This has probably been drummed into the woodwork, but I've been having an 'issue' with my pulled toes today. Maybe its the fact that I'm trying them on mohair, and I've always used the stiffer real fur...or maybe its because my ultrasuede is 'softer' somehow, but as I pull my toes, the ultrasuede is wrinkling. I've tried loosening the stitch, but then I just end up without my pulled effect. I have stuffed and stuffed, and wedged in my hemostats with extra bits of stuffing into the toes...there's no more room for stuffing! My best effects have been to use my doll needle after the toes are done to smooth out the toes by gradually shifting the stuffing.
.....sigh, is there a technique I'm missing??? I'm using Jennifer Laing's instructions from Constructing Teddies Friends, so I'm pulling the thread from the top of the foot or paw to the center (or bottom of the toes) for the stitch...and as I pull down, here come my wrinkles, right across the pretty plump toes....
I'm getting a bit frustrated as I look at all the beautifully plump tootsies on here...and they're all done on mohair, so I'm doing something not totally right here...
I learned from Jennifer also and I have had the same problem from time to time. You may have them stuffed TOO tight.. I can think of all kinds of things that would cause that.. maybe the foot isn't flat enough? (which would put extra ultra suede in the pad.) or maybe it is the type oif ultra suede. I generally have that same problem if I use a very heavy ultra suede. The lighter stretchier ultra suedes seem to work best.
I have had exactly the same problem from time to time...but a bear artist friend told me that if you start your stitch further away from the tip of the toe...ie bring the needle out through the mohair say a centimetre above where the 'toe' tip is ( blimey this is hard to describe!!) because you are making more of a curved stitch and pulling the toe through both sides of the foot effectively then you get a smoother toe.
It does work actually..and though the thread doesn't emerge right on the edge of the foot you can't see the stitch on the foot side as the pile hides it. I always pinch the foot together as I pull the thread through too...that seems to help. Without a doubt though it does depend on your paw pad fabric, felt and cashmere , to my mind, sculpt beautifully....though cashmere puckers easier than felt does.
I hope that makes sense!!!!!
:hug: Thanks gals!!! :hug: I knew someone on here would know exactly what I was talking about
Hmmm....I do tend to pull awfully hard, and the ultrasuede I'm using is a medium weight. Its possible that its too heavy? So I'll see if I can find some lighter weight for future bears....
Jenny I'll have to give that a try, starting the stitch further back. I usually start right on the edge of the ultrasuede where it meets the mohair, so maybe that's the setup point for my crumpling and wrinkling?
Thanks for giving me new things to try. Bear making is always interesting, I just wish the collectors knew how much hard work goes into making them
I have a feeling I do mine like Jenny. The thread goes over the seam line into the mohair. It gives it a good anchoring point. Only when I have tried to do it only on the paw pad fabric have I ever got wrinkles.
I also do'nt stuff the heel o(r close up for that matter) until my toes are finished.
I always mark the spots on the paw pad where I want the thread to be at the bottom of each toe...because once I start to pull up, I can never find the right places for the other toes.
I pull up into two places. The top of the foot and the tip of the toes. When you pull your thread to the tip of the foot (Like Kim said) is when you really start to get the shape to come to life.
I usually soft stuff first and then add more stuffing after the 'sculpting' is done.
Nice tootsies, Birgitte and Matilda and Kathy
It makes perfect sense, now that I think about it, that the footpad would pucker if the pulling pressure is only from one end of the pad fabric to the other--you'd be pulling it back on itself. It might not make much difference how firmly or softly you stuffed. If the toe stitch is anchored on the mohair, the pull would be between the two fabrics over a firm seam. Yes!
I love this thread...I didn't have to ask not one question..lol.. You all got it figured out just great...
I love too ..." Gee..there's so many ways to mess up"...lol... I got to thinking ...there sure is..even tho we discuss every single detail on making bears ( count all the posts !) we can still find more ways ..lol...Winney
Yep, Birgitte, that's the diagram I'm working with!
I LOVE the toes on your baby bear Oooh, I just want to reach out and squish them! Last night I perservered into the night, and managed to get all my tootsies just the way I wanted. They are a bit harder than I'd like, but every time I tried to understuff, the wrinkles came back Pooh! So, I guess 'bear' wanted his tootsies that way! I tend to just bow to the bear's wishes ...
Thanks for all the suggestions, and lovely pics :hug: They've helped loads!
Beautiful toes everyone and great advice!
I've been wondering why some of my toes wrinkled and some didn't. I've been trying to stitch in the middle of the seam, right where the paw pad and mohair meet. I guess sometimes I got above the seam allowance inside the foot and sometimes below it, making the difference.
If the toe stitch is anchored on the mohair, the pull would be between the two fabrics over a firm seam. Yes!
This makes sense to me too. Hurray! May this be the end of wrinkled bear toes!