I’m now on my fourth or fifth marathon re-watch of the last season of Doctor Who, and today I decided I’d pay tribute to one of my favourite scenes with this little felt Ironside Dalek, politely offering you a cup of tea
The pattern, and process pics, can be found here: How to sew a felt Dalek stuffie
To make your own Dalek, you’ll need:
* Felt – your preferred colours plus black, grey, blue and white
* Thread to match felt
* needle, scissors
* polyfil or other stuffing material
Cut out the pieces, plus small circles for the hemispheres (the classic Dalek has 50 – you may want to use fewer!) and any other details you want to include – in my case, a thin strip for a neck strap, two long rectangles to fold into packs/pouches, two large dark brown circles for the tray, and two white and a light brown circle to make the cup and saucer.
Begin with the small details. To make the eyestalk, roll a small rectangle of felt as tightly as possible and whipstitch the edge. wrap the eye discs round the middle of the eyestalk and stitch into place. I’ve only used two discs, though Daleks usually have five or nine. To make the eye, make a running stitch round the edge of a small blue circle, and pull the thread tight. Now make a similar running stitch round a slightly larger black circle, place the blue felt in the middle, and draw the thead tight so that the blue just peeps out. Sew the finished eye to the end of the eyestalk.
The head piece has a flattened edge on one side – fold this flat area around the eyestalk and sew into place. The rest of the head is made by making a running stitch round the edge of the head circle, and drawing it partially closed so it can be stitched to the neck.
To make the neck, use an appropriate colour of thread, doubled, to embroider the neck uprights in backstitch or stemstitch. Whipstitch the top edges of the neck rings into place, horizontally across the neck.
The plunger arm is made in a similar way to the eyestalk, by rolling a rectangle of grey felt tightly and whipstitching the edge. The plunger is then sewed to one end.
The gun is made by stacking the three gun arm pieces, and then sewing tightly with a backstitch down the centre line. If you want your Dalek to be closer to the original, use four pieces, but this was too bulky for my small scale toy. Fan out the edges.
The hemispheres are simply small circles of felt whipstitched onto the ‘skirt’. You could also use beads or studs.
Whipstitch the neck into a tube, and then whipstitch the head and the skirt to it. Stuff well with polyfil or similar, especially the head, before whipstitching the base into place.
Sew the arms into position – you can cover the joins with larger squares of appropriately-coloured felt if you wish, to emulate the ‘boxes’ most daleks have their arms mounted on. Sew on shoulder slats if you are adding them, and a strip of felt around the bottom edge. Roll two small rectangles of felt tightly, as for the eyestalk and the plunger arm, to make the domelights.
Finish off by adding any other details you want, and you’re done.
Care for some tea?