These garden critters by Louise Nichols are the perfect project to stitch in a day. Make for your little one or even as a fun décor piece for your home while developing your toy making skills. We used coordinating prints from the Tapestry collection for Art Gallery Fabrics, but you could mix your pair up with bolder designs.
- Patterned fabric, five designs per snail
- Lightweight interfacing, 6.5cm x 7.5cm
- Coordinating thread
- Embroidery thread, black
- Toy filling
- Fabric glue
- 15cm x 21cm
- Use a 5mm seam allowance throughout, unless otherwise stated.
sew a snail
1 Download and print the templates.Cut out five 9cm x 16cm fabric rectangles. Arrange them as desired and machine stitch together along the long edges. Press the seams open.
2 Fold this strip in half lengthways, pin and machine along the long edge, leaving both short ends open so you have a tube. Turn through to the right side and press so the seam sits down the centre. Oversew one end using coordinating thread, then stuff the tube with toy filling. Don’t overfill, as you need to be able to roll it to form the snail’s shell. Once you’re happy, oversew the open end.
3 Using the template, cut two bodies from fabric and two from wadding. Trim a piece of lightweight interfacing to fit behind the face and iron to the reverse of one of the bodies, where the features will be embroidered. Mark the position of the face using the template as a guide, and stitch with black embroidery thread. Create two French knots for the eyes and back stitch a mouth.
4 Cut out four antennae from felt. Glue two together to form a pair, and oversew around the edge using coordinating thread. Pin into position on the top of the head facing inwards.
5 Lay the two wadding pieces down with the back body piece on top with right sides facing upwards, and the front body piece on top of this, right sides facing downwards. Line up and pin together.
6 Machine stitch the outside edge, leaving a gap. Snip the edges, turn through and press lightly. Put some extra stuffing in the head, then place weights towards the end of the body section between the two layers of wadding (this will stop your snail rolling forward). Oversew the gap using coordinating thread.
7 Begin rolling the shell using small stitches to hold the end in place. Continue rolling, using a few more stitches to secure the outside end. Position onto the snail body and keeping the stitches hidden if possible, sew the shell to the body to finish.