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
So this adorable Meatboy plushie was submitted and I was torn.
On the one hand, I’m a vegetarian, can I endorse this plushie?
On the other hand, I love love love and want to support independant game makers…can I not endorse this plushie?
Well, you saw those three loves in there. That tells you what you need to know about which side won. And I suppose he’s more than meat. He’s a boy. And he’s super.
If you love video games and you have not yet seen Indie Game: The Movie, it is available on Netflix streaming and I highly recommend it. You’ll get a great look at the behind the scenes love and care that went into the creation of Super Meatboy and your heart….oh my goodness your heart….it will be so warmed.
P.S. Just a quick plug for a personal project! I’ve got a book pitch in as a finalist for pitchapalooza, the “American Idol” for book pitches. There is a “fan favorite” aspect to the contest and I’m in there (look for Marjee!) for a novel I’m working on called Nightmares of Neverwas. It’s a book about nightmares and elite demon professors and all sorts of good stuff. If that is your bag, consider voting for me. If it isn’t, give an upvote to one of the other, budding, talented writers over there!
When you think of Zombies, you think of cute and cuddly things that you want to sleep curled up beside right? Or is that just me? These adorable zombie plushies are made by Flickr’er Handmade Stuffs. They’re all so cute and snuggly that I can’t pick a favourite!
Another crazy-detailed needlework project – a flowchart of how Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock works. The crafter, mindboggld, took various pictures from the internet and imported them into Visio to create the chart. Clever girl, and extra geek points for using Visio! I would love to just get a poster print of this for my son! Click on the image above for close-ups!
Also from mindboggld, a set of Big Bang Theory tile coasters, with 3D molecule renderings she found at 3dchem.com. I love that it includes Lactose, since Leonard is lactose-intolerant. These were included in a swap with the above embroidery! I can’t believe she gave them away! Clever AND strong, that one!
I hadn’t heard the term “hako clones” before seeing this Big Bang Theory paper toys project – I guess I always referred to them in my head as “paper cube heads”. Perhaps hako clones has more (ba)zing(a) to it. Bonus: the artist ditch-scrawls posted the templates in his papercraft gallery. Be sure to link over there, because he has lots of other geeky hako templates, like Luke Skywalker, Superman, Army of Darkness Ash, Highlander, & Dr. Who.
While neither my son nor I are particularly crazy about Sheldon’s catch-phrase, I do like the simplicity of these “Bazinga” earrings by Just Duckie Designs on Etsy.
I’ve seen these photo clocks at Hobby Lobby & Archivers, but never would have thought of putting TV stills in the spaces, like this Sheldon clock by P.S. Francis. You could also intersperse pictures with character quotes. Might be kind of fun to have different clocks in each room, each highlighting a different show or movie. A Firefly clock, anyone?
So, all you BBT fans out there – what are some of your favorite quotes?