Stuffed Log DraftbusterJanuary 5, 2014

In trying to come up with sewn gift ideas this last Christmas that people can use and appreciate, I remembered this project from the book Sewing Green by Betz White2-reference
This project checks off all my boxes. It is a functional tool for life in such a cold climate as Winnipeg, it is a decorative homage to the beauty of nature’s textures, it reduces waste by using recycled fabric and scraps for stuffing, and is a versatile gift that can be enjoyed by people of any gender or age (kids like to use it for play). I love this project so much because it finds a use for all the textile waste that isn’t in big enough pieces to make something new.

The thick wale corduroy for the outer fabric came from an old couch that my aunt reupholstered a while back (ten years?) and I’ve been holding onto for just such an appropriate use. (Yes, I hoard materials, but look! I have the perfect thing for that specific need!) The colour and striped texture of the fabric is a perfect echo of the bark on a tree. 3-material

The innards of the log are textile scraps that were SO easy to collect around my sewing room. These two bags were almost enough to fill my three logs, but I did scrounge a few more pieces near the end. You can use anything to fill them! She suggests plastic shopping bags, which is a great use of another excessively bountiful, non-biodegradable material. 4-scraps

After cutting my log and branch pieces, sewing them into tubes, leaving an opening for stuffing, 5-cut

and prepping my embellishing leaves and snails,


it was time to put the log ends together. A stitched spiral gives the effect of rings on a cross section of cut wood, AND it’s better if it’s uneven, cause that’s like nature. Also, perfect spirals are super hard to achieve. Wonky sewing is welcome here. 8-log-ends

The circles are sewn to the ends of the log, clipping the corduroy to allow room.9-log-ends


Now it’s time to stuff! Look at the colourful guts! Make sure you push the scraps right to the ends and pack it tight with some kind of tool. (I used a massive wooden knitting needle.) The log shouldn’t be too flimsy or floppy, and the tightly packed fabric guts make it about as heavy as a real piece of wood! 11-stuffing



Now hand stitch the openings closed,14-stitching

and attach the branches. I found this to be the trickiest part, because it’s hard to get your needle in the tight angle. But it can be done with a little log wrestling… 15-stitching

This is something that I will definitely make again, whenever my textile waste begins to pile up…


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