Friday, July 27, 2012

how to make a sock monkey {guest tutorial}

We know you've heard of our friend, Melynie. We have featured many of her fabulous, creative ideas for you before and today she is sharing a great tutorial for how to make a sock monkey. Thanks, Melynie...

Sometimes I make myself crazy.  Okay, a lot.  I don't know how my husband puts up with me.  I try to load my plate much too full and it ends in minor disaster.  Well, that's why this year--this year of "homemade Christmas"--I am starting now.  I'm making rag dolls for my girls and sock monkeys for my boys.  Today's project? Sock monkeys.  I know I could buy them, but I don't think those kind come with love included.  I want my kids to have heirloom toys and quilts that I made for them.  Things I put my heart and soul into.  Maybe they won't appreciate them now, but hopefully when someday they pull out a much-loved monkey, doll, quilt, etc, they'll realize that their mother's hands created this just for them and realize how special they are to me.  Before I start crying over my grown kids, here's how I made the monkeys. 

You will need:
A pair of socks (This monkey was made with the extra large size, and makes a 21" monkey)
Fabric marker
Needle and coordinating thread
2 black buttons

I looked all over online and the cheapest place I found the 'original' socks were HERE.  The socks actually come with sock monkey directions printed on the back of the label.  But in case you are more of a visual person, like me, you'll appreciate a more step by step illustration.  Cue pictures.

Turn the socks inside out.  I used a fabric marker to draw my sewing and cutting lines.
LEFT SOCK: arms on top, heel mouth, tail on lower left and ears on lower right.
RIGHT SOCK:  monkey body, legs are on the lower part. (Leave a hole between the legs--you will turn it right side out and stuff it through the crotch)
I sewed on all of the lines before I cut anything apart.  I actually sewed my seams twice because my boys are a little rough and tumble.  Trying to save myself repair work now.

These are the socks sewn on the lines and cut apart.   

Turn the pieces right side out.

Stuff the monkey. I used regular polyester fiberfill.

Then sew the monkey together.  This is the most time-consuming part. I started with the crotch, because I didn't want it to fray. With the detached (arms, mouth, tail, ears) parts, you have to simultaneously hold the part on, turn the raw edge of the sock under, and whip stitch it together.  I knotted my thread and sewed a couple loops into the body to secure it before I started stitching.
A note about the eyes:  I did a loop into the body to secure the thread before I sewed the buttons on, then loosely sewed the buttons on, pulled it tight when I was finished, and then came out behind the ear to knot.  If you know a better way, please share!!


  1. I'm heading out to the store to buy supplies...can't wait to get started! PS. I just read your sidebar disclaimer and I am still giggling at the creative way you say what you said!

  2. He is adorable! I've always meant to try and make myself one. I remember one Christmas as a secret Santa at work I brought my crafty friend a kit to make a sock monkey and she had a great time sewing one together!

  3. Love it! I have a sock monkey obsession so I've made a few myself too. Honny Lobby also sells the socks if people don't ant to buy online...

  4. I NEVER use buttons, no matter how tight you put them in little children have a way of grabbing and chewing and pulling.
    Better safe than Sorry.. I embroidery the eyes on my monkeys... I make 3 different ones.. Blue, Brown and Pink for the little princesses in your life..
    I have never used buttons, I would be scared that some child might choke to death.. I could not live with that.... could you...

  5. I'm adding this to my Christmas crafting list! Thanks for the tutorial. I shared your link on my Friday Favorites.

  6. this is so stinking cute! I have been wondering how to make these, and so thankful someone finally posted a tute showing how to do it!

    I do hope you will consider uploading a photo into SewSet, a new on-line sewing pattern & tutorial search engine - so others can find you and this tutorial when looking!

    Thank you for sharing!
    - Jess,

  7. I have a friend that makes the most beautiful sock monkeys! Then after she makes them she gives them to chronically ill children :) Thanks for the tutorial! Always wanted to know how to make one :)