Thursday, January 5, 2012

How to make feltie hair clips using a digital embroidery file.

I have two daughters (and two boys, but this post has nothing to do with them); a 6 year old who thinks she is 16 and spends all her time in the bathroom playing with her hair and a newly turned 2 year old who barely has any hair.

I've made my older daughter a few clips, mostly to match her clothes or the seasons. She likes "big" so she stays with the korker bows.

But, I like felties. They are cute and match exactly for any occassion!

From now on you will see a lot of appliques offered in a set with matching felties (at a discounted price)! Once you know your way around the items needed, putting together a matching hair clip takes only an additional 20 minutes. At most!

Let me show you.

When you buy your design, I will included a "Notes" sheet. PLEASE read this as it will direct you to start, stop, and add additional felt at the correct times. Usually there are less then 10 steps and NO trimming until the end!!

 First of all you want to hoop your stabilizer. I am using a medium weight Water Soluble Stabilizer here (I would have bought heavy but can't find it in the stores). I haven't washed any of my felties, but the WSS isn't as noticeable and easy to get rid of in case these were a gift. Now, if I knew my felt were going to be white or black, I would probably use regular stabilizer since WSS is more expensive.

Now stitch out your placement line. 

 Place your felt on top and stitch out your tackdown line. Remember, this is not an applique and all the threads used will show (so make sure you get your color scheme set up first!).

Tackdown complete! 
Stop your machine (according to the directions). 

Turn your hoop over to look at the back of your design. Some designs will have a lot of detail stitched on (like the Argyle Heart Feltie) while others will have an extra layer of felt (like the Winged Heart Feltie).

 For the designs with extra stitching, we'll clean them up by adding a layer of felt to the back side of the hoop.

That's right, spray and stick the felt to the underside of the hoop/design. 

 Now, turn your hoop over and lock into place. Double check to make sure you didn't lose your felt (see the bottom piece still attached under there?). 

And stitch your final tackdown stitches.

Once the design is finished stitching, unhoop and trim.


Now take a look at the back of your feltie. It should be nicely covered.
Trim any lengthy threads and if you are OCD, add some glue to make sure they won't unravel.

Now, everyone makes clippies differently. 
I use a double prong alligator clip (get the good sturdy kind!) and I'll show you why in a few. 

I bought a cheap (and I emphasize cheap) jelly roll pan to use as my clippie making area. I have certain lengths measured and marked on my pan so I can easily cut my ribbon to the perfect length every time. If you do not have a burning tool, cut the ribbon with scissors and use a fray check to seal the ends of the ribbon. An open flame would work too (not in addition to the fray check though, that's flammable!) but I could never get my ends of the ribbon looking "crisp" with the flame. Or maybe they were too "crisp" and on their way to "blackened."

I fully line the ribbon to my clips using hot glue.

Now look below. 

 Do you see that Hold-It tape? It's awesome.

Don't mind the "for rugs" part. It should really say "for thin-baby-hair-made-at-home-clippies."

If your clips are always falling out, then get this stuff. 

Cut out a little bit and line your clips.
It's the best no-slip grip ever. 

Seriously. It will make them slip-free.

This bow stayed on my baldie for a full 30 minutes before she ripped it (and those 10 hairs it was gripping) out. 


Now, if your child has hair (and I really don't want to talk to you), you can always use a clear plastic ponytail holder and a partially lined clip. Clip just above the holder. That also works. For kids who have hair. 

Anyway, I hope you enjoy making your felties and take advantage of the upcoming sets!

Basketball feltie available here.

If you have any other tips or preferences, leave them in the comments for your fellow crafters.


  1. THANKS! is it o.k to pin this?

  2. You are awesome :) thank you (and cute baby btw)

    1. Thank you @shamroxx! It's always hard to have a bald little girl ;) She's 2.5 now and it's almost shoulder length!!! Of course she still won't keep in any of the felties I make her :)

    2. Two and one half. That looks like 25 and she's not that old (yet)!

  3. Thank you so much, i bought a couple of designs and no this! yay and will repin!

    1. Thank you! I include directions with all of my designs so check the stitch order to make sure it is the same concept. I am so much more a visual person! KWIM :)

  4. Thanks!! Been wanting to make some of these but didn't know how!!

  5. I am having trouble finding design files. Can you point me in the right direction?

    1. Hi. There is a link at the top of this blog to our website. The feltie files are under the In The Hoop section. Clip Covers & Felties are both options to choose from once you are there. Here is the direct link to the felties we have available. Thanks!

  6. I know this is an older post, but I was wondering if there is a specific type of felt that you should use when making these on an embroidery machine? I know some people order their felt online, and didn't know if it is any different than what you find in the craft stores? Or just cheaper online? I want to give it a try but don't want to have to order a ton if I don't have to. Thanks! :)

    1. No specific type of felt is needed. I wouldn't get the super thin felt (if you can stretch the felt or pull it apart any little bit then eh..). If the felt holds up, you can get the craft store felt, wool felt, stiff felt, or even fun zebra felt :)

  7. I really happy to be visiting your blog. Thanks for the share.... Keep posting such an interesting information.

  8. I know this post is older but I thought I'd give a stabilizer suggestion. I use a LIGHTWEIGHT tearaway stabilizer and it tears away super cleanly. Just be sure to tear away the excess stabilizer before you trim your felt design (otherwise it will be hard to tear it away). Hope this saves you some $$$. WSS can be pricey!
    Also I wanted to say THANK YOU for the tip on using the Hold It. Awesome tip! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!

    1. Correct! If my feltie has a securing stitch that goes all the way around the final design, I will use a light tearaway. It is definitely cheaper and holds up just as well! For illustration purposes and beginners, I recommend the WSS so you don't have to worry about what shows on the final product until you get the hang of it all :)

  9. The felt I use are quite floppy. Is there a happy medium blend of felt that will give it sturdy feel and clean look to the finished clip? What brand is recommended?

    1. If you are at a fabric store and in the 8x11 cut section of felt, you can feel the difference between the stiff stuff and the stuff you could rip with your fingers. There should be a happy medium there. Or, you can wait until the bolts go on sale and by some 1/4 yards! Sorry, I do not have a specific name or brand I use.