Cowabunga!!! I am back with this amazing free Sock Ninja Turtle Toy Pattern which was inspired by the cartoon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!
I spent some great time sewing up this set of 4 Sock Ninja Turtle Toys. When I show my kids and my family members the completed Ninja Turtle Toy, they were totally amazed that each of them was sewn from a pair of socks.
My initial plan was to make just one Sock Ninja Turtle Toy, but I can’t help myself not to sew up a complete set of four after I have done the first one. Just can’t leave out any of them with their unique characteristics.
If you are like me, who was born and raised in the ’70s or ’80s, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was one of our childhood nostalgic cartoon heroes. This set of Sock Ninja Turtle Toy brings me back to the memory lane of those days where the siblings sat together in front of the TV watching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle (TMNT in short) (Watch the video of the first generation animated video of TMNT).
Those days were simply one of the happiest childhood days among. I remember that we felt so fascinating by watching the mutated turtle brothers who learned and practiced ninjutsu; to fight against crime; we see magic, hopes, and justice in our wide-eyed childhood mind. Love those days!!!
Sock Ninja Turtle Toy Sewing Pattern
scroll ⬇️ to get the free sewing pattern & tutorial
A little background and characters about the Sock Ninja Turtles, they are a team of mutant red-eared sliders named after four Renaissance artists and living in the sewers of New York City, where they train by day and fight crime by night as ninjas.
Leo is the tactical, courageous leader of the Sock Ninja Turtle and a devoted student of Ninjutsu, wearing a blue mask and wielding a katana. He is courageous and is willing to do anything to protect his brothers. Being the head of the family at times leads to conflicts with his brother Raphael. He is the most disciplined, has a strategic bent of mind, possesses great strength.
Mikey is the most stereotypical of the Sock Ninja Turtle, wearing an orange mask and wielding a pair of nunchucks. He is the one who brings cheer to the Turtles with his easy-going, free-spirited jokester and sense of humor. He is an adventure junkie and loves pizza! He doesn’t just enjoy eating but he can rustle a meal too, for he is a great chef. Being a ninja he obviously has amazing fighting skills. He shows characteristics of a “surfer” type and is often depicted with a Southern Californian accent.
Don is the scientist, inventor, engineer and technological genius of the Sock Ninja Turtle, wearing a purple mask and wielding a bo staff. He is perhaps the least violent turtle, preferring to use his knowledge to solve conflicts. Gifted with a streak of invention, he is a genius who loves peace but never shies away from defending his brothers.
Raph is the aggressive and bad boy of the Sock Ninja Turtle, wearing a red mask and wielding a pair of sai. He is physically very strong and the one who can pick up a fight at the drop of hat. He also has conflicts with his brother Leo, the leader of the mutant ninja turtles but also is intensely loyal to his brothers and sensei. He is often depicted with a New York accent. His personality can be fierce and sarcastic and oftentimes delivers deadpan humor.
Besides the color of the masks, the customization on the expressions of the mouth immediately brings out their unique character and personality. Other than these two customizations, they were all made from the same basic sewing pattern and tutorial.
Additionally, I also added the tutorial on how to sew a turtle shell and how to style them up. With all the details, you are able to make the complete Ninja Turtle Toy as shown here.
We are the Teenage Mutant Sock Ninja Turtles!
I was lucky to be able to find 3 of the Ninja weapons (katana, nunchucks, and sai) in one of the shops here. Unfortunately, I can’t find the Bo staff…. so I DIY it from the rattan cane. Just cut the 4 rattan cane to about 18″ long, add a white felt at the center of the bo staff and tie it with jute twine, tie another few rounds of jute twine at the 2 ends to finish the bo staff. Or, go to the woods and pick up a 3/4″ to 1″ diameter of a straight tree branch, cut it to 18″ and sand both ends to smooth them out.
I made some of them “holding” the weapons by wrapping the fingers and sew to secure the position. The arms can be bent in the same way too, just fold it up and sew to secure.
Before you scroll down to the pattern and tutorial details, please meet my little pet – the red-eared sliders turtle, see how gracefully he walks and “roars” (next picture) 😃. These two pictures were taken about 4 years back, it is now in full-grown size and…. no, it hasn’t mutated yet, it is still an ordinary red-eared slider turtle.
“I am small but I am going to grow up like a Ninja Turtle!!!” oh dear… but you are still an ordinary turtle after 4 years in the pond, receiving all the love from me and the food I feed.
Hope you have fun sewing these Ninja Turtle Toy from socks materials!
For more stuffed animal sewing from sock, click here for more free sewing patterns.
- Sock, cotton, 1 pair, Military Camouflage Green or dark green
- Black button eye 1/2″ (13mm), black, 2; or button; or felt
- Felt, Yellow – 4″ x 4 1/2″
- Felt, Brown – 8″ x 18″
- Felt, White, 1″ x 5 1/2″
- Felt, Eye Mask Color (Red or Blue or Orange or Purple), 8″ x 12″
- Poly-fill stuffing material
- Embroidery floss, Yellow
- Embroidery floss, Black
- Sewing threads (coordinated colors)
- Sock Ninja Turtle Template
- Plain white paper, letter size or A4 size, 2 pcs. (for print-out template)
- Sewing machine. You can also hand-sew if you prefer.
- Sewing needle (prefer long, about 2″) and pins
- Water Erasable Fabric Marker
- White chalk pen
- Blunt point tweezers
HOW TO SEW SOCK NINJA TURTLE TOY
Gather the materials and tools needed to sew the sock ninja turtle. Always pre-washed your socks before sewing them.
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 recommended in this tutorial.
- DRAW, SEW & CUT:
Felt Pieces: Trace the template with a 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.
Sock Pieces: Turn the socks with the right side in, remove the stitches at the cuff fold. Align the sock with foot-part facing up, flatten, iron, and pin.
Use white chalk pen, silver permanent pen or pencil to sketch the pattern onto the socks by referring to the downloaded template. It might be difficult to view the lines from chalk pen and pencil, so please draw harder on the sock so that you are able to judge the lines as you sew.
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 pair of blunt point tweezers or skewer like a knitting needle to poke the toes and fingers out.
Fill all pieces with poly-fill stuffing. Fill them densely to give a stable and rounded 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 a 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 a ladder stitch. Repeat the same to the other hand.
Completed parts of head, hands, and body before proceeding to next step.
- HEAD SHAPING:
Draw a curved 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 curved 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. Eyeballing 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 eyebrows 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 eyebrows, pull to shape up the furious eyebrows.
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 for the top part where the black button eyes are located.
2. Place a red strip 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.
- FEET SHAPING:
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 look like. The body should be able to stand up nicely when it is leaning against the wall.
- TURTLE SHELL:
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 the top shell together, trace the slit opening onto one of the felts. Cut.
1. Turn the shell right side out from the opening.
2. Topstitch 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 with 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.
The 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 difference 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 in addition to 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.
Here are the expressions of the Sock Ninja Turtles, design your own shape to give a different expression to the Ninja Turtles.
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 at the beginning of this sewing pattern.
HOW TO SECURE THE KNOT: Secure the knot by inserting the needle between the 2 threads.
The knot is locked with the sock and it won’t slip away through the knits when you pull the thread during sewing.
WHY DO WE HAVE TO HAND DRAWN PATTERN? Not all socks are the same size, so I can’t provide a standard printable template for this sock animal. The best way to proceed is to sketch out the sewing line by referring to the pictures.
DOLL SIZES: For different sizes of sock animals, use different sizes of socks.
SOCK CHOICE: Socks will be stretched after they are stuffed so thick socks that are close-knit make better quality sock sheep toys.
SEAM ALLOWANCE: Approximately 1/8” or 1/4”.
You need a bigger seam allowance for loose-knit and thinner sock materials because they can be ripped off easily
STUFFING: always massage the stuffing to loosen out lumps. Long tubular parts should be rolled with both hands so any lumps will be smooth, and help to make the parts longer and firmer.
Purchase the exact same material and tool used in this pattern from Craft Passion Shop.