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May 2015

pocket robot mini tutorial

Both dolls frosted

this really is such a simple tutorial, then I promise, less robots.

I used robert kauffman essex linen in linen

They are made using my robots pattern, available here

Firstly I enlarged these by photocopying the pattern at 110%  but that's not necessary if you would like smaller robots


Next I stitched up the robots using the same colours as the pattern but switching them around a little.  I also added three little eyelashes to each of the girl's eyes.  And I appliqued the patch rather than stitching a panel on her chest.

Tutorial 1

Next I cut a rectangle around the robots about 2cm away from my stitching.  

If you have enlarged the pattern it will be roughly 18cm x 9cm for the girl and 16.5cm x 9cm for the boy.  

If you haven't enlarged the pattern then it will be about 16.5cm x 8cm for the girl and about 16cm x 9.5cm for the boy.

Make sure your robots are central.  Of course you could trace your robots into rectangles before stitching, rather than working backwards like me!

I cut backing fabric to the same sizes from these beautiful organic cottons from celtic fusion fabrics.  The red is a carolyn gavin fabric and the gold is by cloud 9.

Tutorial 2

I popped the backing and the embroidered piece right sides together and machined around the edges (using the edge of the foot as a guide) and left about an inch gap at the base for turning the right way around and stuffing.  Then I clipped the corners as you can see on the boy to make the corners easier to turn out.

Tutorial 3

Turned the right way around, pressed and ready for stuffing

Tutorial 4

Now just stuff with toy stuffing.  I use small amounts at a time (partly because the gap is only an inch) because it's easier to mold once finished.  I stuffed them quite firmly, making sure there was enough stuffing in the bottom corners.

Tutorial 5

finally I slip stitched the gap closed

Both dolls

a cute little gift for a child with an enjoyable couple of hours of embroidery :)

If you don't find embroidery enjoyable (??!!)  I have some that I have hand stitched available in my shop to buy

I will be doing kits for these in the next couple of weeks too (so there will be at least one more robot post!)

Hope you have a happy stitchy weekend


a robot family


I have had so much fun this week stitching these little robots.  I stitched them in a row as a family (almost impossible to photograph well!) and I think I will search for a frame to fit them, a bit back to front but sometimes that's just how it goes.

Colours 2

I think it started with the threads, sometimes if the colours are just what I want everything else seems to flow.  

Colours 1

and I was really happy with these colours.  I began with bright greens and blues but they weren't really me.  I wanted something a bit metally but not metallic and maybe a little vintage.  These anchor threads jumped out at me when I went thread shopping to the big city last week and I'm really glad that they did.

Back stitch

the robots are very simple (my favourite kind of pattern!)  All back stitch, that's not to say you couldn't fill them with all kinds of complicated stitchery if you wanted to but I wanted to keep them simple for beginners and older children.

Girl hat

there's a few straight stitches in there too.

I think the back stitch gives a nice broken line to them, maybe a bit more robotic.


these are the little ones still in the hoop

Full adults robots

and here are mama and papa robot.

Mum body

I even managed to slip a little bit of liberty onto mama while no-one was looking (it's an addiction!)

I love the idea of making these into little doll cushions, probably the smaller ones - little pocket robots.

So I think next is a kit for pocket robots... and maybe a giveaway once the kits are ready.

the pattern is available here

and don't forget that if you would like to buy more than two patterns there are multi buy offers for 3, 4, 5 and 10 patterns in the special offer section of my shop

Now I need to get away from my computer and go lie down in a dark room with no screens for the rest of the evening!


more little houses and robotic thoughts

Three in a row

I finished the little houses pattern at the weekend (despite a horrid lurgy that had everyone in the house knocked for six all week).  And then I couldn't stop stitching little houses.

Little mat hoop

I thought how nice to have a coffee mat with a sweet little wonky house.  The yellow helped to make the sun come out too.

Little mat

and then the pink and red (my favourite colours with a little brown too) for a new key fob for my house key.  Not quite  finished as the electrician needed to switch the power off!

Robot tummy

and now I'm back on robots, with a design I'm almost happy with

Robot head

but not quite...

So a trip to buy embroidery threads for a colour scheme I think


hour by hour, stitch by stitch


over the past few weeks I have been reworking the little houses pattern

I have added a hoop pattern

Hoop pattern full

being the wonky sort of person I am, the embroidery sits at an angle in my hoop but you are free to place it perfectly central if you prefer!

I often get asked how long it takes me to complete an embroidery and it's a difficult question to answer as part of the pleasure of embroidery for me is that I can pick it up and put it down as and when.

So I decided to try to time my stitching on this one

Ice cream

This was my first hour of stitching, as you can see the colours are a little different.  I really didn't like these colours on the roof so the next 15 minutes were spent unpicking... 1 hour 15

Hour 2

the next hour, with a bit of maths home ed thrown into the middle somewhere (algebraic fractions eek) 2 hours 15

Hour 3

and another hour, middle son back now and needing help with his art homework in between stitches 3 hours 15

Hour 4

and still helping middle son while stitching.  Not to mention that someone borrowed the camera in the meantime, changing the settings ... hence the strange colours.  4 hours 15

Hour 5

and another hour, a bit less interrupted but still can't sort the camera out.  5 hours 15

Hour 6

and we're on the home stretch... camera sorted children gone so why don't I fill those clouds with french knots?  6 hours 15

Hour 7

and the final hour, finally completed.  7 hours 15 minutes (with home ed and homework and camera fiddling included)

I can't be the only person who finds it impossible to sit and stitch with no interruptions!

The new pattern will be available over the weekend in my shop once I have written all the notes up.