My latest craft project has been to make an angel. When I heard that Burrswood was having a Festival of Angels this December, my original reaction was that I could crochet one. After reflection and a look through my craft materials, I changed my mind.
I have several craft books with projects explained. The Big Book of Soft Toys by Mabs Tyler has patterns for simple dolls. I drew a paper pattern and cut out the pieces from some white polycotton material.
My sewing machine came in handy for joining the body apart from a gap for the stuffing. (I used some recycled polyester stuffing.) I also used the machine for the clothes, which I designed as I went along. I had the remains of a frill from a petticoat. My angel ended up with an underskirt and a smock.
I drew the pattern for the wings on a piece of scrap-paper. I had some white felt and cut four wings. Stuffing the wings lightly was a possibility, but I decided that two layers of felt made the wings stiff enough. I embroidered them simply with feathers in mind.
At this stage I thought of an angel joke. “Cross my wings and hope to fly!”
Her wings are attached to her clothes rather than her body.
I made a wig out of surplus tapestry wool and attached it to her head.
My biggest worry was her face. I am not good at drawing faces. I had a similar doll, which my artistic daughter made several years ago, as an example of what can be done. She had drawn a face. I was not confident. Then I found a piece of flesh-coloured felt. Embroidery is not permanent. If it looks wrong, it can be unpicked and redone – several times. So her face was attached after her hair. (Not recommended.)
Perhaps my angel will give people some amusement. It is not particularly beautiful, but I have tried. Maybe it can fill a space where it won’t be inspected too closely.
And if you’d like to make an angel out of any material any size they are required by 20th November 2015.
A previous Christmas project at Burrswood was a knitted Christmas tree. There is a short YouTube video about how it was constructed.
If you live within reach of Kent, why not go and see the angels for yourself? I only wish I could, but due to distance, I’ll have to make do with photos.