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Topic: New to crafting. Help needed. :)  (Read 1653 times)
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« on: January 16, 2013 11:47:22 AM »

Ok so I want to start off by saying hello to everyone and I'm glad to be a part of your community.

 Now to get on with it. I just wanted to know how to make a large stuffed animal. I wanted to make my own, of high quality materials and make it look like one made by gund or better! I like the ones made by 24k polar puff special effects company. I wanted to make my own creature. I wanted to see if materials that look like fur(faux fur) would be good to use? I intend to wash it every once in a while to avoid too much dust.I just wanted to know how I can go about this.

 I'm completely new to this type of arts and crafts. I've only done sculpting, and not good at it either. Sad I want to be good at this and I want to make something with my own hands that I can be proud of. I'm kinda intimidated by this. After seeing the projects you guys take on and complete I'm amazed. They all look fancy and nice. Some even so fancy that I'd expect them to be sold to a store! Like a chickadee someone made here.
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2013 12:04:02 PM »

Things I forgot to mention(sorry just so excited to take on this new adventure!)... Here's what I'd like to be able to do:

Non-complex(still complex for a beginner I assume):

1)A stuffed rabbit, like the ones sold on easter(like the ones on the pharmacies), I'd like to make it with lop ears that fall down to the toes. I wanted to do the bunny tail too

2)A stuffed mole( kinda more like a mario bros monty mole)

3)A raccoon

4)A baby chicken(like the chickadee)

5)A bat

6)A mouse

7)A kappa

8)A penguin

9)A puppet creature(not an actual puppet, just looks like its a puppet)

Complex stuffies(all include vinyl)

1)A turtle(Vinyl shell, claws and beak)-- mainly a snapping turtle or a loggerhead musk turtle. I wanted the shell to be realistic to the very dot! I keep turtles so I can provide pictures or link to pictures!

2)A deku scrub(vinyl face only)

3)A mouse ver2(Vinyl face, claws, feet)

4)A kappa ver2(Vinyl shell, claws, face, and part of the head)

5)A troll(vinyl face, claws, feet)

Sorry if this is a lot. I just want to know with which I should start first. These are all that I want to do in total.

I want to make these big like 2ft and some 4ft! Also I actually wanted then to be 3 dimensional and not flat

I like this one alot
« Last Edit: January 16, 2013 12:14:43 PM by SolarFlare » THIS ROCKS   Logged
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2013 10:15:58 PM »

Well the first step is finding a pattern you like for each animal. There are lots of good free and paid patterns out there, a good place to start might be here: http://dollmaker.nunodoll.com/plushie  but google is your friend when looking - there are literally thousands of patterns out there.

How realistic the plushies will look depends on what fabrics and notions you use; if you use felt and buttons for eyes, it's not going to look realistic, you know? If you're going to use faux fur, use high quality stuff that can be washed - a lot of the cheap, plasticy feeling ones will just matt together when wet and turn into a big, horrible mess that you cannot do anything with. Also keep in mind scale - whether you're going with short or long pile, it can look vastly different on a 2ft plush compared to a 4ft plush.

Since you're a beginner, I would suggest maybe taking a pattern and making a normal sized (as the pattern intends) plush out of fleece to get a hang of the way the pattern goes together before you start using fur. Fleece is very forgiving as a fabric, and relatively inexpensive, or, if you want experience working with a fuzzy fabric, perhaps try minky which is a very short pile "fur-ish" fabric.

Vinyl can be a pain in the butt to work with; there are certain types that my machine just hates to work with and will just chew it up and pucker it all to hell and I really don't know why, lol. Maybe someone else can help you out with that one.

But good luck with your crafty endeavours! Making large stuffed animals can be extremely fun and rewarding - I once made a 6ft, 5kg panda bear out of minky for my nephew once - it was a bit frustrating lining up all those A4 sheets of printed pattern pieces, but the end result was worth it. Smiley

All we have to decide is what to craft with the time that is given to us.

 Etsy ♥ DeviantArt  ♥  Facebook
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2013 08:04:49 AM »

I thought that I would indeed need to start small. But I just wondered if I could possibly work myself up to those rather quickly? I really want to make a huge stuffed rabbit. And I got new ones too! Like a platypus, hedgehog,  ducky, dino(in a yoshi style though-- big nose, big eyes just cute).

Is there anything that could be coined "kawai"? I'd like to make things you see on the japanese stuffed animals. I have a few. Not sure what show they're from, but they're adorable! the face is like this  (:3) and one like (:x) and (:<)

Also I have this paddington bear I bought on ebay. I kinda used him to practice washing stuffed animals. Since one of my favorite ones, now has matted hair on the top(I'm trying to fix that), and I kinda tried using a blow dryer as I read online would be good for sensitive plush. I accidentally put the thing too near the stuffie and it has a mark on its belly.

I'd like to make good quality clothes for it. I know it usually wears felt clothing. But I do not like felt. It's horrible to my sense of touch. I want to make that big rain coat he usually carries with the large hat.
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2013 03:10:10 PM »

You can of course work up to bigger, more complex projects; all it really takes is practice. You can't expect your first plush to be amazing because you've never done it before and probably have no idea what you're doing: I know I didn't! lol.

Ahh, I thought you wanted to make super realistic things. Sure, kawaii things are completely do-able, and probably a lot easier to make (at least in my mind) than hyper-realistic things. All you really need to do is spend some time searching for a good tutorial/pattern to get you started. There are some good tutorials on craftster, on deviantart.com, and many more on other sites you can find through google. Then it's just a matter of printing up the pattern pieces, finding some fabric and getting to work. Smiley

Never use a blow dryer on faux fur. It's synthetic material that can melt when exposed to high heat.  You can try brushing out the tangles/matted fur with a brush/comb, but it likely won't be the same again. For me, personally, I tell people to spot wash plushies, or wipe them over with a damp cloth rather than shoving them in the washing machine.  If you really *must* wash them, test a small sample of the fabric you're going to use first, before you start, so you know how it handles water, and even then, I'd suggest gentle hand-washing.

Felt isn't my favourite thing to work with either - you can use whatever fabric you like; I've made plushie suits out of suit fabric and out of fleece; it just depends on the look you're going for. Vinyl or some other shiny material may look more realistic for his raincoat, whereas fleece or flannel will give a more cuddly, softer look. Smiley

All we have to decide is what to craft with the time that is given to us.

 Etsy ♥ DeviantArt  ♥  Facebook
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2013 04:29:09 PM »

For the bears I may go with a vinyl type material. I know it's not cuddley but it's mainly for display.

As for the washing. I have thrown some in the washing machine, some I will not. Like a donkey kong plush 1980's version. Vinyl face hands and feets, thing was made by etone. Those are vastly rare(the larger version ones). That I'm thinking of hand washing him and letting him dry. Mainly to disinfect. I'm a neet freak, and I like my things sanitized. I have a ton and I mean A TON of stuffed animals. Probably now like 70+ and growing. 2 really huge ones. (5-7feet in body length= excluding legs and ears), 6 large ones(2feet to 3feet tops/ excluding legs on some as well ear measurments. These include a shaggy sheep dog thats made by chosun, very beautiful, and another dog made by 24k polar puff special effects inc, the other are by unknown makers. Like this mule which is quite odd and adorable, a big fluffy ducky and another I can't quite recall).

I also have medium sized ones (1.5feet to 2feet) this includes a carebear which is in mint condition, some "kawaii" plush, and others from japan, the small ones are assorted and too many to name. I also have some I place in the odd category such as ufo catcher prizes, carnival prizes, etc. I won 3 ufo catchers(all big domo-kuns), 5 carnival prizes(Not the corny looking ones with super bright colors), and 1 which I'm not sure where it is but it's a handmade rabbit plush.

All of these have been washed in the washer in the lowest setting(delicate/handwash, cold cold water, low speed spin). They all have been washed with plenty of detergent and softner to prevent any matting or other issues when you air dry things. Only one plush I put in the dryer with long fur which was the polar puff pooch(33inch tall) his head fur got a bit matted, the rest is fine. The other pooch I bravely put it in the dryer for five minutes on low setting/delicates/low heat... Before which I had to comb to prevent the fur to dry in place. After which it lost a bit of fur(a hand full but the stuffed animal is sooooo furry that you don't even know it was there), then after it dried up to "moist" I had once again combed it dry and let it air dry the rest of the moisture.

Now as for the sewing part. I'm hoping to do a mix of both.
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