|"Monkey Boy" I and II|
Yes, real men can sew. I was looking for something to make for my oldest daughter for her second birthday in 2006. I came across Stupid Sock Creatures in the bookstore. Great book. It explains how to make odd looking stuffed animals out of socks. Not only does it include patterns but it also goes into general construction techniques so you can make up your own creature. Intended for beginners, the book is very thorough and assumes you know nothing about sewing. I hadn't touched a needle and thread for over a decade and I had no problem knocking one out in an evening.
I chose "Wronky" from the book for the first one (pink). I followed the directions almost word for word. He turned out great but I think he's a little under stuffed. I may need to perform a little surgery soon. I gave him to my daughter and she immediately named him Monkey Boy. Last June I made the second one (black and pink) for my youngest daughter's third birthday based on "Owlsley" from the book. This time I changed up the pattern a little making the legs shorter, the arms longer, eliminating the tag and making it a cyclops. Following her sister's lead, she also named it Monkey Boy.
The hardest part is finding the right socks. Most socks are truly boring. And when you find interesting socks, they are often too thin or too soft to make good stuffed animals. Ideally you want heavy cotton or wool socks with a nice pattern to them. Your best bet is to go to a dedicated sock store; I had a tough time finding what I was looking for in department stores. "Monkey Boy I" is made out of a pair of super soft fuzzy socks. Unfortunately the fabric doesn't hold stitches too well and he has had to make a few trips to the stuffed animal hospital. "Monkey Boy II" is made from tougher socks but they are a little on the thin side. Time will tell how he holds up. This was a quick and easy project. Both Monkey Boys hold a place of honor among their favorite stuffed animals. Check out the Stupid Creatures website for more ideas.