Mr Fishie Himself

The top of my stumpwork trinket box isn’t to the (Thistle Thread stumpwork class) design – it’s my own. I’ve designed it to tie in with the front of the box, a grotto, which I was posted about at

Mr Fishie design drawingThe writing is unreadable, but never mind. It gives you the overall idea. I’ll explain as I go along.

Today I’m going to talk about the construction of Mr Fishie Himself. He’s based on, which shows the whole piece. The relevant bit is (from the centre bottom) :


Lesley U, my EGV (Embroidery Guild of Victoria) Guidance Group mentor, advised me to do a ‘slip in hand’. That is, the padding and linen top are all of one piece before it is attached to the ground rather than attaching the padding to the ground and the top over that. You can do tiny stitches to attach this 3 dimensional object, rather than having to use an outline (such as a gimp) to hide the attachment stitches. The original Mr Fishie doesn’t have an outline so I went for this technique.

Working from the paper design, I made the felt padding – 2 layers of wool felt backed by interfacing. The interfacing, I learnt from Mary Corbet, makes the wool much neater in the cutting. I also found that the extra strength was useful when making up the in hand slip. There is a second layer underneath the layer shown, smaller than the top layer.

Felt padding

Felt padding

Then I worked with calico (muslin) to find the right size for the actual fish while leaving enough unstitched linen on the borders to be able to be stitched around the felt.

Mr_Fishie 008


Then I stitched Mr Fishie

Mr_Fishie 011and added an eye. The eye was from (thanks, Fran!)

…coloured the unstitched border with a felt pen, rather than having white edges show up against the ground Mr Fish was going to be attached to

Mr_Fishie 012I used a little fray check so the linen wouldn’t fray itself into oblivion and got a little colour run onto the silk stitches. Lord knows what is in Fray Check.

A quick check to make sure the stitching and felt were a good fit…..

Mr_Fishie 013


Then I cut the shapes out and attached them to the felt

Mr_Fishie 016

Mr_Fishie 015

Yes, Mr Fishie already has a pool to swim in. More on that later.






You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
11 Responses
  1. Majo van der Woude says:

    Thanks for sharing the process Megan. It looks great.

  2. Rachel says:

    I don’t think that technique would have occurred to me, but it works really well! *makes mental note*

    • Megan says:

      Lesley U is that lady that has been teaching for 40 years. I’d never heard or read of it either, but it all came together!

  3. Sue Jones says:

    I do like Mr Fishie – he’s very cute. You’ve got a very good result with your technique, thank you for explaining it in detail.

  4. Francesca says:

    Oh now I understand ! so good and perfect looking !

  5. Cynthia says:

    Too cute by far! Thanks for explaining your technique, very interesting.

  6. Sue Jones says:

    Having done a search for the safety data for Fray Check, out of curiosity, I now know that it is “nylon terpolymer in alcohol solution”. Don’t drink it or get it in your eyes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>