Last week I chatted about the caterpillar we found on a tree in our yard and how we’ve been learning about caterpillars.
And just this weekend our caterpillar turned into a chrysallis! We originally thought he was going to end up being a moth and going to use a cocoon. But after he shed his skin, my husband did a little more research and we think he’s going to be a mourning cloak butterfly. It’s been incredible to watch it with the boys, and we can’t wait to see him come out as a butterfly.
To help the boys learn about the life cycle of a butterfly, I made a small felt set of toys for them to play with. Today I’m going to share the pattern with you and show you how to make them.
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- Felt – for this project you need black, green, white/beige, and then whichever color you’d like to make your butterfly (I used yellow).
- Embroidery thread
- Puffy black fabric paint
- Snap or velcro circles
- Pattern – you can download it here
We’ll start with the leaf. Cut out two of the leaf pattern piece out of green felt.
Do a blanket stitch around the edge of the leaf.
Stitch up the middle of the leaf.
Stitch the veins of the leaf on.
Cut out the egg using white or beige felt. Sew the egg to the leaf, leaving a small opening at the top. As you sew it, keep it slightly puffed open so there will be room for the little caterpillar.
Cut out two pieces for the mini caterpillar. We did black because that’s the color of the caterpillar we have, but you can use whichever color you’d like.
Slip the little caterpillar into the egg.
Now we’re ready to move on to the bigger caterpillar! Cut out your pieces of whatever color you want to make your caterpillar.
Now if I could have done one thing differently, it would have been to add more legs! Our caterpillar ended up looking much more like an ant and less like a caterpillar.
Begin by attaching your legs to one of the body pieces. Stitch the leg half-way closed, but leave the tip open.
Do the same for your other legs.
Now attach the other body piece around the edges, but leave the back end open. Add stuffing to the inside of the caterpillar. I used the eraser end of a pencil to push the stuffing in.
Now we’re going to make the segments of our caterpillar. Start by stitching straight through the caterpillar where you want your first segment.
Wrap the thread tightly around several times, and tie it off while it’s still tight.
Repeat this for the rest of your segments. Lastly, sew a small snap onto the back of the caterpillar. This will be for attaching the wings.
Cut out the cocoon out of beige or white felt. Starting at the bottom, stitch up along the cocoon, leaving an opening at the top for your caterpillar to fit in.
For the wings, you will need to cut out 4 pieces. I did two of a lighter yellow and two of a dull orange so there would be a contrast between the two sides of the butterfly.
Stitch each set of wings to each other with a blanket stitch.
Cut out the wing connector using the same color felt as you used for your caterpillar. Attach the wings to each side of the connector.
Add a snap onto the side that will be facing the caterpillar. Make sure to sew the snap the right way.
Make sure it attaches well to your caterpillar.
Using black fabric puffy paint, paint a design onto your butterfly’s wings.
My boys really enjoyed playing with these as we’ve been learning about the butterfly life cycle.