Easy, Scrappy Softies – What a Hoot!

Ever since I made a murder of fancy felt crow softies from Kelli Nina Perkins's pattern several years ago, I've been looking for other easy art doll patterns to make using my fabric scraps.

tweedie owl stuffies
Tweedie Owl Softie by Amy Struckmeyer,
from Stitch Winter 2012.

Two years ago I made pumpkin stuffies. They were adorable and fun, but didn't have much personality.

After seeing Lynn Krawczyk's adorable Wishing Owls and, more recently, the Tweedy Owl Softie by Amy Struckmeyer in the Winter 2012 issue of Stitch magazine, however, I think owls will be my next flight of fabric fancy.

The materials for the Tweedie Owls include a ½ yard of wool or wool-blend tweed for the body (if you're lucky, you can upcycle an old jacket);  1 fat quarter or 8" x 8" piece of quilting weight cotton print for wings; wool felt scraps for the eyes, nose, and feet; plus fiberfill stuffing, thread, and fusible web.

You can download the templates for the body and feet at SewDaily.com.

Now, I'll tell you right off the bat that I plan to hand sew the scrappy features on these little guys and probably add some embroidery as well. Fabric glue may be involved, too. That's just how I roll.

But, here is the official softie tutorial.

Tweedie Owl Softie by Amy Struckmeyer

1. Using the templates, cut 2 owl body pieces from the wool tweed fabric.

2. Using the templates, trace 2 owl wings and 2 each of the other shapes (eye, pupil, beak, and foot) onto the paper surface of the fusible web. Cut out the shapes about ¼" larger than the traced outlines.

3. Position the fusible web shapes for the wings on the wrong side of the cotton. Fuse, following manufacturer's instructions. Cut out each shape on the traced outline and remove the paper backing. Repeat for the eyes, beak, and pupils.

4. Position the fusible web shapes for the feet on the wrong side of your chosen color of felt, leaving room for the 2 additional feet. Fuse the web to the wrong side of the fabric. Cut out each shape on the traced outline and remove the paper backing.

5. Position the 2 cut feet on the wrong side of the same felt color. Fuse the feet to the second layer of felt. Trim the second layer of felt using the fused feet as guides. This will create a double layer of felt for the feet. Topstitch 1/8" from the edges of the feet to secure them together.

cozy monster softies
Cozy Monsters by Samantha Howard

6. Position the eyes, pupils, and beak on the right side of the owl front. Also position the wings on the owl front, aligning the outside edges of the wings with the outside edges of the owl body. Fuse the appliqués to the owl front. Topstitch 1/8" from the edges of the fused appliqués.

7. Lay the owl front flat, with the right side facing up. Using the marks on the pattern as a guide, pin the feet upside down to the owl body so the tops of the feet align with the bottom edge of the body.

8. Lay the owl back on the front, right sides together, and pin around the edges. Using a ¼" seam allowance, stitch around the edges of the owl leaving a 3" gap above one of the wings for turning.

9. Clip the curves and the corners, then turn the owl right side out through the gap. Use a point turner to carefully push out the ears.

10. Stuff the owl with fiberfill, starting with the ears. Turn in the seam allowances at the gap and pin closed. Hand stitch the gap closed.

OK, who wants to make these with me?

There are actually two softies patterns in the Winter 2012 issue of Stitch: the Tweedie Owl and a Cozy Monster. Plus cute cupcakes, an easy fringed cowl, and many other patterns for fall and holiday crafting.

P.S. The collective noun for crows is "murder" (a murder of crows). Whooooooo knows the collective noun for owls? Leave your answer below!

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3D Art and Assemblage, Blog, Mixed-Media Techniques

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