I am going to start right out of the gate to say that this stuffed sock sloth will not be a 30 minute sewing project, and it will take a little bit of sewing background and knowledge to create this adorable sloth tutorial, however I think any beginner willing to take on this challenge is perfectly capable of it.

If you sew for children or have a baby shower or child’s birthday party and need a gift this sloth tutorial is such a cute sewing project (minus the magnets – I would not include those in this little fella if I were to be gifting it to a baby or toddler, and chances are depending on the age, I would replace the buttons with cloth as well).

Like any pattern, this can be altered it your own way to make it unique and a one of a kind stuffed animal. but I also enjoyed that CraftPassion included a linkable shopping list in this sloth tutorial for if you wanted to buy the exact supplies needed to make the sloth in their images. You will find that list on the very bottom of their post for your convenience.

Please if you make this project share it with our Beginner Sewing group on Facebook and let us know how it went!

My daughters and my version of the sloth inspired by this tutorial.

Not ready to make this little sloth yet? Save it on Pinterest to try later:

Happy Sewing…


Sloth tutorial and pattern from  Craft Passion

View more free pattern and tutorials from CraftPassion by clicking on their logo

We finally own 3 sloths at home! Hang on, I know what you’re thinking – she has 3 wild animals in her house? No, it’s a sock sloth that I have always wanted to design. I have always wanted to own a sloth, not a real one (which is an endangered species, by the way) but a sloth stuffed animal that is cute and cuddly, and requires less maintenance. So here is mine, designed and sewed from a simple pair of chenille socks. Who knew that you could create your own huggable plush toy sloth? Check out the free pattern and tutorial of Smie, the Sock Sloth!

free pattern

I fell in love with this sluggish slow-moving creature when I first saw a baby sloth in a TV documentary a few years ago. My heart was immediately captured by its eyes, smiles and the movements it made. The sloth was just too cute. Sloths move so slowly that people want to carry it to move it faster, instead of letting it take its time on the ground.

Did you know that sloths are a vulnerable and helpless species? That’s why we must protect them before they go extinct!

Sock Sloth – Free Sewing Pattern

sock sloth plushie

Smie, the sock sloth is an animal plushy measuring 16″ long and made by sewing a pair of striped chenille socks together – you can choose brown/khaki or black/gray stripes. You can even have a colorful striped sock sloth. The sock sloth has 3 toes on each limb made of beige felt. On his face, Smie has a big smile and a pair of big goggly eyes with brown markings. Give him more options to pose by sewing magnets onto his limbs and he’ll be so much more fun to play with.

sock sloth

Sock Sloth Sewing Pattern

yield: 16″ TALL SLOTH STUFFED ANIMAL active time: 4 HOURS total time: 4 HOURS difficulty: AVID BEGINNER/INTERMEDIATE estimated cost: $3 – $10

awesome animal-themed crafts to sew

Materials

  • Microfiber chenille sock, brown stripes, 1 pair
  • Butten eye 9 mm, black, 2; or equivalent button for eyes
  • Button eye 15 mm, black, 1; or equivalent button for nose
  • White felt – 1″ x 1.5″
  • Beige felt, 3″ x 24″
  • Brown felt, 1.5″ x 5″
  • Brown embroidery floss
  • Poly-fill stuffing material
  • Super strong round magnets, 0.5″ diameter, 4 pieces (optional)
  • Sewing threads (matching colors)
  • Sock Sloth Pattern Template
  • Paper or card stock for template printing

Tools

  • Sewing machine. You can also hand-sew, if you prefer
  • Long Sewing Needle (about 2″) and pins
  • Scissors
  • Water Soluble Fabric Marker
  • Iron
  • Printer

Instructions

  1. Prepare all materials above. Always pre-washed your socks before sewing them. Turn sock right side in and iron.
  2. Print out the pattern, cut out the templates and trace them on the materials. Draw pattern on the sock. Sew then cut. Turn sock pieces right side out.
  3. Stuff parts with poly-fill stuffing materials and sew as instructed below.
  4. Sew to close the opening. Massage the parts to even out the lumps of the stuffing.
  5. Sew eyes, mouth and arms to complete the sock sloth.

Seam Allowance: give yourself approximately 1/8” or 1/4” (you need bigger seam allowance for loose-knit and thinner sock materials because they can be ripped off easily)

MORE DETAILS ON HOW TO SEW SMIE SOCK SLOTH

Preparation

material to sew sloth

Gather all the materials and tools listed above. Prewash and dry the socks before sewing.

I used a strong circle magnet instead of the black hook & loop strips (Velcro) on the left of the circular magnet. The hooks on the Velcro strips are not friendly to socks, so please do not use it for this project.

After taking this photo, I replaced the yellow embroidery floss to brown as brown gives a more defined line for the smiling mouth.

Sew & Cut

Download and print out the Sock Sloth Pattern Template. Make templates for the face, claws and eye markings with card stock.

Turn the socks wrong-side out and lay them flat as shown in the picture. Align and pin the stripes if you are using stripe chenille socks. Trace the template on socks and felts respectively. Cut out the felt pieces for face and eye markings. Leave the balance of the beige felt for the claws and follow the instruction after the next step. 

Sew the socks according to the red dashed lines shown in the templates to make the head, arms, body, and legs of your sock sloth. Cut the pieces out according to the blue lines. Keep the balance of the sock pieces to wrap the magnets if you are opting for them.

Claws

To ease the work of the sewing up the 12 claws, I traced only 12 claws (instead of 24 stated in the template) and lay the balance of the felt under it, sew around on the traced line of the claws except the opening.

Cut the claws out with about 1/16″ seam allowance.

Stuff them firmly with Poly-fill stuffing material. Note: fill the tip of the claw before stuff it fully.

felt sloth claws

Pin the claws together as shown in the picture and hand-stitch according to the red zig-zag lines.

Take note that the claws of the sock sloth are arched. In order to make sure that the claws are arched in the correct way before you insert them into the opening of the legs and sew (next instruction), check this: with the body and legs piece still at wrong-side out position, and, with back facing upward, place the arched claws on the leg with claw-tip arching up (like an upright bowl).

Insert the claws into the opening of the leg, align and sew to join the claws to the leg. Repeat these 2 steps to the other leg.

Sew the claws to the arms too.

sew sock sloth claws

Turn the body right-side out and this is how the claws are supposed to be when seeing the sock sloth from the front.

Assembly

Now, turn head, arms and body pieces right-side-out, stuff them with poly-fill stuffing materials until they are firm and dense at the lower arms, lower body, and legs. Lightly firm at the upper arms and upper body.

Stuff and shape the head round.

Sew to close the openings.

Massage and roll the parts with both hands to smooth out the lumps of the poly-fill stuffing materials and shaping the parts nicely.

Head

Lay the face felt piece on the head (on the toe part of the sock), slightly lower from the center of the head. Sew it on.

Position the white eye felt pieces on the markings as shown in the template, pin or make a small stitch at the top curve. Sew to attach the black eye button at the top half of the white eye. Repeat the same to attach the other eye.

Place the brown eye marking on the face, with the bottom half of the white and button eye exposed through the slit cut. Pin and sew around with brown thread or embroidery floss.

detail sloth eyes

Stitch a line along the top to create a double eyelid for the sock sloth and give it a relax and take-it-easy look.

sloth head

After that, sew the nose button on and embroidery the smiling mouth to the face to complete the head of the sock sloth.

Attach Head To Body

Before sewing the head to the body, draw 2 same size circles at the bottom of the head and at the top of the body respectively. These stitching lines are where you are going to make slip stitches to join the head to the body. Keep the circle small so that the head can easily turn around.

Make slip stitches to join the head to the body.

Stitch On Arms

how to sew sock sloth

To finish off with the last part of sewing, sew to attach the arms to the body to complete the sock sloth.

Spray water to the completed sock sloth to erase all the water-soluble marker’s mark. Leave it overnight to dry out and Smie the sock sloth is free to go anywhere you bring him to.

SOCK SLOTH SMIE WITH MAGNETS: (4 MAGNETS)

Cut the sock into a circle (must be larger than the magnet).
Wrap the sock around the magnet and sew. Trim off any excess sock to make it neater. Sew the covered magnet onto Smie. 

Repeat with the other 3 magnets. 

Tip: take note of the polarity of the magnets and pair them up correctly so the palms and feet attract each other. 

For fun, you can stick your sock sloth onto any metal surface, like an iron board, refrigerator door or whiteboard. Smie and family make a great piece of home and craft room display. 

Notes

Socks will be stretched after they are stuffed so thick socks that are close-knit make better quality sock sloth toys. 

Tip: always massage the stuffing to loosen out lumps. Long tubular parts should be rolled with both hands so any lumps will be smooth, and help to make the parts longer and firmer. 

Recommended Products

Purchase the exact same material and tool used in this pattern from Craft Passion Shop.

Joan Mantini

About Joan Mantini

After several years of being the Facebook page owner at Beginner Sewing, I noticed there was a desperate need to have a single go-to spot for members to be able to find answers to their common questions, get some useful tips & tricks, as well as find reputable places to purchase sewing products online. Taking my role as a trade publication editor by day, and combining it with my knowledge of frequently requested beginner sewing advice, I created www.beginner-sewing.com. An outlet that gives new sewists a free digital magazine geared for entry level sewing as an extra bonus!

One Comment

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: