Monday, 26 September 2011

Teddy Sweatshirt Tutorial

I have now lost count of the number of bears I have dressed in these mini-sweatshirts. A number of people have asked for the pattern – but of course, they changes from bear to bear as the toys are all different sizes.

Here are the basic notes for making the garment.

Measure the bear round at his widest part [chest or tummy] add 4cm and halve to get measurement ‘across’ [measurement A]. Now measure from shoulder to ‘tum’ -or wherever you want bottom of shirt [measurement B].  Do not add anything here. Get a piece of scrap paper, and fold it in half. With fold at the top [ie shoulders]draw a rectangle to those dimensions [A x B], and then draw curves for armholes and neckline. Cut out, and also cut straight up centre back. Slip this onto the bear and check it is big enough, with overlap for seams. Cut the pattern in half along shoulder folds.

Now measure shoulder to wrist [measurement c] and also round the arm at thickest point add 1cm [measurement D] Cut a rectangle [C x D] and curve one edge.


Now you have the two pattern pieces – body and sleeve


Now take your full size sweatshirt and work in this order

  1. Cut off the collar, waist and cuff ribbing- as close to the seam as possible [leaving seam attached to shirt part]
  2. Cut up the side seams and along should seams, so you have the front piece, and the sleeves attached to the back.
  3. Pin the ‘body’ pattern over the school crest – allowing at least 0.5cm round the crest, so it doesn’t get stitched into the seam.
  4. Cut out back and sleeves from the rest of the front [if you have a very large bear, you may need to use other bits of the original sweatshirt!]
  5. Sew shoulder seams [right sides together]
  6. Pin sleeves into place [right sides together] and stitch
  7. Now cut a piece of ribbing to fit ends of sleeves, pin and stitch [right sides together]
  8. Pin the sides/sleeves/cuffs [right sides together] and stitch – working from bottom edge to cuff, so that seams are lying towards cuff.
  9. Fold cuff to inside, turn in a narrow hem and handstitch in place.
  10. Cut a piece of ribbing to fit the neck, adding 1cm for seam.
  11. Sew a seam in the ribbing [right sides together]
  12. Pin the ribbing round the neckline [right sides together] and stitch into place
  13. Fold neck ribbing to inside, turn in a narrow hem and handstitch in place.
  14. Measure the bottom of sweatshirt, and cut a piece of ribbing to fit, adding 1cm for seam. Sew the seam [right sides together]
  15. Fold hem ribbing to inside, turn in a narrow hem and handstitch in place.


And you now have a sweatshirt for your bear

Hoping you have made sense of all that!


Extra tip – if your bear has something embroidered on his footpad [Mothercare/Xmas 2007/etc] you may wish to cut two circles of the sweatshirt fabric and stitch them on the feet.


But stitch them on very firmly, as I have discovered that little fingers like playing with the footpads and pulling out the stitching. I have spent time over the weekend making repairs to a Barnaby Bear with very tatty feet!

For pyjama jackets, use the same pattern – but cut the front in two pieces and allow overlap for fastening.

On this bear, I cut the pjs from the front of an old adult pair, and used two existing buttons and buttonholes to save effort. Other times I have I used press studs or Velcro dots, and sewn buttons on separately.


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