Hedgie! A little tutorial for the strawberry shape

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I finished up Hedgie the Hedgehog by Just Nan this weekend! He came out so cute!

Since it’s my second Just Nan finish in this “strawberry” shape, I figure I have exactly enough experience to do a little tutorial on this type of finish in case anyone out there is on the fence about making one of these cuties and thinks maybe the finish would be tricky. It’s really not too bad, and Just Nan gives really good instructions. You can do it! Get that adorable Just Nan mouse kit you’ve been eyeing! Or get out the one in your stash that you’ve been putting off! This is really just pictures to accompany the written directions you will find included with any of her charts. Here goes!

So, after you have completed your stitching, gather your materials. You’ll need a pencil, ruler, and scissors, stuffing, floss or thread in the proper color, and anything from your chart pack like the decorative button for the base. And of course your needle. It can be your stitching needle, no need for a sharp.

Measure out around the backstitched border the specified amount. Then cut out your stitching. I mark a few spots with pencil and then connect the dots.

Finger press the seams inward.

Thread up your needle and, after lining up the back seam, start at the bottom and whip stitch the border stitches of the straight sides together.

When you reach the top, work your needle down through the top of the nose and end off the thread on the inside seam.

(Now I needed to take my son to baseball practice so I am moving to a nice picnic table at the park. This is my real stitching life, people. That’s why we are now at a different table with better light!) (Also, at this point, Hedgie needed a little extra work on his nose to get his profile just so. I will not include that since it is not used for the mice, and it was fussy).

NO! I am not going to use all that stuffing!

Next you need a new thread for gathering the bottom. Just Nan says use 24″ and she is not kidding. You don’t need more than that but don’t think you can get away with 12″! You can’t! (Spoken from experience!)

Enter your thread at the seam. I find it best to leave the tail on the top, not inside, and I leave a tail of a few inches to pull the gather. Using the backstitched line as a guide make small gathering stitches.

When you get to the end (rather, back to the beginning) tie a loose overhand knot. Stuff as recommended- mousies get stuffed firmly through to the nose so you might want a chopstick but Hedgie is supposed to have a flat, upturned nose so no stuffing in his nose.

It only really takes a pinch of stuffing! Then tuck in the extra fabric.

Pull your gathering stitches closed like a drawstring bag. When it is closed up enough ( there will be a gap) tie off the end to hold it. Stuff the short end in to the hole. But don’t cut your long thread end! Work the gathering folds around so it’s even.

Then get out your button and center it in the base.

Use the rest of the thread to stitch the button on the base. I try to space the stitches evenly which is a little tricky with the varied spaces on the button edge due to its decorative design.

I go from underneath up through the spaces in the button. I find it easier to make the stitching straight going from bottom up. You might prefer diagonal stitches, if so, then it’s probably easier to go top down.

Then end off your thread and hide the end inside your creature- I do this by poking the needle in, pulling the thread firmly through to a random area, squashing my critter a bit to snip off the end so the end pulls back inside when it is un-squashed. Probably here’s where you needed a picture but this part is a two hand operation! Sorry no picture!

Et voila! Here’s the finished Hedgie!

There are some finishing touches he will get but I couldn’t do them at the park. I’ll put those on at home and share it will you next week for the FFO Gallery. Hope you found this helpful and inspiring to make a mouse or hedgehog from Just Nan! If I could make 2 in 2 weeks or so, you can too!

9 Responses

  1. Your hedgehog is so sweet, and your tutorial on how to finish it was brilliant! You’re right, it’s not difficult, just a bit fiddly, but then aren’t a lot of finishing techniques?!
    I know of at least two bloggers who love these Just Nan animals so hopefully between you you will encourage more stitchers to give them a try. Blogland needs more cuties like these! 🙂

  2. Joanne P

    That was a great tutorial and very clear to follow. The only thing I did differently was use a thread that blends more with the button rather than white. I can’t wait to do the other mice I have in my stash.

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