Stuffed Forms

Using hand and machine stitching, create your own animals or flexible structures. Learn to sew on a curved seam, understand seam allowances and sculptural considerations. Design and execute at least one stuffed form to take home.

Contemporary textile artists stuff fabric to create evocative new forms, going beyond traditional dolls and animals or creating new twists on familiar themes. Create personal meaning while learning new sculptural skills in a supportive artistic community.

stuffed clock by Laura Sapelly's students in Boston

stuffed vessels by Laura Sapelly's students

stuffed animals by Laura Sapelly's students in Boston







Objects above were made by Laura Sapelly’s students at DeCordova Museum and UMass Dartmouth.

Course Number


Class Size


Age Range

17+, teens with instructor

Skill Level



Basic Sewing or equivalent skills are required.


Bring to the workshop:

  •  Package of assorted hand sewing needles
  •  Scissors
  • Small bottle of Sobo or Alene’s Tacky glue
  • White–headed quilters’ pins
  • 7” spring embroidery hoop
  • 2 yards of muslin (for back and base)
  • Stuffing (you may purchase this or use fabric scraps)
  • A variety of threads to experiment with: solid polyester, cotton; also variegated (1 spool that changes color), and a metallic thread
  • Scraps of fabric from your ‘stash,’ old, used cloth from your home or closet
  • Sketch book
  • Your choice of drawing media (pen, pencils)

Find out where to buy supplies

In an earlier version of this class, artist Laura Sapelly offered a concept sheet (pdf download) to help guide students in choosing materials to gather for their stuffed forms. We include this in case you might find it useful.

Instructor, Schedule, and Cost

This workshop is not currently being offered. If you’re interested, please let us know.