Fabric Balls: small, smaller, smallest


Wednesday is my day for the blog hop small, smaller, smallest hosted by Carol at justletmequilt.com  In trying to get ahead of the curve, I posted mine a bit early- oops!  But better late than never, right? Our assignment was to make something small, not a big quilt in other words.  I took this literally and made fabric balls that are small, smaller and smallest!


For my project, I wanted to get away from showing another doll quilt, so this project is something I’ve been wanting to try…fabric balls.   There are so many tutorials for these online, but I was able to sample a few different ones and have some fun!  My favorite tutorial is fabric beach ball the one on Craftsy.com by Sew Fun, called Quilted Beach Ball for Baby. This ball has 8 pieces, a final step to cover the corner seams and the look is lovely.  I think this ball would be great for a bigger kid, not just for a baby.  In fact, I offered one to my many college kids.  The directions, which are easy to follow, result in the largest ball (12″ with a measuring tape around) that you see here in blue and yellow.  However, this pattern calls for an extra applique circle that you sew by hand to cover up your seams. While the look is great, it is much more work than the second pattern I tried.

Below here is a photo of what the Beach Ball seams look like without the extra applique added, and another photo with the circle sewn on.  It definitely looks more like a beach ball with the circle added, but stitching that little piece on wasn’t easy!  I diligently followed the suggestion to use lots of extra stuffing, and in doing so, it’s quite dense. Given how full the ball was stuffed, there wasn’t much wiggle room to easily sew on the applique circle.  Some directions for these balls suggest adding in a bell or shaker toy, but I just kept it solid batting.  Next time, I would definitely add a bit less stuffing and even try a little noise maker.


Beach ball seams before completing the last step.


Beach ball complete with the applique circle covering all the corner seams.  Just don’t stuff the ball too full, as I did, or it becomes very difficult to sew on this final circle piece.


Yes, Annie initially thought that I had made these for her!! She grabbed these and I took  photos quickly before she tore the balls to pieces. 

Since I hope to make these balls with my young sewing students, I wanted to try something with fewer steps.  I found this second fabric ball tutorial by Stitches and Love, which I used to make the smaller balls.  This one has only 6 pieces and is without that last applique step.  I like this pattern, but I still recommend that you check out the Craftsy tutorial up above to get the best step by step directions.  I used my copier to enlarge this pattern and got myself two different sizes, though you can’t really tell in photos.  Trust me, the red and yellow ball is 7 1/2″ around and the blue and red one or the SMALLEST is 6 1/2″ around.  In the photos below, you can see where the seams come together at the end.  They don’t look too bad, but if you like perfection, you could always add your own circle applique to the ends.  These balls went together much more quickly, as you would expect with two fewer pieces to sew.  I didn’t stuff them as full, and hand sewing the last hole was a breeze compared to the first try.  It’s a fun and easy project!


So here you have it.  I’m thrilled to be a participant in another great blog hop with such talented sewers.  I like seeing the variety of projects that each of us choose, and always find some great ideas from hopping around.  Thank you to Carol of justletmequilt.com for organizing another great hop!  Please go to each of the links to see what everyone else has been working on.

March 5 

Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats
Lily Patch Quilts
Needled Mom
Quilt Fabrication
Sew Many Yarns
Meanderings Along Lizard Creek
Melva Loves Scraps

March 6

Vroomans Quilts
Creatin’ in the Sticks
Quilt Doodle Designs
Den syende himmel
Quilt Taffy
Hazel’s Daughter


Cynthia’s Creatng Ark
Sunshine Quilting
Marjorie’s Busy Corner
Elm Street Quilts
Kathy’s Quilts
Pamela Quilts
That Fabric Feeling – ME!
Words & Stitches

March 8

What About Rheema?
Kwilty Pleasures
All Thingz Sewn
Ms P Designs USA
Ridge Top Quilt
Life in the Scrapatch
Seams To Be Sew
Blessings of Thread
Just Let Me Quilt

Linking up with:

This week’s small, smaller, smallest blog hop at justletmequilt.com

Monday Making at lovelaughquilt.com

Lets Bee Social at sewfreshquilts.com

Oh Scrap at quiltingismorefunthanhousework.com

Finished or Not Friday at busyhandsquilts.com







52 responses to “Fabric Balls: small, smaller, smallest

  1. Love these balls, now I wish my little “Boo” would play with toys, I’ve bought several and even made some for her, but she just doesn’t like to play for some reason. I’ve never seen a dog who didn’t like to play or even tear things up, she just doesn’t do that. These are totally adorable tho, thanks for the tips on the different patterns.


    • Every dog is so different, right!? I grew up with dogs and we have Annie now who is completely different…she’s even weird. We love her though. It’s like kids…you never know what they’ll turn out to be but we embrace all parts of them either way.


    • She didn’t ruin them thankfully…i just need to wash a little dirt off the little ones. Will be a nice experiment to see how they wash, right!?


  2. Super project! Not only would these ball be fun for dogs and kids, but they’d make good therapy balls for kids in school and also for adults with sore feet (roll them under the arch) or squeeze them in hands for anyone with hand issues!


    • Thanks so much. You have great ideas!! Yes, yes they have so many applications and are just plain fun!


    • Thanks. I highly recommend making them when you need a little gift for a baby, small kid or even a playful grownup. Easier than it looks!


    • Thanks..yes, they are very easy and fun to make. The best part is no one can pass by them without wanting to play a bit. Thanks so much for visiting and leaving a nice comment.


    • She loves anything I make that has stuffing or a place to sink her teeth!! And yes, those fabric balls are honestly too easy. Why didn’t I ever make them before!? I plan to do them with my 4-5th grade sewing students. They will go crazy!!


  3. Your “beach balls” are adorable! They would be loved by kids of all ages! I can see using them in the classroom to toss to a student when it was their turn to answer a question!! Or in a circle where they toss them to other students…make a game of it for those days when recess is inside because of weather!


    • I highly recommend making one, if you can stop there. They are fun, easier than they look and great for scraps. However, do keep them away from the dog if he/she is a chewer like ours!!


    • Very easy to make and so fun. The only other thing is that you use way more stuffing than you think!


    • Yes, all of the above except for our dog who destroys everything! She had fun playing with them but it wasn’t with permission. This is also great for using up scraps and giving a little fun toy to match a baby gift.


  4. I would have a heart attach if my dog had started chewing on them. LOL!! They are really cute. Reminds me of the snowball pattern I bought for the holidays and never got made up. I need to pull that pattern out and make some up.


    • Yes, inspiration is all around us…that’s what makes these blog hops so fun. I nearly had a heart attack at first, but watching my husband trying to chase her had me laughing out loud! I had to grab some photos later when she tried that move again. This time, I had closed the backyard door, so I was getting a bit smarter….but she still is more stealth than I will ever be!!


    • Thanks. They are good for pets who aren’t like Annie…she destroys everything. However, in my defense, I had to grab a few photos for my blog before grabbing them back from her. Sometimes you just need to record the moment! Like when my eldest son once got stuck in a tree after me warning him not to climb so far. Of course, first I took a photo and then, sadly, we needed to call the fire department. The photo and talking to him did keep my anxiety-ridden son calmer as we heard the approaching ladder truck. He loves to tell that story!


    • Yup, Annie truly loved these more than my 5 boys!! Imagine, one of them turned down the big ball that is in his school colors! Apparently, college is too cool for a fabric ball!! I’ll show him…i’m planning one with pieces to look like a soccer ball!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. cute fabric balls, I have made some with hexagons/pentagons, squares etc. there’s a book at the library I often borrow again and again to get the patterns


    • Oh I want to make the hexagon one as well! Those look awesome! I have seen tutorials online and even bought some cardboard pieces to help. It’s a project on my to do list, like so many others.


    • Yup, and Annie would too but we took the photo and grabbed them back from her. She eats even those rough and tough dog toys. She steals baked goods and is a sly, stealth little thief. We’ve even had a trainer several times but it is probably time for a tune-up.


  6. My grandsons are constantly throwing balls around the house, so these would be perfect for them. Of course, my Bella and Bruster pups would be happy to play with them, too. Thanks for sharing this great small idea for today’s hop…I’m so glad you played along! :O)


    • Carol, thank you for including me in this really fun hop! I truly loved making these and they weren’t nearly as difficult as they looked. I think every house with kids needs a few of these. When I was a young kid, my grandparents had a ball that was heavy, the size of a basketball, and was made up of carpet pieces. We kids would play with that for hours, though you could not throw it even if you tried. I wished I could have inherited it but my cousin snagged it. Making these brought back that wonderful memory. So yes, when you get the time, make some for your grandsons and I bet they will cherish playing with them!!


  7. Oh that is a great idea and they spread some happyness in those colors. I will be a grandma this summer and that would be a gret thing to sew. Thanks for the inspiration!


    • Congrats! I highly recommend making these. They’re so fun and much easier than they look. From now on, any baby blanket I make will have to have at least one matching fabric ball!


    • I’m always excited to share some scrappy thing that I’ve been working on. These were really lots of fun and i’ll be making them again soon!


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