Friday, February 18, 2011

Log Cabin Chicken sans pins

I can't seem to make myself stick pins in this. And I only stuffed it with regular stuffing, so it's squishable, like a toy. 
Turned out pretty cute, in the end, but you should have seen what I ended up with when I made the blocks. I was using the same exact 1" strips, which I cut myself, and sewing both blocks at the same time, but one of them ended up about 1/4" smaller all around. I must not have cut very accurately, or maybe it was the sewing. I decided to center them (mostly) and then sew up the three sides. You can kinda tell my strips aren't uniform, but only if you stare at it.

I did something totally different for the beak and comb. I meant to do what they said, but then, I was sewing, and I couldn't find the directions, and I didn't want to waste a lot of time searching for them. (Physically, I mean, because it would have been easy to find the link here on the blog - but my Twins are always on the computers and I'd have had to kick one of them off, and, it just seemed easier to press on from memory.) So as I was sewing along (having sewn the sides before remembering I was supposed to insert the beak and comb first), I couldn't quite recall what the pattern called for, except that the comb was a felt piece. I was thinking about how to do a beak, and came up with the folded fabric triangle (not my original idea - it was on a similar pattern for a slightly fancier version of what is basically the same pin cushion), which made me want to not use felt for the comb. So this is what I ended up doing - the folded triangle beak, and a gathered rectangle for the comb.

For the beak: I used a 1" square of yellow fabric. Fold it on the diagonal twice. With right sides facing (the block - the beak is all right-sides after folding), place raw edges of triangle even with raw edges of one log cabin block, about 3/8" down from what will be the top corner of the chicken, with the open part of the fold facing down towards what will be the bottom. (Similar to how they show you here, though I've no idea why their illustration is upside-down.) What you want is to place it so it will look like this when it's done:
The beak will be sewn into this seam when you sew the three sides. Make sense?

For the comb: cut a 1 1/2" square of red fabric, fold it in half, wrong sides together (so the pretty is still showing), and stitch like so:
starting and ending at the folded edge, with the curve nearest the raw edges. Leave your thread tails. Knot thread at one end, and pull up one thread from the other end to gather. This will give you the curved folded edge shown on my chicken. Knot the threads to keep the gathers together, and pin the comb to the adjacent edge of the same log cabin block you placed the beak on, again about 3/8" back from the corner. You want the gathering stitching to be 1/4" in from the raw edge, and the curved folded edge facing into the center of the block. (Again their illustration, though upside-down, and showing the felt piece, is still correct for this placement. Except, this piece will have a bunch of fabric at the raw edge - no need to trim, it'll be inside the chicken.) You can baste these in place to make it easier to sew the blocks together, or just pin and hope for the best. (Which may involve the seam-ripper later, but, hey, live on the edge. I did.)

From there, I basically followed the rest of the directions. I forgot to do two pieces for the tail, so mine lacks that dimension. I decided to machine-stitch the tail piece to the top edge of the final seam, centering it, and then I hand-stitched the seam closed after stuffing.
I didn't put eyes on it. I kinda like it that way.

No comments: