Stuffed Octopus

I made this adorable octopus for my nephew!

In June of 2013, I became an Aunt for the first time. When my sister first gave me the news I was a thrilled; I couldn't wait to spoil my nephew with anything he could want or need!
The more craft ideas I found or thought of, the more excited I got and the bigger my sister's baby shower gift became. Luckily for me, she had two showers that I could split all my gifts between.
For the second shower, all of my gifts were "under the sea" themed, to match the nursery set she had picked out. You can find other things I made throughout my blog pages, but this stuffed octopus was the one I was most excited about!
Once she had picked out her theme and showed me pictures of it, I got the idea in my head to make a stuffed octopus. I wasn't exactly sure how I would make it, but I had extra flannel with blue circles on it that I thought
would be perfect for the underside of the tentacles.           
I did a lot of visualizing in my head and attempting to draw it out; and searched the internet for ideas. Ultimately, I drew my own pattern and it worked out really well!
The length of the tentacle, as you can see in the photo, is about 7-8 inches; and a little over an inch wide. I made three differnt types of tentacles and alternated them on the body, but there are a lot of other designs with all the same style tentacle that look great too.
Finding a corresponding 'top' fabric was something of a miracle - I literally looked at every bolt of fabric at JoAnn's to match the color. I found this velvet-like, deep blue material, burried in the clearance shelves, and it was exactly what I wanted!
To create the tentacles, I layed the two fabrics down (backsides together) pinned the drawn out tentacle on top, and cut out both fabrics at the same time. Then I re-pinned the pieces (right-sides together) and very slowly sewed them together. Turning them right-side out took a bit of patience, but a pencil was the perfect tool! -And again to push the stuffing in.

After each tentacle was stuffed, I pinned it to the circle I had cut out for the underside of the octopus. I waited to sew them on all at once so that they would be evenly spaced.
Then I used a zig-zag stitch to re-inforce them. (I thought they'd probably get a lot of tugging.)
For the head/body, I cut out two arches and sewed them together to make a dome shape. This part took a little re-doing to get it to match the circumference of the tentacle circle and to be proportional.
And we can't forget to add some eyes, before sewing him shut! I used iron-on transfer paper and this tutorial for the whites of the eyes. For the inside of the eye, I used some extra black felt I had, since that won't fray.
Now I had to try to stuff all but one tentacle inside the head and sew the pieces together inside out; leaving just a couple inches to pull the tentacles back through.
Once I had the octopus right side out, he was ready to be stuffed and sewed shut.
I did my best at hand-sewing a blind stitch, so that the octopus would look uniform all the way around. And I have to say, I can't see the stitches!

And here he is all finished!

I definitely impressed myself with how well this turned out and I think my nephew likes it too! :)

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