There were so many questions and emails after I posted about sewing Molly some dog toys I decided to do a tutorial to show exactly how they were made. These toys have become Molly's all-time favorite fetching object. My favorite too, as they are soft and don't tend to break stuff in the house when you've made a bad throw or the dog misses her catch. These are also machine wash and dry so when they get all dog-spitty and nasty - into the laundry they go. You should see how excited Molly gets when I take them out of the dryer...it's like brand-new toys!
2 pieces of fleece, a few inches larger than your desired finished circle.
A sheet of plastic, you can use the clear inner liner plastic of a boxed cereal or crackers but I've been using extra-thick drop cloth plastic because it holds up longer.
A piece of cotton batting.
Scissors, use your craft scissors not your good fabric ones because you will be cutting plastic.
A dinner plate or some other round object.
A marker or pen.
Cover your work area before you spray! If you are taking pictures with your cell phone, cover your iPhone too. TRUST ME! Basting spray is nasty on your phone.
Layer 1 piece of the fleece pretty side down and give it a dusting of the basting spray. Put the plastic sheet on. Spray the plastic then stick the batting on. If you are worried about the basting spray harming your dog just wash the toy before use. If you are REALLY worried you can skip the spray and just use pins. I use the spray because the fleece and plastic is really slippery and the spray makes it so much easier to sew.
Now center the round object on the batting side and draw your circle.
Put your 2nd piece of fleece pretty side up and put the sandwich you made on top with the batting part up. Pin these together around the outside of your line. Don't trim yet! It's much easier to hold all the layers together while you sew the circle if you trim after it's sewn.
Now sew around the circle you drew leaving a 3-4 inch gap and backstitch at the start and stop. Don't worry how neat your sewing is, this is a DOG TOY after all!
Trim off the excess. I leave a good wide margin for extra strength. I have to put my scraps up up high since now Molly knows I'm making toys and she will fish the scraps out of the trash! I guess they smell the same.
Carefully turn it right side out, try not to stretch the fleece out of shape. Make sure you get it all smooth and flat(ish) around the edges. Fold the edges on the open seam inside, mimic the curve as best you can. Feel free to pin it closed. I don't pin, I'm making a DOG TOY so I'm not too worried...
Next, top stitch around the outside, close to the edge. This closes the gap you turned it through and makes it lie flat. Feel free to do some fancy quilting in the center. I never have time because someone is usually whining at me to hurry up...
Finished! It's all soft and floppy with that delicious crinkly sound dogs love.
You can give it to someone who will love it. Molly grabbed this one, gave it a furious shake and spit it right out for me to throw it.
Molly often naps beside me while I sew, but if I am sewing a tog toy she is sitting, watching, and waiting. I can't resist making these for Molly...she loves them so much.
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