These DIY felt animal masks were so fun to make for my nieces and nephews- the 6 designs gave us one for each of their little personalities! Find the 6 templates and the DIY tutorial for a bear, deer, fox, gorilla and tiger and wolf below!
These felt masks were so much fun to make and even more fun to watch my nieces and nephews running around in. My sister-in-law and I had been admiring all the felt masks on Etsy for quite some time. This year we decided we’d try our hands at making them for the kids for Christmas gifts. I’m so glad we did! They were such a hit and we were able to make so many more than we could have afforded to buy. They were a bit tedious to sew, but you could use fabric glue if you like. The hardest part was designing the templates… how big should the whiskers be? What about the ears? How many of each could you fit on a sheet of felt?
So I’m taking the guess work out of it for you. I’ve taken my hand drawn sketches that we used and created templates for all six animals that we made: Fox, Wolf, Gorilla, Tiger, Deer, and Bear. I’m so thrilled with how they turned out guys… if you look closely my sewing is pretty rough. I’m not a seamstress by any means. If you know how to use a sewing machine and have some patience, you can do it. In fact- some of these were made by my sister-in-law who hasn’t sewn in years and her five year old daughter did some. Seriously. You can do it too!
Do you love all these poses my niece (our lovely model) is giving? She’s pretending to be the animals. Bears hide in caves, foxes are sneaky and she thinks the wolf is a raccoon and they like to hide in tight spaces… like under the stool. So cute!! By the way, the deer is her favourite.
Anyways… Let’s talk about how I made them… Here’s what you’ll need:
- Mask Templates
- Felt Sheets
- Thin Elastic
- Sharp Scissors
- Craft Knife & Cutting Mat
- Sewing machine with coordinating thread (or a whole lot of patience with a needle and thread… or fabric glue)
- Fabric Pencil
6 Animal Mask Patterns
UPDATE: These templates were a one time freebie for my email subscribers, you can now find them in my shop! You can find them all RIGHT HERE for one low price. If you don’t want to miss out on the next email specific freebie, make sure to subscribe! What’s the email list for, Colleen? Why, I’m glad you asked! Every week, I send out some weekend reading- a short recap of all the posts from the week and often include fun freebies for you. I know that you guard your email with your life- I promise I won’t send you any spam or ever share your email. Just Lemon Thistle goodness.
Alright, so you’ve got your templates… now print them out and cut them out. Then, lay them over top of your felt sheets. On the templates, I suggest the colours I used for each piece. You can make them whatever colour you like though! This is the store where I bought my felt- Christmas Keepsakes on Etsy.
Use a fabric pencil (or a marker) to trace out the pieces and then cut them out. I cut around the edges with the sharp scissors (fabric scissors are best if you have them! I use these guys and they’re amaaazing) and then I cut the eyes out using a craft knife. Craft knife blades dull pretty quickly when you’re cutting felt, so you might want to get a pack of refills (cheaper than a new knife itself). When they’re all cut out, you can lay them out how you’d like them to look (because how can you resist?) to make sure they’re all the right size. The one thing I’d like to point out is that these templates are hand-drawn. So they’re not perfectly symmetrical and I really like that about them. If you prefer symmetrical, you could fold your template in half first and cut them out that way.
Before you start sewing the two pieces of the mask base together (I used two pieces to make a stiffer mask, I’m sure they’d be fine with just one layer of felt- but I love how quality they feel with two), cut your elastic. I just wrapped it around my nephew’s head to guess how big to make it. They’re a bit loose on my babies (photos above), and a bit tight on me if you’re looking for reference. When you place the two layers of the base mask together, slip the elastic ends in each side level with the eyes. You could pin them, that would probably make for more even positioning, but I just held it in place while I sewed.
Sew around the edge of the mask, then around the eyes. My sister-in-law chose not to sew around the eyes and her masks work perfectly too. I really like the look of stitching around all the edges though. I’m just going to assume that you’re picky like me and recommend you do this.
Now you have your mask base! Feel free to try it on… again, who can resist? Then, position the next pieces on top and sew around the edges of those. Each template gives instructions on what order to sew the pieces on. Switch between thread colours as needed, and trim your threads as you go. That’s really all there is to this! Just for reference, I’ve taken a photo of each of the masks laying flat for you: (except for the deer… that one was gifted to my niece and I couldn’t pry it from her hands to take a flat photo… but she models it really nicely for you!)
These masks are so satisfying to see come together- they come to life as you add the details! I’m not usually very patient at sewing… you might have noticed all my projects include straight lines so I can go really fast. These took a bit more time, but they really were so rewarding to make!
What do you think? Will you make these guys? What’s your favourite? I think mine is the gorilla! We only made one of him because he uses the most felt… when our kids start playing with theirs more (the tiger and the wolf) I might have to order more felt to make them the rest of the animals!
These are AWESOME! When A opened them he immediately put on the fox and sang “What does the fox say?” I am still trying to get all three with a mask onto make a thank you card!! Well done and I completely agree about using two layers for the base. I think that is important.
Haha That’s what Shane sang too when I showed him! Now that I know to expect that photo I just can’t wait! I have a package sitting here on my desk for you… that I wrote out two weeks ago and haven’t gotten to the post office. I’m really lagging on this snail mail thing!
Ooh, you’ve piqued my curiosity!
Ahh don’t get too excited just yet. it’s still on my counter!!
These are ridiculously cute (your little models are too)! I’m totally pinning this for a rainy day!
Aw, thanks so much Christine! I think she’s pretty darn cute too! The deal was she would pose for photos if I posed in the masks for her to colour a picture of me. You can see it on my Instagram… it’s pretty fun!
Amy | Club Narwhal
Ahhhh, these are ADORABLE!!! I love working with felt and these masks look like they would be such winners in a dress up box :)
They’re such a favourite already! This felt was really nice to work with :)
Bethany @ The Southern Couture
What a cute and inexpensive way to make new costumes. These are so much cuter and better than the store bought stuff. Thanks for sharing at Motivational Monday Link Party! Hope to see you again next week.
Bethany from The Southern Couture
Yes! They would make for awesome costumes. I’ve seen Etsy stores that sell tails and ‘paws’ to match!
I think I say this every time I’m over here, but can you do no wrong? This is seriously fantastic!
Kyla you always make me smile! You’re too sweet :)
Kirsten @ Treat Yourself Sweeter
Oh my gosh… these are so CUTE!! I am saving these for book week at my work… perfect for little munchkins who don’t turn up with a costume :)
What a great idea Kirsten! If you make them I’d LOVE to see photos!
Kristina and Millie
these felt masks are too adorable! And the models are awesome too :) Pinned and saved and plan to make a few for the grands! awesome!
Thanks so much Kristina/Millie I like to think that I have the best models :) I’d LOVE to see photos if you make them!
hi. i just subscribed as per instructions but did not receive a link to the free DIY printable masks. i clicked on the link in the email, but it just says that my subscription is active. is there a separate email with the link to the printables?
You’re so right Tina! I am moving email services and the auto responder is down. I will send it to you right now!
I love your masks – so great. I subscribed to get your templates, but I never received them. Would it be possible to have the templates emailed to me? I’m going to try sewing some masks for my nephews 5th birthday party.
Hi Felicity! Thank you so much for subscribing- I have sent them to you now. I’m just transferring email services and it’s taking WAY longer than expected, I hope to have everything fixed up by this weekend :)
I subscribed in order to receive the templates for the six felt masks, but have not seen a link to download them. Can you help me out?? Thank you!!
Hi Dianne, as mentioned in the post the files moved over to my store after a year as the email freebie. It’s been replaced with a downloadable calendar :)
Mara de la Rosa
Hi!! I hope and your family are safe and well in these crazy times! I would LOVE to make these for my godson’s birthday. I tried to purchase on Etsy but the shop was closed. Please let me know id there is anyway to download the template. These are beautiful and the cutest that I have seen,
Thank you very much,
Thank you so much! I am working on getting them moved over to my new shop right now! Sorry about the inconveniece!
Have you worked out a way to sell the downloadable mask templates? My granddaughter loves role playing and she especially likes wolves. Your wolf pattern is fantastic and would make a perfect gift – with a different one for her sister! Please email me with a way to buy the patterns, if they’re still available.
Thanks so much for your comment Peg! I’ve been meaning to move these over to my shop for… well, longer than I care to admit! Your comment gave me the kick I needed :) You can find the listing right here: https://www.lemonthistle.com/product/6-animal-mask-templates/ And as a thank you- I’ve activated a coupon code valid for your email and the masks templates for 15% off, just use ‘thankspeg’ at checkout!