I love this little chap, he’s fun to make and cute to boot. I made three of these last year as gifts for babies. Becasue of this they are sewed together very securely but other than that I followed Emma Dents pattern. The pattern is available for free on her blog ‘I Love Buttons’. You can see other peoples versions, for in spiration on Ravelry. Click on ‘Prokects’ under the heading ‘About This Pattern’ on the right hand side of the page.
I like to make all the pieces before sewing anything together when making projects like these. This means that to can pin all the bits together to make sure that you’re happy with the proportions before carefully sewing them in place. If you feel that the legs or arms aren’t long enough you can add a few more rows. If the head or the body appear to big or small you can adjust the stuffing till you’re happy with the over all look.
A lot of toy patterns suggest that you sew eyes, mouths etc on before stuffing, I guess as maybe it’s easier to hide the ends of thread inside the piece rather than outside, but I’ve always found this really hard. I like to see how the features work with the ears etc. and sew them on as the last thing. I tie a big knot in the thread I’m using and poke the needle through a hole on the opposite side of the head so that the knot will get stuck in the stuffing on the way through. To secure the thread when I’ve finished sewing on the features I thread the needle back and forth through the stuffing and then secure on a seem or under a ear so that it can’t be seen.
Laying all the pieces out really helps me to check that I’m happy with the proportions before sewing together.
You really can chose any colours you like for this little chap and I think he’d be a great way of using all sorts of odds and ends as the stripes don’t have to be even. Having said that I really struggle to do things abstract so I stuck to two rows of each colour and kept the colours in order. I wasn’t 100% happy with the shape of the head when all the parts were sewn together so I threaded (using a blunt ended needle so as to easily go neatly through the stitches without splitting them. On the head above I used mustard thread and did a running stitch through the first round of the mustard stripe, starting and finishing under the chin. I then pulled the thread a bit to pull in the shape of the nose.
The Giraffe I gave to my friend Anna had a little extra decoration in the form of a button with a little fox on as a knew Anna loved foxes.