Here it is! It isn’t perfect in any way shape or form. The proportions are off. Mr Mouse is taller than that. And I’m not as thin as that. There are ripples in the fabric, the circle isn’t perfectly circular, some of the fabric glue I used shows, and my stitches aren’t perfectly even. But it’s perfectly us and it makes me smile. It makes all of us smile. We may even hang it up in the living room like souricette 1 wants.
Here’s another one to give you an idea of the scale.
I used a yard of quilting cotton for the background. Full width, unwashed because this will only be spot cleaned. I interfaced the whole back of the fabric to make it sturdier. I folded and sewed the sides back like a hem but on the side. Then I created a casing for a dowel at the top and bottom. The bottom dowel gives it weight and the top dowel is for hanging. Mr. Mouse bought curtains rods to hang it inside.
Remember the inspiration piece? Here it is again.
See how there’s a rectangle with the circles at each corner? Souricette 1 and I marked that rectangle. She chose silver ribbon and I glued it on. I have a hard time with topstitching ribbon neatly and thought this would work better. Except for the glue showing through…
Then, souricette 1 chose fabric for the circle and the ground and I made that part. We drew the family together. Or I should say “together”. Then she told me which fabrics to use. She was very excited about the blue gingham for her dad because he does have a shirt like that. I was instructed that he needed buttons too. She wanted him to wear jeans and was very happy to learn that I did in fact have some denim. For both of our skirts, she picked fabric that I have actually used to make us skirts. This one for me and this one for her. For our tops and souricette 2’s dress she just picked whatever pleased her. I used lightweight double sided fusible to appliqué our clothes and skin to the big circle. I embroidered hair, shoes, and details. The fusible stuff didn’t stick very well so the embroidery also serves to hold everything in place.
We all have hair made of pearl cotton and the rest is two strands of embroidery floss. Mr Mouse has a little triangle up top because that’s how he does his hair. It isn’t quite that high or pointy in real life though… And yes, he should totally dress up as Tintin for Halloween. The buttons are french knots.
Speaking of french knots…
Curly hair! A whole bunch of french knots! I’ve gotten really good at them… You can see I used a variety of different stitches.
Souricette 1 did do some of the embroidery. Maybe a dozen cross stitches on her skirt and top. She needed a lot of help to know where to put the needle but she was good! I should get her started with hand sewing. She’d love to try the sewing machine too…
With the embroidery done, I centered the circle on my background fabric and sewed it on. Then I sewed the cord on top. I was initially going to sew the braid to the flange but decided I liked the way it looked like this. I bought 2 yards of the braid thinking that 1 would be plenty. Ha! Turns out I had just enough. Somehow, the circumference is always longer than I think it will be… I wasn’t quite sure how to get the ends to look neat so I rolled it up in a circle and sewed it down. Souricette 1 likes it like that and doesn’t realized that it’s just to hide the ends…
I had to sew down that rosette/circle thing by hand. I tried to follow the lines in the braid (well, not exactly a braid, what do you call a 2 strand braid thing?) but you can still see my thread a little.
Finally, we needed to come up with something for the fours corners of the inner rectangle. I wanted to find four things that represent our family. One corner could have been our cats (we have 2 of ’em), one could have been a maple leaf and then, I don’t know, other stuff. But souricette 1 was having none of that and informed me that we were doing stars. When I protested, she said this was her project and that was what she wanted. I’m just the labor… She wanted yellow stars and I said we had no yellow. Technically, we yellow felt but I sure wasn’t putting a bright yellow there. Ick. Not that I don’t like yellow but here? Again, ick. I came up with the idea to use the same material as for our clothing. So there’s a star made with my skirt, souricette 1’s skirt, souricette 2’s dress, and Mr Mouse’s shirt. I got approval and got to work.
I used this tutorial. It conveniently comes with a pentagon template. I traced the largest template onto freezer paper and cut it out. Then, I ironed it to the wrong side of my fabric and cut that out, leaving the freezer paper adhered to the fabric. Souricette 1 helped me with the folding. Now, I’ve done origami with fabric before and it didn’t work very well. The fabric had a hard time keeping the folds despite my using the iron extensively. Sewing it up afterwards was difficult too. That may have to do with the fact that I attempted a crane… This time, I figured the freezer paper would help. And it did. It was coming apart a bit but mostly, it stayed put. I also took care to choose a relatively flat star. I only used the iron to press the star down a little at the very end. I pinned the points down and machine sewed 5 lines on each star. Then, I pinned the stars onto the fabric and used embroidery to hold them down. Freezer paper and all… I used a different stitch for each star and those stitches are the same as the ones used for our clothes only mixed up. For instance, this is the star made from my skirt fabric but I used the cross stitch from souricette 1’s outfit.
And then it was done! I was informed that I put the stars in the wrong place but I. Don’t. Care. I did most of the work so I get to make some design choices too. And I like it. Actually, I love it. I’m going to tell Mr Mouse it’s going in the living room.