It is wonderfully inevitable that what we admire most in the world becomes a part of us and is reflected in the choices we make. A love of Van Gogh may draw one to growing sunflowers, wearing yellow dresses and painting your walls blue. Or in my case, a fascination for Andy Warhol and a love of sixties kitsch has developed into a love of pop. With that throw in a vibrant pinch of cultural Mexican love, and we have what I affectionately call the Pop Cactus.
The Pop Cactus is the cutest of cacti with its purposely eye popping colours. It is the perfect thing for people born without a green thumb. The Pop Cactus is also a lovely little traveller, fitting into your bag and you’ll never have to deal with quarantine because… well, it is made of felt. So… let’s do this!
Felt Craft: How to make a Stitched Felt Cactus in a Pot
You will need:
- Felt (two different colours – the brighter the better)
- Felting wool [contrasting colour to the felt]
- Pom-pom fringe trim – 17.5cm length
- Thread (match the felt colours)
- Wire stem
- Hobby fill
- Needles – sewing and needle felting
- Scissors (paper and dressmakers)
- Fabric marker or dressmakers chalk
1/ Print template at 100% and cut out the pattern pieces.
2/ Draw an outline of pattern pieces onto felt and cardboard. When drawing on the felt use a fabric marker or dressmakers chalk. Choose your felt colours for maximum contrast and brightness. We want these babies to pop.
3/ Cut out the cardboard and felt pieces.
4/ Pin the pom-pom trim to rim piece, 5mm-1cm down from top edge. Hand stitch in place along edges of pop-pom trim.
5/ Bring the sides of the Rim piece together and blanket stitch closed beginning with the top end [closest to the trim].
6/ Press the newly sewn seam with fingers to give the rim a cylindrical pot shape.
7/ Pin the base piece to bottom of the rim and blanket stitch together around the circumference.
8/ Lay out the trunk pieces two together x2. Blanket stitch the edge of one side, stopping at the top point.
9/ Place the two seamed Trunk sections together and blanket stitch along the outside edge. Keep the bottom open. Puff out the trunk to give it a three dimensional shape.
10/ Using pliers bend the wire stem in the middle and push the ends through the cardboard inner base Ensure the bent wire length is 10cm above the cardboard. Bend the wire ends below the cardboard and snap off excess wire.
11/ Drop the trunk onto the bent wire. Stuff trunk with hobby fill.
12/ Place the two branch pieces together and blanket stitch along the top edge half. Stopping at the marker reference on the pattern piece.
13/ Sew the branch side piece to the two joined branch pieces, creating a third side.
14/ Stuff branch with hobby fill and stitch to side of the trunk by lining up the side seams. Use the pattern piece marker as a guide.
15/ Pop the cactus inner base into the felt pot and stitch the cardboard to the base of the pot. This will help hold it together.
16/ Fill up the pot with hobby fill. It’s just like potting a real plant isn’t it!
17/ Layer some felting wool around the cactus and over the hobby fill. Take your felting needle and get some good stabby action happening as you make the felting wool lock into the hobby fill.
18/ Voila! You now have your very own cute pop cactus to love and to hold.
Melissa made her first doll when she was seven, by raiding her mum’s craft box. Years later when she had kids Melissa’s passion for making dolls was rebooted. Now she makes mermaids, fairies, armature dolls, girls, boys, plants, food mythical computer game creatures… the list goes on [we could be here all day] . She experiments with multiple mediums – sewing, painting, cloth, felt and wire, and any new material that falls off the shelf at the craft store and into her shopping basket.