Tips for sewing soft toys for children and their loved ones | So sew easily

One of the most fun and rewarding sewing projects I have ever undertaken is sewing stuffed animals for my children, relatives and friends. It's fun not only because of the myriads of colors and accessories used to make it, but also very rewarding when you see the smile it ultimately brings to a little one's face. Not to mention the pretty little product that finally comes out after the work. For anyone looking to sew a cute bunny or teddy bear, here are some tips from my own experience.

Choosing the right fabric for stuffed animals

There is no fixed rule regarding the type of fabric that can be used to make a stuffed animal. You can mix and match different fabrics and materials according to your imagination to get the best result. For example, for the teddy bears below, velvet is used to make the body and felt is used on the bottom of the feet. Likewise, you can mix and match velvet, fur, pom pom, or any other material that you think would be suitable for a stuffed animal. Faux fur is often the material of choice for stuffed animals. You can find a very large faux fur section on Fabric Empire.

Here's a link to one of our articles on tips on sewing with fur that every beginner should know:

sew stuffed animals

Good points for making toys

Whether you sew the toy by hand or machine, make sure the stitches are strong enough to withstand heavy use. Children tend to put their finger on any loose spot and pull out all the stuffing. So make sure the points are short and even triple if possible. Check if your machine has this feature. Otherwise, sew a straight stitch first, then sew it two more times. Also invest in good quality sewing thread.

sew stuffed animals

What stuffing should I use?

For stuffed animals, there are different stuffing options, such as polyester, cotton, bamboo, corn stuffing, wool, and fabric scraps. Whatever type of padding you use, make sure it is tight so that the toy does not become deformed over time. Pay special attention to the joints as they tend to collapse if not properly padded. Also, while stuffing, be sure to check the back for any air bubbles, which may become difficult to fill later. The best padding, in my opinion, is polyester because it is lightweight and can be easily washed. I usually use Fairfield Poly-Fil Premium Polyester Fiber.

sew stuffed animals

Important Features

The first thing you notice about a stuffed animal is its face. Before sewing the eyes, place two round pieces of fabric to find the exact location where the eyes should be attached. Similarly, for the nose and mouth, cut pieces of fabric into triangle and oval shapes and place them on the face to find the best match. Always remember to sew facial features before stuffing and final stitching.

There are many interesting patterns online for making soft toys. By keeping the simple tips above in mind, you'll be sure to succeed on your first attempt. Now, to get started, here's a fantastic roundup of some of our favorite best free softies and plush designs:

sew stuffed animals

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