Cute, colourful, and perfect for cuddles, there is no doubt that this vibrant character from Corinne Bradd has what it takes to brighten up the toybox. What’s more, you can bring some colour into your own life thanks to the accompanying keyrings. A great opportunity to use up scraps of fabric, these cheerful accessories can be stitched in four simple steps.
- Fabric, cotton, assorted print fat quarters
- Lightweight quilt wadding
- Fibre filling
- Buttons, black
- Coloured felt
Make the parrot
Download and print the templates from sewmag.co.uk. Trace and cut the pattern pieces onto the reverse of coloured fabric, adding a 5mm seam allowance to each. Snip the mask and feet pieces from coloured felt without a seam allowance.
Appliqué the felt mask pieces to the head of each body piece with a small zig zag stitch. Pair up each beak piece with the front of the head and sew right sides together, manipulating the curve of the beak to match the curve of the head. Open out and press.
Stitch the body gusset between the front of each body piece, starting just below the beak and working round to the bottom. Leave the last 5mm of each bottom seam unsewn for the time being. Stitch around the beak, head, and back of the parrot, leaving a 5cm gap in the centre-back.
Layer each pair of tail feathers, right sides together, and each pair of wings onto lightweight wadding. Sew all the way round each pair, through the layers, leaving a gap in the top flat edge of the tail and the flattest part of the shoulder on each wing. Trim the excess wadding from the seam allowance before turning right sides out. Fold in the raw edges of the wing gap and slip-stitch closed before pressing all pieces.
Layer the ends of the tail feathers together and slip them inside the bird so the raw edges poke out of the unstitched gusset seam. Sew across the ends of the tail while closing up the seam. Turn out the parrot, using a large knitting needle to push the point of the beak out fully. Topstitch a beak line before firmly stuffing with fibre filling. Fold in the raw edges of the gap and slip-stitch closed.
Layer the wings up and pin to the sides of the toy. Oversew the wings to the parrot around the top semicircle, stitching through the bird’s body and both wing layers. Oversew the pairs of feet together and stuff firmly before closing up the seam. Oversew each foot to the middle of the bird’s bottom around the back curve. Stitch two 10mm black buttons to the sides of the head, close to the beak.
Stitch the feathers
Cut long, 3cm wide strips from several different colours of fabric. Sew right sides together with a 5mm seam allowance to build up a panel of striped fabric. Press well, ironing the seams in the same direction.
Cut the stripy panel into two squares. Snip each square diagonally, one from top left to bottom right and the other in the opposite direction. Swap over the halves so the stripes meet at a 90 degree angle. Stitch the pairs of triangles together on the slanted side.
Cut a feather shape from the centre of the stripy square, then layer onto quilt wadding and plain fabric. Topstitch in a coordinating thread using a small zig zag along all seam lines, except the top centre 2cm, before trimming the wadding and backing to the same shape as the striped piece.
Cut a rectangle of fabric, fold in half right sides together and sew. Turn out and fold in half to make a loop. Slip the ends of the loop between the layers at the top of the feather and secure by completing the topstitching along that seam line. Bind the edges of the feather with a zig zag stitch and fit a split ring into the loop.