DIY Fabric Stars by Alida Saxon
The type of fabric best for this kind of star, especially if it’s small (Mine are about 2.5 inches in diameter) is a medium weight designer fabric like Moiré. It is durable, has a bit of shine to it, without unraveling easily or stretch to cause a horribly lumpy shape. But do experament if you’ve got a scrap you can try out. Just don’t put a lot of money into a fabric purchase before you know it’ll hold up.
1. Place two pieces of fabric right sides together, and then sew a star as seen in the diagram, making sure to lock your stitch at the start and finish, indicated by the red dots. You need a hole left large enough to turn the star right side out, as well as stuff it with batting. Trim fairly close around your stitching 1/8" or 1/2 centimetre all the way around, coming even closer at the tip and the valley. This is especially important for a good looking star. Too much fabric at the tip, and you can’t get a good point for all the bulk. Too much fabric in the valley, and the fabric strains to wrap around the angle and you get wrinkles and deformed star shapes. Do it wrong once and you’ll see what I mean.
2. This is roughly how it should look turned right side out. The points aren’t going to be as sharp, though. You can use a chopstick, wooden skewer to get those points. Don’t push too hard either, as you could rip right through the stitching. If your points are very lumpy, either you didn’t trim away enough fo the excess fabric before turning, or the fabric you chose is a bit too thick for the size of star you made. Use good batting that isn’t going to feel or look lumpy.
Now it’s on to prettying it up. At the craft or fabric store you can get all kinds of cord trims. Pick your favorite, be it satin or like I use – a plastic metalic woven over a fibre core. I find it glitters a bit better than satin cording. You’ll need thread to match your cording. Here’s where I differ from most star designs is that I stich on my trim. Sure, you can use a glue gun or the like, but I find the trim pops off before long. Hand stitching makes for heirloom quality decorations that can survive a mauling without falling apart.
3. Cut a length of trim after roughly measuring around the edge of the star. Be a bit generous or you’ll just have to redo it. Stick the tail of the trim inside the stuffing hole and start stitching. I’ll make a stitch about every centimeter. Hide the thread as much as possible by passing under the fabric, surfacing to place a stitch piercing the cording. The cording will naturally settle into the ditch, hiding your seams.
4. Your stuffing hole is going to be the bottom of your star, so when you come around to the top point of the star, you are going to make a cording loop. Put in an extra stitch for strength at the point, before folding a short section of cording and securing it with several stitches. Resume stitching the cording to the star, drawing the loop snug against the fabric.
5. When you’re coming around the last point, it is time to trim off the excess cording and stuff the end into the hole. This is the trickiest part of the stitching. You want to both close the stuffing hole and fix the trim down while keeping the tail in the hole. Don’t expect perfection your first try if you’re not used to hand sewing. Just do your best to keep your stitches close and you’re done.
Time consuming, but worth it. You can add extras like a tassle to make a shooting star, or add glass beads for extra glitter. You can even trim the whole thing in beads instead of cording if you like. Plenty of variations are possible.
Tagged: , DIY , stars , fabric stars , sewing , hand sewing , art , crafts , art recipes