Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Cuddle Turtle Footstool & Shannon Fabrics Cuddle Fabric Giveaway!



Today's tutorial is a real cinderella story for an old friend AND has a fabulous fabric giveaway to go with it!! My parents were cleaning out their basement and found a old stuffed turtle footstool that had been in my childhood nursery many moons ago. I had a lot of fond memories of it and hated to bin her after all these years, but to say she'd seen better days was an understatement. She looked like she'd been hit by a truck: 


But instead of tossing her out, I saw her potential to be beautiful again by using a little TLC, seamstress wizardry and some incredible fabric. Now she's looking fresh, modern and extremely huggable:


My plan was to redo her in some fabric that would look really nice, but also be hard wearing & kid-friendly. The answer was Shannon Fabrics Cuddle Fabric.  


Their motto is Making The World A Softer Place and believe me, they totally do.  They offer the world's largest selection of plush fabrics: Cuddle (aka minky), Faux Fur, Sherpa, Terry Cloth - every soft & cuddly fabric type you could want and in a rainbow of colors and designs.  I used a trio of their yellow & grey Cuddle Classics prints for my turtle's transformation:


For the head and limbs, I used this adorable nursery rhyme toile and cut it so the front legs feature the 3 little kittens that lost their mittens:


The back legs have Jack & Jill tumbling down the hill:


Even the tail has a little rock-a-bye baby:


And besides upgrading my turtle with Cuddle fabric to make her snuggly soft, I also added a little ruffled edge to her shell so she'd look a little cuter too:


From total trash to a real treasure - it's a pretty big difference:


I thought I'd share how I made this major transformation and give away some of this wonderful fabric, so you can make your very own turtle footstool too!

Materials:
- 3 yds Cuddle fabric - I used Shannon Fabrics Pretty Paisley Lemon, Mod Dot Lemon/Silver, Toile White/Charcoal
- Cotton stuffing (for limbs), foam & batting (for shell interior)
- Upholstery thread
- Hand sewing needle
- Paper & pencil
- Notions (ball point needle, rotary cutter/shears, pins, 2 buttons, scrap of ric-rac)
Optional: walking foot, pinking shears, elastic thread, curved upholstery needle

Tips for working with Cuddle fabric:
- Keep a vacuum handy, since it does tend to shed when cut.
- Pop cut pieces in the dryer on air dry for a few minutes helps remove any loose fluff on edges.
- A walking foot isn't absolutely necessary, but it will help keep Cuddle fabric (and other thick or knit fabrics) from shifting or stretching unevenly.
- Use a stitch length of 3, this is better suited to fabrics with a bit of stretch.
- There is a nap, so make sure it is facing the same direction when stitching pieces together.


I started by taking apart the turtle with a seam ripper to have all the main components separated: 


For the front legs I cut two rectangles 9 inches wide by 8.5 inches high and for the back legs I cut two rectangles 11 inches wide by 7.5 inches high from the Toile.  I folded each leg widthwise, with right sides facing and stitched along the bottom and side with a 1/2 inch seam allowance, then turned right side out and stuffed.  I also cut two 4.5 wide by 5.5 inch high curved pieces for the tail and stitched them together leaving a small gap on the flat end for turning.


I drafted a pattern 6 inch wide by 19 inch high piece for the head/neck on paper cut out two halves and stitched them together with right sides facing, leaving the bottom open to turn and then stuffed.



I like to trim the seam edges with pinking shears since it's faster than clipping into the curves and there's a little less shedding:


For the top of the shell I cut an oval 29 inches high by 26 inches wide and a smaller 16 inch wide by 13.5 inch high for the underside from the Pretty Paisley.  I basted two rows 1/4 and 1/8 inch away from the edge around the top piece.


I placed my original shell stuffing in the center and pulled up on the bobbin threads of the basting to fit the fabric around the interior.  If making from scratch, I'd suggest cutting some foam in an oval that will be 13in wide x 16in long x 5in thick and covering it with a layer of quilting batting to make a shell inner.  Then I covered it with the smaller oval, pinned in place (folding it's raw edges under) and slipstitched them together.



Then it was time to do the base.  From the Mod Dot print, I cut two pieces that were 12 inches wide by 24 inches high and stitched them together on one short side.  Then I folded the new piece widthwise and stitched one short end and down the length and turned right side out.  



I stuffed the original base piece inside the new outer and stitched the open end closed.  I brought the short ends together and hand stitched them together with a slipstitch using upholstery thread.  


To make the ruffle addition I cut three pieces 36 inches wide by 8 inches high and stitched them together on the short sides to make one long strip.  Like the base, I folded this piece widthwise and stitched one short end and down the length and turned right side out.  I overlapped the short ends and stitch them together to form a loop. 


I ran a basting stitch 1/4 inch from the seam and a second one 1/8 inch over.  Because this fabric is thicker when folded, & this is a big piece to ruffle, I used elastic thread in my bobbin at this point.  It won't break as easily as standard thread when being pulled this much and will help ruffle up the fabric. I pulled up bobbin thread and spread the ruffles evenly to fit around the base edge. Pin onto base as shown and then hand stitch together with a slipstitch.


Next I added the shell on top of the newly ruffled base and flipped it all upside down.  The underside of the shell was then slipstitched to the inside edge of the base.  This is where the curved upholstery needle really came in handy to get into the tight curved spots. I also flipped it right side up and stitched along the outer edge of the shell, going through the ruffle into the outer edge of the base, so it can really withstand the kids playing with it.


After stuffing the original legs into the new outers, I folded the raw edges inward and pinned them and the tail to the base and slipstitched together.  



I did the same with the neck, stitching from bottom, all the way around the shell and back down.


Button eyes and a ric-rac mouth were added and the revamped turtle became ready to cuddle & love.  Look at that smile - she's feeling better already, thanks to her new look:


Now how about a chance to win this very fabric for yourself?

Shannon Fabrics is giving one lucky reader a
 3 yard trio Cuddle Classics Fabric!
a Rafflecopter giveaway




I'm also sharing this project with my FAVE LINK PARTIES.
Click HERE to check them out!

51 comments:

  1. Love the Oh La La Cuddle line...My Grangirlie loves Paris things.....I would make her a Cuddle Quilt for her bed & a Big pillow & throw for watchin TV & reading! : )

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  2. Boys Toys cuddle fabric by Robert Kaufman- I love the airplanes

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  3. I was just introduced to Cuddle fabric and have fallen in love. I'm making a super cuddly lap quilt from it, and this giveaway would fit it so perfectly! If I win, I'll make it a lap quilt for two LOL - But seriously, thanks for the opportunity to win some "cuddling" :-)

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  4. You've performed and amazing transformation on your turtle footstool. It's cozy and inviting and so cute! I'm loving the nursery rhyme themed fabric! Have a great day.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much. It's hard to believe it's the same footstool when I look at it!

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  5. Nested Owls is my favorite & I'd make a quilt for my great niece who loves owls. Thanks.

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  6. So many awesome choices... I am loving Crazy For Daisies!

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  7. I love the Crazy for Daisies collection of cuddle fabrics. I'd make something snuggly for my granddaughters with it.Thanks.

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  8. They are all so cute! But I like the gray and yellows that you used. I would probably use it for baby blankets for my nieces and nephews.

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  9. I really like the RKC Night Owls Watermelon/Topaz fabric. I would use it to make a blanket for my new little niece!

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  10. New favorite line is the Owl line!! What wouldn't I make! Kids beanbag chairs, quilts, stuffies, scarves, pillow cases! :). #cuddleaddict

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  11. I think the Kozy Cuddle fabric would be perfect for the back of a quilt!

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  12. So many fabrics, so little time... I'd probably make a tied cuddle blanket for my nephew...

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  13. Too cute! I have a niece who wants a turtle for Christmas, such great timing! I know Mom and Dad don't want a pet right now.

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    Replies
    1. This is the perfect solution then. So glad to hear that:)

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  14. I absolutely adore you turtle foot stool....both of my grand babies would just flip over each a stool like this.. and they asked for pets for Christmas from Granny !!!!!!! Perfect is what I say !!!!!! Thanks for giveaway & pattern !!!!

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    1. Aw, that is fantastic Linda. It truly makes me thrilled to hear that my tutorials are such a great fit with what people are wanting. I'd love to see yours when you make them!

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  15. I love the pink dot cuddle fabric and I would make a blanket for my daughter.

    knickgirl_3 at yahoo dot com

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  16. oh wauw, this will be on my to do list!

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    1. I can't choose, so many great fabrics! My kids are in need of winter pj's, these would be perfect for it!

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  17. Your new old turtle looks happy in her new outfit!

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  18. If I were to win, I'd buy a selection of fabrics from the Mar Bella Cuddle group. I love everything there! I would put the pieces together to make myself a small quilt to watch TV with.

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  19. I like the fabrics in the Robert Kaufman collection,especially Night Owls. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  20. I would get the soft fur collection and make this turtle. I love him and I collect turtles and have 2 live turtles. One is called Big Boy and the other is Houdini. Thank you for the tutorial and the chance to win the great giveaway.

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    Replies
    1. Good luck Bonnie and how turtle-tastic - I had several as pets when I was a kid:)

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  21. I've been eyeing the embossed heart cuddle fabric for weeks... I would make a blanket for my youngest with it, with a pink satin ruffled edge. =)

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  22. I am fairly new to quilting so am just using quilters cotton for now.

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  23. Chevron Cuddle
    Charcoal/Snow and I would make some soft pillows.
    smjohns63 at yahoo dot com

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  24. It looks really nice and I am sure that my kiddos would really like it. You gave me great idea. Thank you for that!
    Cheers,

    Rebecca

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    1. You're very welcome Rebecca. It's so wonderful to see so many enthusiastic comments about my tutorial. I'd love to see if you make one:)

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  25. I want to make this for my 2 year old grandson. I know he would love sitting on it. My favorite fabric is Tile Cuddle Scarlet. Thank you for the chance.

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  26. I like the Mar Bella Cuddle Collection. I'd make hand clutches with them!

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  27. my sister is having baby number 7 she would love this fabric

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  28. I love the cuddle print collection & would make lots of stuffed animals!

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  29. OOh! I love the faux fur collection. I'd like to have a few yards of the "Siberian Tiger" faux fur and make some snuggly soft throw pillows. <3

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  30. Love the black and white one you've used here so precious!

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  31. I have never made anything with Cuddle fabric but have heard how wonderful it is, so would like to make something like the turtle for her.

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  32. The Cozy Cuddle fabric would be perfect for my first grandchild. Something he could "cuddle" up to!

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  33. ha. i want that set you're giving away! i love that it's a little more grown up and not traditional baby colors! but it is still sweet!

    now... if I can just find a turtle pouf to recover I'll be set! LOL!

    Am trying to think how to DIY this... wondering if for the base, the round part on bottom, if a pool noodle would work? thinking... maybe need to do bun feet and just a plywood disk for the base and make it like a regular ottoman... with a head and feet... LOL!

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    Replies
    1. That's what I love about it too Mel. My tutorial shows how to make the turtle from scratch using stuffing & foam. You could probably try a pool noodle, but the dimensions may be off and it wouldn't be as soft. I'd recommend the stuffing so the turtle stays as cuddly as the fabric:)

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  34. I love the Nested Owl pattern, and I'd make soft pillowcases!

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  35. I like the Marble black/beige soft cuddle material, and the snowflake cuddle in red.
    me_juliet AT hotmail DOT com

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  36. I like the nested owls collection, and would use it to make a quilt for my granddaughter. I love your turtle! Thanks so much for sharing!

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  37. I like the Safari Print Faux Furs, and I would use them to make cat pajamas.

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  38. Fuscha classic damask! I'd love to make a blanket with it.

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  39. I absolutely LOVE the Izzy Flower Pastel by Robert Kaufman

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  40. I like Vine Cuddle Marina and Barcelona Cuddle Marina

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  41. Wahooo. Cute fabric, great giveaway

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  42. I like the Toile Cuddle collection. Had no idea that it existed in toile. Thanks so much! I'd make a comfort quilt for a friend.

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  43. Thank you so much for sharing with Adorned From Above’s Link Party. We love having your join the fun.
    Debi and Charly @ Adorned From Above
    http://www.adornedfromabove.com

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Getting your comments brightens my day. I'd love if you left one:)

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