Editor's Note: This series of posts became a book!
Stuffed Animals: From Concept to Construction was published by Lark Crafts in 2013.
Like any medium, fabric and stuffing present certain design challenges. Fabric can tear during stuffing, shapes can get distorted when they go from two-dimensions to three, balance can become an issue if a toy is top heavy or stands on very small feet, and so on. One design challenge, though, can be overcome relatively easily and therefore should not pose a limitation to you when you set out to design a new pattern and that is turning an especially long, skinny piece right side out.
Don't be afraid to draw a pattern for a crab with thin legs, a giraffe with a stretched neck, a long snake or a cat with a long tail because you think they will just be too hard to turn and stuff properly. There is a solution! And once you see it, I hope you'll dive right in to these projects without fear.
Now insert the hemostats (I'm using the smaller, curved pair with the ridges) into the opening on the side, grasp the tip of the crab leg, and pull inside the leg. Remember, always pull the farthest extremity in first.
Have you tackled a softie project with long, skinny pieces? Do you use this method or do you have another way? Tell us about it in the comments, please, so that we can learn together. You guys are the best. Thank you!