Monday, March 31, 2014

Project 52 - Miniature Bear Making - #4

Mark the Joints

One of the fiddly parts of miniature bear making is jointing.  We will discuss various jointing methods in a future post.  For now, let's assume that we are going to use split pin joints, and that you have a pattern that has the joint position indicated, as Angus does.
When marking the pattern pieces on to fabric, be sure to transfer the joint marks accurately. 
I use a punch or a large darning needle to make a hole in the template so that I can press a dot with my marking pen in exactly the right spot.  You all knew to do that, right? ;-)
So the groundwork is done, I marked my joints accurately on the wrong side of the fabric, I sew the bear together, turn it, want to start jointing... and the dot is impossible to spot through the opening on the side of that tiny little limb.  Darn! 
Here's a very simple solution.  Before you start sewing the pieces together, grab a needle and thread it with brightly coloured cotton.  Sew a tiny X over the joint position and leave the ends of the thread hanging on the right side of the fabric so that you can pull it out later.  This simple trick saves  lots of aggravation.

This is my book page for lesson 4.
In this miniature bear making series, we are using the Angus pattern, which you will find in my Etsy Shop, and on the Tin Soldiers Website.
I have made a few page templates if you would like to copy mine, but it could also be fun to make your own.  Every week, you will find printable templates for Project 52 HERE .
Yesterday, Aurora visited the studio and brought her book to show.  What an inspiration.  She is a mixed media artist extraordinaire.  All her pages are planned and the backgrounds are filled, just waiting to add each week's lesson in.  There are bits of fascination on every page, I could play with it for an hour... cartoon strips, a page from her grandmother's ID book, cotton strips, images cut from posters and packaging boxes, bits of wool and paper napkins... 
Can't wait to see more of Aurora's pages, I will have to hurry up with the bear making tips.  If you have made a page or two, we would love to share them.  You can send photos to me at, and I will add them to the blog.

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