This blog post is the full photo tutorial to accompany the Katie Cat sewing pattern available from my Etsy shop. Click here to go to my Etsy shop…
Info before you start
Pin your pattern pieces onto your interfacing and cut out, and then iron your interfacing onto your fabric and cut the fabric out. The interfacing will stop your fabric stretching when you stuff your elephant.
Or, if you intend to make this pattern more than once it will save you time in the long run to glue your pattern pieces on to thin cardboard to create templates. Then use your templates to draw round onto your interfacing. Then iron your interfacing onto your fabric and cut the 2 layers out together.
When you cut out the legs cut 2, 1 reversed with the arch shaped hole cut out, then cut 2, 1 reversed without the hole.
All seam allowances are 5mm, unless stated otherwise. Ensure you start and finish every line of stitches with a few reverse stitches to secure. Where the instructions say snip the curve, or cut the excess fabric from the seam allowance be very careful not to snip through your line of sewing stitches.
There is a 5cm scale on the page with the body piece, to check your pattern has printed out the correct size.
Fabric: you will need 1/2m of fabric, with a small amount of contrast fabric for the inner ears and any other areas you want to highlight. If you are using fake fur allow a meter to ensure there is sufficient to have the pile laying in the right direction.
1/2m of iron on medium weight woven cotton interfacing
Eyes: 15mm cat style safety eyes
Nose: 22mm cat nose with whiskers
Toy stuffing and a plastic chopstick, or something similar that is long with a blunt end, to insert the stuffing.
A child’s paint brush handle or something similarly slim and blunt to push the ears the right shape
Plus: pins, cotton thread that matches your fabric, hand sewing needles, scissors, plus pinking shears if you have them
1 –sew the 2 cheek pieces together from point A to point B. Snip the excess fabric from the top and bottom of the seam allowance
2 – sew the back of head from point C to D. Snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance
3- put the ears into pairs of one front and one back, right side to right side. Sew them together as shown by the dotted line, cut all excess fabric away from the seam allowance to make them easier to turn.
Turn right side out and run a paintbrush handle or similar around the inside to push out the point and the sides. If necessary, tack along the bottom to keep the fabric tidy – you will not need to do this on all types of fabric
4 – Pin the ears to the face, so the edge of the ear fabric butts up against the line at point E and the inner ear fabric is laying on the right side of the face fabric.
5- Next pin the face onto the cheeks right side to right side lining up center point F with the top of the cheeks center seam at point A, and lining up point G of the face with H of the cheeks. The ears will be sandwiched between E and G.
Sew all the way round from point G to F to G. Snip the most curved area around point F
6 – cut a little incision where the ear sticks out from the forehead to the depth of the sewn line, this will allow it to bend more easily see photo below
7 – Make small holes where the nose and eyes will be inserted into the face. Then push the nose and eyes through the fabric and when you are sure they are at the correct angle push the backs on firmly.
8 – Pin the pieces of the ears that protrude from the cheek face seam to the top of the forehead as shown in the photo below
9 – Pin the back of the head to the cheek / face piece. Line up point H to point C and points I to points J. Pin carefully and be extra careful to ensure the sides of the ears will not get caught up in the seam.
Sew down from C to J one side, then from C to J the other side. You will get a much smoother top line across the top of the head by doing this seam in 2 phases.
1 – On each body piece fold and sew the dart with right side of fabric to right side. It is easier to do this with the leg hole uppermost and back end of the cat underneath as there’s more depth of fabric to pin to – see photo below
– snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance.
2 – On the tail pieces sew a 5mm deep guideline on the stuffing gap on both pieces
3 – Pin the tail pieces together right side to right side.
Sew from point K to point L except for the stuffing gap. Snip off the excess fabric by points K and L and clip the curves.
4 – Pin one of the back leg pieces with a hole to one of the body pieces, right side of fabric to right side so the arch shapes are lined up, one sitting exactly over the other. Pin round the arch, with the toes facing the front of the body. Sew all the way around the arch, make sure there is no gap in your line of stitches as this will cause problems later when stuffing,
then clip the curve.
Repeat for the other leg piece with hole / body panel
5 – Pull the back leg with the hole’s fabric through the hole from the right side of the body through to the wrong side
6 – Next pin the back leg piece without the hole to the back leg piece with the hole, right side to right side.
Sew from point M to N. Clip the seams on the curves. Especially snip into the V shaped area so it does not pucker when turned through and stuffed. snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance at point M and N. Also put some snips in the faintly curved area directly below the V, it will make a big difference when you stuff the leg.
7 – Fold the toe of the leg piece together so the seams of M and N touch. Sew around the toe end.
Clip the curve as shown
11 – Turn the tail fabric through so the right side is outwards. Pinch the tail together so the seams at K and L are together. Pin the tail onto one of the body pieces between the markers so that the open end of the tail is up against the edge of the body fabric – see the photo below.
Ensure the bottom fabric is facing O and the top fabric of the tail is facing the opposite direction
12 – Pin the 2 body pieces through from O to P. Then sew from point O to Q the additional pins are just to ensure everything is lined up correctly. Snip the excess fabric from the seam at point O
13 – sew a guide line along the stuffing gap on the body 5mm from the edge of the fabric
1 – Lay the 2 top pairs of front paw pieces out right side to right side. Sew them together from R to S as shown by the dotted line then snip the curves and snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance
2 – Lay the 2 bottom pairs of front paw pieces out right side to right side. Sew from point T to point U leaving the stuffing gap open. snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance. Press with a hot steam iron as this will make it clear where the edges to be sewn together are when you turn the paw in the right way
3 – Sew the two paws together T to R and U to S right side to right side, snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance, clip the curves and turn through so they are right side out.
Putting everything together
1 – Pin the front paw pads so the bottom halves (ie those with stuffing gaps) are laying on the right side of the fabric of the stomach piece. Lay the open ends of the front paw pads against the stomach/ chest seam as in the photo below
the edge of each piece of front paw fabric needs to butt up against point V
2 – Pin and sew the front paws to the stomach with a 3mm seam allowance. This seam is to hold the paws in place and will be hidden when the chest is attached.
3 – Pin the chest to the stomach, right side to right side matching the center points of each. The front paws will be sandwiched in between the layers.
Sew from W one side to W the other then snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance at points W
4- Sew the length of the stuffing gap on the stomach with a 5mm deep guideline. Sew a matching guideline on the body piece that will marry up with this piece (remember fabric right side to right side) from the dart to point O
5 – Pin the chest and stomach pieces to the body. Match up the center point at the back of the stomach piece to point O, and points X on the stomach to the dart seams. Also match the stomach / chest seam to point Y, and the neck seam of the chest to the neck seam of the body. Sew from Z all the way round to Z except for the stuffing gap
6 – Turn your cat’s head through so the right side is facing out. Keep the cat’s body wrong side facing out
7 – Pin the head inside the body so that the fabric is right sides together.
Line the central cheek seam at B up with the center point of the chest, and the open back of head pieces at point AA up with the open body pieces at point P. Use plenty of pins to stop movement. Sew round and snip the excess fabric from the seam allowance at point P
8 – pin the remaining open seam from point D on the back of the head to point Q on your cat’s back and sew closed
9 – turn your cat the right way out and start to stuff. Stuff the front paws first and make them really firm, then ladderstitch the openings closed. For guidance on how to ladderstitch click here.
Next stuff the main body/ head/ back legs section of the cat. Stuff the back legs first, then the head, then the body. Once you are done ladderstitch closed. Lastly stuff the tail. Stuff this less firmly than the rest of the body to allow it to sit nicely. When you are happy, ladderstitch the tail closed, and your cat is complete.
If you have some fabric left over and you really want something easy and pretty to sew with it have a look at my heart shaped cushion / pillow here.
Copyright/ Use of this pattern
I ask that you please respect the amount of work that has gone into making this pattern. This pattern can be used to make soft toy cats and keepsake cats to sell through your own shop or at craft fairs. However, within any written description of the item for sale please credit Rachel Leggett at The Messy Stork with the pattern design. You do not have permission to make a copy of this pattern to sell, or to offer it for free distribution.
Thankyou, and I hope you enjoy!