Step 3: Shape the head/body

Starting with simple rectangles for the front and back of the body, we can add some shape to create a ‘head’ and a ‘bottom’ for the monster. If you prefer to keep the rectangle shape, no problem.

Photo showing front and back body pieces after shaping.
The lining visible here is optional and not covered in this guide. To line your monster, simply cut one piece of lining fabric to match each body/limb piece.
Diagram showing the suggested cuts for shaping the head/body

This diagram shows one suggested shape. Please dont’ feel tied to it – trim the outside edges into any shape you like. However, please do leave the full 8.5″ width around the mouth/zip area (or cut more width in the first place). There is some wiggle room in my sizing, and a generous seam allowance, but things get fiddly if the ends of the zip get too near the outer edge of the body/head pieces.

Unless you’re already confident making dolls, I strongly recommend not rounding off the bottom edge of the stack – leave at least the width of your leg tube as a flat edge. This is much easier to work with when we attach the legs. If you’d rather cut a curve there, I suggest attaching the legs after sewing up the rest of the body.

  • Stack the body fabric pieces with the edges lined up, then fold the stack lengthways.
  • Press the stack carefully with an iron.
  • Check that the edges are still lined up – clip or pin them if needed.
  • Optional: press a crease into the centre fold line to help with placing the facial features, later
  • At the head end, round off the outer corner of the stack to create a head shape.
  • Optional: at the bottom end, slightly round the outer corner of the stack to create a hip/bottom shape.
  • Optional: at the bottom of the centre fold line, cut out a small notch for the ‘crotch’. (Recommend trying one monster without, first, unless you’re confident with doll-making – it makes adding the legs a bit trickier, later.)
  • Make sure that the bottom edge of the remaining fabric is a flat edge.
  • Take the stack apart and choose which piece will become the front of the body. Set the other aside.