myBearpaw Blog by Jo Avery

Autumn Leaves

I mentioned in an earlier post about how busy I have been recently making things for my shop, well here are some of the fruits of my labours (well more foliage than fruits…).

You may remember the Leaf Needlecases from a batch I made earlier in the year. They are adapted from a beautiful Japanese book called Kokoro No Te. I made my first one just after Christmas and then simplified it quite a bit to make a batch for the shop. They have sold well and were fun to make so I have made another batch of 7 and have even managed to simplify them further!

This time they only have 2 beaded seeds, before they had 3. Also instead of toiling over fiddly silk rouleau tubes for the stalks, I have used ready made ‘rat’s tails’. I think they work just as well! You can find a photo of the original batch here.

For some reason it is making the little leaves with fabric and felt that I enjoy the best. I don’t know what it is but I find it very pleasing, so I tried to think of something else I could make with these fabric leaves. I came up with a small version for a keyring. I have a big bag of keyfobs to use up too!
I just picked out some nice ‘leafy’ fabrics from my furnishing fabrics stash, and matched them with contrasting coloured felt from my bag of felt scraps. I just turned the edges of the fabric around to the wrong side and pressed them down, pinned the felt to the wrong side, and machined close to the edge all the way around, remembering to insert a folded loop of braid with the keyfob attached at the rounded end.

They didn’t look quite finished, so I embroidered a running stitch with some embroidery silk to make the veins. This had the added benefit of making the leaves ‘curl’ slightly like real autumn leaves.

Here is a big tray of them. I sold my first one to a friend who visited at the weekend when I was making them, so hopefully that is a good sign they will be popular!
We are exhibiting at the Scottish Country Living Fair in Glasgow next week, and I am taking all my Bearpaw stuff and cushions. It will be a lot of work but here’s hoping I need to make lots more leaves once it is over!


  1. Another nice thing about the leaf keychain is they aren't any added weight to a purse or pocket! Wonder if you could find some clear plastic and make a pocket to put info to use as a luggage tag?!:)

    They look really good hanging on the tree…need a real tree branch in an urn to hang them!;)

  2. They look lovely. I'm going to the show on Saturday, my first time at anything like that and I'm really looking forward to a fun day out. Will try and track you down to say hi! Juliex

Leave a Reply

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