I sewed the world...no, really

I had an idea for a gag gift for my little nephew, mostly because my family has a sick addiction to puns.  My nephew, Atlas has probably the coolest name for a boy -- ever.  I envisioned his tiny little arms balancing the world on his shoulders.  So, naturally, I wanted to give him the Earth in some form or another.  Originally, I intended to give him a giant inflatable Earth, but that wouldn't suit my mo.  I shrugged my shoulders and decided to make the world using texture so it would be more than a weird-looking ball for a baby.
I made a template for an 8-piece, 9" ball, then made the ball from a scrap of fleece I had in my stash.  All of the islands, except for Hawaii, and continents were cut from fabrics that had been fused to lightweight stabilizer, then hand-stitched using a blanket stitch to the ball.  Hawaii was embroidered directly on the ball using a satin-stitch.
Africa might be my favorite.

I tried to include as much as I had the patience for, but I had to draw the line somewhere.  Southeast Asia was a Bear!

Antarctica is covering the imperfect center, where a couple of the ball pieces didn't match up as perfectly as they should have.  How great is that?!

The little heart, represents us in KS, thinking of him.  The ice on the northern hemisphere (with the exception of Greenland) was randomly cut and placed.  Yeah, I know it's obvious. 
Minky and fleece are very forgiving, but the stitching looks better on the homespun cotton on Africa and Australia.

Asia was tricky all around.  I had to add a couple of darts to form it on the ball properly without wrinkling.  This is why fleece was more forgiving.  When I finished, Rob requested one for himself...guess I had better get back to work!

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