This summer, my husband’s brother and family came to visit us from out West. My seven year old nephew, Conan, told me that he loved Tuatara lizards, and really wanted to have one as a stuffed animal. However, Tuatara lizards are not commonly found among teddy bears and plush puppies and kittens. Could we possibly make one??
Hmm. I couldn’t find anything suitable in any of my books, so I searched the Internet and found a link to a book with a similar pattern — an iguana. It was not a book I could get easily, or in a timely manner, but with DH’s help, I managed to roughly duplicate the pattern, tweaking it to look a bit more like a Tuatara lizard than an iguana. Close enough to make my nephew happy, anyway.
It was pretty tricky to make, because some of the pieces (the lizard’s fingers for example) were so small! Turning the fabric right-side-out after I’d sewn it was a real challenge — I encouraged the fabric bit by bit, with my fingers, with a chopstick, and finally with a small crochet hook. Then I had to stuff it! which was almost as difficult, as I had to feed the batting in shred by shred. However, it came together, and I was excited to see something relatively lizard-like appear as I continued my fight with the fabric.
In the end, it got finished. I was happy to have used up some of the green and greenish-yellow batiks I had in my stash, and I found black buttons in my button jar that worked for eyes when I backed them with small circles of felt. My nephew was excited, and I felt pretty good about it, too — though I was careful to caution all the other children in the house that it was a challenging project and I wasn’t keen to make another one any time soon!