Monday, November 7, 2011

Making a "toutou" (Part 1)

I recently decided out of the blue that I wanted to learn how to make little fabric stuffed animals to give as gifts. So this past week I did some research and planning, and then bought the necessary materials. On Friday, I made my first one: an elephant for a friend's daughter's 1st birthday. Instead of using a pattern, I decided to make my own since I figured it couldn't be that hard. After researching some images of elephants, I began doing some rough sketches and decided to base the pattern on the above drawing.

I was originally just going to wing it with the fabric I bought. I think I must prefer having a bit of a sense of risk when attempting creative projects: When having people over for dinner, I regularly try out new recipes, and I often improvise with various craft projects. But for once, I decided to do a practice version.

I got some pieces of old t-shirt from my "to re-purpose" collection, and cut out my pattern and pinned the "right" sides together.

Then I sewed around the elephant and two ears, leaving an un-sewn space in the elephant's tummy. I trimmed the edges and turned it right-side out.

Then I stuffed and stuffed and stuffed. And noticed the trunk was as long as the legs....and that I forgot to make a tail...oops. As I stuffed, the elephant shape altered as it became three dimensional.

Looking at the stuffed elephant, I realized my pattern needed some adjustments to make it look I also decided that the two-legs design looked funny on a 3-D stuffed elephant. S explained how to alter the pattern to make four legs, and made the new pattern pieces for me. So I made some changes and started elephant version 2.0 with the actual fabric...and hoped this one would come out more elephant-like. (To be continued...)


  1. What an awesome idea! I can knit and crochet, but can't sew for the life of me, so people who can create things out of fabric are always really impressive to me. :)

  2. canadianchia, I am impressed that you can knit and crochet! :) When I was a kid, I once made a funny-looking scarf, and I remember nothing of the technique. I thought about re-learning a while ago, but eventually decided to go with sewing instead. There is only time for so many hobbies, right? :)

  3. It looks so great! I'm so impressed you did this. And Frédérique loves it. Thank you so much again.

  4. I like the two-legged elephant. Great job! Can't wait to see the four-legged!!