Inspiration comes when you least expect it. I was clearing out the kitchen cupboards (worst job in the world when you’re doing it, but always so satisfying once it’s done) and I came across some old paper napkins from my son’s first birthday. They had a pattern of individual jungle animals on them and it struck me how cute the elephant was. Just right for a new Tinny Tinies collection!
I was keen to get started, so needless to say the kitchen cupboards were left less than dazzling and I ended up making a mess elsewhere instead, pulling out bits of fabric that might be suitable for the job.
I started as usual by sketching a pattern onto paper and cutting it out, allowing for a seam, then pinned the paper pattern onto the fabric and cut out the basic shape.
I wanted the ears to be in a contrasting fabric so I decided to do lots of elephants in one go, cutting out the body shape and the ears in the same colour with the intention of mixing and matching later on.
After what turned out to be a somewhat lengthy selection process pf pairing up the ears and bodies I was ready to start. First I machine stitched around the main body, leaving the bottom edge open for turning and stuffing. I also machine stitched around the curve of the ears, leaving the straight edge open for turning.
I stitched on the eyes before stuffing and stitching the elephant closed. That way any knots could stay inside the body of the elephant. I used the tiniest beads I could find.
At some point before stitching the elephant closed it was necessary to give him a little tail. I found the best way of doing this was simply by tying a knot in some embroidery thread, threading it through from the inside out using a needle and then tying a knot at the end of the elephant’s tail, snipping off the excess.
The rest was done by hand, whip stitch all the way. The ears were the last to go on, making the little fellow feel like a proper little elephant at last.
Being a Tinny Tiny, each and every one of these little elephants was entitled to a bed. I decided to go one step further this time and make a sleeping bag instead of a blanket.
What do you think my little Elefriend? A nice, snug fit? Zzzzzzz.
Finally into the minty Altoids tin, with sleeping bag and pillow. Ready for the next sleepover or camping trip.