Take the Rag Bag Challenge – Project 2 – A Dinky Owl Key Ring

A Dinky Owl Key Ring - Embroidered "In the Hoop"

Having practiced “In the Hoop” embroidery for my last couple of projects, I was beginning to become addicted – I need to find one more project …

I enjoyed making the owl glasses cases so much that I decided to purchase another pattern from the Embroidery Garden.

This dinky little embroidered key ring has a handy pocket on the back to hold a credit card/business card/chapstick/hand sanitiser or trolley/locker token.

I like making things that people will find useful and this pattern ticked all the boxes.

Take the Rag Bag Challenge ...

When you ask for donations of fabrics for up-cycling, you never quite know what you are going to be given.  That’s part of the fun of it!  The large bag of scraps that Michelle has been so useful in may of my projects – but the scraps are getting smaller and smaller!

The challenge was on to find a project that would make good use of some of the tiniest scraps of pretty fabric that I still have left.

What You Will Need

Owl Key Ring Fabrics
Owl Key Ring - Up-cycled Fabrics

Step-by-Step Guide

Time needed: 1 – 2 hours

The process for making the key rings is very similar to making the owl glasses case in a previous post – it is just on a smaller scale and has a key ring inserted on a ribbon just before the final step.  Have a look at why previous post via the link below.

  1. Cut your fabric squares for the front and back pocket.
  2. Starch your fabric and iron it.
  3. Cut a piece of water soluble stabiliser to fit your hoop.
  4. Set up your machine for embroidery (see my previous post – link above)  
  5. Place the batting square and front fabric in the centre of the hoop.
  6. Stitch out the tack lines and eye placements.
  7. Place your eye fabric on the hoop and tack in place, then embroider the eye rims and the beak.
  8. Stitch out the belly quilting, changing threads as desired.
  9. Place the key ring and ribbon in the centre at the top of the design and sellotape it in place.
  10. Place the pocket over the whole design and tack it in place.  Don’t worry – the stitching won’t go anywhere near the key ring!
  11. Place the back over the whole design, lining up the top edge over your ribbon ends.
  12. The design now stitches out an owl shape and sews everything together neatly for you.
  13. Turn out through the opening left, press lightly and hand stitch the opening closed.
  14. Turn again, press and your key ring is complete!
Owl Key Ring - Attaching the Ring
Owl Key Ring - Attaching the Ring

Heart Up-Cycling!

Heart Upcycling Logo

I used a variety of curtain fabric samples to make the eyes for the owls.  It is a bit fiddly to peel away the labels on the back, but the scraps of fabric are usually just large enough to make a pair of little eyes and often have lovely textures that add a nice 3D effect to the finished key ring.

Owl Key Ring - Curtain Fabric Samples
Curtain Fabric Samples - Heart Up-Cycling!
Owl Key Ring - Dress
New Life for an Old Office Dress

An old duvet cover provided lots of fabric for this project.  The checks seemed to work nicely with the owl design.  I still have lots left for other projects.  Thanks Becky!

Owl Key Ring - Duvet Cover
Making good use of an old Duvet Cover

Tips and Tricks

I found a little pice of cardboard really handy to check the placement of the ribbon was exactly in the centre of the key ring and that the pocket fold was the required half an inch below the top stitch line.

Owl Key Ring - Placing the Ring and Pocket
Placing the Ring and Pocket

Meet My Owl Parliament ...

It turns out that it isn’t just dolls who have their own personalities.  Yes – owls have their own personalities too!  Finding names that match them was quite fun.

Yes – I did check the collective noun for a collection of owls and it is indeed an owl parliament.  Who knew?!

Owl Key Ring Sleeky Beaky
Sleeky Beaky
Owl Key Ring Twit 'n Twoo
Twit 'n Twoo
Owl Key Ring Rich 'n Stitched
Rich 'n Stitched
Owl Key Ring Sweety Tweety
Sweety Tweety
Owl Key Ring Glam 'n Glitzy
Glam 'n Glitzy
Owl Key Ring Cheeky Beaky
Cheeky Beaky

Would you like dinky Owl Key Ring of your Own?

If you like the design but don’t have time /resources to make your own owl key ring, you can find one for sale on my Etsy shop.  Working with up-cycled fabrics means that no two creations are ever the same.  Each is unique and when it’s gone, it’s gone!


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