Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tutorial Time! Watch the (Crazy) Birdie!

Have you ever tried taking a picture of a baby? They seem to want to look everywhere but at the camera lens! You make noise, you pull away from the camera and make goofy faces - finally, he looks at you!! --But by the time you get your eye back to the viewfinder, bam! His eyes are somewhere else. Well, I came up with a little something today (thanks to some inspiration from my photographer friend Kristal), that will hopefully help in that endless struggle for the perfect shot.

I'm calling it the Crazy Bird -- it's an attention grabber. Bright colors, crazy eyes, and even some hidden noise makers will get that baby's gorgeous eyes looking right at the lens. And today, I'm going to teach you how to make one. :) 

Ok, first you're going to want to gather your materials.


scrap felt
feather boa
googly eyes
fake flowers
elastic (mine is 1 inch wide)

Step 1:
Measure your camera lens and determine how much elastic and feather boa you need to wrap all the way around. I used 2 inches of elastic and 6 1/2 inches of feather boa. I cut 2 strips because I wanted the "body" of my bird to be a little bulkier than just the one strip.

Step 2:
Glue the feather boa to the elastic strip.

There's a bit of a trick to this - you want to make sure you pull the feathers away from the cord in the middle of the boa so that the bond between the boa and the elastic is a little sturdier.

Glue both ends so that it forms a nice little circle. I actually decided to reinforce this by tacking it down with a few hand-sewn stitches. I'm a little paranoid, so that step is optional. So, you'll end up with your body piece looking a bit like this:

 Pretend that's a camera lens, eh?

Step 3:
Now we're going to work on the eyes. Take your fake flowers - mine are gerber daisies - and remove the middle portion.

Then glue the flower layers together, and glue your googly eyes on top. Don't you just love googly eyes? I love saying googly. Googly. It makes me giggle inside.

Put some glue on the back now...

And glue it to the top of the body piece. (The elastic is the bottom, so the top is, well, directly opposite the elastic.) Here they are all glued on:

That was looking a little weird to me, so I smooshed down the petals that were in the middle and all getting in her eyes and stuff and just glued them down.

Ahh, much better. On to the next step.

Step 4:
Cut some wing shapes out of your scrap felt. I doubled over the felt so the shapes would be identical.

Then take your feathers, arrange them on the wing, and glue them down.

Step 5:
Grab a jingle bell for each wing and sew them on to the wing tips. I wanted mine to be mostly hidden, so I sewed them to the back of the wing, but you could sew it anywhere.

Step 6:
Sew on your wings. I placed mine a little high - I think if I did it again, I'd put them on a bit lower.

Step 7:
Cut out some little feet shapes from your scrap felt. Again, I just folded it over so I could get 2 identical feet.

Step 8:
Sew the feet onto the elastic. 

And ta-da! You have a happy little attention grabber for all your baby-photographing needs.

Thanks for stopping by-- I'd love your feedback! Questions, comments, lavish praise are all welcome.


ElissaMLF said...

I LOVE it! Wonder if it would work on Amelia, too... (Ramona will usually look at me. Amelia is another story!) Now, if only I had time to make one... :)

Charity said...

Thanks Elissa! I'm going to be working on some more of these and they'll be up in the shop eventually. So :)

Patti Johansen said...

You are so clever! You must have inherited the creative gene from your mother!

PitterPatHeart said...

Oh definitely Mom! You get ALL the credit :)

Buffy said...

That awesome Charity! Incredibly creative and super cute and I have no doubt it would work on even the trickiest subjects.


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