A toy vegetable patch can be a great make-believe game to help encourage imaginative play, as well as teach little ones about where our food comes from, and how it grows. The talented Anna Jay has created a fantastic pretend and play vegetable patch using coloured felt and a handful of sewing supplies – check out her step-by-step tutorial below (and download your free printable templates!) to make your own.
You Will Need:
How To Make A Toy Vegetable Patch:
For my size of box, you’ll need 3 “soil” rolls. first, cut the “soil” roll main piece (14.3 – 8.5x inches + seam allowance). Sew the bottom stitch, leaving a small opening for turning it inside out and stuffing with filling. Before turning it inside out, attach and sew both side pieces as shown.
Turn the “soil” rolls inside out and stuff them. Hand sew the opening. Repeat with all three rolls.
To sew carrots, fold the leaf in half and machine-stitch close to the fold. Fold the orange carrot piece in half, right sides together, and stitch along the seam line. Tie the threads at the pointy end. Trim the seam allowance. Turn the carrot inside out and hand-sew a row of a running stitch on a seam line of the top part of a carrot, leaving long enough ends to gather. Stuff the carrot with toy stuffing.
To create radishes, start by machine-sewing all of the 4 pink details together at the side seams, then the white details all at the side seams too. Trim the seam allowances close to the stitch line. Then attach the pink part to the white part, matching the side seams. Hand-sew a row of a running stitch on a seam line at the top of the radish. Enclose the bottom point of the radish with some hand stitches. Turn the radish inside out and stuff it.
As for the leaves, put the pink bit of a leaf on a green part of the leaf and machine-stitch it. Fold the stem in half and hand stitch it.
For the beetroots, stitch all of the 4 pieces together by connecting the side seams. Trim the seam allowances close to the stitch line. Hand-sew a row of a running stitch on a seam line at the top of a beetroot. Enclose the bottom peak of the beetroot with some hand stitches.
Turn the beetroots inside out and stuff them. Just like with the radish leaves, put the purple bit of the leaf on a green part of the leaf and machine-stitch it. Fold the stem in half and hand-stitch it.
To finish up the carrots, beetroots and radishes, start pulling the thread ends to gather the top part of a vegetable.
With carrots, try to push all of the seam allowances inside.
Pull the threads until you close the opening almost completely, leaving a small opening to insert the leaves (make sure to do it carefully so you don’t break the thread). Once you finish gathering, tie a couple of knots and hide the ends of the thread inside the vegetable. Insert the leaves and secure them with hand stitches all around the opening.
For the cabbage, draw 3 lines on the right side of the main piece, as shown.
Fold along the lines and machine-stitch close to the fold.
Hand-sew a row of a running stitch on the seam line. Put some toy filling in the centre of the main piece (wrong side up) and start pulling the thread ends until you get the desired shape, adding up a bit of stuffing if needed.
Take a separate thread and apply a row of a running stitch at the edge of the cabbage leaves, attaching them all on the same thread.
Pull the thread to gather the leaves and secure the thread. Hand sew the gathered leaves all around the main piece of the cabbage.
To make potatoes, sew two pieces together, leaving a small opening. Turn the potato inside out and stuff it with toy filling.
Now it’s time to add the final touches to carrots and potatoes.
For the carrots, thread a black thread into the needle and tie a knot at the end. Pull it inside the carrot through the hole with the leaves and have the needle emerge somewhere ½” down from the very top. Start creating the straight lines across the body of your carrot, all around it and all the way down. As you finish, secure the thread next to one of the last lines.
For the potatoes, insert the needle into the hand-sewn opening and pull it out in any part on the vegetable. Make about a 1/4 inch or smaller stitch and pull the thread with a needle out anywhere else on the potato. Pull the thread tightly and repeat in a few more places to create potato eyes. After you finish, secure the thread next to one of the eyes.
Create the vegetable tags. Cut them out and attach them to the sticks.
Now your toy vegetable patch is complete, it’s time to plant (and harvest!) your vegetables! How will you organise yours, and what games will you play together?
Looking for more creative ways to encourage little imaginations? Check out the rest of our kids craft ideas and tutorials right here.