MacGuyver Mittens

As you know, I have been making things out of felted sweaters.

And, if you don’t know, MacGuyver is a television character out of the eighties who could engineer an explosive device using only a paperclip and some pocket lint.  I tend to use MacGuyver as a verb when I’m describing how I successfully completed a task with my own ingenuity and a little bit of elbow grease.

Such was the case with these mittens.  I wanted to do a practice run with sewing together the felted wool, just to see how well it worked and how they felt to wear, before I made them for real.  So I thought, why not use the sleeves?  And the sleeves of this particular sweater had a beautiful row of buttons on them.  It would be a shame to waste them.

So I cut off the sleeves.

Measured them roughly to my hand.

Cut them out.

Flipped them inside out.  You can see that I was able to leave the original seams on the sides. 

Sewed them together.

And tada.

Not the best fit, I grant you, but a decent first effort, considering I didn’t use a pattern.  “Real” ones to follow.

Felted Wool Chicken

Next on the DIY Christmas to-do list is the stuffed chicken.

Again, I borrowed a template from Martha Stewart, and she has some very good instructions on making a stuffed chicken.  And some other things. I will probably make the pig, too.

I photocopied the template to double its size and cut the chicken out of those two lovely orange sweaters I recently felted.I followed the instructions pretty carefully, save that I only cut out two wings and sewed them directly onto the chicken first.  I didn’t want them flapping around and possibly getting torn off.So first of course I turned everything inside out and sewed the bottom part onto the sides, as according to instructions.Before I got too carried away sewing up the rest of it, I filled a small wool pouch (scrap from another sweater) with dried beans and sewed it up before basting it to the bottom of the inside of the chicken.  This will keep the chicken from falling over.Then I carefully sewed on the wattle and comb of the chicken while doing up its head (be careful when you go around the beak, it’s tricky), and, with some small difficulty, sewed it the rest of the way up.It worked out surprisingly well, and was really easy to do.  I’m working on another, in opposite colours.Just don’t eat it.  This isn’t a recipe post.