Friday, May 11, 2012

"Hobbes" Times Two

I remember long ago when I was barely a teenager in North Carolina. I picked up the newspaper and read a "preview" of a new comic strip that was going to be published in the Winston-Salem Journal. That comic strip was Calvin and Hobbes. The preview didn't have Hobbes in it, only Calvin with a frog in his throat. But I started reading the strip.

Calvin was a boy who would never have to look back on his life and regret not having done anything (though most of the things he did I wouldn't encourage my children to do - ever). Hobbes is a great reminder to indulge the 6-year-old in all of us once in a while.

It wasn't long before I was a Calvin and Hobbes fan and I loved loved LOVED Hobbes!

Fast forward many many years. The Boy discovered Calvin and Hobbes. It wasn't in the newspaper, but in the books. He picked up a copy from his school library and started reading them. He started reading them to his sister and later as she began to learn how to read, she started reading the comics on her own.

I was very happy when I came across a tutorial on Instructables for making my very own plush Hobbes. I was even happier when I discovered I already had everything I needed to make him - including the orange fleece (I wasn't sure why I even had orange fleece in the first place, but I'm glad I did).

The only problem I had was I needed to make at least two of them. Both children loved Calvin and Hobbes so both children would get one. I also thought about making a couple more for later gifts for other Calvin and Hobbes fans in the family.

I set out to cut out pattern pieces for four Hobbes dolls.

I made freezer paper copies of all the pattern pieces ironed them onto the fabric and cut them out. I numbered the pattern pieces "1" through "4" for each of the four dolls and coded each piece so I knew what color fabric they would be ironed on to (the "1B" on the pattern pieces below would be for doll #1 in black fleece) It was a LOT of pattern pieces for 4 dolls!

As it turns out, I had enough fabric for all but one head piece. I would have to make a trip to the fabric store sometime before Christmas to get some orange fleece.

I thought I would just start with the two dolls for the "Pickles" since those were my "must-have" gifts and the other two were my "if-I-have-time" gifts.

It was nice to be able to have all the pieces out at the same time. I could almost create an assembly line of sorts and sew up all the legs at the same time, the bodies at the same time, etc. I did all the machine stitching I could all at once (while the "Pickles" were at school) then packed everything into a bag and hid it under my bed to start the hand stitching while they were away at school or sleeping at night.

a couple of arms ready to be stitched on
I loved seeing the pieces come together and since a lot of it was hand stitched - the muzzle, the eyes (I opted for fleece eyes instead of button eyes) and the stripes, each one was slightly different.

It looks like Hobbes is keeping vigil next to his unfinished twin :)
Yes, the stripes took awhile, but the tedious part was sewing on the arms, legs, tail and head. Trying to get them straight, even and to look not hand-stitched was a bear! Compared to those, sewing on the stripes was actually quite relaxing. I'm still working on getting legs and stripes on the second Hobbes. I think I'm going to have to make yet another one...just for me :)

PS - If you have never been to  Instructables, I highly recommend it! You can find user-submitted tutorials on just about everything!

DISCLOSURE:This post may contain affiliate links. I earn from qualified purchases. Thank you for supporting Little House In Colorado.

No comments: