Eyelids certainly add some personality to any plushie. Stick horses (or other animals) and faux taxidermy pieces are no different. I offer hand applique rounded eyelid options as well as in-seam eyelid options. Not all of my patterns contain both options, so I’m showing you how it’s done here.
However, I must give a word of caution regarding in-seam eyelids. If you choose to apply in-seam eyelids to a design that wasn’t made for them (such as the Classic Stick Horse) keep in mind that you are shortening the edge of the head side that will join to the head gusset. The now extra length on the head gusset can easily be eased in or you can trim about 3/8 of an inch off the top of the head gusset and adjust accordingly. Also, it will change the appearance of the animal, play with the placement of the eyelid before you cut the slit to into the head side to make sure you are happy with where it will sit.
There are two eyelid templates for the in-seam option. One is labeled ‘smooth’ eyelid and it is the one depicted above on the moose with the green/brown eye. This option does not have the fold in the eyelid and is pictured with a 40mm eye, however, a 30mm eye can also be used.
The second option is labeled ‘folded’ eyelid which is depicted above on the Mustang with the brown eye and is pictured with a 30mm eye, however, a 40mm eye can also be used.
You Will Need
- -Fabric scraps that match or coordinate with your project
- -Sewing Machine and Notions
- -The project you’re applying them to
The eyelids are applied to your project before joining the head sides to the head gusset.
Both the ‘Smooth’ and the ‘Folded’ eyelid options are applied the same except for one step noted below.
The ‘Smooth’ option is pictured in the brown check fabric, the ‘Folded’ option is pictured in the solid tan/brown fabric.
Step 1: Fold the eyelid in half where indicated to ‘fold’ on the template. Baste stitch the long straight edge together with a scant 1/8 inch seam allowance.
Step 2: Cut the slit for the eyelid in the head side. The template includes a guide to cut the slit. You’ll need to decide where you want to place it. Place it about one inch above the marked location of the eye and angle it how you see fit for the look you’d like to achieve.
Step 3: Align the raw basted edge of the eyelid along the raw edge of the slit and fold the eyelid between the right sides of the head side fabric. The tip of the eyelid should protrude a little bit, this ensures it is well secured in the head side. Pin in place.
Please note: the tip of the eyelid may protrude as much as shown here (which is on a toddler size head) and that is completely ok.
Step 4: Sew using a scant 1/4 inch seam allowance. Taper the stitch just past the end of the slit toward the fold to complete the stitch. (if using canvas or cotton, I recommend placing a conservative amount of hot glue or fabric glue along the raw edge and seam to give extra security due to the minimal seam allowance)
‘Folded’ Option Only
Step 5: The edge of the folded corner of the eyelid will not be lined up with the head side. Bring the corner of the folded edge to the raw edge of the head side. This will create a gap between the eyelid and the head side.
‘Folded’ Option Only
Step 6: Fold the eyelid about mid-way to close the gap and pin in place. This creates the fold in the eyelid for a ‘wrinkled’ look.
Step 7: Baste stitch the eyelid to the head side. If making the ‘smooth’ eyelid, all you do is line up the raw edge of the eyelid with the raw edge of the head side and that puts it in the correct position.
Continue sewing your project.
Step 8: Once your project is sewn, and prior to stuffing it, you’ll need to add the eyes. To find the correct placement for the eyes, you’ll want to find the approximate center of the long fold on the eyelid and puncture a hold for the eyes in that location right at the fold of the eyelid. The hole should be partially covered be the eyelid. You can place the hole higher or lower to your liking, it will change the expression on your animal.
Now you’re ready to finish your project.