You probably have seen the single-sock sock lion and could be already sewed some of them, here is another version of sock lion, his name is “Shimba”. Shimba uses a pair of socks to sew, it is bigger in size with longer arms, feet and body. I have got the inspiration of making the sock lion in this size from my popular sock monkey tutorial, which has received many lovely comments from all over the world. Thank you for telling me that the kids love to hug the sock monkey and how easy it is to make it, not forgetting those who showed me your sock monkey photos, you are awesome! Kindly give the similar affection to Shimba the sock lion as well if you think it is as adorable too. 🙂
I have received a good number of feedbacks asking me where to get the sock I am using for all my sock tutorials. I shop at many places but mostly buy the socks from a local (Malaysia) sock shop called Sox World. Their socks are mainly imported from Taiwan and China. I have asked the shop if they have any online shop where oversea customer can order and buy, unfortunately, the answer is “NO”. Up to date, I still haven’t been able to find a decent store that is able to ship all over the world, the closest possible is to buy from Amazon (socks department). I saw a few good ones but you will need to read the reviews to see what others have to say about the sock. To search more, try “men’s socks”, “women’s socks” etc… Upon browsing, I accidentally found this which seems to be perfect socks to make for the July 4th theme craft.
Shimba is equally cute as the sock monkey, sew some today for your kids, grand-kids, friend’s kids, or even your neighbor’s kids. Please let me know should you need further clarification where you can’t find the answer from any of my sock’s tutorials.
How To Sew
Difficulty: Intermediate / Avid Beginner
Finished size: approximately 14″ (W) x 20″ (H)
1. Sock (crew length), 1 pair
2. White felt
3. Brown felt
4. Safety eye 5/8″ [15mm], black, 2; or button; or felt
5. Embroidery Floss, Brown
6. Red yarn
7. Yellow yarn
8. Poly-fill stuffing material
9. Sewing threads (matching colors)
1. Sewing machine
2. Sewing needle (prefer long) and pins
3. Tapestry needle
4. Cardboard, 2″ wide (to make lion fur)
5. Erasable fabric marker
6. Pen & ruler
8. Erasable fabric marker
Seam Allowance: approx. 1/8 – 1/4″ (thinner sock material need to have bigger seam allowance as the loose-knit can be ripped off easily.)
Note: I can’t provide a standard drawn pattern for this sock lion as not all the socks are in the same size, the best way is still to sketch out the sewing line by referring the pictures.
In order to make different sizes of sock lions, you may use different sizes of socks, ie, baby socks, toddler sock, ladies sock, etc….
Since the sock is stretched after stuffed, thick sock yields better quality than a thin sock.
Prepare all the materials and tools needed to sew a sock lion.
Cut 2 ellipse from white felt for the white of the eyes, about 7/8″ x 1 1/4″.
Cut 1 trapezoid from brown felt for the nose, about 1/2″ x 1 1/4″ x 1 1/4″.
Turn your sock with the wrong side out. Align sock as shown in the picture.
Press them flat with a warm iron.
Mark the pattern with a pen:
Solid yellow line – sewing lines.
Dash yellow line – running stitch line.
Blue line – cutting line for the snout of the lion.
The cutting lines for overall are not shown but you can see them on the 3rd step by step pictures.
Cut near the sewing lines, about 1/8″ to 1/4″ away.
Left sock: body.
Right sock: arms (top), snout (center), tail (left) and ears (right).
After cutting the body, there will be a small opening between the legs, this is the stuffing opening.
Turn all parts right side out except the tail.
Please refer to sock monkey’s tutorial for more detail, especially the body side.
a.) Roll a big ball of poly-stuffing material and stuff into the toe area of the sock. Sew running stitch around the neck, pull to tighten, knot and cut sewing thread. This is the head of the sock lion. Roll the head with your hand to make it rounder.
b.) Stuff the legs and body until the firmness you like. Adjust the poly-fill so that the body can sit properly.
c.) Close up the opening by sewing the stuffing hole between the legs.
d.) Stuff the arms and close the openings.
e.) Attach the arms to the body.
a.) Roll some yarns about 1″ – 2″ longer than stretched sock tail. Tie one side with yarn.
b.) Insert 1″ of yarn into the sock tail (with wrong side facing out).
c.) Stitch up to close the opening while securing the yarn in place.
d.) Turn the sock right side out. Remove the tying yarn, you can cut the yarn to have a straight tail tassel or leave it in the loop shape.
a.) Mark snout shape on the face with erasable fabric marker
b.) Turn the raw end inside the snout and sew it on the face with a slip stitch.
c.) Leave an adequate opening for stuffing
d.) Stuffed and shaped the snout, sew to close the opening.
a.) Pin the brown felt (nose) on the snout.
b.) Sew it on with matching color thread or embroidery floss (2 or 3-strand).
c.) Stuff in a small amount of poly-fill to make the nose to boost the shape. Continue to sew to close the opening.
d.) To make the philtrum of the mouth, knot your embroidery floss (6-strand) at the bottom center of the snout securely, insert your needle at the center of the bottom edge of the nose felt, into the snout and come out from the same place where you knot your floss.
e.) Pull to make a dent that resembles the philtrum. Repeat again if necessary to add another secure stitch.
f.) Make a french knot to resemble the vibrissa or whisker of the lion. The needle should cross the snout and come out to the other side, pull lightly so that the french knot is indented a little into the snout. Make another french knot on the other side of the snout.
a.) Stuff the ears and stitch up the openings. Fold the ear in half vertically, stitch the bottom together to make a cup ear.
b.) Sew them on the head of the sock lion. Without the mane, it looks like a lioness.
c.) Roll the red and yellow yarns around the 2″ cardboard. Gather and stitch every 10 of them. Catch yarn into needle as you pass through them, loop 2 to 3 times, pull tight and make a knot before proceed to the next 10 of yarn.
d.) Measure the length needed to wrap the head of the sock lion. Make extra length if you want to have a dense mane. Stitch the mane to the sock lion. For an even mane distribution, divide the mane into 2 parts, pin it at the neck and top of the head. Sub-divide the mane again and pin at the middle of the side head.