So, as I sit here needlefelting little black pads for the feet of the dog I'm making (yes, that's 20 little pads!!), I wonder.....
Have we discussed other ways to do the pads?
I've seen ones that are puffy and look really neat, ones that are inset somehow..... how???
We've discussed how to do pulled toes but what about some other methods of doing paws, well pads, on bears???
Trapunto is always nice too! Its a bit tedious, but the end result is so rewarding. The easy way is as follows:
1. On your paw or foot pads, draw your toe design with a quilters pencil or other disappearing pencil.
2. Pin a piece of muslin under the area that you want to have raised. Set your machine up for free hand stitching. (Drop feed teeth, take all the pressure off your presser foot [unless you're using a "hopping" foot], and put on a darning foot.) Thread with a color to match the outline you want to stitch, or something to blend.
Take a stitch and pull up the bobbin thread. Hold both thread tails, and with small stitches, go backwards about 1/8" and then go forward.
3. Completely outline the area you want to pad, and reverse about 1/8" to end. Do this for all the areas you want to have raised. Clip all thread tails.
4. From the back, make a small slit, about 1/2", in the muslin only. With the tweezers or hemostat, pull out a small amount of stuffing and push it into the smallest area, like a point or channel. Continue inserting small amounts of stuffing until you have the whole thing stuffed. Don't stuff it too full, or you'll have the fabric around it quite puckered.
5. Look at the design from the front. If there are parts that don't have enough stuffing in them, you can use the strong pin or needle to shift the stuffing around by pushing it in from the muslin side and gently moving the stuffing around. Continue this way until you have the design the way you want it.
6. Using a hand sewing needle and thread, make a quilter's knot in the end of the thread. Stitch from one side of the hole to the other, creating a web to keep the stuffing in. Don't close the hole tightly, because that will also cause puckering of the fabric around your padded area
You can use this method to make the pads prior to sewing the pad in place on the foot.
The other way to do it is to cut each of the individual toes out of leather or fabric and stitch it in place on your paw pad. Then from the back side, slit the paw pad and insert the stuffing and close as above.
OR....... you could do them by hand. ......
make your paws in mohair . Trapunta as explained by Sonya. Stuff the pads. After wards you can trim the mohair off of pads. You can paint them with what ever technique you wish. Or embroider them Or & wax them............that's why I suggested to to them by hand because the odd stray hair fibre will need to be removed while sewing. :dance:
I once saw some beautiful embroidered pads on a mini-ish bear (maybe about 9 inches but it was a skinny folky looking bear). The artist had embroidered them with waxed black thread in a satin stitch and they were stunning - my embroidery skills arent up to that thhough
I like the ones with bottom 2/3rds in mohair and then sculpted ultrasuede upper portion which is similar to what Bronwen was talking about.
I'm so boring these days - boring feet - hardly any sculpting at all these days...maybe I'll be inspired to try something different!!
BTW... 20 felted paw pads...you have far more patience than I!!!
I like to sculpt my tootsies I am getting help with that from Kim B. (BearBottoms) I like to keep my leg open when I sculpt my tootsies so I can push more into the individual toe areas if I want them puffier....
For my needle felted critters - I either paint on "faux toes" or I will sculpt them as well! My recent bear (bug) has sculpted toes - I use embroidery floss.
I also have found that the toes come out better if I mark where I am going to go in and come out - I will either use my prisma marker or my disappearing ink pen....
I usually give my bears more toes but I figure since Phoebe is a bug she would look better with less, so she has three
Thanks for the ideas everyone. And Sonya, thank you for the step by step method for traputno. I've read instructions once, they made no sense to me!!! Yours are perfect!! Matilda, great adaptation!!!
Kim, I'd never thought of leaving the leg open to put more stuffing in the toes!!! :doh: Great idea!
You all are very creative.
Interesting thread Daphne! I was wondering what traputno paw pads were.
I wish I had something more interesting to add though. I also like felted toes, or felted pads. Using claws etc. I have seen a woman who makes the pads out of the same material as the rest of the bear ( she uses synthetic ) and just paints on paw pads. Or shaves it down just slightly. She got some pretty darn cute feet that way!
Sonyathanks for the lesson on Traputno pads. Very cool and I'm dying to try it now. Could be very interesting.
Trapunto pawpads can be really lovely! We've only done them once, but will definitely do them again (our one trapunto example is actually the bear in my avatar, who has leather trapunto pads). We want to try ultrasuede the next time around. Fabian Song does really elaborate trapunto pads, if you've ever seen one of his bears... the pawpads wind up very rounded and then he shades around them. Another idea would be to do sculpted pawpads out of polymer clay or resin. My mother once did a bear with polmer sculpted pawpads covered with leather. Very interesting effect.
Good topic! Looking forward to seeing all the answers
Kim, Sue Ann, Carolyn, thanks!
Yes, a Wheaten.... for a customer. She wanted it to look like her's but she gave me a link to a photo hosting site with over 100 pictures of her dog and he looks different in every one..... he's 1 1/2 yrs. old and wheatens change so much in color, shape and size during the first 2 years of their life!!! So I went for a basic Wheaten look, sort of. I've added the extra hair that hangs in their eyes on this guy... after I took these pics but this will give you the idea. I am so DONE with him now!!! He'll be in the mail on Monday and I can finally move on. This dog has been a black cloud over my head for 2 months between no being able to get my wheaten mohair any more, trying to find something else. Then trying to figure out what this guy is going to look like. I can't wait to go make a BEAR!!!
(I had to take the photos outside today.... no sun and my light tent... well, it needs lighting help!!)
Hubby didn't like him..... once I added the fur in the eyes he liked him a little more but he really got me doubting myself on this guy and I got into a state of panic last night! ***sigh*** You've all put my mind at ease. I usually want to hear what I could improve upon and want all of those folks who don't have anything good to say so keep their mouth shut to speak up and tell me what's wrong with him. But this time I needed all the ego boosting I could get!