Monday, September 27, 2010

Pep

I always thought Jeffrey Jump-Up (the basketball player) was the most time-consuming ornament. Now, I'm not so sure. Pep could give Jeffrey a run for his money! Because I stitch everything, the soccer ball alone took over an hour. Between the black patches and the changing colors of thread as I stitched around the outside, it was a pain. I needed this to be a girl, so I stole this hair from one of the angel patterns. This was one of those tricky patterns that totally changed shape once it was stuffed. If I ever make another one, I'll be adjusting that hair to eliminate that whispy thing that winds up looking like a sideburn.

This is for Cally -- the girlfriend of our friends' son, John. She got the Leiloni hula girl last year. She doesn't have ornament-related hobbies and I was about to cut out Betsy Bubbles for her because I know she likes to go to the spa . . . . but then John told me she plays soccer recreationally and suggested that might be a better fit. (That just means she's getting Betsy next year!)



Monday, September 20, 2010

Hiccups

This is the ornament my older nephew, Alex, picked. He also chose every single color. You can't really tell in the picture, but the tie is purple -- it looks like it's the same color as the suit. This is another one I might have to make for myself now that I see the finished product. He's really cute!


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Hobo Hurry-Up

My nephews were here for a week in August and I decided to let them each pick an ornament pattern for me to make them this year. They're 10 and 12 and all boy and I had visions of the astronaut and the viking. As we were wading through the animal designs, Zach (10) became enthralled with Hobo Hurry-Up . . . or "Hobo Turtle" as he called him. From then on, no matter what Zach saw, it was all about Hobo Turtle.

"Look at this lumberjack!"
"HOBO TURTLE."
"What do you think of this astronaut?"
"HOBO TURTLE."
"Don't you think this antique car is cool?
"STILL HOLDING OUT FOR HOBO TURTLE!"

Hobo Turtle it is.

I have to say, though, that Hobo Turtle turned out to be really cute in person. Thanks, in no small part, to Zach's design choices. Hobo Turtle was to have not one, but two, blue patches on his hat -- different shades, of course. His red pack with white polka dots had to be carried on a golden stick. A golden stick! Scott is perplexed by this. His thought is that if Hobo Turtle can afford a golden stick, then he has the financial means to choose a non-hobo lifestyle. LOL!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Mr. Squealers

This is another original design and another ornament with a story. Taylor is one of my church kids and piano students. Her mother is one of my best friends and her family goes on the VBS mission trip with us in July. They also happen to be one of the five families of the local 4-H mafia. (Ha ha -- that's how I like to joke because they're all so serious about it!)

Her grandparents own a hog farm and sell a large number of the hogs that wind up in in the county fair. Taylor's father, Matt, was very involved in 4-H as a kid and was even the fair king when he was in high school. There was no doubt that Taylor would be the heir apparent. This was her first year to show a hog and what a way to start. Mr. Squealers wound up being crowned the Grand Champion! Her family was beyond ecstatic, needless to say.

And I, of course, decided this momentous occasion needed to be commemorated in the form of a felt ornament. I wasn't crazy about any of the DeAngelis pig patterns and I wanted this one to really look like Mr. Squealers. Some online clipart and references to photos for correct placement of spots led to my miniature version of the prize-winning pig.

Here is Taylor at the big moment -- parading Mr. Squealers before the judge:


And here they are after they received their big prize:


And here is Mr. Squealers in his new permanent form -- all ready to hang on the Christmas tree for years to come.


Sunday, September 5, 2010

Sofia

Here is Al Pine's significant other, Sofia. Either they are twins whose mother likes to dress them alike, or their one of those couples who've reached the age where they've started wearing matching outfits. Whatever the case, I really like her and her ensemble.


Al Pine

After seeing Clif's version of Al Pine, I immediately knew I wanted to make one of my own. It's funny how seeing it finished makes it so much more appealing. I doubt I ever would've taken a second look at him. Now I want to make a pair of the international figures for myself every year!

I went with some traditional German colors for his lederhosen. (How DO you spell that word?) I also added an arm . . . though it seems to make him look as though someone needs to give him a stein of beer!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Big Brother

This one has a little bit of a story behind it. Alex is a kid I've worked with at church for the past 10 years. He'll be a sophomore in college this fall. The short story is that due to some unfortunate circumstances in his home life, he has preferred to spend a lot more of his summer at our house than his own. He also went on the mission trip to southern Ohio with us. There were adult men, little boys . . . . and Alex. He sort of became the unofficial "big brother" to all the younger kids. He spent the majority of the week toting someone around on his shoulders or his back.

Here he is with Ethan, one of our church's kids, as we walked down the local ice cream place one night.



And here he is with Donnie and Dalton, a pair of brothers who attend the VBS our church runs on the mission trip. They seemed incapable of being in Alex's presence without climbing on him.




Over the course of the summer, Alex has seen me working on various ornaments and I'd show them to him when they were finished. He never really said much about them. I'd shown him the golfer I'd made for John -- Alex knows John well because they grew up in church together. A few weeks ago, my box of patterns was out in my sewing area and Alex was leafing through them. I said, in a teasing manner, "Aww . . . Do you want me to make you an ornament, Alex?" He immediately turned and said, "YES!" in a toned that implied, "DUH!"

Since he was sitting with the patterns, I suggested he pick something out that he wanted. He refused. He informed me that I didn't ask John what he wanted, or anyone else what they wanted . . . . he just wanted me to pick something out specifically for him. Normally this isn't a problem. Unfortunately for me, though, Alex doesn't have any hobbies or interests that really relate to any of the ornament patterns I have. Carolyn DeAngelis failed to make one of a drunk college student passed out at a party. LOL!

I spent a week or two really thinking hard. And then it occurred to me exactly what I wanted to make:


It was really a pain in the butt. For starters, I don't draw whatsoever, so it's a little primitive. I should've made those shorts wider than the legs. I tried to copy the logo from our mission team shirts, but unless you know that it is -- you don't know what it is! The whole ornament is only about 6" tall, so you can see how tiny everything was. The faces were so small that I just had to make eyes from French knots.

All in all, though, I think it turned out pretty well. I named this one "Big Brother" because I couldn't think of anything more clever. I can't imagine ever needing/wanting to do this one again, so I think Alex'll be pleased that he got not only an original, but a one-of-a-kind!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Photos from Clif

Clif sent me a bunch of pictures of his ornaments months ago, and I'm just now having time to load them all! Some are Carolyn DeAngelis patterns and some are Clif's original designs. Enjoy!




Little Leaguer







Touchdown Tommy







Blue Tooter







Tin Lizzy







Garden Guardian







MPV







Blonde Babe and Bear







Band Aide







Al Pine







Al Ahoy







Acco Lyte







Herald Angel







Angel in Blue







Tootsie







Tip Toe







Sunbonnet Sally







Penny







Night Night Katy







Hobo Belle







Betsy Bubbles







Elf Himself the XII







Raggie Maggie







Red Top Rob







Mama Claus







Yule Man for You All







Sweet Sioux Zee







Straighten Arrow







Carol Singer







Karl Singer







Candy







Kane







Della from Delft







Dutch Uncle







Round Clown







Sember Bloomer







Timothy







Roquefort







Pup Pet







Pony Rocker







Petunia







Pen Pal







Peekin'







Hop A Bit







Gogasset







Galloping Tortoise







Don Key Ota







Country Mouse






Colt 45






Chick En Little







Blonde Hare







Blarney






A Bearable Bear







Bandito







African Rubber Neck







Snoopy







Ice Skates






Rainy Days







Santa








Mrs. Claus








Jumping Jack







Humpty Dumpty







High Fashion







Smart Cookie