Quick-to-sew soft little critters make perfect playmates for baby. These two softies (along with six others) are easy to make from a fabric panel. Fabric is from the Urban Zoologie by Ann Kelle for Robert Kaufman Fabrics.

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Project design: Erica Jackman

Materials:

The materials given are for eight animal softies. Instructions are for making one.

  • One panel (makes 8 animal softies)
  • 8--9" squares assorted prints or 2--18x22" pieces (fat quarters) for backing
  • Polyester fiberfill
  • Water-soluble marking pen
  • Chopstick (optional)

Finished hippo: about 8x4"

Measurements include 1/4" seam allowances. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

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Assemble the Softie

1. Cut out animal print along printed border. With a water-soluble marking pen, draw a line around animal shape about 1/2" from outer edges.

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2. With wrong sides together, layer and pin marked animal print and 9" backing square. Cut out layers on marked line.

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3. Pin cut shapes with right sides together (printed sides). Using a water-soluble marker, mark a 2" opening along one edge of animal shape.

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4. Using a 1/4" seam allowance, sew around shape, leaving marked opening free. Clip around curved edges.

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5. Turn right side out. Stuff hippo shape with fiberfill, using a chopstick to pack filling into small areas. TIP: Using small "tufts" of polyester makes a smoother finished stuffed softie.

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6. Fold unstitched seam allowances to inside; pin in place. Using a needle and thread, stitch opening closed to complete animal softie.

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