Tutorials

Articles tagged as stitching dies (view all)

Easy Llama and Cactus Garland

Posted by Renae Bradley on 19 March, 2019 1 comment

Llama and Cactus Craft

Using stitch dies in partnership with Neat and Tangled you can easily create llama and cactus crafts! If you are new to die cutting -read up on how to do it and if you are new to stitching read up on how to stitch up these dies! 

Felt llama

Here are all the supplies you need to make a festive garland: 

-Stitch Dies -grab the llama and the cactus dies made in collaboration with Neat and Tangled. 
-Benzie Felt -we love the bright colors of the Tropical Palette with the addition of Linen for the the llama. 
-For extra sparkle -add in sequins and glitter felt! We used black seed beads for the llamas eyes!
-Assorted felt poms in extra small and small. We used the colors Tangerine, Magenta, Aqua and Leaf. 
-Bright colored embroidery floss -don't forget the linen colored floss to stitch up the llama! 
-Polyfil & a stuffing stick

felt cactus craft

1.) First cut out your shapes using the cactus and llama die. You will need two shapes per side. Reference this blog post to find out more about die cutting! 
2.) Grab coordinating or contrasting floss -we used 3 strands and the running stitch to stitch our friends up. If you are new to stitching or stitch dies -read up on your options! Don't forget to leave a space to add in polyfil! You'll find the stuffing tool useful in getting into small spaces! 
3.) embellish with pom, sequins and tassels! It's a fiesta! Quick tip -use this special glue to attach the sequins! 

llama crafts

Make a garland by sewing the cactus and llama with embroidery floss and small size wool poms. 

cinco de mayo garland

Or make a diorama and put the cactus in a pot

llama and cactus felt

Create our other stitch dies crafts:

Unicorn Mobile
Snowflake Ornaments
Ugly Sweater Gift Topper

Ugly Sweater Ornament DIY

Posted by Renae Bradley on 09 November, 2018 0 comments

ugly sweater ornament diy

We collaborated with Neat & Tangled and designed the perfect die for holiday crafting -the ugly sweater! Embellish and decorate with all our favorite holiday things! 

winter mint felt palette

Grab all your supplies! We used a variety of wool felt + floss colors from Benzie's Winter Mint palette, bits of glitter and metallic felt, Beads and sequins, Embroidery Floss and tacky glue. Most importantly -you'll need our Sweater Die

ugly sweater die cut

If you are new to die cutting or stitching skip down the the bottom of the page -we have included some helpful links to get you started! The first step is to cut out all your shapes -it's fun selecting your favorite 'ugly' accents! To make the wreath sweater we cut out one sweater with stitch marks and one without, a wreath shape, two cuffs, one bow, one sweater hem and one sweater collar. 

ugly sweater ornament how to

Place the embellishments on the sweater and stitch them in place using 4 strands of embroidery floss. You can be creative in how you stitch the pieces on, here we stitched zigzags and crosses. I would love to see a sweater just using straight stitches to emulate cuffs of a shirt too! The pieces are little so if you are having problems just use a touch of tacky glue to hold in place. Add glitter felt, beads and sequins to make it even more ugly! To finish it off, lightly tacky glue the back of the sweater on -this will hide all your stitches!

stuffed sweater ornament

We stuffed this ornament by using two strands of floss and polyfil. Follow this tutorial to use a paperclip to make a hanger! You'll find this tool handy! 

ugly sweater ornaments

ugly sweater craft

Here is a few of our favorite blog posts for the beginner crafter and stitcher! Let us know if you have any questions at all! 
Introduction to die cutting.
Beginner embroidery for stitch dies.
Stitching with beads + sequins. 

Snowflake Ornaments using Stitched Dies

Posted by Renae Bradley on 09 November, 2018 0 comments

felt snowflake ornament diy

We collaborated with Neat & Tangled and designed a stitchable Snowflake die with the capabilities to be simple or elaborate -using any combination of the 4 shapes included in the die! In our specific design we added a bit of our metallic felt + sequins to make a beautiful decoration for your tree, a gift topper or even a special gift. The added shimmer from the metallics and sequins makes them sparkle like snow! 

supplies for christmas ornaments

Grab your supplies:

-Snowflake Die
-Benzie's wool felt colors Silver, Icicle, Blush and Aqua
-Metallic felt in Silver and Blush
-Sequins in Silver and Beads in Silver Iridescent
-Divisible Embroidery Floss in Parchment and Blush
-Beading Needle
-Metallic floss (for ornament hanger), we used Silver
-Tacky glue

die cutting ornaments

If you are new to die cutting, read up on this post. All of Benzie's Neat & Tangled dies are wafer thin dies and will need a platform to cut on. Concerning cutting, some find it helpful to run the dies through your cutter one extra time to get a clean edge -other then that they will cut just like paper (even the metallic felt)! Start cutting out snowflakes and play around with the layers! 

snowflake ornaments

Here is an example of how we layered one of the snowflakes. The best part of the die is that all the stitch holes are designed to be interchangeable with each other -so layer and twist however you wish and it will still line up to make a beautiful ornament!

Once you have found how you want to layer your snowflake -thread your needle. We used 3 strands of floss for most of our snowflakes. We added beads and sequins last with one strand of floss. Don't forget you will need a beading needle for this! Read up more on stitching with beads + sequins here! To finish the ornament off, we lightly tacky glued a second snowflake to the back and including a metallic floss hanger. This hides our stitching mess too! 

snowflake ornaments to make

We love the different varieties that we were able to make with just 4 colors of felt -the additional two shades of metallic just make it shine! All were stitched with just one color of Parchment DMC floss

embroidery snowflake ornament

Here is a more simple snowflake that highlights the embroidery -adding some sequins makes it so delicate and pretty! We used 4 strands of DMC floss in Blush for the embroidery and just one strand to stitch on the beads and sequins. 

snowflake christmas ornaments

handstitched snowflakes

Have a happy winter! 

Stitched Dies, Unicorn Mobile

Posted by Renae Bradley on 14 September, 2018 3 comments

Unicorn mobile diy


We are so excited to partner with Neat & Tangled to develop a set of stitchable dies! What is so special about these dies is that the stitch marks are etched right in the die -making stitching a total breeze! All your embroidery will be perfectly spaced and just gorgeous! These are great for children and adults just getting into felt crafts or embroidery. But the experienced hand sewer will love how everything is cut out with one swift roll of the die cutter!  

rainbow unicorn crafts

I wanted to pass on a couple of resources you may find helpful! For those new to die cutting read this blog post. All of Neat & Tangled dies are wafer thin dies and will need a platform to cut on. Concerning cutting, some find it helpful to run the dies through your cutter one extra time to get a clean edge -other then that they will cut just like paper! Also, if you are new to stitching we talk about 3 different ways you can stitch up these dies! 

Where to buy wool felt

Supplies (all available at www.benziedesign.com):

  • Stitchable dies by Neat & Tangled + Benzie! We used two sets to make this mobile, the unicorn and the cloud set. 
  • Benzie Felt, we used the colors Peony, Coral, Peach, Guava, Mint, Julep, Sky and Periwinkle. We love how our 6x9" sheets fit perfectly in our die cut machine!
  • Embroidery Floss in coordinating felt colors. This floss divides into six strands; we used three strands for this project.
  • Iridescent 4mm Sequins: We used Amethyst, Citron, Jade and Rose Quartz.
  • Seed Beads: We used coordinating beads to the sequins and also black for eyes! 
  • Ink, we used the color Rose Coral, Splash and Chambray
  • Needles (if you are using beads make sure you utilize a beading needle), here is a great basic needle and here is our favorite

Wafer thin dies with felt

Here is a close up of the dies -can see all the little stitch holes?! After you pick out all your favorite felt colors -get to cutting out your pieces! Don't forget to cut a front and back piece for the unicorn and clouds! Read more about die cutting here. 

die cut clouds for felt

The cloud die is a great die for the beginner stitcher. After you have cut out all the pieces, thread your needle. We used 3 strands of coordinating floss, lined up the front and the back felt pieces and used the running stitch. You can read more about the running stitch here! We also added some fun shading to our clouds -with ink! Lightly tap the ink pad over the areas you would like added color! 

unicorn crafts with dies

For the unicorn we like to stitch on all embellishments first with just 1-2 strands of floss: cheeks, eyes (we used a seed bead), sequins and felt accents. Read more about stitching with beads and sequins here! Then match up both sides of the unicorn together using the running stitch with 3 strands of floss. Don't forget to stitch in the tail or mane! As I stitched, I filled up the unicorn with polyfil using a stuffing stick (or a small pointed scissors) to help fill the small crevices such as the legs! 

Unicorn horns out of felt

There are a couple of different ways to finish off the magical horn! The front one is bedazzled with sequins and beads, the middle one has floss wound around the horn and the last one is just left alone! You can also use some tacky glue to secure.

Unicorn mobile

diy unicorn mobile 

Unicorn and Cloud diy decor

String your cloud and unicorn together! Then hang from a mobile, dowel or embroidery hoop, it's magical! 

pink unicorn mobile

Sewing with Stitchable Dies

Posted by Renae Bradley on 04 September, 2018 2 comments

how to use stitch dies

Have you used stitchable die cuts yet? Traditionally used by paper crafters; these wafer thin dies include holes for stitching, ensuring that each creation is sewn evenly and neatly! Perfect for beginners or kids -but fun enough for advanced stitchers too! And we love how wool felt seems to be made for these sort of dies -sew stuffies, ornaments and appliqués super easily! Just roll them through your die cutter and start stitching. If you are new to die cutting we suggest catching up on our tutorial first where we explain the differences between dies and how to use them

Stitch Dies

We are going to introduce you to three different stitches you can use: Whip Stitch, Running Stitch and the Blanket Stitch. But first gather your supplies: favorite stitching die (we love Neat & Tangled!), Benzie wool blend felt, embroidery floss (we love classic DMC floss) and an embroidery needle 1/5. DMC floss is a divisible floss, meaning that it can be split into 6 parts. In this particular cloud die, we liked how all 6 strands pop on the cloud! If you are looking for a more subtle look use just 3 strands. Let's get started on the easiest stitch first, the whip stitch!

How to Whip Stitch

how to easily stitch felt

Whip Stitch
Step 1: Thread your needle and knot the end of your floss. Begin by bringing your needle in between the layers of felt. Stitch through the top layer of felt, the knot will remain hidden between the two layers of felt. 
Step 2: Line your layers of felt together -it will be easy to see the premade holes this way! Bring your needle to the back of the felt and stitch through the next set of holes, bringing up the needle to the front of the design. 
Step 3: Continue stitching, whipping the thread around the edge of the felt, always starting the stitch from the underside and ending on the top. The premade holes help to keep your stitches nice and even! 
Step 4: You will begin to see a succession of angled stitches, finish up the design by hiding the knot in between the layers of felt. 

how to blanket stitch

Blanket stitch for felt

Blanket Stitch
The Blanket Stitch builds on what you learned in the Whip Stitch but in addition to 'whipping' the floss from back to the front you stitch through the previous stitch before you head back around -this adds a more decorative edge to your finished piece.
Step 1: First thread your needle and knot the end of the floss. Start by bringing your needle in between the layers of felt nestling the knot underneath the top layer. 
Step 2: The blanket stitch uses a one time 'start stitch'. Just take your needle and stitch a loop around the felt; come back through the same place the knot is nesting in. It will be easy to locate the prepunched holes when the felt is lined up to each other.
Step 3: To finish the 'start stitch', go back through the floss loop you just made. This will position your thread just right for the blanket stitch!
Step 4: Bring your needle through the back of the felt and stitch through the next set of holes. 
Step 5: Right before tightening up the stitch from step four -run you needle through the loop you just made. You have made your first Blanket Stitch! 
Step 6: Continue to bring your needle from the back to the front.
Step 7: Don't forget to stitch through the previous loop! Gently pull to shape before moving on to the next stitch
Step 8: Continue to stitch, you will see the Blanket Stitch coming together soon! Finish by knotting floss around your first stitch and hiding the thread end between the felt layers.

Running Stitch and Felt

Basic stitches for stitching dies

Running Stitch
Both the Whip Stitch and the Blanket Stitch wrap floss around the edge of your felt  -but the Running Stitch stays on the felt and can end up looking like the more fancy Back Stitch -but simpler for beginners! 
Step 1: First thread your needle and knot the end of the floss. Start your first stitch in between the two layers of felt, hide your knot in the top layer of felt. Then line up your layers of felt so you can easily locate the holes.
Step 2: Stitch down into the the next hole. This completes your first stitch. 
Step 3: Bring your needle back up through the next hole. 
Step 4: Continue to 'run' to the next hole, stitching down then up chasing each hole in succession. You can finish your feltie just like this or go for round 2! See the next step! 

how to stitch felt with stitch dies

Step 5 & 6:
You can also choose to keep on stitching, just continue your up and down motion, this time filling in the spaces that were left. This gives your design a continuous floss border that resembles the Back Stitch but fully finished on both sides of the felt.

Additional Tips:
-Use all six strands of your floss -or just use a few! We like using just one to three strands when stitching on embellishments. If it's easier -just use tacky glue! 
-Line up the layers of felt to clearly identify prepunched holes - if you are still having problems identifying the holes use the eye the needle to clear the holes of any felt that did not come out during the die cut process.
-When making stuffies -don't forget to leave a couple of inches open to fill with polyfil. Once filled, finish stitching. 
-Be gentle with your stitches, if you pull too tightly the felt will ruffle! 
-Embellish! Use variegated floss, glitter floss or add beads and sequins (just make sure to get a beading needle!)