I must go down to the sea again…

I bought the pattern to make this Seagull Cushion from Bustle & Sew back in 2012, and have finally got around to making it.  It’s going to be for my dad for Christmas.  He lives in a house on the edge of the cliff at the seaside, and loves the sea.

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Believe it or not it took me a long time picking the exact shades of white, grey, yellow and blue felt I wanted, having visited all 3 of my local suppliers! I finally cut the pieces out and got on with it.  It didn’t take very long to stitch the pieces on, which was a shame really, as I was enjoying the free motion!  

It’s really very effective, Helen is full of good ideas like this.  I want to make myself a Toadstool Pincushion too.

AAHBK Poppy’s Book

I have always been attracted to free motion stitching, I’m a big fan of Poppy Treffry  and have both her books, which are full of eye candy (and I like the paper they are printed on, I’m funny about things like that!)

I have been on a couple of workshops for freestyle (now that I actually have a machine that will drop it’s feed dogs) and bought myself the Janome free style embroidery foot and a handy pair of these Madeira Spring Hoops.

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So here he is, ready to stitch onto the main cushion.  The fabric is a ticking-style cotton from Rose & Hubble, which I decided to back with some Hair Canvas I had leftover in my stash, to make it more hardwearing.  Isn’t he a handsome chap!

Helen says to attach the panel using invisible thread before hand stitching it to be sure it is secure.  Happily I had some invisible thread in my stocks, and had recently found and watched this video with Vanessa Wilson

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I have made notes – 

  1. Only use on top spool, NOT in bobbin
  2. Add a thread net to control the flow of thread and
  3. Reduce the tension to a lower number

and put them, and the thread net, in a bag with the invisible thread.  Organized Am I!  The next step was doing some hand embroidery.  I decided to put it in a hoop as I had one big enough, and use blanket stitch rather than the one in the pattern.  I went to my trusty Needle Index and dug out my chenille needle and had a lovely time embroidering.

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Then it was time to make the bunting, more fun with free motion stitching!  When it came to adding the words from our English Music Hall Number “Oh I do love to be beside the seaside” I decided to use a couple more lines than on Helen’s cushion.

 

 

song

I was going to hand embroider it all, but it was really too much to be considered fun!  So instead  I followed her suggestion and used a sheet of printable Linen instead.  (Rather than waste the rest of the sheet I added a poem called “I must go down to the sea again” as I have had another idea!*).  I didn’t fancy fraying the edges, so I used my Scalloping Shears to give it a fancy finish then stitched it in place.

My Seagull Cushion

Here it is finally assembled.  The hair canvas has given it a nice feel and it should wear well.  I overlocked all the seams inside, so it’s nice and tidy.  I hope it will become a family heirloom!

The idea I had is to make another cushion, (so he has a pair) using a smaller version of this beautiful ship design from Helen, with the other verse….

“I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking” 

John Masefield