I just spent the weekend selling my handmade goodies at TopCon, a small pop-culture convention in Topeka, KS. One of the guests, Mike Mundy, was a zombie on The Walking Dead, so there was a lot of zombies hanging around this weekend. All those undead inspired me to share this great tutorial on making your own zombie plushie on the blog Heidi Boyd. This tutorial offers more inspiration than actual techniques, but if you’re familiar with basic hand sewing skills, you’ll have no problem making your little Zombie Plushie friend to hunt down brains with. You could even mix it up a bit and use different colored fleece, felt scraps, and embroidery floss. The tutorial offers up a great, basic starting point for your imagination to take over. Be sure to share your adventures in zombie making with us!
A Monster to Love is this great online shop where, for every cute little monster doll you buy, Sam, Ben, and their dad Ray, donate a monster doll to a kid in need. They partner up with children’s hospitals and even the World Relief Refugee program out of Atlanta.
I ran across their awesome work about a year ago on Craftsy, including a pattern to make your own monsters to donate to local kids in need, or send off to Ray and his boys in Colorado so they can donate the cuddly little monsters to kids in need.
I try to organize a Monster Making Party at least once or twice a year–they’re fun, and pretty easy to do. Here’s how:
1. I buy a couple yards of fun colored fleece fabric when it’s on sale (usually in the summer). You can get quite a lot of monsters out of a yard of fleece, or even half a yard. Just be sure to shop when it’s on sale! Along with fabric, I’ll pick up a box of stuffing when it’s on sale too (or with a coupon). One box can last a long while and stuff a lot of monsters (probably around 30). I’ll also purchase Safety Eyes for the dolls, which can be attached before sewing, and don’t require any sewing knowledge to install. I purchased my Safety Eyes here, but there are tons of vendors and craft stores out there that sell them. The 18mm sized ones are what I used, and I liked to mix and match colors too. 15 pairs of eyes cost about $15. You can also use buttons for the eyes, but make sure they are SEWN on really well. If the eyes are not sewn on securely, Ray and his boys can’t use them. Do not glue on eyes. Ray and his boys can’t use the monster dolls if the eyes have only been glued on (hello choking hazards!).
All in all, I spent about $40 on supplies for making the monsters, but I did it over the course of a couple of months.
2. I set up a FB event and ask folks to bring their own sewing machines if they’ve got them, but I also tell folks that there’s plenty of other ways to help too: attaching eyes, stuffing, cuddle testing, and hand stitching are great ways to get even the most novice of crafters involved in a Monster Making Party. Along with the fabric, stuffing, and safety eyes, I also bring along thread, scissors, and hand sewing needles for people to use. If you’re worried about materials cost, you can always ask people to pitch in a couple bucks to help out.
3. I cut out at least some monsters before the party so there are dolls ready to be sewn. I also set up stations for people to work at installing eyes, stuffing the monsters, and hand sewing the monsters closed after stuffing, and even cutting out more monsters if necessary.
4. We have music playing, and I ask folks to help out with some food (like chips and dip, cupcakes, and frosty beverages). And I invite folks to come when they can and stay as long as they’d like to. It’s a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening.
5. I’ve found three hours to be a great length of time for a Monster Making Party. You can get a lot done, have time to chat, and still steal a cupcake too. Once the party’s over, you’ll want to box up your magnificent creations and mail them off to A Monster to Love! Their address is on the last page of the PDF.
If you have your own Monster Making Party, be sure to take pictures and share!!!
More Links of Interest
A Monster to Love: check out this great online shop and see where they’ll be selling their cute little monster dolls next!
Check out the story about A Monster to Love on Craftsy
This week on Spoonflower, the contest involves original designs for mythical creature plushies, and when I saw Gila’s UniPug design I knew I had to share it on Geek Crafts. You can purchase your own DIY UniPug Plushy Pattern on a variety of fabrics (I recommend Spoonflower’s new Minky fabric for this one because it’s super soft and cuddly, like the ever elusive UniPug himself) in Cross The Lime’s Spoonflower shop. The design fits on a fat quarter and costs about $17 with shipping.
If you’re more of a cat person, you might enjoy making your very own Grumpy Cat with this Instructable by username elewis03, complete with step-by-step instructions and pictures, as well as a rudimentary pattern you can download for free. This little guy would make an excellent cubicle pal at the office, don’t you think?
Hello All! I’m sure most of you have seen Guardians of the Galaxy by now (and if you haven’t, why?? Go, go! I’ll wait.). Baby Groot is undoubtedly one of the cutest things to hit the big screen, and I joined the masses in trying to create my own version of him for a friend’s Christmas gift.
Since I couldn’t find any plushie versions, I decided to make my own, and documented the process so I could make a Baby Groot tutorial!
There’s only one baby Groot that I believe is cuter than mine:
Featured on FashionablyGeek, Reddit user S7ar-lord’s wife made this costume for their baby boy for Halloween, and Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn tweeted the picture, saying he was “out-cuted”.
If retro-media is more your style, there’s crafts for you too! First, in honor of the “Awesome Mix Vol. 1” that Peter Quill aka Starlord listens to, 30MinuteCrafts created a printable cassette tape box, perfect for any cosplay, or just a geeky place to keep things!
A group of 15 of us descended upon a local dine-and-watch movie theater last weekend for the latest (and last) installment of the Hobbit movie trilogy. Definitely epic eye candy – I mean, Legolas dashing up that crumbling tower? Forget about it!
Bilbo’s trusty blade Sting made an appearance in the film, and served him well. If you would like a decidedly less pointy version with a high cute factor to brandish about, check out Choly Knight’s plushie pattern.
I agree with Choly about what makes this project unique: “the real kicker is the bit of satin stitching I did in glow-in-the-dark thread to simulate Sting’s ability to glow blue when orcs are near.” She says the glow-in-the-dark effect makes it great for pillow fights – which makes me want to make it even more, just to test out!
Have you seen the Battle of the Five Armies yet? What did you think? We did enjoy it, but my husband didn’t think the story merited three full movies.