Thursday, January 26, 2017

Graph Paper

My process for making an animal design is based on graph paper. I usually have a general posture in mind before I start drawing, but I always pull up Google images of real animals for a reference. I am not replicating them in any fashion, but this let's me know some of the true attributes of an animal...such as that the cow's ears extend out straight from the head, or the nostrils are at the ends of the nose, not in the middle.

I then break the rules if I need to. Prey animals (versus predators) have eyes that are set further apart. This is not as cute. So for the cow, I tried several different eye locations. I opted for more realistic and less cute for the cow.

The next step is breaking the pattern down into sewing units. I try to keep the largest possible areas without seams and you know I love flip triangles more than half square triangles. I do a lot of that figuring on graph paper, but I do make adjustments as I sew the first block. Once I have the first block sewn, that becomes the model for future changes.

Here you can see that I had a lot of problems with the chicken pattern. These drawings are nothing like the final options I eventually used and made into blocks. These drawings look more like generic birds. I was worrying too much about the feet. Once I tipped the wing, I could get rid of the feet and had a speedy chicken.

Molly is sorry that you had to put up with all my boring blather and she would like to reward your patience with an adorable cat picture.


  1. Thank you, Molly!
    (I love the fact that you even made your sketch a purple cow!)

  2. Not boring blather to me in any sense of the word. Thanks for sharing.

  3. You can blather on as long as you like as long as we get a Molly picture, LOL. Seriously, You don't blather, and I enjoyed this post. That is basically how I came up with my reindeer and sleigh patterns (yet to be sewn or published). LOOoove the cute cow!!