How To Sew Sock Ninja Turtle
Difficulty: Advance / Avid Intermediate
Finished size: approximately 15″ tall
1. Sock, cotton, 1 pair, Military Camouflage Green or dark green
2. Black button eye 1/2″ [13mm], black, 2; or button; or felt
3. Felt, Yellow – 4″ x 4 1/2″
4. Felt, Brown – 8″ x 18″
5. Felt, White, 1″ x 5 1/2″
6. Felt, Eye Mask Color (Red or Blue or Orange or Purple), 8″ x 12″
7. Poly-fill stuffing material
8. Embroidery floss, Yellow
9. Embroidery floss, Black
10. Sewing threads (coordinated colors)
11. Sock Ninja Turtle Template
12. Plain white paper, letter size or A4 size, 2 pcs. (for print-out template)
1. Sewing machine (optional, you can hand-sew without machine)
2. Sewing needle (prefer long, about 2″) and pins
4. Water Soluble Fabric Marker
5. White chalk pen
7. Blunt point tweezers
Seam Allowance: approx. 1/4″ (loose-knit and thinner sock material need to have bigger seam allowance as the loose knit can be ripped off easily.)
Since the sock is stretched after stuffed, thick sock with close-knit yields better quality than thin sock.
Gather all the materials and tools as stated in the list above.
Download and print out the Sock Ninja Turtle Template. You might need to do some size adjustment to suit your sock ninja turtle if you are using different socks as those used in this tutorial.
Remark: Just in case you spotted something different. You are right, the eye mask template shown in this picture has been updated with a better design as shown in the picture below and in the template.
Print and cut out the template of page 2. Trace the template with water soluble fabric marker on the felts according to the color stated on the template. Cut pieces out without any seam allowance except the top shell.
Fold the brown felt and trace the top shell template onto 1 side of the felt. Sew around the tracing line and cut it out with 1/8″ seam allowance.
Cut the remaining brown felt to 3 or 4 strips of 1/2″ x 18″ (not shown in the picture).
Cut the remaining eye mask color of your choice to 3/4″ x 12″ strips.
Turn the socks inside out, align, flatten and pin.
Use white chalk pen or pencil to sketch the pattern onto the socks by referring to the downloaded template. It might be difficult to view the lines so please draw harder on the sock so that you are able to judge the lines as you sew.
Click picture to get enlarged view.
Yellow lines are sewing lines, red lines are cutting lines.
Machine-sew along the sketched sewing lines. Stretch the socks a little while sewing so that the sewing seam is stretchable during stuffing. You may hand-sew with backstitches.
Carefully cut pieces out after you have finished with all the sewing. Give as much seam allowance as you can.
Try to clip as close as possible at the notch of the toes and fingers, be careful not to clip the sewing thread.
Turn all pieces right side out. You will need to use a blunt point tweezers or skewer like knitting needle to poke the toes and fingers out.
Fill all pieces with poly-fill stuffing. Fill them densely to give a stable and rounder shape.
Stuff heavily dense with 3 groups of stuffing on the arms and legs to resemble muscle-like structure.
Sew to close the openings of all pieces.
Head – Use slip stitch or ladder stitch to sew and close, this will give a straight line seam.
Body and upper arms – Use running stitch to sew around the raw edges, pull the thread to close, this will give a gathered seam.
Join the palm to the hand by using ladder stitch. Repeat the same to the other hand.
Completed parts of head, hands and body before proceeding to next step.
SHAPING THE HEAD
Draw a curve line as shown in the picture on the head, from one of the end of the top seam to another, with the center touching the heel line of the socks.
Draw another curve line as shown in the picture at the bottom of the head, with the center touching the heel line of the socks.
Sew ladder stitch between the top and bottom lines. Keep the needle straight during sewing. Eye balling the distance between the 2 lines so that you are able to reach both ends at the same distance after finish sewing.
Pull to create the shape of the muzzle for the ninja turtle.
Knot your thread securely, hide the knot and thread end into the head by inserting the needle back to head from the knot, out from the opposite side, pull tight to force the knot into the head. Pull thread and cut, the thread end will be hidden in the head.
Draw the lines as shown in the picture by adding the furious eye brows and to further refine the muzzle of the Ninja Turtle.
Sew ladder stitch between the lines on the muzzle, pull to make a small lift at the nose area of the muzzle.
This is how the muzzle will look like after the polishing touch.
Sew ladder stitch between the lines on the eye brows, pull to shape up the furious eye brows.
1 & 2. Sew the white felt for the eyes, the white felt should fit into the area between the brows and muzzle, trim it a bit if it doesn’t. Design your own mouth expression of your Sock Ninja Turtle, cut it out from a white felt if needed. Sew it on the mouth area of the muzzle.
3. Sew some vertical lines with black embroidery floss.
4. Finish up the mouth with a yellow outline with yellow embroidery floss.
1. Place the colored eye mask on the eye, sew around the holes for the eye except the top part where the black button eyes are located.
2. Place a red strips vertically at the back of the head, sew the center of the strip at the place where the band of the mask meets.
3. Join the bands of the eye mask, roll up and sew to make the joint narrower.
4. Tie the vertical strip to the band of the eye mask that you have just sewed.
Position the black button eyes under the mask, with 1/4 of the top being covered under the mask. Sew securely.
SHAPING THE FEET
1 & 2. Bend the foot, 2″ from the toe. Rub the finger across the foot to move some the stuffing away so that it is easier to bend.
3 & 4. Sew around from side to side at the front of the foot where the sock touches. Sew with ladder stitch to secure the bending.
This is how the feet looks like. The body should be able to stand up nicely when it is leaning against the wall.
Position and place the yellow bottom shell onto the chest of the Sock Ninja Turtle.
Stitch up the center vertical line and the 3 horizontal lines with yellow embroidery floss.
Stuff the 6-pack segments of the bottom shell with poly-fill.
Stitch up the edge of the bottom shell to close the openings.
After sew and cut the 2 pieces of top shell together, trace the slit opening onto one of the felts. Cut.
1. Turn the shell right side out from the opening.
2. Top stitch around the shell, about 1/4″ from the edge.
3. Trace the front shell with 2 oval rings cut out from the top shell template.
4. Trace the 4-point star on the back of the shell where the opening is located.
1. Stuff the shell lightly with poly-fill.
2. Sew both layers together along the oval rings with running stitch.
3. Stuff more poly-fill at the center of the shell.
4. Sew to close the opening following the 4-point star lines, this is to make the back of the shell smaller than the front shell, hence give a convex curve to the front shell.
Completed top shell of the Sock Ninja Turtle.
You have 4 parts completed and ready to be assembled.
Align and sew the head to the body with ladder stitch.
Position one of the arms to the body, stitch around the arm where it touches the body. Repeat the same to the other arm.
The sock Ninja Turtle after arms and head are assembled. More details to put on him, next.
Tie the color strips on the hands and legs by wrapping 2 rounds then tie a knot. Trim the ends of the strips.
Give the limbs a good roll, this will compress the poly-fill and will make the limbs slender and longer.
See the different between the left and right legs? The one with arrow pointing is longer after the hand roll.
Sew the shell to the back of the Sock Ninja Turtle.
This is how it looks like from the back after the top shell is sewn on.
Tie the brown strips to the belly area to complete the Sock Ninja Turtle.
Remark: Leonardo (blue mask Ninja Turtle) has another cross body belt besides the one at the belly)
If you want to attach the weapon to the turtle, bend the fingers to hold the weapon then sew it up to secure the hold. You may bend the arms and sew in the same way.
Cowabunga!!! We are Sock Ninja Turtles, Michelangelo, Leonardo, Raphael and ….. hey, where is Donatello? If you are not familiar with our name, mask color and character, please read it up on the 1st page of this tutorial.