How to Make Your Own Stuffed Animals?

  • By: Mohammed Zeliche
  • Date: December 15, 2021
  • Time to read: 6 min.

Making your own stuffed animals is a great way to have fun and express yourself. You can make them as simple or as complex as you want! In this post, I will show you how to make three different types of stuffed animals: a bear, a bunny rabbit, and a dog. 

They are all easy to follow along with and don’t require too many supplies – most people may already have everything they need lying around the house! Once you’ve made one, try making another! There are endless possibilities for what kind of animal you could choose. The options are limitless! 

Why You Need to Make Stuffed Animals

When people are children, they love to snuggle with stuffed animals. As adults, there is nothing like curling up on the couch with your stuffed dog or cat. Then you have kids who do the same thing…

But why should this be restricted to children? If you can make one yourself, wouldn’t it be even more special than one that you just bought in a store? Of course! So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started!

What Materials Do You Need To Make Stuffed Animals:

Making your own plushies at home is surprisingly easy and inexpensive. Once you’ve gathered these supplies, which many people may already have right in their homes, you’ll be sewing in no time! 

Polyester Stuffing 

For the bunny, bear, and dog you will need about half a pound of stuffing each. If you are making other stuffed animals, don’t worry too much about measuring this out exactly. Each animal needs less than one pound to make, but it’s better to have too much rather than not enough because you can always save the extra for another project! You can find polyester stuffing at your local craft store or online on sites like Amazon.

You’ll be using the same material for the ears, feet, arms… basically everything! For one plushie you should have enough to make four full heads of hair. Depending on how long or short your fur is cut it might take more or less so if you’re planning on making more than one of the same type of stuffed animal try measuring what you need to make one so that you have enough for all of them.

As an alternative, faux fur can be used instead of fabric. It’s easier to work with because it is already cut but it can be harder to find in stores especially if you are looking for a specific color. If you want your end product to look very life-like with wavy or puffy fur then using faux fur may be better for you even though sewing it together can take some time.

A Needle 

any kind will do! You could probably use something like a large paper clip if needed (although I don’t recommend it).  When buying needles, remember the larger the number, the smaller/thinner the needle!

Scissors

It’s always best to have a good pair of scissors for this. Don’t use your fabric scissors in case they get messed up because you will most likely be using them again later. A good idea is to have more than one pair that way if one gets dirty or dull, you’ll still have another pair to use.

Fabric

This doesn’t need to be too expensive because you’ll only need about 0 .5 yards for each plushie with just a tiny bit extra in case of mistakes (don’t worry too much though, mistakes are easy to fix).

If you want your plushies to look like their real-life counterparts then buy materials that are similar to their fur. Some good choices would be fleece, Minky, or faux fur. If you aren’t looking for a plushie that is life-like but instead just want something cuddly and huggable then any kind of soft jersey knit fabric will work!

Thread

I recommend using an all-purpose polyester thread. It comes in many colors so if the color you need isn’t available you can dye it yourself. You’ll only need about six feet for each plushie so this also won’t cost too much either. 

A small spool will last quite a while even if you’re making multiple plushies because there’s no way you could use more than six feet at once! You may not even need the whole spool so you could save the rest for later.

Stuffing Tool

Something to help push the stuffing into those hard-to-reach places inside your plushie! A chopstick, pen, or even a pencil would work as a substitute if needed.

Measuring Tape

Just a standard measuring tape that you probably already have in your house. This is only used to measure how wide and long to cut your fabric for the head of each plushie, though it’s not necessary since many stuffed animals use this same formula. Just make sure that it isn’t too small or else it will be easy to break while cutting. If you don’t want any measuring tools then using some string might work instead but I still recommend using the measuring tape for convenience.

Pencil and Paper

Just write down your measurements in case the string method is used instead of a measuring tape. You could also use it to sketch out rough drafts of what you plan on making or just draw pictures when writing up the pattern for your plushie!

Stuffing

This can be bought at most craft stores and when buying, make sure that there aren’t any holes in the bottom of the bag since it will be hard to stuff your plushies if you have lumps everywhere due to stuffing coming through holes in the bag. The only time that you might want some hole showing would be if you are using fake fur fabric because then it doesn’t matter how much stuffing comes through since the fur should still look nice and neat.

Time

This will vary depending on what plushie you make and also how fast you sew/cut the fabric but it shouldn’t take longer than a day to make a plush. When making more complex plushies it may take a bit longer since there are more steps involved in ornaments such as button eyes, embroidery, etc.

You can also follow the below method to make your own stuffed animals. This simple process will help you to get stuffed animals on your own. 

  • Gather materials
  • Cut out the pattern pieces and sew them together
  • Stuff your animal with stuffing or battin
  • Stuff your animal with stuffing and butting
  • Finish the raw edges
  • Stuff it in, fill it up!
  • Add eyes and stuff in any loose ends of stuffing or batting
  • Stitch on some eyes or buttons if you want to make this plushie look more life like
  • Flatten out your seams with water and a brush (if needed)
  • Block your plushie until dry by pinning it down to something squishy
  • Your finished product will be ready soon 🙂
  • Sew up the opening in the back of your animal 
  • Add embellishments such as buttons, embroidery, and yarn for hair
  • Enjoy!

Your finished plushies may need blocking before they are done to get rid of all the creases that were made during sewing but if not then they are still usable though not quite as pretty. Don’t forget to let them

Conclusion

For those interested in learning how to make their own stuffed animals, the process is easy and can be accomplished with a few simple steps. First, you will need stuffing for your toy. 

You may already have some on hand or purchase it at an arts-and-crafts store near you. Next, take out any pattern that comes with the kit and trace it onto paper before cutting it out of felting fabric (you could also use cotton). 

Then cut two pieces from each piece of fabric–one for the front and one for the back–fold them together so they’re right sides facing up, then stitch around three edges using a sewing machine or by hand. Finally, sew buttons opposite where your opening will be to close. 

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