an alpaca plush for marie
In August I had the wonderful opportunity to get to know Marie, a fellow blogger who loves to sew and knit. While I’m hoping to find some creative friends who don’t live an ocean away, it was awesome to hang out with Marie and we had lots of fun exploring fabric stores/markets and sharing thoughts and ideas.
While I was in Germany, she made me an amazing green and orange quilted pouch, with an orange zipper (!) and little ribbons with the Berlin and Hamburg skylines as a memory of my trip. Then, for an early Christmas gift, she sent me a package filled with German Christmas cookies, whale-printed fabric, and a gorgeous hand-knitted hat with cables – something I could never make in a million years.
Clearly, the best part about having crafty friends is that you can make things for each other, and I wanted to make something special for Marie.
Marie loves to knit, and, on a similar note, she loves sheep. I thought about making a plush sheep, but that didn’t sound terribly exciting. What other animals produce cuddly fibers, are adorable, and are loved by Marie? Alpacas!
Once I got the idea in my head, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. What could possibly be cuter than a plush alpaca? They’re such silly looking animals. And I think this is the first time I’ve ever sewn a plush with an eyebrow*!
I cut into my new collection of wool scraps from the rummage sale, opting for a chalky blue body and lavender features. The wool was fun to work with… in contrast to the fleece I normally use, it doesn’t stretch much at all. This led to a very substantial, “heavy” feeling stuffed animal. It’s a good thing.
I filled the bottom of his legs with plastic pellets, like beanie baby beans, and this added weight means he can stand up on his own! This was not intended and it was the best surprise. I rarely make plush that have legs but this was a good success.
I used the selvedge edge of the lavender wool for his feet – the ribbed edge makes it look like he’s wearing little socks. I figured Marie would appreciate an alpaca with wool socks. :)
He was hard to send away, but it’s great to know that he’ll have fun in Germany with Marie. A big success for me on the plush front – I’ve been in a bit of a sewing rut lately – and I can’t get over his little eyebrows. Or his alpaca forehead.
And to make your day, here’s a happy alpaca I found while I was doing my research:
*regarding eyebrow plush – in 2006 I made a plush Goomba for Ben. Its eyebrows are giant! So I guess that counts.