Lately, I have been looking for threads to stitch animals. Years ago I did an experiment where I stitched many simple small bunny shapes. I used different stitches and different furry threads. From all this stitching I learned a few things:
- if you want the stitch to show don’t brush the area
- if you do brush, use Tent because all stitch definition gets lost after brushing
- the thread makes a difference in the texture and length of the finished, i.e. brushed, fur
Since I did that project many new threads that are furry have come on the market. One of these is Furr, Fuzz, Funn from Planet Earth. It is a fine mohair/silk blend that comes on cards with 30 yards on them. Currently (Fall 2019) it is available in 12 colors. Light brown was used for the lighter brown on the bunny above.
Normally I don’t like mohair threads (I don’t like mohair sweaters either) because mohair has a wiry stiff quality that prickles my skin. I started using 3F without knowing this and found that it had almost none of the defects I associate with mohair. While the thread feels a tiny bit wiry on the card, it doesn’t have that feeling when stitching.
I don’t know if it is the quality of the fiber, the presence of silk, or how the thread is made that does this. I like it and I am looking forward to using it again. When you consider I have only used mohair under duress that’s saying something.
The card suggests using one or two strands on 18 and two or three strands on 13 or 14 canvas, which I will be trying soon. I found two strands to work perfectly on 18. My next project using it will be on 13 mesh.
The mohair does contribute to the unique characteristics of this thread. Because it is a bit wiry the thread is furry even without brushing. If the texture you want is soft and furry but with a short pile, this will be a great choice. Brushing it with your fingernail raises the pile to a nice height that will still allow you to see detail.
Because the hairs in mohair tend to stick to themselves this also contributes to the threads and how you use it. Multiple strands will look fuller than they actually are because the hair will tend to separate the base strands. The real trick is finding the thread end on the card. It ended to get lost easily because the thread sticks to itself. When this happens I would rub my hand along the card until something near the loose end fell out.
You can make this much easier on yourself by always keeping it with several inches of thread unwound from the card. You could also run the thread end through the hole at the top of the card for longer storage as I did.
When you take a length of the thread from the card you will notice that the hairiness is quite uneven. When stitching, this gives the area a very natural look, but it can make your needle harder to thread. To solve this problem, always cut your thread in an area where the fur is short.
I was both surprised and delighted by this thread. It comes in an excellent package size. It can work for several different canvas mesh sizes. It’s easy to use and offers an excellent texture for fur without brushing. I’m excited about this thread.
Note: The bunny is from a nativity set adapted from the artwork of Tricia Lowenfield (here’s her Etsy shop for her ceramics). I bought it through Louise’s Needlework in Columbus. There are several pieces in the set, which is not currently available.