Need a last minute gift for the hockey fan in your life? Or maybe you’re just learning to sew and need a simple project? Why not try your hand at this Habs Doll/Pillow Thing tutorial?
I’m not really sure what to call these things. They’re like dolls in the sense that they have a face, but without any of the hard work involved in making and attaching limbs. Whatever you want to call them, my kids love theirs and they look super cute sitting around on the sofa.
You’ll need some red, white, blue, black and skin-tone felt. You may also need small amounts of additional colours for the facial features, depending on which player you’ve chosen to make and whether or not they are Lars Eller.
You’ll often find felt in 12″ x 9″ rectangles at your local craft store. This tutorial is designed with those in mind, to minimize the amount of measuring/cutting required. If you are buying these pre-cut rectangles you will likely need: Skin-tone x3, Red x5, Blue x6, Black x1, White x3.
It would, however, probably be cheaper to buy felt by the yard at the fabric store, especially if you plan to make more than one team member.
You will also need red, blue, black and white thread and a bag of polyester fiberfill.
I feel like this project is probably simple enough to be hand-sewn, but it will, of course, be way faster if you have access to a machine.
Let’s get started:
1) Measure and cut the following pieces:
(A) Skin-Tone Semi-Circles x2 – 12″W x 8.5″H
(B) Red Rectangles x2 – 12″W x 7″H
(C) White Rectangles x2 – 12″W x 3″H
(D) Blue Rectangles x2 – 12″W x 2.25″H
(E) Blue Rectangles x2 – 8.5″W x 4.75″H
(F) White Rectangles x4 – 1.5″W x 4.75″H
(G) Red Rectangles x4 – 1.75″W x 4.75″H
(H) Red Rectangles x2 – 12″W x 3″H
(I) Black Rectangles x2 – 12″W x 2″H
These measurements are just guidelines. You may, for example, want to vary the height of pieces (B), (E) and (H), depending on the height of the player that you are making. In this case, I am making Eller, and he is quite tall. When I made Gionta I hacked about an inch off each of these. Don’t spend too much time measuring. Nothing needs to be perfect here. Just cut rectangles that look vaguely like the pic above.
2) Cut pieces (J) and (K) for the helmet. Just trace around the semi-circles you made for the head, and then cut them to look like the picture above. (L) is pretty much optional. I kinda thought it would make it look more helmet-y, but I’m not sure it really helped much. If using, cut a long strip about 2″ wide and round the edges. Cut two little ear shapes (M) out of your skin-tone felt.
3) Find the Habs logo online (hint: google “Habs logo”). Print it out to be about 5″W. You can do this by resizing it first, or just by printing it a bunch of times and fiddling with the scale. Use your printed logo as a pattern and cut out pieces (N), (O) and (P) as pictured above. Do the same thing with your player’s jersey number to get pieces (Q) and (R) – they should be about 3″W when placed side-by-side.
4) Pin your red C-shape (P) to the white “CH” (O). Stitch carefully with red thread as close to the edge as possible.
5) Pin the red/white “CH” (PO) to your blue background (N). Stitch carefully with white thread as close to the edge as possible. Do the same thing with jersey numbers (Q) and (R).
6) Center white rectangles (C) lengthwise over red rectangles (B). Pin and stitch carefully with white thread as close to the edge as possible. Center blue rectangles (D) lengthwise over white/red rectangles. Pin and stitch carefully with blue thread as close to the edge as possible.
7) Position your Habs logo and jersey numbers over the blue stripes. Pin and stitch carefully using blue thread as close to the edge as possible.
8) Pin helmet pieces (J) & (K) to head pieces (A). Stitch carefully with blue thread as close to the edge as possible.
9) Pin one white rectangle (F) to each end of blue rectangle (E). Stitch leaving a 1/2″ seam. Pin one red rectangle (G) to the free end of each white rectangle (F). Make sure you have right sides together. Stitch leaving a 1/2″ seam. Press flat.
10) You should now have a bunch of pieces that look like this. Stitch each piece to the one below leaving a 1/2″ seam. Press flat.
11) Now it should look like this.
12) Time to deal with the face. You’re going to have to trust your own instincts for this part. The goal is to create a simplified version of your chosen player’s face, while still keeping enough detail that he is easily recognizable. The easiest way to do this is to look at a photo of your player and ask yourself what the first thing you notice about their appearance is. For example, if you’re making Brian Gionta, it might be his goatee or his kind eyes. For Max Pacioretty it would probably be his strong brow. And, of course, the first thing you’ll notice about Lars Eller is that he has the face of a glorious angel.
Cut out your chosen face bits and stitch them on, staying as close to the edge as possible. The smaller pieces may have to be done by hand.
13) If using the potentially useless (L) piece, position along the top of the face opening. Stitch between red arrows (show above) along long sides using blue thread. Do not stitch within one inch of the outer rim. Fold the rounded ends inward, toward the centre of the face, and pin.
14) Pin the front and back sections, right sides together. Ensure that the rounded ends of piece (L) are tucked inwards, free of the seam. Stitch around outer edge, leaving a few inches open at the bottom. Remove all pins, turn right side out and press flat.
15) **OPTIONAL – BLACK MAGIC** This step is optional but highly recommended. At this stage you can create some sort of magical talisman to bury in the heart of your player. In this instance, I used some metallic modelling clay to sculpt a little Stanley Cup. You can also do something simpler, like print a photo of the Cup. Maybe write a little spell on it. Roll it up into a little scroll. If you could get your hands on some hair clippings or something, that would probably work too. I leave it to you to figure out the right type of juju for your particular player. Whatever it is, create it now.
16) Stuff your player with fiberfill. If using freaky black magic object, bury it near the heart area. If it’s something breakable, like the little Stanley Cup that I’m using here, it’s a good idea to wrap it up in some layers of fiberfill and tie it into a little bundle. This will hopefully keep it from getting broken. Sew the opening closed by hand.
17) Fold the ends of piece (L) and hand stitch to the back of the head.
18) Pin the ears (M) to the sides of the head. Stitch along the inner edge only.
19) Finished! Give to lucky recipient(s)!
Awwww! Look at that love!
Go Habs Go! xo