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Cuddle® Minky Fabric Animal Pillows: Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillow Tutorial (with Video)

Cuddle® Minky Fabric Animal Pillows: Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillow Tutorial (with Video)

Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillow pattern

Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillow pattern (chick)

Hello fellow sewists, I’m Naomi Stewart, a Shannon Fabrics Brand Ambassador. I love Mckay Manor Musers patterns — I met Shelia at a quilt show several years ago and I was impressed with all of her patterns, quilts, softees, slippers, etc. While I have made many of McKay Manor Muser patterns, I particularly love the Jelly Bean (JB) pillow series

Cuddle® Minky Animal Pillows - Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillows- Duckling and Sheep!

Shannon Fabrics Cuddle® minky plush fabric makes the pillows especially soft and fluffy, and the extra plush (extra nap/extra fluff) Luxe Cuddle® fabric makes them especially cute! My first projects were the raccoon, fox, and panda using Cuddle® 3 fabric, and I then made the yeti using Luxe Cuddle® Llama.

This blog post is all about the Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean pattern — more specifically the duckling, sheep and chick (video tutorial with National Educator Teresa Coates).

Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillow Tutorial

Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillow Tutorial

Check the Shannon Fabrics website for free tips and tricks (as well as tutorials) to help. And don’t be afraid of the higher nap, it sews up beautifully if you follow their tips (also, the higher nap hides any sewing imperfections even more). Jump in and try it or attend a Shannon Fabrics class if you can.

READ MORE: How to Sew an Elephant Stuffed Animal (with Pattern & Video Tutorial)

Fabrics, Notions & Supplies

Update 4/20/2020: Note some of the fabrics in the duckling and sheep images have been discontinued. Feel free to swap them out with an alternative color in Cuddle® or Luxe Cuddle® — get creative! 

Tips For Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillows

—When cutting straight lines on heavily napped (fluffy) Cuddle®, use a box knife (I know this sounds weird). Draw a line with a Sharpie on the back of the Cuddle®. Using a sharp box knife, cut through only the back of the fabric. If you don’t cut the longer hairs, they don’t fall out.

—Always toss cut pieces (not the pieces backed with fusible), in the dryer on low or fluff with a damp washcloth for 10 minutes. This should take away most of the “Cuddle® dust.” Note that Llama may take 20 minutes. Many of the Cuddle® fabrics are embossed, and heat will remove the lovely embossing (i.e., rose or hide pattern).

READ MORE: 3 Easy Tips for Sewing with Faux Fur for Cosplay

—Be mindful when turning pieces with small openings, such as the feather on the top of the duck. Pull/push the smaller feather through first, then the larger feather. If you try to push the entire piece you wind up with a hard mess! A chopstick works well to smooth out the edges and for stuffing.

—Don’t overstuff your parts! I’m talking about ears and tails here — it's much, much easier to attach your ears when you can see the seam.

—Pin well when sewing to minimize slippage. Lengthen the stitch length to 2.8 and sew slowly!

—When attaching animal parts, especially stuffed ears, tails, etc., double check your sewing from all sides carefully. Believe me, it's much easier to make corrections (un-sew) at this stage.

—Appliquéing with Cuddle®: Use a good double-sided fusible and a pressing cloth. I typically use a medium sized zigzag. When finished stitching, always check your stitches and make sure you caught all the edges. It's much easier to re-stitch when the face is still in pieces. My stitch width for appliquéing is 3.7 and my stitch length is 1.0, but adjust to fit your machine and taste. On the sheep face, I used a buttonhole stitch that works well (stitch width 3.5, length 2.5.). For a video on applique, see here: How to Applique with Cuddle and Minky.

Cuddle minky applique- how to<br />
Jelly Bean Faces Cuddle® Minky pillow — Sheep eye

—I make my heart by tracing the shape on the Cuddle® fabric. I back a cotton piece with interfacing and then sew completely around the heart (see below).

Cuddle minky applique heart
Sewing around the heart

—Clip the cotton fabric and make a small slit in only the cotton fabric and turn (see below).

Cuddle minky applique heart
Clipping corners and making a slit

—Smooth the edges out and stitch the small opening closed. Then sew the heart on the back using a straight stitch about 1/8 inch from the edge (leaving an opening at the top). This method works well with hearts, circles and other shapes, when it’s important to maintain the shape (see picture below).

Cuddle minky applique heart<br />
The finished heart!

—Before stuffing anything, double and triple check all your seams, especially where you attach ears and tails. If you find a hole, usually you can just resew the area — remember Cuddle® is not only soft but forgiving.Cuddle® Minky Animal Pillows - Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillows- Duckling and Sheep!

—When making the sheep tail, use a heavy, color coordinated thread. There is nothing worse than when your thread breaks while gathering, so I find the heaviest thread in my sewing kit (color is a close match) and use it.

Cuddle® Minky Animal Pillows — Barnyard Buddies Jelly Bean Faces Pillows — Duckling and Sheep

Wrapping It All Up

I strongly encourage you to make one of these pillows. Convince a friend to make one with you, or contact your local quilt store and maybe they can get a Shannon Fabrics Brand Ambassador to teach a class for you.

Your favorite child, grandchild, sister or friend would love one of these ‘stinking cute’ pillows.  I know I can’t quit making them — I’m thinking I need to make the cow next, or maybe the werewolf! Until the next project, remember: creativity is messy and I am very messy!

Find our fabrics and kits at independent quilt shops and fabric stores. Or, view our Store Locator to find online shops and shops near you. Connect with us on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube.

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pillows, sewing patterns, Patterns, Sewing, Jelly Bean Faces pillows, Mckay Manor Musers, Cuddle Craft Projects, Cuddle Fabric, cuddle minky, Cuddle minky fabric
Written by Ellen Mickelson
Ellen Mickelson is the Marketing Manager at Shannon Fabrics. She loves sewing, quilting and knitting, as well as plants, flowers and gardening. Ellen is a cat lover, and a super proud parent who likes being in nature, taking walks outside around the MN lakes, working out and yoga. She's also a beginning Salsa dancer.
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