Monday, March 20, 2006

Sigmund the Octopus

** update: This pattern is now available as a free download! **

This original stuffie is the culmination of 5 pattern pieces, 25 felt pieces, 50 beads, 52 sequins, and hours of sewing. Whew! I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I decided to design an octopus back in February. I was flying high on my easy success with the owls.   An octopus is a different story.

I have a yard of cream felt that I bought to do prototypes. There is a graveyard of weird cream arms and orbs in the lead-up to a fully recognizable octopus. The biggest challenge was the arms. I wasn't exactly sure what I wanted them to look like. The solution I came up with seems obvious now, but I didn't get it on my first try.

I also didn't work out what I was going to do for a face until I had the body and bespangled legs all sewn together. There were a couple of ways to go with the face. One is Japanese-cute wide-eyed and human-ish. I decided to go with inhuman, indifferent, google-eyed animal. Sigmund creeps me out. I imagine big sharp teeth hiding under all those legs. Why is he staring at me like that?!

I was so excited when I finished Sigmund. I wanted to honor him with a kick-ass photo shoot, so I bought that cool aquarium grass you see in the picture. I was hoping to find a cheesy treasure chest or goofy diver, too, but they only had realistic looking rocks and sea urchins and stuff. I was impressed. I almost bought one of those big undersea photos that you can tape on the back of your aquarium to use as a back-drop, but I thought that was going too far (... says the girl who just sewed a bazillion sequins on a small stuffed octopus ... ha!).

I am going to do a set of three original sea creatures. I like doing things in sets of three, like I did with the owls. I already have the next one's prototype done, and it's looking good. I going to keep it a secret for now, though. :)