Hey, guys! It’s Katie here. I recently made one of my most favorite toys for my kiddos and I just had to share! I have to admit, when this idea popped into my head I may have gotten a little overly excited. You see, one of our very favorite things to do as a family is tend to the garden, but since we live in the Midwest there has been none of that for many months now. Soon the weather will be warm and we will be growing goodies in the garden again, but until then this toy garden box will help tide the girls over. Here’s how to make your own:
-A color variety of felt (purple, orange, green, and red were necessities for me)
-Green pipe cleaners
-Brown paint & paint brush
-Brown jersey cotton
-Needle & thread/scissors Now, let’s start with the garden box. Grab any good-sized box you have lying around your house. I chose one that was pretty shallow so it would be easy to “plant” in.
Step One: Cover the entire box in brown paint.
Step Two: In between coats of paint, you can start on your “dirt.” Cut a piece from your brown jersey fabric to fit the width of the box (mine was 13″ x 14″). Fold it in half and run a stitch up the edge with your sewing machine.
Step Three: Flip right side out and cinch one end closed with a running stitch pulled tight and tied off. Stuff it full and cinch the remaining end closed. Repeat as many times as needed to fill your box.
Step Four: Insert your “dirt” pillows and make sure they fill the box. Now, onto the carrots!
Step Two: Cut out a circle for the top of your carrot, along with the leaves. Stitch the leaves to the top portion of the carrot.
Step Three: Flip the carrot right side out and stuff. Hand sew the carrot top on.
Step One: Cut out a large circle from your purple felt (mine was 7 1/2″ in diameter). Clip four even triangles out of the circle (as shown above). Join each edge with the one next to it with your sewing machine. Repeat until the beet is sewn all the way around.
Step Two: Flip right side out and stuff until firm. Cinch the top closed and tie off.
Step Three: Cut a long leaf shape from your green felt (mine was 8″ tall). Stitch a purple stalk piece to your leaf to create a sort of pocket. Leave the bottom open.
Step Four: Insert a pipe cleaner into the stalk. Cut off the excess and repeat.
Step Five (optional): I used contrasting thread to sew veins onto the leaf to make it look more realistic.
Step One: Cut out a simple strawberry shape (as seen above—mine was 2″ at its widest point and 2″ long). Stitch around the edges, leaving the top open.
Step Two: Flip right side out and stuff. Cinch the top closed and tie off with a knot.
Step Three: Add small, decorative stitches all over the strawberry. Cut a small green top and sew a piece of soft velcro to it. Hand stitch the top onto the top of the strawberry. Repeat as many times as you’d like. I made four strawberries for my plant.
Step Five: Cut out leaf shapes in groups of three. Create jagged edges and then stitch the leaves to the pipe cleaners on the bottom side. Repeat this step until the pipe cleaners are entirely concealed.
Step Six: Grab another pipe cleaner and insert it through a leaf shape (this leaf looks more like the top of the strawberry, with four points). Round the edge of the pipe cleaner and lay flat against the felt leaf.
Step Seven: Stitch a rough piece of velcro over the rounded pipe cleaner. Repeat on both ends.
I added some simple felt flowers and some store-bought ladybugs to add to the fun of the garden box. This is one of my very favorite children’s toys to date! It’s a great way for little ones to learn about gardening. Happy crafting! xo. Katie