Guest Author - Tamara Bostwick
I feel that it is important to show respect for those with religious or cultural beliefs that are different from my own and to honor their holiday traditions. So, to honor one of the important Jewish holidays, I have designed a pattern for making a dreidel out of felt. This softer version makes a great toy for a little one and would also make a fun table decoration.
Supplies to Make a Felt Dreidel
- 9 x 12 inch sheet of tan, light brown or cream colored felt
- 4 x 4 inch piece of felt in your preferred color for the letters
- Size 5 or 7 embroidery or crewel needle
- Straight pins
- DMC embroidery floss to match all colors of felt
- Large handful of polyester fiberfill (or light colored felt scraps)
Making the Felt Dreidel
|Cut four dreidel side pieces from the tan felt and one dreidel top as noted on the pattern pieces. Cut one additional piece that is 2 inches wide by 3 inches long.|
Cut the letters out of the paper as a group and trim close to the outside edges. The letters are small and detailed, so to make cutting them out easier, use clear packing tape to tape the letter set down onto your felt as shown in the photo.
Don't cover much more felt than you need to with the tape because it can stretch the felt when it is pulled off. It won't bother the pieces that you are cutting out because those areas don't make contact with the tape. I used cheap, thin packing tape, so mine came off with no problem, but do be aware that it can damage the felt.
|Cut a piece of floss (to match the letters) about 12 inches long and separate into three sets of two strands. I wanted the stitches to blend in more on the letters, so I used two strands instead of the three I typically use. You can also use a single strand of matching sewing thread instead of floss if you wish. Thread your needle and knot one end.|
Lay the four dreidel sides out flat in front of you and place one letter on each side piece so that the letter is centered. The bottom of the letters should fall slightly above where the side begins to taper to a point. Pin the letters in place with several pins to keep them from moving while stitching. Because the letters are thin, the segments can shift easily without you realizing it.
Using your knotted floss, sew each letter onto its side section by stitching around all of the edges of the letters with a small, tight whip stitch. When inserting your needle down into the brown felt, place the needle so that it is right against the letter so that the stitch stays completely on the letter.
|Once all of the letters are sewn on, assemble the side sections in the correct order. Place two sections wrong sides together, matching the shapes and stitch them together with a whip stitch and matching floss (use three strands for sewing the dreidel sections together). Begin sewing the sections together at the top edge of the dreidel about 1/8 of an inch below the top (you need some space to sew on the top later). End your stitching about 1/8 inch from the bottom point and knot off the end. Attach the remaining sections in the same fashion. The last seam will close the dreidel shape. |
When you reach the bottom of the point on this last seam, do not tie off the end yet. After securing the end of the last seam with knot, use the rest of the floss to stitch through the tip of the dreidel to close and reinforce the tip. Do this by taking the needle through the tip of the point from one side to the other twice or three times; repeat in the other direction. This will make an "X" of sorts at the bottom of the dreidel. Knot off end securely and take end to the inside of the dreidel and trim.