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monsters of cuteness

The art of creating monsters is a varied one. For some people it’s as simple as a little drunken procreation. Others slave away in dripping cellars, stitching together bits of this cadaver and that one and waiting for a thunderstorm. But my method is quite different from both of these, and is clearly superior due to the involvement of brightly coloured felt.

Also, you can wear them.

What you’ll need:

  • felt – two bright colours, a bit of black and a bit of white
  • paper
  • pen or pencil
  • small circular objects to trace (use your thread bobbins)
  • thread – white, black, and in two colours that match your bright felt colours
  • scissors
  • straight pins
  • [optional] pin back or hair clip or hair barette

Putting it all together:

1) Find a circle of appropriate size (I use one about 1 1/4 inches across) and trace it onto a piece of paper.

Then fold the circle in half, and draw half of your monster (whatever you want that to look like) around it. Think about tentacles, tails, antenae, oozing pustules… it all depends on the sort of monster you want to make. If you want a tail or something else that only goes on one side, just cut it off one half of the paper once you unfold your template.

2) Cut out your paper template. Then pin it to two pieces of your main bright colour of felt and cut around the template.

Note: Keep the scraps from cutting out your monster!

3) Cut some smaller circles for the eye. One tiny black one for the pupil (I just freehand this one) one medium coloured one for the iris (from your other colour of felt) and one larger white one for the eyeball itself. Tracing the bottom of your thread bobbins works really well for this.

4) Grab your various colours of thread. Sew the black pupil to the coloured iris and the coloured iris to the white eyeball.


Last, take your white thread and make a couple of stitches on one side of the pupil to look like a bit of reflected light and give the eye some more depth and detail. Then sew the eyeball to one of the coloured monster cut-outs.


5) Take the scraps of felt you kept from step 2 (cutting out your monster) and cut them into tiny little pieces.

6) Now pin the two sides of your monster together and sew them up using small, even stitches. But don’t sew all the way around!


7) Before you finish sewing your monster’s two sides together, use the tiny cut up felt scraps to stuff the monster. Then sew the rest of the two sides together.


8) If you wish, sew a pin back or barette or hair clip to the back so you can pin or clip your monster to your bag, your head, etc. Or maybe sew him onto a headband.


  • To sew a nice snap clip onto the back, put your snap clip down on a scrap of felt the same colour as your monster.
  • Draw a line around the snap clip, a little ways away from the edge.
  • Cut two of these, and cut a small slit at the thick end of one.
  • Sew the non-slitted piece to the back of your monster.
  • Stick the snap clip’s small skinny end through the slit on the other piece, then sew this other piece to the first one. Ta da!

9) Command your monster to stare at people on the bus, making them uncomfortable. Though frankly, they’re more likely to just coo over him. Or her, of course.

To make monstrously adorable finger puppets, simply leave the bottom end of your monster unsewn, and don’t stuff him.




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16 Comments

  1. These are great!

    Reply
  2. ooh those are lovely!

    Reply
  3. any tips on what kind of felt should i use for your crafts.. they’re all so pretty by the way and i’m gonna try to do so some too

    Reply
  4. Thanks so much for all the great ideas! I modified this to make a dinosaur, but I wouldn’t have thought of it if it weren’t for your blog. (:

    Reply
  5. admin

     /  June 2, 2011

    Arianne, I just use felt sheets from Michaels – you should be able to get them at any craft store. For things like finger puppets if you’re not concerned about top quality fabric (and there’s likely no need to be), you can even just use felt sheets from the dollar store. Works perfectly well.

    Thanks M! Glad you liked it.

    Reply
  6. Amanda

     /  August 23, 2011

    May I ask, which stitch did you use to sew the two fabrics together?

    Reply
  7. admin

     /  August 23, 2011

    Of course you may ask! I used a whip stitch for these, though a small blanket stitch would work as well or better. If you (or anyone else) need it, there’s a rundown of how to do both those stitches included in this tutorial: http://nheilke.com/blog/?p=4259

    Reply
  8. S. Caulder

     /  July 31, 2012

    These are adorable. I am going to make some up as Christmas Ornaments for the little boys in the family. I think they would appreciate these more than the more traditional style of ornaments. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • Tally

       /  August 5, 2012

      You’re most welcome! Love the idea of making them as Christmas ornaments for kids. :)

      Reply
  9. Isabelle

     /  December 20, 2012

    Your monsters are so cute ! For Christmas my son and I have decided to make a package for the teachers. We made the heating pad, the monster book mark and finally we made a stress monster using the idea of the monster of cuteness, stretch fabric (the one use for bathing suit) and stuff it with flax seeds. Very cool.

    Reply
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