Nellie"s Needles

Monday, October 27, 2008

Bird Perches & Headdresses

The two foreground birds were created just before I left the cottage. The orange one was done last spring when I first began. All of them got their perches this week after I got back to Tennessee.
These two with headdresses were made at the cottage as well. I used tiny lengths of fuzzy yarn from the two skeins in the picture to adorn them. The ruff around the brown one's neck makes him look a bit like a vulture. Can vultures be cute?
Here's how I get the yarn on the birds. I cut short lengths of yarn from the skein. In this case, I include a touch of blue green at one end. Teeny dots of glue were applied to where I wanted the yarn on the birds body. I use a squeeze bottle that comes with an applicator. There are syringes that can be purchased at craft stores.
Carefully lay the yarn over the dots of glue. Use fine straight pins to hold it place until it dries. When removing the pins give them a twist to release them from the dried glue so the yarn is not dislodged. I've used as many as three lengths of yarn for a headdress ... each one applied separately ... and as few as the one for the vulture's ruff.

To make the birds stand more easily and securely, I glue their feet to objects ... some to driftwood collected on the beach in Michigan and some to shells that I've found on past vacations.
Apply a strong, thick, industrial type glue such as "E 6000" to the bird's feet. I secure the feet with rubber bands or clips (whatever works for specific areas) to the object until they're dry. It is easier to work on one foot at a time ... sometimes waiting until the one is set before gluing the other. It may be necessary to shape the toes (claws?) with pliers before the gluing process. If the perch object is rough on the bottom, a piece of felt or felted wool gets glued there to protect the surface where that bird may end up living.

I hope many of you are enjoying watching these birds come to life here on my blog as well as in your own studios and sewing rooms.


Paularay said...

I enjoy your birds. It is so neat how the fabric gives them there own personalities. I am reminded of my great grandma who made Chicken and rooster door stops,out of fabric, like your birds. by the hundreds in the early 70's I wish i had a picture of some to share.

self taught artist said...

I am certainly enjoying watching the birds. I especially like the different objects they are perched on. Fun photos!

Bizarre Quilter said...

Wow! These birds really are fabulous! Thank you for sharing the patterns and instructions.

I also loved your instructions for the rosette! They would take a while to make, how special.

I haven't been to your blog for a while, and look what happened while I was away???

Loz in Oz

Lise said...

The birds are lovely! So are the photos.

teodo said...

Nellie your birds are getting more and more famous and i think that now they are in a lot of parts of the world.

Nellie thanks for the border's tutorial.
ciao ciao

arlee said...

I am succumbing! I *have* to make birds today--these are too irresistible to pass up!

arlee said...

Ms Delishia Pomentea awaits your approval :}

Nellie's Needles said...

Arlee, Ms DP bird is funky fun. Who would've thought of using paper? other than you? And then there's the angelina fibers worked into her head dress and tail feathers. oooolala!

clevelandgirlie said...

How absolutely cool Nellie that your birds are winging their way across the oceans. They really are so fun and full of personality.

Kay said...

The birds are wonderful, and I love to see how the different fabrics work out. I'm going to resist making them though--

Laney said...

Hi! I love the birds!!! Now I'll probably want to make some LOL!