My Neighbor Totoro Project #1: Totoro

Hi again my avid followers!

It's time for some projects with NEW fabrics!! Well, this project has actually been done a few years ago, but I did go shopping for it especially and I'm really proud of how it came out, so yay!

Way back when (not THAT long ago, although right now it feels like it... ), I discovered that my friend and colleague was a huge fan of the movie My Neighbor Totoro. So I wanted to make her a proper big Totoro, as I knew she'd been looking for one but those things are expensive! I mean £100 and upwards if you want a nice one.

Off to the shop I went in search for the perfect fabric, and I came across this fake wool fabric. I'm sure there is a proper name for it, but this stuff is great. It feels as soft as proper wool fabric but it's machine washable. Perfect for a doll. Really, doll is so not the right word for this, more like: stuffed animal I guess? Let's just call it what it is: Totoro! I found the perfect shades of dark grey and cream fabrics, ordered a ton of fibrefill online, and used some black wool scraps for the eyes and the nose.

I found this great tutorial on how to make a small doll here. All I had to do was upscale it a bit a lot. I didn't take any photos of the process unfortunately, but here is the end result:

I just love how he came out! The ears wouldn't stand up at first, but with some positioning it worked. It's completely stuffed with fibrefill, so it's more like a giant pillow I guess. It's not as wonky as it looks in the photo, but this was the morning that I would bring it to the office and I was in a hurry...

The back, including tail of course (how else is he going to balance!)

Closeup of the details. I'm still a little bummed that the mouth stitch was not closer, but it was too late to worry about that now.

The arrival. This was so epic, it was fantastic. You have to click to enlarge this image so you can see my friend's reaction. I'd come in and stashed Totoro quickly under my desk (in a bag so she wouldn't see), and when she left her desk to get coffee, I put him on her chair. Her reaction was priceless!!! 

Of course I had to get a piccie as well :)

Making this for my friend was so much fun! She knew it was coming but had no idea that it was done when I brought it in. Remembering this still brings a smile to my face :D And then I made another Totoro project... stay tuned for that one!


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