How I make noses:

A tutorial with pictures.

After having some trouble sewing on noses freehand, I worked out this way of sewing a nose over a stuffed felt template. I have been told that this is similar to the way Ted Menton does it. The pictures below ere taken during the completion of my most recent bear. The photos have been somewhat retouched and enhanced to show detail.

1.Nose patternThis is the pattern for the felt nose template. It is best to use a heavier felt as you may want to stuff it tightly without too much stretching. The shape shown here works well, but you could certainly experiment with different shapes.


2.The template with darts sewnThis is the nose template with the darts sewn up. Keep the darts small or the curve of the nose will be too sharp to sew over. I've used a contrasting color on this one for the tutorial, but you'll want to use a felt that is the same color as your pearl cotton.


3.The template attachedHere I have pinned the felt template to the trimmed muzzle of the bear. At this point you might need to do a little additional clipping or shaving to clear the nose are of pile. Sew the template on starting at the center top and work around, leaving an opening for stuffing.
4.The nose template attachedThis is the nose template sewn on and stuffed. You will want to stuff the nose fairly firmly so it will not get squashed when you sew the pearl cotton over it. At this point its a really good idea to step back and take a long look at the bear's may want to make some adjustments.
5.Starting to cover the nose with the cottonThe pearl cotton is threaded on a long (6") needle and anchored in the bear's head. Starting at the center bottom, carefully lay the strands of cotton over the template, bottom to top, working toward the edge. This uses a lot of cotton, so expect to reload you needle several times.
6.The nose coveredThe nose is now covered with the pearl cotton. While sewing be sure to keep the strands aligned and as close together as possible. Getting around the curve at the side of the nose can be tricky, and you can't pull too tight. You might use a few pins or your finger to hold one row while you sew the next. When carefully laid down, the rows should support each other around the curve I use one vertical layer on my noses, but you might want to try a horizontal layer under a vertical one.
7.Edging the noseWhen the nose is covered, border the nose with 3 long stitches of cotton. I like to use black when I use a colored cotton such as the rose color shown. If your nose is white or light, use a gray or pink cotton. You can pull these strands tight to give the nose a little extra body. Be sure to use long strands so that you can sew the mouth markings.
8.All done!This is the finished nose and mouth after trimming more pile. (I wish I had a better picture.. he's cute!)

I'm still experimenting with this type of nose, and so far its lead to the best looking noses I've ever done.. and its so easy! Give it a try!

Comments? email me!

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