I start back at work soon after 18 months of maternity leave (gasp). For some reason I have convinced myself that when I start, I will never never again have ANY time left to do ANYTHING ever again. Obviously this means that every shelf, cupboard, nook and cranny of my house must be thoroughly organised.

This brings me to odd socks. Of which during this military cleaning operation I have found MANY. We made a sock monkey named Atkins first which we have all grown very fond of (pictured below) but sock monkeys don't really need tutorials as there are plenty on the internet. It was only a small jump to make a penguin! This little guy is in fact much easier than the monkey and requires much less sewing (and no sewing machine).

Here is what you need

- An odd sock, preferable navy or black

- A small piece of white felt

- Some recycled cardboard (not too thick)

- Cushion stuffing

- Two buttons

- A piece of string

- Some black paint

- Liquid watercolours (very optional)

1. Begin by laying your sock down and cutting off the top bit as illustrated above. Keep the top bit as you will use it later on.

2. Stuff with cushion filling. Try to squeeze in a bit more down the bottom of the sock to create a slightly oval shape.

3. Sew up the top of the sock.

4. Tie a length of string around the top of the sock to create a head

5. To make the nose, cut a long triangle off the excess sock. Sew it up the side them turn inside out and stuff with stuffing.

6. Hand stitch this to the face of your penguin. Use lots of little stitches so the stuffing is kept securely in the nose and doesn't spill out the end.

7. Stitch on two buttons for eyes. I used two cream buttons and drew on some small black pupils.

8. Mark out your wings and feet on some recycled cardboard as shown above. Cut them out and them paint them black. Leave to dry.

9. Fold the top of your wings slightly and wedge them under the string you tied earlier for the neck. Mine stayed in place without the need to glue, but feel free to add some glue to yours if you want to make them more secure.

10. Stick the feet to the bottom of your penguin. I used hot glue here which I would recommend. Your penguin should now be able to stand up!


11. To make the front panel of the penguin, cut an oval shape (flat on one end) from some white felt that is the same length as the body of your penguin. To create the yellow orange tone at the top, I wet the tip of the felt then dropped on some liquid watercolours and let the orange and yellow mix together. If this is a bit tricky you could always use a bit of paint or marker or just skip this bit all together.

12. When dry, stick to the front of your penguin using hot glue or stitch on by hand.

All done!

Sock friends forever

Here is Percy hanging out with his mate Atkins the sock monkey. What dudes.