$ $ $ $ $
• • • •
5 mins

An easy way to add a little life to any sewing or plush project
A really quick, 3-stitch process to add a little life to any animal-themed project, like this fox hat I made for a friend. It's a technique that's been around as long as people have been making teddy bears and the like, used because it is both simple and effective. It really doesn't get any easier than this, and you can get a multitude of expressions just from altering the angle of the bottom stitches.

Posted by AlterEgo Designs from Cleveland, Ohio, United States • Published See AlterEgo Designs's 22 projects »
  • How to embroider . Simple Hand Embroidered Animal Mouth - Step 1
    Step 1

    First off, you'll want to start by marking where you want the edges of your mouth to fall. For the fox hat, I started the middle line from the middle of the nose and kept the two bottom lines mostly straight. for the sample I pointed the mouth corners down a bit for a different effect.

    Mark the points where you want your mouth to fall with a disappearing ink marker, chalk, or something else that will not be permanent. I made the marks for this tutorial with a pencil so they'd show up clearer, but I wouldn't recommend this for your final product. I also drew a vague circle where the nose should be just to give an idea, but it's best to sew/attach your nose first so you'll know where your center line should go.

    ***Make sure your marks are as small as possible, just in case they don't completely wash out***

  • Step 2

    Thread and knot your needle so that you are sewing with a single strand. I recommend using heavy duty thread if you don't have embroidery thread on hand. I used Coats & Clark upholstery thread for this project, as I wanted something that would hold up well and be resistant to fading.

    Start from the top dot on your middle line. Pull the needle through to the right side of the fabric, so that your knot is on the underside that won't be seen, then sew down to your bottom center dot.

  • How to embroider . Simple Hand Embroidered Animal Mouth - Step 3
    Step 3

    Pull your needle back through to the right side from your bottom left dot. You're going to thread it back to the wrong side through that bottom center dot again. Repeat this step on the other side. (Pull to right side from bottom right dot, then back to wrong side from bottom center dot.

  • How to embroider . Simple Hand Embroidered Animal Mouth - Step 4
    Step 4

    Repeat this process 3 or 4 times, or until you are satisfied with how your mouth looks from the right side. I like to repeat the same stitching order (top down, left>ctr, right>ctr) so that I can be sure each "leg" of the mouth has the same number of stitches.

    That's it, you're done! It's a very easy process, but the result is very cute and professional-looking on anything from teddy bears to appliques and everything in between! Pair with some heavy-lidded eyes for that perfect Grumpy Cat scowl, or raise the outer corners of the mouth for a cheerier look.

Made this project? Share your version »


Square 2021 03 24 085646 bookmarktutorial13

More Projects