Monday, October 7, 2013

Moth-Eaten Sweater Dress to Elephant Softie!


Elephant Softie

This cute elephant was once a Banana Republic sweater dress that got eaten by moths at a prior residence. I felted it by running it through the washer and dryer on the hot cycles twice with a few towels to provide friction.  The pattern is from Stuffed Animals: From Concept to Construction (affiliate link). I bought myself the book for my birthday and so far am pretty pleased with it.  It doesn't just contain patterns but also walks you through how to make various three dimensional shapes so that you can design your own stuffed animals. Just flipping through the book and reading about gussets and how they work to give a head shape helped me feel confident enough to create a rhino head for my big guy's Rhino Lovie.  


Anyway, this pattern had a lot of little details, several of which (like the toenails!) I decide to leave off.  The tusks, however, are a necessity!  Turning small pieces like the tusks on this pattern inside out can be a challenge.  The book recommends using hemostats (affiliate link).  I don't have any yet, so I decided to use a pair of tweezers.  I put the tweezers into the tusk and then with my fingernail, pushed the end of the tusk into the tweezers from the outside.  Then I squeezed the tweezers and pushed the fabric along tweezers and pulled the right-side out.


The eyes are another necessary detail.  I considered doing something simpler than the pattern called for, but I like the way they came out.  I think they contribute to the sweet and sleepy look of this elephant.  


The elephant is going to be a Christmas present for my new niece.  The fabric I used for the inside of the ears is a scrap from fabric I used in a quilt I made her.

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