A common question asked by plushie makers is, “How do I make eyes for my plushies?” But before we get to that, let’s first talk about what a plushie maker does. A plushie maker takes fabric and turns it into stuffed animals! If you want your creations to come out looking their best, you must give them the correct facial features. And making eyes for your plushies is just one of those things.
What are Plushies?
A plushie is a stuffed animal. A plushie maker takes fabric and turns it into stuffed animals! But before we get to that, let’s first talk about what a plushie maker does. A plushie maker takes fabric and turns it into stuffed animals! If you want your creations to come out looking their best, you must give them the correct facial features. And making eyes for your plushies is just one of those things.
Types of Plushies
There are very many types of plushies out there, but they all have one thing in common: they’re made from fabric! There are two major categories for plushies: anthropomorphic and non-anthropomorphic. Anthropomorphic means that the plushie has an animal head with either a completely animal body or a partially human body.
For example, you could buy a teddy bear that looks exactly like Winnie the Pooh or you could create your own little Piglet stuffed animal using this tutorial. A non-anthropomorphic plushie is just an animal with no human parts to it. For example, if you were to make a stuffed panda, the head and body would be all one piece.
Types of Fabrics
Not all fabrics are suitable for making plushies! When choosing your fabric, keep in mind that some will be easier to sew than others and some will turn out better looking than others. And don’t forget: different fabrics need different types of thread (more on that at the end)!
Mayor Types of Fabric: Fleece, Minky, Cuddle, Jersey, Flannel. Benefits of each fabric type:
Fleece – very easy to sew; molds itself to curved shapes; don’t fray; very soft; many colors to choose from; can be found at big craft stores.
Minky – also very easy to sew; two-sided (the furry side has a shorter nap than the smooth side); makes clean lines because it doesn’t fray (fray-ability varies by color); very soft; many colors to choose from; can be found at big craft stores.
Cuddle – hard to sew with regular thread, but possible! It’s best sewn together with nylon thread or invisible thread; molds itself well around curved shapes because it doesn’t fray and doesn’t have a nap like fleece or Minky does; not very soft under normal circumstances, but becomes softer when washed properly use; some colors are available at big craft stores, but best to order online.
Jersey – very easy to sew with regular thread; does fray so oversew or finish seams; doesn’t have a nap like fleece or Minky does; not the softest fabric on earth but becomes softer when washed properly use; stretches well on one axis which makes it great for “skinny” plushies (ones designed more in the anime/manga style).
Flannel – also easy to sew with regular thread; can be found at big craft stores in many different colors and prints; has a nap that you’ll need to go over with your machine again before turning right side out because it will make your edges turn up if you don’t brush them down first.
How to Make Eyes for Plushies?
Once you have a plushie pattern, some fabric, and a pair of eyes, let’s begin!
- Draw your eye shape on paper first. This will act as the guideline for the fabric that you’ll be cutting out. Make sure to note where your eyelashes should go (see above picture). Use any drawing tool (pencil, pen, etc.) to draw your shapes on paper; make them however big or small you want them to be! You can also write letters on the papers if you want to tell yourself specific things like “sew this part first before attaching it” or “attach these pieces together with invisible thread”.
- Cut out fabric shapes according to the outlines you drew onto the paper. It’s a good idea to sew a few stitches around the edges of each shape to keep them from getting messed up.
- Attach all parts together using invisible thread . Invisible thread is great because it won’t be seen from the outside and you can make your plushie as furry as you want! I usually start sewing at the bottom of a piece and work my way towards the top, but if you feel more comfortable working in reverse then go for it! Once your pieces have been sewn together, turn right side out and admire your finished product! 😀
We hope you enjoyed this blog post on how to make eyes for your plushies. This is not an exhaustive list of all the materials that can be used in making a pair of eyes, but it does give you some ideas and guidance about what might work well for your application.
If you have any questions or need more help with anything else related to crafting, don’t hesitate to reach out! Our expert team would love nothing more than being able to share their knowledge so others can learn from them too. Happy Crafting!