Sew a Softie Paisley Bird

Maybe it’s my hippie roots showing, but I don’t think I’ve ever met a paisley I didn’t like. So while surfing through some of the crafty, sewing, DIY blogs I’m addicted to, a little bird caught my attention. It was a clever little bird with lots of body parts and fancy stitching.  It was more trouble that I was up for at the time, but the wing was in the shape of a paisley. And voila. This little bird was born.

I started doodling paisley patterns and came up with something I liked. This tutorial is part of the ‘ Sew a Softie for the Festive Season‘ tutorial hop. Check out the list of other softies over at Coloured Buttons,

I literally made this little birdie out of scraps, but if you’re new at this stitching stuff and don’t have a stash to raid, you’ll need two or three colors of crafting felt and a smidge of cotton fabric. Pick one color for the bird, one color for a wing, one color for the beak, and a scrap of cotton.

Paisley Bird Softie on Jan Made It

Use regular all-purpose sewing thread for the basic assembly. You’ll need black and matching or contrasting colors of embroidery floss or pearl cotton. The bird will hang on a scrap of ribbon, cord, twine or other trim. A handful of fiberfill is all you’ll need to stuff it.

The tools you need are basic: sewing needle, embroidery needle, some pins, and scissors. Small scissors will help you manipulate the curves a little easier.

So download this pattern and get started.

Paisley Bird Ornament Pattern-JanMadeIt

Cut out the pieces and start with the top layer.

Paisley Bird Softie on Jan Made It

I used white sewing thread to tack the scrap of calico to the wing. I stuffed it with a tiny bit of fiberfill as I made my way around the shape.

Paisley Bird Softie on Jan Made It

OK, I know that’s not a tiny bit, you know how things will take more stuffing than you think they will. But you’re right, most of that didn’t go into the wing. In fact, a little snippet of quilt batting, just a bit smaller than the scrap, would probably work as well.

Anyway…

Paisley Bird Softie on Jan Made It

After you get the calico wing attached, stitch it to the body of the bird in the same way. Start at the back and stuff it as you go. Notice I’m still using the white thread which is practically invisible on these colors.

Paisley Bird Softie on Jan Made It

At this point I realized the checked homespun was going to fray more than I wanted, so I appliqued it with a satin stitch to seal the ragged edge. I used red pearl cotton.

Now pin the front to the back and put the body together. I used the same red thread and a blanket stitch. I started at the center back and did the tail first. I had to stuff it along the way to get stuffing pressed firmly into the tip of the tail. Use the eraser end of a pencil or other pointy object, but not your scissors, to cram the stuffing all the way to the corner.

Paisley Bird Softie on Jan Made It

Keep stitching and stuffing your way around the body. As you get to the face, have the beak handy and pin it in place.  I used two little triangles for my beak, but you only need one to do the job.

Don’t forget to stitch a little black eye.  A cluster of satin stitches or a French knot will do the trick.

Paisley Bird Softie on Jan Made It

Fold the ribbon in half and insert it at the back of the head. If you put the ribbon on the top of the head his tail will droop when you hang him. Center the ribbon between the front and the back of the bird to keep him on an even keel when he hangs on your tree.

Isn’t he cute?

This is the first time I’ve included a pdf pattern with one of my posts. The illustration is rather primitive, but now that I have my feet wet I’ll get better. In the meantime, it will do the job.

Let me know what you think and if you make one, I’d love to see how it turns out. If my instructions aren’t clear, just ask.

Hope you enjoy this little guy.

Jan

 

 

 

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5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. juliascreativeyear
    Nov 30, 2017 @ 02:26:47

    This is very cute… Thank you for sharing. I was plannig to make some little birds so your part has given me more ideas of what I could do. I hadn’t thought of mixing cotton with felt, or of Stuffing the wing, but i love both these ideas.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  2. trixi
    Nov 30, 2017 @ 02:33:18

    I love your little paisley bird!! I also liked the way you stuffed his wing and his body. Your bird is really doable 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    • Jan
      Nov 30, 2017 @ 09:48:50

      Thanks, Trixi. I think he’s easy enough for anyone to make. The little wings might be a little fiddly for a child, but if you skip the stuffing in the wings it would be a piece of cake for anyone to stitch together.
      Thanks so much for your encouragement!
      Jan

      Like

      Reply

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