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3 hand embroidery stitches add dazzle and charm to a mini quilt

3 hand embroidery stitches add dazzle and charm to a mini quilt

by Nancy Devine

Yesterday, we got cracking with appliqueing the flower pot and the English Paper Pieced (EPP) flowers onto the Studio Bird mini quilt.

Today, let’s decide where the little wool felt bird will go, and use different hand embroidery styles to add embellishments using WonderFil’s Dazzle thread.

WonderFil Specialty Threads - Dazzle

WonderFil Specialty Threads – Dazzle

Little bird pinned to the studio mini wall quilt. WonderFil Specialty Threads.

Pin the bird elements in place so they fit into the overall design.

Once you’ve decided where the bird will perch, pin it to the substrate (you may have to move pieces out of the way as you work on the various components). Use that lovely Ellana blend of 50% Merino wool and 50% acrylic, to applique the bird using a traditional blanket stitch. To keep the stitches evenly spaced apart, place a little pen mark on the side of your thumb, about a ¼” from the bottom of your thumbnail as in the photo below. This helps space the stitches evenly.

Thumb with pen marks next to the bird applique. WonderFil Specialty Threads.

A couple of pen marks on your thumb helps space your blanket stitches apart.

With the little bird in place, draw a line from the bird’s beak downward, about 2½”. Use a length of Dazzle thread to embroider this line using a chain stitch.

Light pencil line from the beak to the top of the heart. WonderFil Specialty Threads.

Draw a line from the beak downward. Chain stitch along this line.

Chain stitch close up. WonderFil Specialty Threads.

Create a delicate and shimmering chain for the wool felt heart with Dazzle thread.

Applique a small wool felt heart to the end of the line, using Ellana wool thread, making sure the heart applique covers the end of the Dazzle thread. To make the heart stand out on this quilt, I used a running stitch and some colonial or French knots on the felt, and then outlined the heart shape with Dazzle thread. WonderFil’s website offers a guide to several stitches in a downloadable PDF.

Tie a small bow using the Dazzle thread. Cover the knot with some white craft glue and allow it to dry. The glue will dry clear.

Tack the bow to the top of the heart using the Efina thread. Use a tiny amount of fray stopping solution to keep the ends from fraying over time.

Stitched bow added to the applique heart on the bird quilt. WonderFil Specialty Threads.

Attach the Dazzle bow to the felt heart.

Colonial knots embroidered on the bird's wing with Dazzle thread by WonderFil.

Dazzle adds some magpie sparkle on the bird’s wing

Colonial knots in the flower center using Dazzle thread by WonderFil.

Dazzle creates some pretty details in the flower center

A long stitch topped with a colonial knot also known as the pistil stitch

A long stitch topped with a colonial knot also known as the pistil stitch

Applique ric rac to the flower pot, and embellish it with Dazzle thread.

Applique ric rac to the flower pot, and embellish it with Dazzle thread.

Use WonderFil’s Efina thread to add a little bead eye to the bird. The thread disappears and the bead looks magically attached.

This is all looking pretty cute, right?

The magpie in me is totally in love with the Dazzle thread. It’s a sturdy 6-ply thread which is very much like perle cotton. It’s a 100% rayon and metallic blend. It’s got a bright, reflective way about it, and the little pop of metallic makes all of us magpies sit up and take notice. It’s great for hand embroidery, and like all things shiny, a little goes a long way. I’m doing my best to reign in my love of all things sparkly.

This won’t prevent me from adding some Dazzle details onto the bird and the flower. You can do as you please to embellish this quilt. Iron-on crystals, beads, heck, even a few real feathers would be fun.

As for me, the flower is getting some lovely Dazzle details, as is our feathered friend and the flower pot, which I think we can all agree, is just about right.

Come back tomorrow, when we trim our little quilt, make a label, bind it, and hang it on the wall.

This is part 4 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 3: THIS wool thread adds luxury to a hand stitched mini quilt

Go to part 5: Using a little Dazzle and a little Splendor to finish the Studio Bird quilt


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