Bear Pillow Project Box Update: Prototype Number One


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Two sides of the pillow printed with Permaset Aqua Ink with shapes made with linoleum

I finished printing both sides of the pillow. For the second side, I taped down the fabric, so, it wouldn't move while I printed, which worked great. But where I had tape, some of the threads came apart when I removed the tape. So, I'll add fabric tabs on either side of the bears that can be cut off after printing, but can be a spot to safely secure the fabric while printing without worrying about damaging the fabric.


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Two side matched up print to print and pinned

Once, I printed both sides of the pillow and the ink dried. I heat set the ink with an iron. Then, I pinned the two sides together, face to face, print to print. I marked the seam where I needed to sew to guide me. Then, I sewed them together. Which I was dreading, because I do not have a lot of experience sewing, but I found it very soothing and meditative, and enjoyed it.


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Needle and thread ready to sew

I sewed both sides leaving a hole open at the top to pull the fabric right side out. I noticed immediately that I would have to change the shape of the bear considerably in my next attempt. I'm calling this guy Bear Pillow Prototype Number One. So, as can be seen in the photos, the legs are too skinny and the face is too narrow. I also learned where I sewed a ninety degree angle, the fabric bunched and did not want to lay flat, so, I will need to modify these harsh angles into more gentle curves in the design.


Stuffing the bear was also fun. The Polyfil is fluffy and soft and reminds me of cotton candy.


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Sewed together with a opening left on top to pull the fabric through and stuff the bear

I still need to sew the hole close to see what I may need to learn about this step. After I do, I plan on taking this prototype apart and mounting the fabric as art. I love how the print turned out and the shape of the bears when they are flat. So, these will be transformed back into a two-dimensional work of art, and I will start on Bear Pillow Prototype Number 2.


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Prototype Bear Pillow Number One, fabric pulled through, opening still on top

For the second Bear Pillow, I am just going to focus on figuring out what the template shape needs to be to achieve the stuffed three-dimensional shape I envision. So, I am not going to worry about printing, until I know I have a shape that will work.


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Opening to stuff the bear

Thank you for following along on this process. I enjoy seeing the evolution of an idea, and want to share the failures or problems that must be solved. The process of learning and figuring out how to make something work is part of the enjoyment for me. Thanks for reading!


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Partially stuffed bear, opening pinned, ready to iron folded seams to make easier to sew close

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