Going Nuts by Rose Nordenberg
26th April 2019
For those of us who live in Australia, we’re sure you’ll agree how fortunate we are to have so much gorgeous and unusual native fauna. Koalas, kangaroos, wombats, possums – all of them make their homes on the outskirts of (and sometimes even in amongst) our cities and towns. We have to admit, it’s easy to get a little blasé when spotting another koala in a backyard tree.
In a similar way, chipmunks are equally as ubiquitous in many parts of North America and for those who live with them day in, day out, you too can no doubt take them for granted.
One chipmunk that seeks to change all that is the cute little guy featured in Rose Nordenberg’s project ‘Going Nuts’ from Inspirations issue #102. His shining eyes and chubby cheeks are just so adorable, he quickly steals your heart.
For those of us who have only experienced chipmunks via the endlessly chatty Chip and Dale from Disney Studios or, more recently, the famous crooner Alvin and the chipmunks, it’s nice to see one in a more natural habitat!
In Going Nuts we find our hero chipmunk nibbling on acorns and nuts, holding his quarry in his little claws. You can almost see him assessing the peanut he’s holding tightly for freshness.
What you may not know about Chipmunks is they carry food to their burrows in their perfectly developed cheek pouches.
Rose has captured this characteristic perfectly with his plump, round cheeks which already have several other nuts squirrelled away inside, ready to deposit into his winter larder.
Unlike many other long and short stitch projects, this little fellow is brought to life by thinking of each stitch as a strand of fur. Rather than carefully blending your colours to achieve a painterly effect, this project requires you to vary the distance between your different colours in order to build up the fur-like texture.
There is less concern with piercing previous threads than there is with positioning the thread to indicate the contours of the body.
When creating a creature, some people fear working the eyes first. There is no doubt that the eyes make or break the character, and we’ve spoken to people who leave them right to the last minute, just so they know they’re right. However, it is important in this project for you to work the eyes first so that you can then position the fur around them. Try it. It is worth it, because with a few stitches, your chipmunk will come to life. Perhaps he’ll even watch you as you carefully create his furry head and fluffy tummy, encouraging you with each stitch.
There should never be any debate about whether embroidery is an art form, as anyone who has ever threaded a needle will agree that it is. But for those of us who haven’t got the skills to paint, it is a joy to create a lifelike image with needle and thread. Rose’s chipmunk seems to have paused, mid-nibble, to look straight out at you and we’ve no doubt that yours will too.
Make Your Own Going Nuts
Going Nuts by Rose Nordenberg is a delightful threadpainted chipmunk with food for the winter store.
Step 1 – Purchase Project Instructions
Step 2 – Purchase Ready-To-Stitch Kit
The Inspirations Ready-To-Stitch kit for Going Nuts includes everything you need to recreate this delightful critter: Fabrics (unprinted), wool felt, embroidery threads and needles.