How to make a recycled monster


How to make a recycled monster

How to make a recycled monster

1. Create your Pattern

First you will need to create a pattern for your monster. Either draw one yourself or ask your children to draw you one. If you get your children to draw one you may have to adapt it by making it bigger or simplifying it.

This picture shows how I adapted a drawing by one of my children (on the left) into a design I could use (shown on the right).

Transfer your pattern to newspaper or dressmakers pattern paper.

2. Cut out and Sew Together

If you are using a piece of fabric then fold it in half so that you have two layers. If you are recycling then you should have two sides already. Place your pattern on top and pin it to both layers. Cut out your pieces leaving an extra 1.5 cm around the pattern for your seam allowance.

For our monster we cut the Monster body out of the main part of the top and the Monster legs from the arms. If you do this you will need to sew the leg pieces to each side of the body before you sew the rest together.

Remove the pattern and with the right sides of the fabric facing each other pin and then sew your monster together on a sewing machine or by hand using a back stitch. Use a ball point needle to prevent laddering. Remember to leave a small gap open at one side so that you can turn it inside out and stuff it.

3. Stuff your Monster

Turn your monster the right way out pulling it through the hole you left in the side. You can either stuff it with shop bought stuffing, cleaned and carded sheep’s wool or even small remnants of fabric. Use only small pieces of stuffing otherwise it will become lumpy. Push the stuffing well down the legs using something long like a chopstick if necessary. Even very small children can help with stuffing and they will delight in seeing the empty sack take shape before their eyes.

Once it is firmly stuffed sew up the hole in the side.

4. Give it some features

Decide what features you are going to give your monster. It can be as simple or as complex as you wish. You can either cut out the features from fabric to sew on, or embroider directly onto the fabric with embroidery thread, or even paint them on.

We used some off cuts of fabric to make two eyes and a mouth. We used two colours for each and sewed the smaller piece on to the larger one with a small zig-zag stitch on the machine. If sewing on fabric like we did then pin it first so it doesn’t move around. We placed ours over the worst of the stains. Then sew the fabric on using small over and over stitches close together.

5. Give your monster to a lucky child

And there you have it: you have just created a fantastic recycled monster. There is only one like it in the world and you have also done your bit to help save the planet.

The sky is the limit here. You can make your monsters as small or as large as you like. They can have two heads, seven arms and three legs. Only your imagination is the limit.

And if you like you can also create shoes, clothes and accessories for your monster. Get creating and have fun.

All about mum:

Mairi Rivers is a work at home mum of three young children and she runs Pogglers an online store selling cloth dolls, dressing up clothes, toys, bags and more for babies and children. She started making toys when pregnant with her second child. “I wanted to make something for my new born baby to give her big sister, so that she felt included and also had something to look after,” explains Mairi. She uses natural fabrics, predominantly organic cotton, with a line of one off Funky Dolls made from recycled material.

Visit her website for more creative ideas like this one;




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