How to Make Your Own Softie With PicMonkey – Just In Time for the Softies for Mirabel Handmade Toy Drive

NOV 14, 2015 updated May 14, 2021

*While the integration of PicMonkey on Spoonflower will no longer be available as of December 31, 2020, you can still create your cut-and-sew plushie on PicMonkey, Canva or another design software program of your choice and upload it directly to your Spoonflower account. 

What a festive November it’s been for the Spoonflower team! While we’re busy prepping for the end of the year holiday party in the Greenhouse, we’re also in the final weeks of our Softies for Mirabel handmade toy drive. If you’re just learning about this wonderful drive today, don’t worry, there’s still time for you to sew, knit, or crochet a softie for the drive! Please mail or drop-off all softies to the Spoonflower headquarters by Saturday, December 5th. For more donation drop-off details, please click here.

Today, Spoonflower team member Meredith gets in the Softies for Mirabel spirit to show you how to make an easy softie with the help of PicMonkey and a bit of creativity. Too busy prepping the turkey for Thanksgiving to create your own design? With so many great softie designs in the Spoonflower Marketplace to choose from, we’ve got you covered!

Materials

1 Minky* Fat Quarter of your custom PicMonkey animal in the large scale
1 Minky* Fat quarter of your custom PicMonkey animal in the small scale
Sewing Machine
Thread/Needle
Fabric Shears
Polyfil for stuffing softie
*Spoonflower’s cuddly Minky is a great fabric choice for creating your own softie
but our selection of cotton
fabrics will do the trick too!

To get started, log-in to your Spoonflower account and hover your mouse over the Create tab and choose the Custom Fabric option.

Next, scroll down until you see the Other Design Options section and choose the Fat Quarter button.

Once on PicMonkey, select the Butterfly icon to view your overlay options in the left-hand tools section. The Whimsy section has a great selection of potential plushies and I chose the lion from this Cutimals sub-category. Double click your chosen animal to add it to your PicMonkey canvas.

Once you’ve chosen your animal, select it with your mouse to highlight the four corners. Select one of the four corners with your mouse and pull the tab outward to enlarge the image. When you make your animal bigger, make sure you are leaving enough white space for a seam allowance when sewing!

I wanted a spunky lion so I decided to change the color to purple. (If only lions were purple in the wild!) To change the color of your animal, locate the color changing tool to the right of your image and select your updated color with your mouse. With this tool, you choose one color to change the entire image using pre-set shades.

I love the People Toppers overlay section PicMonkey has because they can effortlessly add a lot of personality to your design! To view the fun hats, mustaches and glasses, select the butterfly overlay option and scroll down until you reach the People Toppers category. To add the icon to your image, click on the topper item and place it in the desired location on top of the animal. When adding accessories, keep in mind you’ll need to sew the softie so don’t go too crazy with extra items outside the animal outline if you’re new to sewing! (who am I kidding… go crazy if you want to but user be warned!)


To increase the size of your accessory, click on the item and select the small circle in the right corner. Pull the tab outward until the accessory is a suitable size for your plushie.

Repeat the animal color changing step if you would like to change the color of your accessory. Before making adjustments, make sure you’ve selected the accessory and not the animal!

Once you’re happy with your softie and don’t want to make any more changes, select the Save button at the top of your canvas. Your design will appear a few moments later on a Spoonflower design page. Please note, when you select the save button, you can go back to PicMonkey with this design at a later date but you can not edit the layers!

After getting directed back to Spoonflower, you’re going to want to set up your design as a large repeat for the front and as a small repeat to use as the back-side of the softie.

For the larger softie:

Choose your fabric and fabric size in the drop-down menus. I chose our cuddly Minky and the fat quarter option (27”x18”).

Next, choose the center repeat option to print your softie just once. If you want a smaller version and more than 1 per fat quarter, you can select the smaller button until you have more softies shown on the fat quarter preview canvas. You will not want to choose the center repeat option if you want multiple softies. Add the item to your cart.

For the smaller design on the back-side of the softie :

 

Once you’ve added the larger softie to your cart, return to the original design page. Choose your fabric and fabric size. You’ll want these options to be the same as large softie (Minky & Fat Quarter).

To make the design smaller, select the smaller option on your design page. As you decrease the size of your design, you’ll notice the image size listed under the repeat option will decrease as well. Use this information as a guide to how small you’d like your image to be.

For this fabric, you’ll want the design to repeat throughout the fabric rather than the larger softie design so you’ll want to update the repeat option. The half-brick option works great for this type of project Once you’ve updated the fabric type and size, design size and repeat option, select the Add to Cart option.


After you’ve added both items to your cart, review the details to make sure you’re ordering a small repeated version and a large centered version. To view your cart, select the cart icon located at the top right of your screen.  After reviewing the scale, select the Continue to Checkout button to place your order!

Now on to the best part….make your softie come to life! To make my time sewing a bit easier, I included an extra white border around the larger lion that is visible once sewn. This is a great reason why we don’t make the image as large as the canvas while in PicMonkey!


Once my lion was complete, it was ready to join the gang of softies ready to head off to be united with a rad kid supported by the Mirabel Foundation! Inspired to make a softie of your own? Don’t forget to tag your photos with #softiesformirabel and tag @spoonflower so we can see your great work!

 

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