Introduction: Plush Balloon Animal

Picture of Plush Balloon Animal

Everybody loves balloon animals, but eventually they deflate and the fun is over.  Make your own plush balloon animals, and the party never has to end!  

Upcycle a pair of kid's tights into fun new toys, that make a very sweet gift.  No sewing skills are required - just the ability to tie some knots.   The best part is, each animal only takes one leg from the tights, so you can make two!

These toys are soft, squishy, and perfect for young children or old.  So grab a pair of tights, channel your inner clown, and let's get started! 

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
  • 1 pair girls tights  (I used the smallest pair I could find, but would go larger next time - you can always cut off what you don't need!)
  • Polyfill or other stuffing
  • Tiny clear rubber bands (like these)
  • Black embroidery floss
  • Sturdy white thread
  • Sewing needle

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Step 2: Filling

Picture of Filling

Cut off one leg of the tights and stuff with polyfill batting. Artfully smush it all around to make a nice smooth tube.  

Section off the tube with rubber bands as follows.  I included the approximate sizes of the sections I used, but you can certainly change these to suit the size of tube you have or to make a bunny with different proportions:
Face (1.5")
Ear (3")
Ear (3") 
Body (1")
Arm (1")
Arm (1")
Leg (2")
Leg (2")
Tail (just the knot in this case)

Once you've got the rubber bands where you want them, secure the sections with thread and knot.  Pull on the tights to move the batting away from the divisions so they twist more easily.

Step 3: Shaping

Picture of Shaping

Twist the sections together and secure with thread.  Tie the ears together, the arms together, and the legs together.  

You can compress the shapes more tightly by running a thread from head to tail through the interior of the body, but that is optional.

Finally, add eyes by creating French knots with the embroidery floss. 

You're done!  Now that you're a pro, experiment with other balloon animal shapes.  I'll give you a 3-mo pro membership for posting a picture of your plush balloon animal! 


LlamaNarwhalLover (author)2015-09-10

cool! im gonna trick some1 with this!

curly gurly (author)2015-03-19

Aaaawwww!!!!!! 2 cute! :)

Chikpeas Brother (author)2013-07-17

This is adorable! (I love making balloon animals.) :)

charlieanderin (author)2013-06-24

I use it as a pin cushion ... I don't think my little sisters like it when I use them as a pin cushion

GenAap (author)2013-06-13

You could use it as a pin cushion! That would be ironic.

Sydneysyd (author)2013-05-29

I'll made animals in balloon, and this idea is great !

TheDiyFan (author)2013-05-12

This is so cute, and it won't pop either! great idea!

mypinkrainbow (author)2013-02-28

so cute

AmyCat59 (author)2013-02-11

Great idea, especially since balloons are a choking and suffocation hazard for very young children. This way, they can have the fun of balloon animals and be safe! The bunny is adorable, too...

Fo55ilise (author)2013-01-30

Good post and a great instructable.

My wife makes stuffed animals, we've found the cheapest way to get the polyester wadding is from pillows. You can even buy 'non-allogeneic' ones, for people who suffer from dust mites etc.

AmyCat59 (author)Fo55ilise2013-02-11

I use sewing scraps (especially the trimmings from my Serger) as stuffing, but dark colors might show through thin, light-colored outer fabric like the pink tights material used here.
If I make one of these, I'll probably use pieces from old t-shirts sewn into tubes rather than buying new tights and cutting them. (I like cotton better than nylon or acrylic, and have a lot of shirts with rips under the arms and frayed collars, but lots of usable fabric elsewhere.)

Bugsley (author)2013-01-28

This a fantastic idea! Our clown unit, can no longer bring balloons to tie, to the hospital visits. However we can bring stuffed animals. These would be great for our balloon tying clowns. Thank You, so much.

scoochmaroo (author)Bugsley2013-01-28

That's wonderful! I hope it works out, and would love to see some pictures!

mistyp (author)2013-01-28

Oh what a great idea!

Sorn1983 (author)2013-01-28

soooo cute <3

mathiemom (author)2013-01-26

My dad was a magician and made alot of balloon animals. I always hated when they deflated. I wonder if this would work to make a "balloon" sword. It probably would need some support other than the polyfill.

KWDragon (author)mathiemom2013-01-28

You could always insert a coat hanger in the middle, not quite reaching the ends on either side. It would just take a little more muscle to twist and manipulate it.

scoochmaroo (author)mathiemom2013-01-26

Try it! The polyform is pretty sturdy.

KWDragon (author)2013-01-28

This looks so cute! I am terrified of balloons (no, seriously), so now I can finally enjoy balloon animals. I will definitely give this a try and post the results. :D

Rowan_Winterhaven (author)2013-01-27

I remember doing this with my grandmother when I was little! We made pigs. :D This is a wonderful tutorial. Also, this is a great way to use hose with runs in them. You can use the parts without the run to make body parts then sew the pieces together to make the stuffie. Maybe I'll break out those old black tights that I don't wear anymore and make something fun with them. :D Thanks for bringing back such a happy memory!

masynmachien (author)2013-01-25

Great! I'm going to make one (or more) with my youngest daughter an maybe use it in one of my workshops for kids.

Alice want (author)2013-01-25

A pink sweet rabbit, I think you can make some change to make the rabbit look more attractive and unit, or you can make it more funny in its facial expression.

ynze (author)2013-01-24

You just beat Jeff Koons in the Crazy Rabbit category:

kcli (author)2013-01-24

Honest to god, warlier this week I was wondering how to keep balloon pets around for longer than a few days. This is brilliant!

scoochmaroo (author)kcli2013-01-24

ha! glad to be of service :D

p0llyw0lly (author)2013-01-24

I saw another idea for old panty hose. That was a chia pet. It was great to,I love to see people come up my ideas for things you would normally throw out.This is a great website.

p0llyw0lly (author)2013-01-24

That's sooo cute,what a great idea!

OCgal (author)2013-01-24

Oh my..... So squishy cute!

artfulann (author)2013-01-24


Nabil (author)2013-01-23

Freaking Genius! Right to the favorites

PitStoP (author)2013-01-23

That is so cool. It reminds me of the yummy marshmallow Peps bunnies. Awesome.

skittlespider (author)2013-01-23

Such a great idea! That looks great, and you can always make another animal if you get bored of the current one.

I bet this would be good to practice with for actual balloon animals too.

Ninzerbean (author)2013-01-23

This is hysterical! Well done.

marcellahella (author)2013-01-23

too cute!

About This Instructable




Bio: Former Living &amp; Food editor here at Instructables, now running! Follow me @sousvidely
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