Picture of Stuffed Hobbes (with pattern)

The comic strip Calvin and Hobbes was wildly popular through its run in the papers. Like most people, I've always been a fan, and now my kids are as well. For Christmas a few years ago, I thought a stuffed Hobbes doll would make a great gift for one of my sons.

The artist of the strip, Bill Watterson, refused to allow his characters to be licensed and capitalize on their popularity, feeling that doing so would undermine the integrity of the strip. Despite obvious interest, Calvin and Hobbes merchandise was never available.

Since you cannot buy a Hobbes doll, I figured I'd make my own. For anyone interested in duplicating this Hobbes doll, I'm sharing the pattern I came up with for free.

The pattern shared here is for personal, non-commercial use only.

My son loves his Hobbes and has been happily dragging him around for years. If you make one, please post a photo in the comments!

2015 Edit: If you happened to see the story about the lost stuffed Hobbes tiger at the Tampa International Airport and all his ensuing adventures with the airport staff, that Hobbes was made from this pattern! Woo-hoo!

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Step 1: Pattern

Picture of Pattern

I spent a while digging through my Calvin and Hobbes books studying the Hobbes character when he was in the stuffed-toy form.

Early versions of Hobbes were very cartoony, and things like the shape of the nose and the number and placement of stripes were not always consistent. His proportions also appear to have changed slightly over the years. Later versions were crisp, clean and very consistent in the features. I based my Hobbes doll off of pictures that appear in the later strips.

To create the pattern, I broke the doll down into separate basic shapes. After some trial and error, I had a pattern that yielded all the needed body parts that fit together to my liking.

This pattern requires creating and stuffing all of the different body parts separately, hand stitching them all in place, and then hand stitching all of the stripes in place individually.

If that wasn't completely clear, this project requires a ton of hand stitching. You've been warned!

Begin by printing out my homemade Hobbes pattern, preferably on stiff paper like card stock.

You will need about 1/3 yard of orange fleece, some little bits of black, and a couple small pieces of white. You will also need some polyester stuffing, poly stuffing beads if you want, two black 3/4" plastic buttons, and some thin black cording or yarn.

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seamster (author) 1 year ago
For anyone having trouble finding the link to the pattern, here it is:

seamster's Stuffed Hobbes Pattern
DanielleM36 days ago

Hello ! The second one is made , thank you soo much , I made 2 happy kids !

seamster (author)  DanielleM36 days ago

Very nicely done! Thank you for sharing the photo here. Your Hobbeses look great!

dlove137 days ago

nice! Thanks can't wait to try this ?

This is fantastic. :) I already have a couple of my friends asking me to make one for them... after I make mine, of course. ;)

I was wondering, though... how tall is Hobbes once he's finished? One of my friends is quite tall and large (his nickname is Hagrid, for VERY good reason!), and he wants one a little bit more size appropriate for him. Lol! Just curious as to how tall Hobbes is sitting to start with, so I can estimate how much to scale him up. Thank you!

Thank you for the compliment!

The pattern makes a Hobbes that is about 15 inches tall.

Love Love Love this!! Keep up the amazing work!

caperutto13 days ago

Whoa! It's lovely!

I will make one for my wife! Congratulations!

DBB313 days ago
This is a wonderful gift to C&H fans. I know if this had been around 20 years ago, I would have made one for my son. I be printing this one out for the future. :) Thank you!
KittyCat 914 days ago

i love calvin and hobbes!


That's great!

ClareBS14 days ago

Excellent, I love Calvin & Hobbes too. The airport story is amazing.

mlaiuppa.15 days ago

Wouldn't it be easier to attach some of the stripes before constructing the arms and legs?

buck221715 days ago

Brilliant, my absolute favorite cartoon strip ever, every (older) little boy knows exactly where Calvin is coming from, I am in my 50s and still as irresponsible as him!

sunashine17 days ago

Thank you so much. My brother (35) always loved Calvin & Hobbes and has read the books of his comic strips. He commented he wanted a Hobbes doll after the boy in the news lost his homemade one at the airport. It was his bday yesterday, but figure i'll give him one for a bday gift. THANKS FOR THE TEMPLATE! =) p.s. i started it. we'll see how it turns out, i'm doing it all by hand. thanks for the accessory ideas, too!

seamster (author)  sunashine17 days ago

Awesome, I'm glad you found this!

If you start to doubt your commitment as you go (especially sewing on all those stripes!), be sure to look through the comments here and see all of the Hobbeses people have made. It's inspiring!

Be sure to share a photo when you're done. Best of luck! :)

Hi Seamster, thanks for your feedback and encouragement, i'm ready to start the stripes. i'll check out others Hobbes dolls, and also post a pic later. thanks again!

pezrampage made it!17 days ago
Also, my little guy went as Calvin for Halloween and of course Hobbes ("Hob-Ums") was with him!
seamster (author)  pezrampage17 days ago

Awesome! Thank you for the photo!

pezrampage17 days ago
I wasn't sure if you had seen it, but one of your Hobbes stuffies made the news!
seamster (author)  pezrampage17 days ago

Yes, I saw that!

It totally made my day. I shared a few links around with family and friends to brag . . . and a couple people said "Yah, yah, but how do you know that was from your pattern??"

. . . because there are only a few handmade Hobbes patterns out there, and I know mine like the back of my hand! :)

tigerfood made it!17 days ago

Here is my version. I made him out of old cashmere sweaters (underlined with old t-shirts for sturdiness), so he is very soft.

Thank you so much for creating and sharing this, it obviously has made many people very happy!

seamster (author)  tigerfood17 days ago

Oh, very nice! Yours turned out looking excellent. Good work!

VickieD1 made it!17 days ago
Calvin and Hobbes was my son's favorite comic as a child. His baby is due in August, a boy, who will be named Calvin. My son wants a GIANT Hobbes for photo ops for the next 18 years. I enlarged your pattern 300% and have struggled with this tiger to attach his stripes, but I think he's going to turn out just fine. He sits nearly 4 feet tall. I need only attach his tail and he's complete. I thank you for this pattern!
seamster (author)  VickieD117 days ago

Oh my . . . MEGA HOBBES!

This is so cool! Thank you for sharing this photo. Very inspiring!

Thank you for this great pattern! I made Hobbes for my son's 8th birthday. He insists on taking him everywhere :).

mortimus8319 days ago
seamster (author)  mortimus8319 days ago

Oh my, clearly. Thank you for the link!!

plood19 days ago

Exactly what I was looking for. My kid sort of looks like Calvin so looking forward to this :) Just wondering whether to print the pattern on A3 or A4 card?

seamster (author)  plood19 days ago
I used standard 8.5" by 11" size, not sure which that is :)

Glad you found this. Be sure to share a photo or two when you finish your Hobbes. I always love seeing how they turn out!
DanielleM31 month ago

Thank you sooo much! It is exactly what I was looking for !!! my grndaughter asked me to make one for her .. And I have started thanks to you and your excellent tutorial and pattern !! I am very grateful to you !!!

If you follow the link , you will see what I made .

this is the first try I made , using faux fur ... But next I will make an orange one !!!

seamster (author)  DanielleM31 month ago

Nice work! Glad you found the pattern and were able to make a Hobbes!

Hi! I have started making a second one ,and I wanted to thank you again for the step by step photos , it is all very well explained . I guess the stripes process will be long , but , I want it to look good . Also , for the eyes , I just melted the sides a bit on a flame ...I am not always keen on borrowing husband's dremmel .... :)

DanielleM31 month ago

And , I also wanted to tell you about this that my grandaughter found for sale ..

I do not know if it is your pattern , but it very much looks like it , which is not fair at all, if it is ...

I am giving you the link so that you can check it ... I am not sure , but I wanted to tell you about it , just in case , and anyway thank you .

seamster (author)  DanielleM31 month ago

That's a different pattern, so nothing to worry about.

I appreciate the vigilance though. Have a great day! ;)

ClaireV made it!1 month ago

I've been meaning to make this for years now. One of my good friends LOVES Calvin & Hobbes. I thought it would be perfect. Kept putting it off. Then he and his wife announced they were having a boy. I could procrastinate no longer. They loved it. Best. Gift. Ever. The nursery is elephant themed. So it was a win win all around. Thanks again for the pattern. And for the warning about hand stitching. I thought it would never end...

seamster (author)  ClaireV1 month ago

I love it! The elephant cape is fantastic. You're the Best. Friend. Ever. for making this Hobbes for your friends! ;)

Yep, the hand stitching is certainly a beast. Glad to see you powered through, though. Thanks for sharing these photos! Love it!!

TexasCraftHouse made it!2 months ago

Thank you so much for posting this awesome how to! I was able to make a close friend of mine a Hobbes for his new born son and their Calvin and Hobbes inspired nursery! Here is my blog post about it :)

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seamster (author)  TexasCraftHouse2 months ago

Nice work! Glad you found the pattern and were able to make a Hobbes for your friends!

Thanks for the note, and for sharing the photos and link.

I've been quite shocked by the number of people that have found this and made it, but it always makes my day to get notes like yours. Thank you!

lelectriccoyote made it!2 months ago
Thank you so much for sharing this. I made one for my daughter's 1st birthday and though she's only had it for a day they're already inseparable. I started off using cheap felt but it started to stretch and get lint balls before I'd even finished so I moved to the fleece. Though it was extremely difficult to work with as far as stretching and cutting, it's totally worth sticking it out. Its softer and more likely to survive a toddler. Thank you again so much for this, I've never done much sewing beyond mending holes or stitching patches on jackets, but now I can't wait to make the next thing for my little girl.
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