Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Marching Mariah

Both kids are in marching band and I knew I definitely wanted to do ornaments of them in their uniforms.  This one took some thought and it took a while to design.  This is an old picture of them from freshman year with their band friend in the middle.  I wanted to include as much detail as possible without losing my mind.  

Because I can't draw, I started by looking for a DeAngelis pattern that had the basic body shape I wanted.  I was looking for a front-facing girl with her arms positioned to hold something.  I landed on Jodi.

Using the method I shared on how I do my pattern designing, I got to work tracing and changing details.  Here's the first pattern I came up with:

I don't usually color them, but I needed that for reference when I started cutting out.  I got it all cut out and even got the front of the jacket stitched . . . . and then I decided I didn't like it.  For starters, I made a mistake that I've made before and I don't know why I didn't catch it.  I like my ornament people to be about 5-1/2" tall when they're completed.  When I printed this pattern, I made it measure 5-1/2" from the top of the HAT to the bottom of the feet.  What I really meant to do was make it measure 5-1/2" from the top of the HEAD to the bottom of the feet.  Secondly, I didn't love the hair.  I also had the head disproportionately large.  And, finally, I didn't like the legs.  I knew this one would be a lot of work and be hanging on my own tree, so I didn't want to be looking at it and hating it every day.  (I already have that Charlie Brown situation -- remember?)

So . . . . back to the drawing board!  I like my second attempt much better.  The hair's a little different, I got it the right size, I changed the pants, and I got the head in proportion with the rest of the body.

(Yes --  you can have that pattern.)

Since I can't draw, I had to figure out what to do about that trumpet.  I just did a Google search for "black and white trumpet clipart" and came across this:

I sort of drew around the outside and then drew around the inside.
Worked like a charm.  Mariah loves her!!

Skating Mariah

Neither of the kids had been ice skating before.  We promised them a "friend day" over Christmas break and one of the things we did was go ice skating outside in downtown Cleveland.  It was a beautiful day and everyone had a great time.  

I could've just used Carolyn DeAngelis' Katrina pattern . . .

. . . but I knew I'd probably want to do a matching boy for Brayden, so I wanted to go a different route.  I'd seen some cute ice skating clipart on Etsy and decided this would be an easy one to design. I've noticed that very often on Etsy, the clipart vendors will have a "buy two, get one free" offer.  I've even seen "buy two, get get TWO free" before. That's a good time to peruse everything in that Etsy store to see if there's anything you can use down the road.  This clipart came from an Etsy store called Tiny Confetti  and it was perfect for adapting to an ornament because it was simple.  

I wanted to use paper clips for the skate blades like I did on the Katrina ornament.  This one had smaller feet, though, so the whole paper clip would've been too big.  If you look at a standard paper clip, there's that smaller, inside loop:

I used wire cutters to just snip off the larger loop and that worked perfectly.  The overlap of the of the paper clip is hidden up inside the skate.  I think she's adorable . . . just like the girl she's named for.  


In case anyone happens by and thinks I've stolen someone else's work or thinks I'm profiting from it:

  • purchased the clip-art.  I did not do a "right click/save as."
  • I am not selling a pattern made from this clip-art.  I'm not even giving away a pattern made from this clip-art.  
  • I am not selling ornaments made from this clip-art.  

Rolling Roadster

January was a big month in our house.  Mariah turned 16 and got her license.

Her first job was to drive us straight to the poor house to pay for her insurance -- LOL. Of course, we thought this milestone merited a commemorative ornament and Mariah asked for a shiny red car.  I went with a vintage DeAngelis pattern and chose the Rolling Roadster.  I thought it had fun things to customize and ways to add dimension.  In addition to wanting it "shiny," Mariah also asked for clear plastic over the headlight . . . like the kind I used on the snorkeling ornaments.  You'd have to know this girl; leave it to her to request something specific like that.  I used some of my silver metallic fabric to give the car big, blingy rims.  I think it turned out great and Mariah loves it!


February is Mariah's month for ornaments.  I had hoped to do four or five, but I managed to complete four.  And we can blame that on Goofy.  He is now my arch nemesis in the world of felt ornaments.  And, honestly, I have no one to blame for that but myself.  "What ornaments would you like?" I asked.  "Elsa to go with your Anna that I made a couple of years ago?" I asked.  Her response:  "You know which ones I really like?  That Mickey and Minnie.  I think I'd like a different Disney character every year."

I think you remember the Mickey & Minnie ornaments.  They had a million tiny pieces, had instructions in Japanese, took hours to make, and caused me to say lots of very bad words.  They looked great, but I was super relieved when they were done.  I kept reminding myself that the end justified the means and I dug that horrible pattern book back out and decided on Goofy.  Having been up close and personal with Goofy for what felt like an eternity, I can now tell you pretty much anything you want to know about his appearance and I will never forget the colors of his clothing.  (For the record, I think his stylist might be color blind.)  I knew I had enlarged the Mickey & Minnie patterns a little, so I did the same for Goofy.  So, in addition to being the most horrible ornament to construct, he is also the largest.  If I hadn't enlarged it though, he only would've been more maddening with smaller pieces.

So, here he is . . . . Mariah's latest Disney ornament and the current first-place holder of my least favorite ornaments EVER.