WOW 2 POSTS IN ONE DAY…
So having taught sunflowers a few times and having made hmmm how many dozens for the annual centerpieces I do have a bit of a handle on how to make these and since a lot of people asked here are instructions:
Sunflowers are easy peasey especially if you have a proddy tool (kind of like a spring loaded needlenose plier). If not you can do it with a big fat primitive hook… You will need about a fat 8th of wool for the center in various colours and about a fat 8th for the prodding plus a scrap for the back (approximately 1/2 of a 16th…
1. Draw circles on linen – I did 2 different sizes – one about saucer sized and one a bit smaller as I wanted bigggg sunflowers – you can draw a bunch on one piece of scrap linen but you need to leave about 4 inches between them because the proddy takes an inch and you need about half an inch of linen around the sunflower to turn under.
2. Hook your centers – use scraps or yarns or thready stuff that you would usually not want to hook a rug with – thready or thick or yarn will give it wonderful texture.
3. Once the centers are done PRESS THEM now because you don’t want to do what I did and press them AFTER you have prodded – flattens the prodding! but do not cut out!!!
4. Prod around each center – make the petals as long or as short as you want. I made my pieces about 1 inch wide by 3 1/2 inches long and tapered the ends. Mix them up – they don’t all have to be the same colour but should relate to the center. To prod you push your proddy tool down one hole and up about 3 holes over and clamp your strip in the jaws of life (proddy tool) and pull it through so that the center of the petal is centered in the holes. If you don’t have a proddy tool push your hook down one hole and pull up one end of your proddy strip and then move over a few holes (say 2 – 3) and pull up the other end – you will now have “petals”. I leave about 2 holes between the last row of hooking and where I start to prod and about 2 holes between prodded petals.
5. Once the prodding is done cut out each sunflower leaving a good 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch of linen around each prodded sunflower and then finger fold this to the back. I used to press at this point but again that flattens down the proddy so you really don’t need to press. If it bugs you having the linen loose then do a really long basting stitch to hold the linen to the back of the sunflower in a circle. So from the front your flower looks finished – from the back it looks pretty darn ugly!
6. Cut out a piece of scrap backing that is about half an inch wider than your center (thready or too thick stuff is good) – I actually draw a circle on freezer paper using the original template for the center of the sunflower made a tad wider and cut it out and then iron it to my wool backing and cut out around it adding half an inch all the way around. I then press the seam allowance over the edge of the freezer paper with my steam iron giving me a perfect circle – then remove the freezer paper.
7. Pin the circle backing to back of sunflower and stitch it on using the same technique as a show binding i.e. stitch down in between the loops and tug as this will totally cover the backing – leave about 2 inches open at the bottom.
8. Stuff with fiberfill and then take a walk! Find a good gnarly stick, stuff it all the way up to the top inside the sunflower and stuff in some more fiberfill and then finish stitching the bottom together around the stick – et voila you have your sunflower!!!! You can add fabric leaves if you want at this point.
If my instructions are not clear – email me!!!!