DIY Little Stuffed Elephant

My good friend back in Arkansas just had the sweetest little baby girl. When she was pregnant, I let her know that I wanted to make something for her baby. I gave her lots of choices, and eventually decided I’d make her a little stuffed elephant.
 photo elephant26_zpsaa70012c.pngI made Ellie (that’s what I’ve been calling her in my head…) completely from scratch, no pattern pieces or anything. She’s also composed of fabric I already had scraps of on hand, and stuffed with some leftover quilt batting. So she was completely free!

I used three colors of flannel to make her: pale purple, grey, and light teal.

The first thing I did was make an elephant outline on paper and cut it out. I searched through google images until I found an outline I liked, and them free-handed it on some sturdy card stock. I had to tape two pieces of paper together to make a big enough pattern piece.

 photo elephant_zpse1179d03.pngOnce I’d cut out the elephant, I traced the outline onto the pale purple fabric, which was folded in half so I could cut out both sides at once. If you don’t fold your fabric in half, make sure you make two body pieces that face opposite ways when the right side of the fabric is showing.

 photo elephant1_zpsdd251b5f.pngWhen I traced, I made sure to leave an extra 1/4 inch around the outline for my seam allowance. I used my rotary cutter to cut around the outline, but scissors would work just as well. With the seam allowance, the side pieces ended up being about 12 inches wide and 9 inches tall.
 photo elephant3_zps3fd36004.pngNext, I made a heart-shaped pattern piece for the ears. I traced and cut out two grey and two teal hearts, again leaving room for a 1/4 inch seam allowance. I also cut two grey triangles for the tail.
 photo elephant5_zpsfc9e7422.png
 photo elephant6_zps00d5fc92.pngThe last piece I cut was a long strip of purple that was 2.5 inches wide and about 45 inches long. At the time, I thought that would be plenty to go around the outside of the elephant outline, but it ended up being just barely enough, so make sure you cut at least 50 inches.
 photo elephant2_zps2a5b2d31.pngOnce all the pieces were cut, I put the ear pieces right side together and stitched around them with a 1/4 inch seam, leaving about an inch open along one side.
 photo elephant7_zps35143cf0.pngThen I turned them right side out, ironed them flat, and stitched around the outside, as close to the edge as I could. This sealed up the gap in the first seam and also gave some nice topstitching to the ears.
 photo elephant8_zps88284c8c.pngFor the tail, I put both pieces right sides together and stitched down both long sides, leaving the top open. Then I flipped it right side out and ironed it flat.
 photo elephant9_zps6aaae5a5.pngTo attach the ears to the body, I stitched an ear to each elephant piece with a tight zig-zag stitch for extra security. I only stitched about 2 inches along the top to leave the rest of the ear floppy.
 photo elephant10_zpsc107004e.png
 photo elephant11_zps2c5d386c.pngI stitched the tail to the end of the long strip with the tip pointing away from the end of the strip.
 photo elephant12_zps4f1bfe93.pngNow that all three large pieces are ready, all that’s left is to sew them together. With right sides together, I lined up the tail where I wanted it to land on her rump and started stitching about an inch from the top of the strip.
 photo elephant13_zps38912dda.pngOnce I got around to where I started, I folded the end of the strip down so that the tail is resting over the other end of the strip.
 photo elephant15_zps4b3a4393.pngSo it looks like this:
 photo elephant16_zpsd43b44a3.png
 photo elephant17_zpsce303b54.pngNext, I lined up the second elephant piece, right sides together, at the tail. Then I sewed around the edge again.
 photo elephant18_zps0ce8d6c0.pngNow the elephant is all put together, and the little flap at the tail is still open, so that’s where I turned her rightside-out.
 photo elephant19_zpsdd79d2ad.png
 photo elephant20_zps1f009d68.pngI stuffed her with some leftover quilt batting that I tore up, making sure to get the trunk and legs stuffed before filling up the rest of her.
 photo elephant21_zps65bd0770.pngI hand-sewed the bum-flap closed using a hidden running stitch – here’s an excellent tutorial for that stitch.
 photo elephant22_zps1fb7956c.pngTa-da! She’s all ready for some snuggles!
 photo elephant23_zps5d588eb1.pngI used some embroidery floss to write “for Mae” on the underside of one of the ears. It’s pretty hard to read, since I just free handed it.
 photo elephant25_zps611cdd72.pngNow to ship Ellie off to Arkansas!

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Lisa Kieklak

Co-Founder at The Helpmates
Explorer & adventurer - mostly through scratches of ink on a page - I enjoy my husband, our twin boys, our boisterous German shepherd, and strive to live for the glory of God.

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