Friday, April 08, 2011

Leisure Sewing: Pretty Egg (Fabric Decorative Ornament)

Eggs in the Country
by Victor Gabriel Gilbert  (France, 1847-1933)

You've probably seen the egg-shaped decorated cakes in bakeries and grocery stores around the country. This dainty little sewing project is a replica of these egg-cakes, and only takes a small of amount of time to make.

It is made of polar fleece but any fabric can be used. This one is a pink egg shape, stuffed with polyester fiberfill,  trimmed in rucking, and topped with a rose and leaves that look just like the icing in the real cakes. Here is how to make one:

With a pencil and double layer of fabric, draw around the cardboard egg pattern which is included in this post and then cut out the fabric.  Machine or hand-stitch a small seam around the edges, leaving a gap big enough to insert stuffing.

When filled sufficiently to your preference, stitch up the opening, and then cut a long strip of fabric about 3/4 to one inch wide. Make the strip two times the circumference of the egg by wrapping it around the outer seam twice to get the right measurement.  This is called ruching, which is a simple kind of ruffle.  To make it, knot a long piece of thread and sew a running stitch , using long stitches down the middle of the strip of fabric, pulling it to gather slightly as you go.

Check to see if it fits the egg, wrapping it around the seam line once, before you knot the other end. Loosen or tighten the gathers as needed and then tie off.

Attach the ruching trim to the egg by sewing through the middle of the ruching again, through the seam of the egg, covering the seam, all the way around.  It should look a little like piped icing.

Using another piece of strip, approximately 3 inches long, (or use the pattern provided) sew a gathering stitch at the lower end.

Gather up the piece like this,

and pull up the thread and tie off.

Then, roll the gathered piece so that it looks like a rose, 

and stitch the lower edges together.

Lay the rosebud on some felt leaves from the pattern. Put gathering stitches down the middle of the leaves before attaching the rose, and pull up the threads slightly to give the leaves some shape, and to make them look like icing. Or, take a stitch in the back of each leave to give it a puckered look.

Imagine what a white bowl filled with these eggs in lemon yellow, mint green, baby blue or white would look like!

Print the pattern out on card stock, or trace around an egg-shaped card for your guide.

Part of the enjoyment of making something like this is the cost: just a few cents if you use little bits of fabric and trims you already have. You can scent them by spraying some vanilla cologne (available at Dollar Tree) into the fiberfill before you stitch up the seam.  It is tempting to make a lot of these, but one of them will make a nice package topper or little gift to include in a package for someone.

Have a look at Pink Saturday to see projects others are making.

The fabric eggs you see below are sold in a popular catalog online:

These velvet eggs are from Victorian Trading Company  - The trims are made of wool and chenille trim. I tried to figure out how they were made but ended up just inventing my own, as you see in the above demonstration!  These are about 6 inches long by 5 inches wide, and my eggs are almost as big. So you see, if you make these cloth eggs, you are making something that sells for about $12.00 apiece online!!  Make some of my fleece piped-icing eggs  for your etsy shop and sell them for your nest-egg!!   Check out my chicken pattern here.

You might enjoy this sweet blog.


♥ Miss Tea said...

What a super cutee pink egg! thanks for sharing the tutorial and the pattern too! Im no good in sewing but i just might give it a try!! Happy Pink Saturday!

paintedlady89 said...

What a sweet project, I love the idea of putting a little scent to it!
This would make a nice hostess gift!
Please come an visit me, I would love it!

Mrs. Cozy Home said...

I adore this -- how beautiful!

Marqueta (Mar-kee-ta) G. said...

Dear Lady Lydia,

How adorable! Thank you for another fun idea. The painting is beautiful, too; I've never seen it before.



Lydia said...

For ladies who do not want to sew this, you can still make it with papers and trims. Run glue around the edges of the egg and pinch together, leaving an opening for stuffing. Insert tissue paper enough to make it bulky, and then seal the opening with glue. For rucking, just cut a strip of crepe paper down the middle to make it shorter, and twist and glue around the edge. I've made similar paper projects with brown paper: a teddy bear and rabbit, then painted it with puff paints or colored pens. You just glue around the edges of any project and pinch them together with clothespins til they stick.

Kerrie said...

Your Blog is wonderful! So so glad I came over for Pink Saturday!

Lydia said...

If you do a google search on Victor Gabriel Gilbert or type in the name at, you'll see some familiar paintings of his that have been in books and cards and publications over the years. This is one that just recently surfaced and is being made available to the public.

Anonymous said...

--This egg is quite dear. Not having any fleece on hand, the idea came to me that the baby blankets at Dollar Tree are made of fleece, and the little bit piece of appliqué on these blankets could be part of the embellishing of the egg. I do have bits of white lace that would be nice to make the bit of icing to go around the egg.
I am thinking that a little silver tray with perhaps three of the eggs and two crochet teacups and saucers, and a edible chocolate bunny. A cake plate of these eggs would be pretty too. One blanket should make several of these eggs, and the scraps could even be used to stuff them with. Sometimes the fabric stores have a plastic bag with several pieces of assorted ribbon lengths for $1.99 that could also be used for embellishments.

Miss Linda said...

What a delightful little project. I look forward to trying it. Thank you for sharing your ideas. I noticed these in the Victorian Trading Co. catalogue, but would not have paid $12.00 for them. These would make a wonderful gift.

Lydia said...

What a good resource: the dollar store and other places that have things made of fabric. If I lived where there was no fabric store, I would certainly glean all the stores for different fabric items: sheets, curtains, towels, and even skirts at Goodwill can be used for fabric for other projects.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Lydia for the great ideas.
I once bought several inexpensive twin flat sheets and made curtains under my craft room counters and fabric cutting table by feeding heavy gage wire through sewn in casings. Then I looped the ends of the wire over a screw on either end of the counters.
Now I have lots of hidden storage space under them. The sheets were on sale at Wal-Mart so I could get them all the same color. Will do my potting shed bench the same way soon just to dress it up a bit.
One could use white cotton sheets from the thrift store and dye them any color also.

Unknown said...

Thank you so much for this great tutorial! I have the cutest Easter basket that I've been trying to figure out how to fill...these will be perfect and not cost me a thing. Thanks!

HaPpY pInK sAtUrDaY!

Anonymous said...

I finally got to the store today to buy the materials for the egg and the chicken. I am looking forward to making several eggs and a chicken. I may give a few as gifts. Thank you for posting the tutorials!

I like the idea a previous commentator had about using a silver tray as part of a display with the eggs.

I am trying to buy more things that are "made in America". Even better is making them here myself!

Lydia said...

Sarah, I like all the special weekly activities you link to! There is so much than can be done, I wonder how anyone could judge homemaking as a worthless boring activity! Just setting a table and getting a meal takes a good deal of time and if done well, a lot of creativity too!

The Tablescaper said...

These are absolutely adorable! You should link this to this coming Sunday's Seasonal Sundays.

- The Tablescaper

Bonnie said...

Hello, I've just found this post through a picture of the very sweet little pink fabric egg. I actually make candy Easter eggs, and your pink egg looks almost the same as one of my 'hen' eggs, which is decorated in the same way!

I loved reading through your post and am looking forward to reading more of your blog. Thanks for the pattern also. I might just have to make some of these in a non-edible form for a change!