BASIC STITCHES: When making your bear, or other character by hand, always use a double thread and keep stitches neat and small.
Hand sewing - Begin and finish by stitching "on the spot" 2 or 3 times
Dont cut the threads too close to your last stitch - better to leave a 1/2 cm free.
Use a cotton as close to the colour of your fabric as you can find. If in doubt, I find it better to err on the lighter side, rather than a darker shade.
Below are the stitches I use most when making bears ....
So called because you take the needle "backwards" each stitch.
Work on one side of the fabric. With the thread at (a) take a stitch backwards to fill the space (b). Take the needle into the back, up and out an equal distance away at (c). Do this is one movement. Then repeat the backstitch this time to (a) filling the space.
Oversewing or Overcast
Does not give as neater finish as back stitch when working seams
This stitch is worked over the edge of the fabric. Take the needle over the edge of the fabric(s) and through the back on a slight diagonal. Keep stitches neat and equal as possible
Work from top right to left in groups of 3 or 4 stitches. Taking a stitch on each side altlernatively. Pulling each group closed as you go.
The stitch "folds" the raw edges inside as you work and creates a very neat finish. Almost invisible!
It should be worked over the edge of your fabric, very like an oversew stitch, but your needle stabs front to back at the bottom of the stitch, staying at the back of the fabric and catching a loop of thread.
Running or Basting Stitch
Basting is a longer stitch used to keep two fabrics together (also called tacking stitch). Running stitch is shorter and can be used for gathering the fabric by pulling on the thread.
The needle stabs in and out of the fabric in one movement. Keep stitches and distance between equal as possible.
There are many fabrics that you can use to make soft toys, or decorative sewing projects. Here are a few to get you started x
(fabric not the wool : )
Used in clothing too, but a short nap and woven,fray resistant backing make this fabric perfect for those teddy paws
Velvet like appearance - I often use in toy making.
Easy to sew, colourful and brilliant for making dolls or bears garments.
Good for small bear paws as it does not fray
Also handy to try out designs before using furs too.
Silks and Satins
Light and heavier weights. Will fray readily !
Usually used for linings in clothing and curtains.
Makes beautful bow for bears!
Can be used for smaller bears but will fray easily.