Our newest installment in the Sew with Me series features the work of beloved creator Heidi Boyd. If you know Heidi’s work, you know that her felt creations are cute, charismatic and have tons of character. From spookie-cute Halloween softies to vintage-inspired stockings, the line of holiday videos, kits and patternsshe’s created for Sew News is just that. We sat down with Heidi to discuss her creative process, her style and a few of her favorite things.
What’s your favorite thing about sewing with felt?
Just one?! The first has to be because it doesn’t fray! Simply cut and stitch, no tedious turning raw edges under to applique. The second is structure: felt immediately adds weight and stability to your work. Third, felt is incredibly forgiving: holes from embroidery and stitching mistakes disappear in the fibers. Finally, felt comes in an endless color selection so you can easily find a shade that will match any printed cotton.
What kind of felt do you use?
I always have a great selection of National Nonwovens felt on hand. It’s made close to me in Northhampton, MA. It was my natural go to for the Halloween softies and ornaments kits. It was a treat to discover and design the Cardinal pillows and stockings with Weeks Dye Works felt. The fabric not only comes in fabulous hand-dyed colors, but it’s also buttery soft to the touch and has great movement (flow).
Your creatures and creations have so much character. How do you make them come to life?
Thank you! They’re an absolute joy to create. If the designs make me smile when I’m drawing and stitching them, I know I’ve landed on a winner. I always start by researching animal photography, then simplify the shapes and add easy-to-stitch simple sweetness.
What’s the best thing about sewing projects for the holidays?
Sewing gives you the chance to slow down, decompress and take a break from daily work and chores. In a consumer-driven world, it’s especially meaningful to make a handmade gift for someone special in your life.
What’s your favorite holiday to sew for?
It has to be Christmas with its endless decorating and gift giving opportunities. Every year when we decorate the tree, I enjoy rediscovering hand-stitched ornaments from Christmases past.
Where do you find your inspiration?
Everywhere, out in nature on my endless dog walks, window shopping with my daughter, even catalogs that come in the mail. I found Pinterest to be a wonderful place to assemble visual inspiration. Sometimes materials inspire the projects but I almost always draw first, then find the fabrics to bring the sketch to life.
If you love Heidi’s illustrative style, you’ll also love her new fabric line. Foxes, bears and more all frolicking!
Read more about Heidi’s workspace in the latest issue of Sew News.