Finishing – Puffed Ornament

Small circle, oval and egg-shaped projects look prettiest when finished as puffed ornaments. A puffed ornament finish shows off the embroidery to its fullest and mimics the shape of the item the ornament is modeled after.

This finishing technique uses layers of filler, built from the bottom upwards to make a convex shape. It’s puffy in the center, with the filling tapering outwards towards the edges of the shape.

The following tutorial shows you how to make a puffed, convex ornament using an Easter egg, but the same method worked for any shape.

Materials Needed:

  • acid-free chipboard
  • traditional weight polyester quilt batting
  • coordinating fabric for backing
  • coordinating trim
  • tacky glue
  • scissors
  • needle and thread
  • completed embroidery project

Finishing – Puffed Ornament Directions:

Cut the chipboard about 1/4″ smaller than the final size of the ornament. It must be must slightly smaller because the padding adds bulk that needs to be covered by the fabric.

By cutting the shape smaller, the embroidered area properly covers the area when the fabric is wrapped over the padded shape.

In contrast, if the shape is not cut smaller, the embroidered design area will be too small, and not fully cover the shape due to the excess bulk from the padding.

It’s a bit like squeezing into last years’ jeans…

Using the chipboard shape as a guide, cut the same shape 5 times, with each shape getting progressively smaller. Cut a 6th shape slightly larger than the original chipboard shape.

Next, glue the smallest shape to the center of the chipboard. Glue the remaining shapes, smallest to largest, to the chipboard. place the chipboard shape in a flat surface (it may be slightly flexible from the moisture of the glue). Let the glue dry thoroughly.

Once the glue has dried and the chipboard is once again rigid, trim away the excess batting from the edges of the shape.

The shape is now ready to cover with the embroidered fabric.

Trim the fabric so that you have at least 1-1/2 inches extending beyond the edges of the design. Using heavy-duty thread and a sewing needle, work a line of running stitch 1/4 inch from the cut edges of the fabric.

Center the embroidered shape over the padded chipboard. Pull the thread to gather the fabric around the shape and fasten off.

Cut a piece of backing fabric 1/2-inch larger all around than the chipboard shape.

Turn under the edges of the fabric 1/2-inch and press. Hand-stitch the backing to the back of the shape using an invisible stitch.

Stitch or glue the trim to the edges of the shape to complete.