Softies are fun no matter what, but they are even more fun when they're interactive. Yesterday I sewed one of my Squeaky Snakes from super-soft minky with a bright pink felt tongue. I love the coiled shape, but the pattern actually includes three snake shapes:
a basic straight snake
a curvy snake
and this coiled version. I sewed this one from giraffe fleece, but I think it actually looks convincingly like snake skin!
The baby stole my new Squeaky Snake and ran out into the garden with it. She made it squeak, refused to share it, and then laid down on the grass. Hard to blame her.
It's really easy, and fun, to add a noise element to your softies. Here are a few easy ways to do it:
- Insert a squeaker - Be sure it's near enough to the "skin" of the toy that a child can easily squeeze it. For the snake I used one of the squeakers I stock in my shop.
- Add a rattle - I like to pad the rattle insert so that you can't feel any hard edges when you hug the toy. Just push bits of stuffing all around it and stuff the toy firmly to hold the rattle in place. These are the most popular supply I sell in my shop!
- Insert a music button - Press the button and a short song plays. Toddlers can't get enough of this. Trust me! They'll press that button over and over and over. I'll have music buttons that play Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in stock next week. I'm excited about them!
- Add a music box - Turn the key and hear the music play. These have a classic sound, but are a bit more complicated to insert. For a very special toy, though, I think it's worth it.
- Try a growler - Flip your toy upside down and hear it growl! These are traditionally used in teddy bears, but would be really cool in another sort of softie.
- Slip in some crinkly paper - Cut up a clean chip bag and slip it into your softie for that crinkly noise babies love.
Find more detailed instruction for using each of these in my new book, Stuffed Animals. Make a Squeaky Snake or add a noise maker to your own softie design. It's fun and you'll end up with a toy that your baby won't share, just like mine!