Poised Pachyderm Elephant Pudgy Plushie

Designed & Released 2022

A favorite among many…the elephant! This one has been on my ‘to make’ list for quite some time and I have dabbled with it here and there over the years. I never really liked how the trunk was taking shape and would set it aside to pick it up again much later. Once an idea clicked on how I could give my elephant the look I really wanted with a wrinkly trunk…I hit the ground running.

Introducing the Poised Pachyderm! Yes, I understand the term ‘pachyderm’ applies to more than just elephants (rhinos and hippos for example). However, while it isn’t exclusive to elephants, it does in fact apply to elephants.

This pattern has a variety of options to meet various skill levels, looks and available time to create it. While I have it labeled as an intermediate level pattern, I invite adventurous beginners to give it a try! Whether you’re a seasoned sewist or a confident beginner…please trust the process and take it step by step. You’ll succeed in creating your own unique elephant or mammoth.

Fun Fact: The pose-able trunk is the same length as the static trunk, but looks quite a bit longer.


Full Size Templates

Two Trunk Options

Three Tusk Options

Two Ear Options

Mammoth Option

Easy to Follow Bite-Size Instructions

Photos Accompany Each Step

Skill Level - Intermediate with Advanced Options

Skills and Techniques Used

  • Fundamental Sewing Basics
  • Sewing Tight Curves
  • Clipping Curved Seams
  • Sewing Opposing Curves
  • Machine Applique (optional for markings)
  • Sewing Darts
  • Attaching Safety Eyes
  • Hand Sewing (to close seams)
  • Hand Applique (to attach optional eyelids)
  • Applying Wire or Lock Joint Armature (optional)

Photo Gallery

Materials and Tools Needed

  • ~ ¾ yard minky or Luxe Cuddle® by Shannon Fabrics (alternative fabrics: quality cotton, fleece, flannel, repurposed clothing etc)
  • ~13″ x 17″ of minky for inner ears (alternative fabrics: quality cotton, fleece, flannel, repurposed clothing, etc)
  • ~ ¼ yard minky for foot pads and toenails (alternative fabrics: quality cotton, fleece, corduroy, etc)
  • Scrap of minky for small tusks up to 11″ x 11″ for mammoth size (alternative fabrics: quality cotton, fleece, flannel, repurposed clothing, etc)
  • ~ 20-22 oz fiber filling
  • 1 pair 20mm, 24mm or 30mm safety bolted eyes (30mm is shown in this tutorial)
  • ~15″ x 12″ Pellon Flex Foam FF78F1 or FF79F2 (ear support)
  • ~8″ x 11″ of minky for tummy accent (alternative fabrics: quality cotton, fleece, flannel, repurposed clothing, etc)
  • 12″ length of ¼” cording, for optional neck roll (several strands of twisted yarn or fiber filling will also work)
  • Optional: Poly-pellets, dry beans, etc to add weight to the bum for better sitting.
  • Optional: ~2 feet 3/16 lock joint plastic armature, or wire. (for poseable trunk option)
  • ~6″ length of fringe trim (for tail hair)
  • Optional: ~12″ length of 18 gauge wire for mammoth tusks
  • Optional: 1 pair false eyelashes (the kind people wear)
  • Notions: scissors, thread, sewing machine, needle, etc

Pattern Testers Poised Pachyderm Gallery

Oh, how I appreciate my pattern testers who volunteer their time and talents to test it out and provide feedback. My favorite part of it is seeing the creativity of each tester as they curate the fabrics for their elephant or mammoth and bring it to life.  A huge thank you to each one of them!

Pattern testers used a variety of fabrics, including: minky, cotton, fleece, faux fur, teddy bear fur, light canvas, denim, repurposed blanket and suede.

Some testers made multiple elephants/mammoths and tried different options. A couple testers reduced the size to 50%. 

Bling was added to the trunk, head and neck by one tester. Testers had fun with their photos too…Poised Pachyderms were seen doing a variety of things from eating peanuts, to swinging, playing ukulele, waiting for the mail, snuggling a mouse, sliding and making snow angels. Have fun and get creative, not just with your pachyderm…but your photos of it too!

Pattern testers’ skill level ranged from adventurous beginner to advanced/professional.

Have fun and let your creativity drive you! I’d love to see your finished elephant or mammoth! You can share your makes in my Facebook Group or even email them to me.


Why Make a Poised Pachyderm?

Heirloom quality toy

Inspires active play and imagination

Makes a memorable and fun gift

A memory elephant is more fun than a memory bear

You will tap into your own creativity when you make it

Sewing and crafting are therapeutic

Great décor in a nursery

Wonderful addition to any toy room

Fun décor in your living room

Sell finished elephants at handmade markets

You’ll love watching it come to life as you make it

You’re never too old to cuddle a soft toy

An elephant is simply just fun!

Purchase the PDF Sewing Pattern & Tutorial in My Shop!

It is difficult to accurately describe the skill level needed for each project as the skill level itself can be quite subjective.  Each traditional skill level has a wide spectrum of ability associated with it.  I have tried to assign a general skill level to each pattern, however, please review specific techniques used in the pattern to determine if it is a good fit for you to try.  Keep in mind I write my tutorials in bite-sized easy to follow steps, each accompanied with photos. 

I aim to have each pattern attainable for a confident beginner and some have variations that may be more advanced, but they are optional.  You’ll be provided with all the instructions, tips and material list to create a plush toy just like those pictured in the tutorial…I keep nothing secret.  Each pattern and tutorial provides the blueprint for you to make it just like I have.  An easy to make pattern doesn’t have to be simplistic looking…it can look amazing!