Hello there! Tia and Laura from Little Button Diaries here. We have a lot of friends who are having babies and it can be a struggle to think of newborn gift ideas. This tutorial is for a cuddly seahorse rattle for babies. You can adapt it into the shape of any animal you like – as long as the shape can be depicted in a simple outline. If you can draw it, you can make it!
A Little Seahorse Rattle
Time to make : Two to threehours
Skill level : Intermediate
You Will Need
- Fat quarter of fabric
- Scrap of contrasting fabric for fins
- Small box (such as a tic tac box) and rice for rattle
- Soft toy filling
- Sewing machine
- Black embroidery thread and needle
Begin by sketching out a seahorse. You can use the template below – just print the image so that it measures around 25cm high – exact measurements are not needed. If you’re drawing it, bear in mind you will need to poke out the edges and corners, so wider shapes are easier! Cut the fin shape out separately.
Pin the template to the fabric and cut two pieces – one the reverse of the other – with a 1 cm seam allowance. From the contrasting fabric, cut four fins.
Sew each fin, right sides together, leaving the flat side open. Turn out, fold the raw edges in and press.
If you like, you can then add some textural stitches to the fins. Attach them by pinning on the centre of each body piece and sewing a straight stitch along the flat (turned in) edge.
Sew the two body pieces, right sides together, leaving a three inch gap at the back to turn out. Be careful to avoid sewing the fin into the seams!
Turn the seahorse the right way round, using a pencil to fully poke out all the corners and tail. Then stuff away, using the pencil again to poke all the fluff into the far corners.
Now make the rattle. Take a small box and fill loosely with rice or lentils. We used a tic tac box (although actually it was too big – so we chopped a chunk off the end and popped the lid on this bit instead to seal it. We were quite proud of ourselves!). Now squish it into the tummy of the seahorse, ensuring there are no hard edges pressing out.
Hand stitch up the hole.
Using black embroidery thread, stitch on a smile and two french knots for eyes (french knots are really easy, all you do is wrap the thread around the tip of the needle a few times and put the needle back in the spot where it came out).
This would make the perfect personalised gift for a newborn. Why not try other unusual creatures – we think a hedgehog would be nice!
For more crafting ideas, baking goodies and toddler activities check out our blog www.littlebuttondiaries.com
Tia & Laura x