Friday, 29 July 2011

Rhino snuffle tuch

It really is a hunting gallery, but I am enjoying the rhino shape and design.

This is just a little walk through of my thought process on making it. I think it can be quite nicely revised but as a first it is not bad. It works and that is all that matters. There is trial and error, but every good project is like that- especially when you make it up yourself!!

The toy worked out really well but the biggest problem is that the buttons are a little dangerous for little ones who do oh so love to jam everything in their mouths. Also, the Rhino toy is soft but cuddly for bigger kids (or adults!)

I love 'snuffle tuchs'. Animal head and fabric body. I have only ever seen them here in Germany- I am sure they are available everywhere. The figures they use are really sweet but a little boring- rabbits, mice, dogs.. etc. I did see a fox that was rather sweet but my Rhino is more fun. I tried to hunt out the towelling like material but I couldn't find anything- and certainly nothing nice (horrid colours!)

Ok... so I started with a a head... the horns, stuffing and a few sketches. For the head I used one of my husbands old shirts.

I bought some velvety stretchy like material. Good green... maybe a little dinosaur like, also not a bad idea but the ears are already on.. next time. A red one... with some yellow? Hmmm. Anyway cut a length I thought was generous and centerd the head for a feeling of the toy.

Now the tricky part... how do you attatch a triangle shape head in the center of the fabric?? Keeping it 3d and not just a floppy, flat seam sewn head?

Well, sure a triangle but do you really want to cut so much material away?? Ok, start small work up. I measured the head size- length at the bottom- and cut a slit in the middle of the material. Memo, cut a little smaller, half centimeter, I did nothing wrong but since the material stretches it also rips a little. Was perfectly ok, just a memo for next time.

Pin the head and the fabric... does it work? Yup!

I had to add a little tuck at the back of the Rhino green fabric- I think that was due to the triangle shape.

Sewed around it.... its a curve. Fiddly but not impossible!

And the tuck looks good!!

Next choosing material for the underside- not really needed but adds a little something!

Yup, the lighter material. And please note my mistake here... DON'T STUFF THE HEAD!! Makes it tricky to sew. I think a revised edition would be to leave a seam open on the neck of the head for stuffing later-- better idea!

So sew the head onto the white material- Around the shape of the head with the white material underneath- in effect closing the hole where the stuffing is. My mistake- yup, stuffed head- and the double mistake was the head wasn't fully stuffed so I stopped half way, left a hole and carried on stuffing- impossible to sew the rest! I ended up sewing the head on by hand. It isn't ideal but it worked really well.

Lastly just sewing the eyes on and the little horns.

So, I hope that helped anyone else who would like to give it a go. It is not impossible but tricky!! Also the green velvety fabric was a COW to hem. I wanted to put a bias tape on it but it didn't work at all. Maybe lack of my skills but I have a sneaky feeling it was the green material- velvety and kind of 'pushed' it off. I think I tried 6 times. Lots of unpicking and bad humour!! Possibly ironing that double sided interfacing would help keep the tape in place. Grr...

In the end I folded the edge and zig zag stitched it. If I am honest not what I really wanted--- but it has something.... I rather like the feel of the zig zag and since it is for little ones I am sure they will enjoy running fingers over it.

1 comment:

Abby Glassenberg said...

Really interesting to read your process.

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