Come, they told me… Free Play Drum Pattern
Come, they told me… Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum. I’ve a drum pattern for you, Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum!
Happy holidays to you! I’ve been busy making up this fun and quiet drum as part of the DIY Christmas Toy Blog Tour hosted by Seams Sew Lo. This tour came about from her Best Homemade Christmas Toy Sewing Patterns post, and I am quite excited and honored to be part of it! Not only is there the free pattern for the toy drum, but our sponsors Phat Quarters Fabric and Seamingly Smitten are graciously offering a giveaway at the end of this post. Win-win for Christmas!
Like other kids, my children love music. I play piano and violin/fiddle, and my husband plays piano and guitar, so our boys were bound to have an interest at some point.
Rather than get the boys a bunch of noisy toy instruments to encourage their interests, I thought: why not make some out of felt? My children are so loud on their own they don’t need another noisy toy to compete! Seriously – as I type this while nursing Mr. L, I hear screeching upstairs. Their vocal boxes are loud enough.
The drum is filled with Poly-fill and has cardboard on both ends to give it structure and a little sound when you hit it. The drumsticks have wooden dowels inside so they are nice and sturdy. It’s a lovely sized toy: 8 inches across and 5 inches tall. Fingers crossed it lasts through their childhood!
Mr. R and Mr. A had such a hard time being patient while I worked on these. Every day I heard, “Can I play with my drum yet?” Now you can, children. Beat on.
Ready to make your own? Download the pattern from my free resource library and follow the instructions below!
- Pattern from link above
- 12″x18″ fleece for the shell (body of the drum) (I found these large sheets at Jo-Ann – I’m sure they can be found at similar craft stores)
- 12″x18″ fleece for the hoop (border of the drum)
- 2 12″x12″ fleece for the drumhead (top and bottom of the drum)
- 2 8″ diameter cardboard circles (these cardboard circles by Wilton are amazing and make it so you don’t have to cut your own!)
- Poly-fill or similar stuffing
- 1 1/2 yards leather cord
- 10 small rivets and rivet tool
- Fabri-tac or other fabric glue
- 2 1/2″ wide, 12″ long wooden dowel rods
- Pins, marking pen, matching thread, sewing machine, needle for sewing by hand, etc
Assume 1/2″ seam allowance unless otherwise noted.
- Cut out all of your fabric using the pattern from the link above.
- Transfer markings to the hoop pieces. I used pins initially as in the picture below, but then realized that a marking pen here would be a whole lot easier.
- Line up the hoop pieces to the top and bottom of the shell pieces, right sides up, as shown below. The markings have been highlighted so you can see the placement easily.
- Place the hoop piece 1″ down from the top of the corresponding shell piece, right sides together. Place the bottom hoop piece 1″ up from the bottom. Stitch as shown in the picture below. Repeat for the other hoop and shell pieces.
- Fold the hoop pieces away from the center and press. Place the complete body pieces right sides together, matching up marks, and sew together along the sides, forming a tube. Flip the tube so the right side is facing out.
- Press seams out on the inside of the tube.
- Grab your Fabri-tac and glue the leather cord onto the drum in a zig-zag pattern as shown below, with the tips of each section matching the marks you made on the drum. (Fabri-tac is one of my favorite things to use to glue fabrics together. I also used it in my sons’ costumes for Cow Appreciation Day.)
- Attach the rivets at the mark points, following the instructions given with the rivet set. I did it directly on top of the leather cord, though in retrospect it would probably work better slightly below each leather cord corner, so the cord gets caught under the rivet instead of having it cut through with the rivet tool.
- Pin one of the drumheads to the shell, first matching halves, quarters, then eighths to get it matched evenly.
- Sew the drumhead to the shell.
- Repeat pinning and sewing the other drumhead to the other side of the shell, however only do it for half of the drumhead as shown below.
- Now it’s stuffing time! First, flip the drum inside out. Put one of the cardboard pieces into the bottom. It will be a tight squeeze – this is good! You don’t want a flimsy drum. Just make sure not to bend the cardboard.
- Once the first cardboard piece is in, fill the rest of the drum up tight with Poly-fill. When it’s filled to the brim, slip the second cardboard circle in.
- Close the drum off by hand-stitching with a blind hem. This is personally my least favorite part… I much prefer sewing by machine than by hand, but it’s kind of impossible to do with this kind of project. Just embrace it!
- You’re doing great so far! The drum is complete, now it’s time for the drumsticks. You should have four identical pieces. Match up pairs with right sides together, and stitch a box around from below the circle part all the way around the rectangle part as shown below. Use a 1/4″ S.A. here!
- Clip corners. Repeat this with the second drumstick.
- Flip the drumstick inside out, using one of the dowel rods to help push it through. Keep the rod inside for the next step. Note – this picture has a 1/4″ dowel rod instead of the 1/2″ dowel rod needed. I initially tried to do it with the smaller one before I realized it would be too thin.
- Start hand stitching the drumstick closed. Once you have about half of it sewn shut, fill it as much as you can with Poly-fill. You want a nice, round shape. Finish sewing it closed.
- Hot dawg, you did it! Now aren’t those drum sticks amazing? Go ahead and give the drum a few wacks. You know you want to. 😉
I hope you enjoyed this pattern and tutorial! Let me know how yours turns out. I’d love to see pictures of your own creations and share them here. Feel free to email me at sunni (at) madeforlittlegents.com with any photos of your work, and of course let me know if you have any questions.
We are all excited about our DIY Christmas Toy Blog Tour based on the blog post Best Homemade Toys to Make for Christmas Presents! Please visit all of the wonderful bloggers on our tour to get more toy ideas for your little ones!
- December 11th: Intro by Seams Sew Lo
- December 12th: Stitched by Jennie
- December 13th: Sewing Blue
- December 14th: Manning the Machine
- December 15th: Threadistry
- December 18th: Sew Cucio
- December 19th: Oak Blue Designs
- December 20th: Kathy’s Quilts and More
- December 21st: Just Delphine
- December 22nd: Sewing by Ti
- December 23rd: Seams Sew Lo
Thank you to our Wonderful sponsors Phat Quarters and Seamingly Smitten for the awesome giveaway! Please enter below