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15 December 2010

Tutorial: Nerdtastic Felt Ornaments

As promised to the awesome people who showed up to check my tutorial out at Bazaar Bizarre's "Cocktails & Crafts," here's the full instructions on how to make one of my Nerdtastic Felt Ornaments! Based on how well this tutorial is received, you might find more of these little nerdy how-to's coming your way real soon.

TUTORIAL: Nerdtastic Felt Ornaments
by Steph Cortés @ nerd JERK
Small but freakin' rad!

DESCRIPTION:
Having been  a nerd most of my life, I've let this shine through as much as humanly possible. So why not share it with decorations this holiday season? Handmade gifts are often the ones we hold dearest to our hearts. Let your true self shine through with a new tradition: make some Nerdtastic Felt Ornaments to brighten your tree with awesomeness.

MATERIALS:
 - White Felt
 - Ruler
 - Scissors
 - Disappearing Ink Fabric Marker
 - Embroidery Needle
 - Red & Black embroidery floss
 - A spool of Red 1/8 in. ribbon
 - Small amout of Polyfill


STEP 1: Using your marker & ruler, draw out two 1.5" by 2.5" rectangles of white felt for your ornament. Cut these out & set side.

STEP 2: Cut 8" of red ribbon. Fold in half and tie off the end twice in a knot. Set aside.

STEP 3: Draw out a pair of horn-rimmed glasses and the word "nerd"  in marker on one of the small white felt rectangles. You can also write "geek" or "hipster" if you so desire.

STEP 4: Measure out about 1' of black embroidery floss. Divide your length of thread into two lengths with 3 strands of floss for each length of thread.
Thread the embroidery needle with 3 strands of embroidery floss and knot the end.
Stitch in the horn rimmed glasses with a back stitch (view this page to see an example of a back stitch). It doesn't have to be perfect, as all handmade items are unique and little imperfections add to their charm. Tie off knot when finished and cut off excess with scissors.

STEP 5: Measure out about 2' of red embroidery floss. Separate floss into 2 lengths of 3 strands each. Thread the embroidery needle with the 3 stranded- length of red floss and double knot the end. Stitch in the word "nerd" with small back stitches, tying off thread twice after completing each letter to ensure your stitches stay in place. When finished with word, tie off and cut off excess thread with scissors.

STEP 6: Tie another double knot at the end of your excess length of embroidery floss. Place knot of ribbon above the glasses between the felt rectangles and stitch into place.

STEP 7: Continue to stitch the perimeter of the white felt rectangles with a blanket stitch (view this page if you need help learning the blanket stitch) until you come to the last corner.

STEP 8: Grab a small amount of Polyfill and stuff into your ornament so that it looks like a small pillow. Push Polyfill into small corners with the cap of your marker.

STEP 9: Finish stitching the rest of the perimeter of the ornament with a blanket stitch. Tie a tight double knot close to the felt and cut off the excess thread with scissors.

STEP 10: Massage the Polyfill in your ornament until you feel it's evenly stuffed and enjoy!

SUGGESTIONS:
You can make an entire set of these awesome Nerdtastic Felt Ornaments with a variety of colors, phrases and graphics. Someone suggested doing a moustache or an owl. Others have said a ball of yarn with "craft nerd" would be pretty rad. Since you're the crafter, you control the amount of awesome. Have fun with it and see what you can come up with!

Feel free to post URLs to examples of what your finished ornaments look like here!

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