Thursday, March 17, 2011

"St. Patrick's Day is an enchanted time..."

"... a day to begin transforming winter's dreams into summer's magic."~Adrienne Cook

Happy St. Patrick's Day! And what a beautiful day 'tis. It's a sunny 60 degrees and perfect for partaking of green beer, some Irish karaoke, and a little jig.

I promised you pictures of my little shamrocks that I would decorate my office with, but sadly I didn't get very far. I still only have my prototype half finished. The baby shower gift from my previous post has taken up much of my time. But no worries, I'll have to make the little shamrocks just because they are adorable.

Do you have plans for St. Patrick's Day? I couldn't attend the parade last week but I'm wearing my green and Celtic jewelry! Maybe someday when I start learning step dance I'll be able to BE in the parade. For now, I prefer the Irish Festival in September. All these thoughts of Ireland have me dreaming about our eventual visit. The Irish branch of my family is from Northern Ireland (County Tyrone: Cookstown and Omagh) but they have been here for about 200 hundred years, based in Ohio. I am eager, however, to visit these towns regardless of how long ago they lived there. And to see Ireland in general! It may warrant its own trip, separate from the rest of Europe. My family is also from Germany (Kappel Am Rhein in Baden) and Slovakia; it will be very exciting to someday visit these places but I would prefer to explore for weeks at a time!

Although my shamrocks aren't done, I can share with you the other little project I made for my friend's baby shower. It's green! Her nursery theme is going to be Super Mario Bros. 3 and I wanted it to tie into that. I had a bunch of ideas but ultimately, only enough time to make one. And of course, while I was working on it, I had great ideas to make it better. But not enough time! I constructed a stuffed Yoshi egg pillow from felt. It's stuffed full enough to make a firm pillow but it can also be tossed around. I originally wanted it a little more 3D, but decided to keep it flatter like a pillow since I didn't have much white felt. I also thought it would have been neat to make it more 3D, add a small zipper to the side, and have a little stuffed Yoshi inside! Maybe eventually I'll make another one. I traced a picture of a Yoshi egg that I had enlarged enough for an appropriate pillow size. I had first blown up a print-out on a photocopier, but that ended up not big enough. I then used that blow-up and took a picture of it with my webcam. On the laptop, I increased the size until it was about the size of my screen (a little bit bigger actually). I traced it directly off my laptop screen, adjusting the paper to scroll down for the rest of my image. I used my tracing paper just like pattern cutouts, pinning them to the fabric and cutting them out.

There were four spots in all. To attach the spots, I decided black thread would pop nicely. I used fabric glue to stick them down and then a running stitch around the inside edge of the spots to keep them secure and add a nice little detail. I didn't take any pictures of the blanket stitch I used to secure the two sides of the egg together. I decided to blanket stitch the two exterior sides facing each other and then flip them right side out. You can sort of see the black stitching, but I liked the effect since this is a prop from a video game (this is slightly visible in the finished picture on the top of the egg). And then I stuffed it using polyester fill, tiny little pieces that wouldn't make a lumpy pillow.

It was a lot of fun (I like using creative prompts, like the nursery theme, because it makes me come up with my own ideas to get excited about. I need parameters and deadlines!) and fairly quick. I pretty much finished it in one evening. And now to finish the other gift!


  1. Natalie says "make one for us please!"

  2. Sure! I didn't know the girls were fans of Mario and Yoshi. :)