on. So I thought today might be the perfect opportunity to share some treats I whipped up for my four-legged friends. Let's take a closer look at this month's featured products.
The first item in this month's spotlight is the Sewing Staples: Scissor Keeper Die. This die first debuted as part of the Quick Stitch line of kits, but was later released separately. It is designed to keep your sharp sewing scissors safely secured, but its simple shape is wonderful for so much more (I dare you to say that sentence five times fast). It coordinates with the gorgeous Sewing Staples: Floral Cluster Die, but can also be paired with monograms or other Seasonal Stitching designs for even more options.
1. Erin trimmed off the handle of these Scissor Keepers to create sweet, seasonal flags. She adorned the flags with the Seasonal Stitching: Butterflies, Eggs, and Clovers to celebrate Spring. A hidden cardstock core keeps her flags flying high on her little dowel rod poles. Clever!
2. Tracy used just the straight edge die to create her scissor keeper. The Sewing Staples: Floral Cluster looks stunning in cool colors against a Smokey Shadow background. She even added a tiny ribbon tag for a bit of extra flair.
3. Erin created these charming Easter treat pockets decorating the Scissor Keeper to look like a carrot. The Tissue Paper Favors #1 Die creates the cutest green tops, don't you think?
4. Erin also created this tussie mussie style lollipop holder to tie to a birthday gift bag. She used 2015 Birthday Tags and the Limitless Layers: 2 1/4" Oval Die Collection to create a sweet focal point on her pocket. A little crochet thread is all that she needed to tie her treat to the bag's handle.
5. Erin's chicken scratch scissor keepers have a classic meets modern, homespun quality that is absolutely delightful. On the aqua version, she snipped off the handle to make it even quicker and simpler to sew together while the pink version boasts pretty scallops and that wonderful pop of color.
6. Rebecca turned her scissor keeper into a flower pouch by lining the interior with a bit of wax paper. She used Floral Cluster blooms to add a soft, botanical element while the deep purple stitching adds an elegant contrast.
The possibilities are truly endless when you're working with a basic shape like a circle. These dies have the building block potential to be nearly anything you can imagine!
1. Amy created this incredible penny rug for Halloween. She used the Stitched Beaded Cauldron, Stitched Witch Hat, and Stitched Moon & Sketched Stars Dies to embellish select mats while she layered contrasting circles on others. What a fun piece of home decor!
2. Erin used one of the larger Stitched Circles as a mat on her Big Hugs card. The curved shape is a refreshing departure from a classic rectangular version. The Button Stacks die cuts are such a cute alternative to the flowers from With All My Heart! It's a clever way to add dimension and texture without a lot of bulk.
3. Betsy layered a couple of Stitched Circles on her mini floral hoop project. On small stitched projects like this one, layering mats can be a fantastic way to give your focal point more weight. The Floral Cluster dies are small, so that added substance is particularly valuable.
4. Nichole used the Stitched Circles to create a set of blueberry wreath coasters. The Cross Stitch Alphabet makes a lovely monogram, especially when surrounded by a Rustic Wreath die cut embellished with small blue seed beads. Monogrammed items make such a thoughtful and personal gift.
5. I used the largest of the Stitched Circles as the background for my "Oh Happy Day" hoop design. The Hoopla: Stitched Circle Bases are great for creating a ground and the Stitched Scallops die is sized to easily add a playful border around the outside edge. I used the Hoopla: Stitched Banners, Tiny Stitched Alphabet, and Sew Stylish Alphabet 1 to create a sentiment that made me smile. I love the flexibility you get from alphabets!
6. Erin used the Stitched Circles to create a festive holiday ornament. Paired with the Limitless Layers: 2 1/2 Circle Die, she was able to build a fabulous base for her Seasonal Stitching: Holiday Wreath. Wouldn't you just love to hang a colorful set of these ornaments on your tree?
So now it's time to share my new spin with these dies. I decided that I wanted to make some jingling, stuffed, catnip infused toys for my fellas. A quick Pinterest search led me to all sorts of amazing ideas, so I got straight to work.
Aren't these hilarious?! I thought it would be a kick to make them food items and I was right. Seeing my 14-year-old kitty chewing on a piece of pepperoni pizza cracks me up.
I used the Scissor Keeper to create the pizza and slice of pie. For the pizza I cut three layers (one Classic Kraft, one Pure Poppy, one Vintage Cream) that I stacked together and stuffed with catnip, polyfil, and a rattle insert (I bought a bag of these on Amazon awhile back).The pepperoni are the smallest Stitched Circle shapes cut from Pure Poppy. I stitched those to the Vintage Cream layer first. Then, I trimmed the handles off of the Scissor Keeper pieces and trimmed the Vintage Cream and Pure Poppy layers down about seven holes. I sewed the layers together and then folded the Kraft "crust" piece over and stitched it into place. There aren't holes on the back for this step, so I just took my time and watched to make sure I was being careful with my spacing.
The pie was similar. I cut the lattice pieces using the Pinking Shears Border Die and secured them with a center stitch to the Blueberry Sky layer. Then, I just stitched the Blueberry sky and Classic Kraft pieces together (again, filling with polyfil, catnip, and a rattle insert before closing it up). That outer stitch keeps all of the loose ends nice and secure.
Next up is the taco - because everybody loves a taco! I used the largest circle in the Stitched Circles set to create the shell. I used the Small and Medium Scallop Border Dies to create the filling. I cut notches in the solid side of the die cuts to make them easier to curve along the line of the shell. I also used the top of the Stitched Cupcake die to create a sour cream dollop. The cheese is looped Harvest Gold Twill ribbon. Just like the others, I filled this one with polyfil, catnip, and a rattle insert before stitching it up.
The last two toys are super fun. The donut is my favorite, so I'll start there. I used the Stitched Circles die to cut two Classic Kraft layers. Then I used the Stitched Circles: Holes die to cut center rings. I used another circle die (any die smaller than your holes only die will do) to cut the center hole. You just want to make sure that your hole is smaller than your holes only ring. Then, I used a Stitched Circles: Holes shape to cut a piece of Sweet Blush. I free-hand cut around it in a slight squiggle to mimic the look of icing and then used the same smaller dies to cut the hole in the center. Then I stitched random lines using white, blue, pink, and orange thread to look like sprinkles. Next, I stitched the icing to the top layer of donut and the centers all together. As I stitched around the outside, I stuffed in the polyfil and catnip. The rattle insert fit too, but it was snug. This one is a little tougher to stuff, but the end result is so worth it!
Last up is the mini pie. I cut two scalloped circles (I used the Tinsel & Tags kit dies, but any scalloped circle would work) out of Classic Kraft and one solid circle out of Scarlet Jewel. I used the Pinking Shears die to create the lattice again, using the same single stitch at each intersection to secure the strips. I added the stuffing between the Kraft layers and then stitched all three pieces together, again securing the lattice ends with my stitches.
The boys were going nuts for three or four days trying to figure out where the catnip was hiding. Gus decided to help himself right in the middle of my photo shoot!
I figured I had tormented them long enough and handed over the goods not long after the photo shoot interruption. Seeing as how these two are still figuring out how to get along (well...Louie has no idea Gus isn't his best buddy; Gus is working on warming up) this was a welcome moment of absolute peace.
I think they approve! I have a feeling there are more catnip pizzas and donuts in my future.
The best part about these toys is that they can be made catnip free and be perfect for kids. Just make sure that all of your edges are secure so no one can hurt themselves. I'm already thinking about delivering a dozen felt donuts to the little one next door!
Thank you so much for joining me today! I hope you've had as much fun with this post as I have and maybe even got inspired to try some felt toys of your own. Have a wonderful day and I'll see you again soon!