Hare Today

Oops, just realised it’s almost a month since I last posted anything so, just in case anybody was at all concerned, I’ve popped in today to let  you know I’m still here and haven’t suffocated in the heat nor am I still at the vet’s waiting in line with my cat behind two dogs, a rabbit and a faun – although both of these scenarios were distinct possibilities and, yes, there really was a faun.

There are reasons for my absence.  Family matters – nothing scary – meant that, on my return to France I had a lot of making appointments, cancelling appointments,  paperwork and rummaging through ancient filing to find said paperwork to do.  Plus, the heat has been punishing for a couple of weeks and I haven’t felt like doing anything unless strictly necessary. There goes the housework again then.

Anyway, now I’ve got my excuses for not commenting on as many blogs as I usually do (although I’ve read most of them) out of the way, I do have a few things to show but I’ll restrict myself to one today as I’m after a bit of advice.

The clue’s in the title

Before I left for the UK., I saw a pattern for a beastie, had a coup de coeur, bought the pattern and cut it out.  I ordered a hemostat (surgical forceps thingy) as recommended by the pattern designer for turning narrow tubes of fabric out the right way but, for reasons too complicated to go in to here, they are still languishing in England lest I be accused of trying to perform surgery on the plane on the way back to France.

Anyway, I managed with a chopstick – the turning, not the surgery – and here is the ‘what is it going to look like, sort of, when it’s finished?’ stage, limbs and ears held in place by pins.

Now, the assembly is finished  – although I’ve just realised I’ve forgotten his tail.

My question is – have you ever painted a 3D fabric shape with acrylics?

Here’s the original pattern by Emma Hall .

Having got my lovely hare all together nicely (apart from the tail) I’m scared to mess it up with my very amateur painting skills.

I have burnt umbers and raw siennas and even some pouring medium to hand which might sound like I know what I’m doing but I don’t.

Any tips?



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  1. #1 by claire93 on July 29, 2019 - 11:00

    my painting is hopeless so I can’t help.
    Although I would suggest, if you have some scrap fabric leftover from hare, to make yourself a small stuffed ball, or any shape, to try painting on the 3D fabric first.

    • #2 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 11:07

      Yes, I was thinking along those lines myself – it would be useful for testing which colours to mix together too.

  2. #3 by katechiconi on July 29, 2019 - 12:04

    I have painted 3D fabric shapes. I’d suggest using a stippling technique with very little paint on the brush, and build up slowly. If you can locate a broad stippling brush it shouldn’t take forever. You don’t really want the fabric to get wet with the paint, but you could try spritzing it lightly with water in a spray bottle before stippling to avoid a patchy finish. A test piece would be a really good idea, as different paints and different fabrics will perform quite differently.
    I’d only add: why are you painting him? He’s gorgeous as he is. But you’ve probably got a particular finished effect in mind….

    • #4 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 12:36

      Did you use a pouring medium?
      I also like him as he is although he looks like an albino hare. I’m really only painting him because the pattern designer does and also I’m thinking the paint would merge all the stitched areas into the main body a bit.
      I’ll almost certainly make another and wonder about making it in wool blend felt as I did with my fox recently or even in a subtly patterned or textured hare-coloured fabric.

      • #5 by katechiconi on July 29, 2019 - 22:28

        I didn’t use a pouring medium, I thinned a little with water and spritzed the fabric I was working on. It seemed to take pretty well. I think if you want the stitches to blend in, you’ll need to test how the stitches take up colour, or there’s a chance they’ll stand out even more. I like the idea of a range of hares in different fabrics!

      • #6 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 23:21

        That’s true about the stitches. I’ll have to put a few in my test piece to check what happens. I think the hare would look great in different fabrics but you’d have to get the colour/pattern/texture just right I think otherwise it could end up looking a hot mess.
        The designer also does a pattern for a really cool greyhound should you be tempted. https://www.etsy.com/listing/205403711/greyhound-pdf-sewing-pattern?ref

      • #7 by katechiconi on July 30, 2019 - 00:22

        It’s a gorgeous pattern, but I’m going to wait a bit, since every soft toy he’s been given so far has been tossed in the air and worried somewhat. It’d look great in black crushed velvet, an excellent likeness!

      • #8 by tialys on July 30, 2019 - 09:54

        Eek!! I didn’t mean as a dog toy! I see you have already moved over to the mad dog lady side. Welcome aboard.

      • #9 by katechiconi on July 30, 2019 - 11:08

        No, I didn’t think so! – and I wouldn’t want it as a dog toy, it’s much too pretty, but Mr Mouse would undoubtedly regard it as his property and steal it and disembowel it.

  3. #10 by nanacathy2 on July 29, 2019 - 15:02

    I think I would make him a nice fabric jacket and forget the paint. The fairies I made last year all required painted eyes, no chance, al that work go to pot? ate seems to have come up with a good idea though. Good luck, and nice to have you back.

    • #11 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 17:55

      I quite like the idea of making him a jacket – a knitted one would look cute too – and that might be the way to go if my test swatches don’t look good.

  4. #12 by anne54 on July 29, 2019 - 15:13

    I haven’t painted on fabric either (but that won’t stop me having my tuppence h’penny’s worth!), but Kate’s advice sounds wise, as it always does. i think it will take a lot of work to get him evenly painted, especially if you have the lighter chest. I rather fancy the fabric jacket idea too. My only other suggestion is to contact Emma to see if she has any advice for you.

    • #13 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 18:08

      I did ask Emma what paint she used before I bought the pattern because I had it in my mind that she’d mentioned copic pens in her listing. However, she said it was acrylics. I’m not too worried about getting an even finish because I think the style is supposed to look ‘natural’. Emma suggests leaving some of the original fabric colour showing here and there for instance. I’ll have a practice with the stippling method as I think that would give the sort of effect I’m after but, if it doesn’t go well, a mini jacket might be on the cards.

  5. #14 by Laurie Graves on July 29, 2019 - 15:52

    Phew! No advice to give. Good luck and hope the horrible heat is abating.

    • #15 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 18:09

      We’ve had a couple of rainy, fresh days but the heat is building back up a bit now – hopefully it will stop before it becomes too uncomfortable again.

      • #16 by Laurie Graves on July 29, 2019 - 18:14

        Fingers crossed for you and the rest of Europe. Muggy and too hot in Maine as well. Sigh.

  6. #17 by sewsouk on July 29, 2019 - 16:58

    I paint fabric quite often but only 2d not 3d. The trick is to do a light wash then stipple using a very dry brush, cloth or piece of foam. I also use cotton buds too. Building up layers gradually works best. You can always add but you can’t take away!

    It is best to test using a piece of the cloth wrapped round something like a ball -or maybe a narrow shape too -you don’t need to sew it just secure with a rubber band. Maybe try a test painting either side of a sewn seam. Check it once the paint is dry- it will look very different.

    I think I would have painted the cut out shape of the hare before making it into the 3d hare only because there are some hard to reach places but that is just me.Then I would have just added any finishing touches once made.

    • #18 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 18:12

      Thanks for those tips Ruth – it seems layering and stippling is the way to go. I did think about painting the pieces before assembly but I guess then it might be more difficult to get a uniform effect. I’ll have a practice with one of the dog’s tennis balls and an elastic band and see what happens.

  7. #19 by sew2pro on July 29, 2019 - 19:20

    I noticed you’d been quiet but a whole month!! How did that just fly by?
    So sorry about the heat wave. We had a mere taster of what you went through and it took a day for me to realise I don’t like hot weather any more. 28C is plenty!
    Good luck with painting the beastie boy!

    • #20 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 20:29

      I’m just not comfortable in very hot weather nowadays. I would say, 27 degrees would be my temperature of choice with perhaps a light breeze. I can’t go out in the sun without sunglasses 😎, I don’t like the feel of the sun beating down on my head and I’m worried about getting more wrinkles which, if I’d have taken my own advice years ago, I wouldn’t have (or at least not so many).
      Having said all of that, I don’t like being cold either. There’s no pleasing some people.

  8. #21 by magpiesue on July 29, 2019 - 19:36

    Glad to know it’s just been life as normal (mostly) that’s kept you out of the blogosphere. I had wondered. Life’s been getting the better of me more days than not lately too. I have no suggestions for painting your hare. He’s looking lovely though. If it were me, I’d just pick a great print and make him again. 😉

    • #22 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 20:25

      I think I’m going to try that next time. The print would have to be just right though.

  9. #23 by thecontentedcrafter on July 29, 2019 - 21:47

    I missed you! Glad it’s nothing too awful (except heat and paperwork equals pretty awful in my book.) Hope it cools down for you soon.

    My advice – DON’T use pouring medium. I’d be more inclined to first put on a coat of gesso which acts as a gripping ground for the paint, especially as you aren’t using fabric paints. You have to trial your paints on the fabric anyway to test for all kinds of things like adhesion, colour density etc etc. And to know how to blend the colours where and when you’d like them to be blended. I would have some white to hand, to mix with for shading purposes and as Kate suggested work with a largish round stippling brush or a ‘large round’ the biggest, fattest childs painting brush you can find. You will also need a finer version for pushing paint into the creviced bits of sir Hare. When applying the paint think stippling rather than stroking. Also less is more and you can add layers to build up colour. If it was me, and to make the hare really quirky I’d have applied some stamping prior to painting – but also to the flat pattern pieces ……….
    If you find your paint is too thick and or ‘heavy’ you can add a little water to make it more movable, but by ‘a little’ I mean a little else you lose your paints ability to adhere to the fabric. (think 1:10) I also like Cathy’s idea of a cute wee jacket . You could make one anyway ….. I’m sure you will make a great job of it! Oh, a final note. If layering make sure the paint dries between. Else it will all eventually just lift off and leave the poor fellow in a sorry state of nakedness…. You can use a hairdryer if you are impatient. Have fun! ❤

    • #24 by tialys on July 29, 2019 - 23:29

      Wow! So much good advice Pauline. Now, I’m going to have to do lots of test pieces before I touch Sir Hare and remember to label each piece with notes detailing what I used and how I used it. I have a relatively free day tomorrow so I’ll be spreading out some protective paper and starting the mixing and stippling.

  10. #26 by nottaholiday on July 30, 2019 - 05:49

    could we not spritz some colour on a pom pom?

    • #27 by Wild Daffodil on July 30, 2019 - 07:50

      I love that sentence!

      • #28 by tialys on July 30, 2019 - 09:22

        So do I but what does it mean?

      • #29 by Wild Daffodil on July 30, 2019 - 09:26

        Yes! Just like the colourful cow. Your characterful beasties will certainly bring life into your shop – but will you feel able to part with them, once made, not sure I could.

      • #30 by tialys on July 30, 2019 - 09:51

        I’m not sure either – that’s why I still have the fox sitting on a shelf in my house. 🙄

  11. #31 by Wild Daffodil on July 30, 2019 - 07:56

    Sir Hare looks fabulous – I’ve been soaking up all the advice above – spritzing and stippling seems the way to go.
    Of course if it was mine I’d probably just splosh layers of garish colours all over him and give your Sir Hare quite a fright.
    Will you keep him or is he going to be a gift?

    • #32 by tialys on July 30, 2019 - 09:21

      I’m imagining a 3D fabric hare version of your colourful cow!
      I’m contemplating having a selection of beasties in my Etsy shop. I’ve let the stock dwindle to a few things plus my tutorials and fancied an injection of new life. My ‘Little Prince’ style fox is a contender and maybe the hare as I’ve been pleased (so far) with the results. Both designers are fine with selling the finished objects so I’ll see how it goes. It keeps me out of trouble.

  12. #33 by KerryCan on July 30, 2019 - 12:18

    Wow–everyone has an opinion on this little guy! I think he’s perfect just the way he is, although a jacket, for cool weather if we ever get any, is a nice idea.

    • #34 by tialys on July 30, 2019 - 15:17

      I also like him the way he is and, if my painting doesn’t work out, I will make another one and leave it plain. I’ve just found some orangy brown quilting fabric in my stash which I think would also make a nice version. I could just use a creamy fabric for the inside of his ears. I’m also fantasising about a Liberty hare as my stash of tana lawns is embarassing and I need to do something with it. When I’m going to do all this I have no idea for, of course, this is not the only project floating about in my workroom by a long way.

  13. #35 by kathyreeves on July 31, 2019 - 05:01

    Youtube has everything, maybe there’s a video?

    • #36 by tialys on July 31, 2019 - 11:09

      I have looked but can’t see anything specific to 3D stuffed animals which I suppose is no surprise. I really only want a faintly colour washed effect so, as long as I am not too heavy handed with the paint, it should be fine.

  14. #38 by Kim on July 31, 2019 - 10:33

    Welcome back! I hope the temperature is more bearable again – we have rain 😐.
    I have no help to offer with the painting but I’m fascinated by the comments and can’t wait to see how you get on. Fabulous hate btw.
    I regret I now have a mental image of someone doing surgery with chopsticks 😲.

    • #39 by tialys on July 31, 2019 - 11:12

      It is more bearable now thanks Kim. Mr. Tialys told me it was absolutely lashing down in Bournemouth yesterday so it looks like things are getting back to normal everywhere 😆
      I am sure somebody, somewhere has probably performed surgery with chopsticks but it doesn’t bear thinking about and it certainly wasn’t me!

  15. #40 by dezertsuz on August 5, 2019 - 03:38

    Well, really, if you do it all wrong, so what? You will learn answers to questions you never thought to ask, and you can always make another one. Give the wrong one to a child – they don’t care at all!

    • #41 by tialys on August 10, 2019 - 09:49

      All true – except the giving it to a child bit as it’s meant as a décor item really and has wire in the ears 😲

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