Because elephants are adorable…

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Because elephants are adorable…

Stuffed animals have always been a love of mine, but what child, or child at heart doesn’t love stuffed animals?  They’re cuddly and soft and don’t tell your secrets, what more could you want.  Despite this, as of recently I have needed to at least pretend to be an adult, so other than the treasured ones that my boyfriend has bought me over the years (a bear with a knitted heart sweater, an adorable turtle, a Santa Claus that comes out at Christmas time, and the piggy that he won me at a carnival {he refers to this as when he was robbed at a carnival, but that’s another story for another time}) my stuffed animals are currently living a quite lonely existence at my mom’s house.  This hasn’t been of too much concern to me, I have been far too busy for the past few years doing this Masters thing to even begin to worry about childhood toys.  Within the last year though many people close to me have been creating excessively adorable little bundles of joy, and spit-up and poo…but you know mostly joy.  This has put me into the mood to make cutesy little things which manifested itself as handmade stuffed animals.

I cannot take credit for the pattern as I found it through Pinterest on a Czech language site, and after finding it I couldn’t have been more excited to begin this new project!  I decided before I even began that I wanted the elephant that I made be a bit more chic than cutesy.  I already had the fabric all picked out!  My mom celebrated my rejuvenated love of crafting by unloading a ton of old fabrics and lace on me, which I happily accepted.  One of the ones in the bunch was a really pretty red, blue and cream tapestry print.  It had at that point been decided, I was making a tapestry elephant!

I began by importing the picture into paint and from there I attempted to enlarge it.  I can’t really be sure if this worked or not…but eventually it was printed and I was able to begin, at least that’s what I thought.  So here are some fairly serious warnings to anyone who would like to attempt this pattern (which by the way once it’s tweaked is quite cute).  First of all the “gusset” portion of the pattern, at least for me, did not print to the same dimensions as the body.  It’s possible that this is because I enlarged the pattern, but I don’t think so because while the length of the legs wasn’t a problem the width was.  The feet of the gusset had to be enlarged to match the body.  If you decide to do this pattern and have any problems with it just match up the body with the gusset and trace over so it matches and then cut it out.  If you still have problems just e-mail me at brushesandthread@gmail.com and I’ll help you out!  The second issue is don’t expect the end product to look just like the one that’s on the website.  If you look at the picture of the finished elephant it’s legs are much longer than in the pattern and the “mouth” side of the trunk goes up higher.

That being said, as I previously mentioned once it’s done, the end result is pretty darn adorable, don’t you think?    It’s possible that choosing a fairly thick tapestry fabric for my first attempt may not have been the smartest idea, and this may or may not have been mentioned to me by my mother before I started, but I really like the effect.  I think the colors and pattern really go well with his tubby little body.  Because of how thick the fabric was, and the amount of turns involved, I chose to not struggle with my sewing machine which likes to get snagged and be difficult for no apparent reason, and instead hand sew the entire thing.

I was personally pretty happy with the results and because of that I might have spent 1.5 hours in Hancock fabrics the next day looking for new and exciting fabrics to make little stuffed animals out of.  One such fabric is a pretty teal micro-suede that I made this little cutie out of.    Because of how much I love these two, I’m quite sure that my future holds many more stuffed animal blog posts.  Hope you enjoyed and keep crafting!

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