Along with their awards, our summer interns are usually presented with a small stuffed Cy (Iowa State University’s mascot). This year the option was given to our interns to turn these small stuffed creatures into weights that could be used on future projects. Both were interested in this option and I got the joy of showing them how to dissect their animal and transform these light weights  into heavy weights.

It’s a super simple process that can be done with almost any small stuffed animal.  My animals of choice are the once-popular Beanie Babies. These days you can easily find them at yard sales for super cheap.

The easiest way to open your animal and empty it of its insides is to cut the seam open. On Beanies I suggest cutting the tag down to about ¼” long, open the tag so you can clearly see the stitching and cut the stitching with either a seam ripper or x-acto knife. After you get a good opening along the seam just reach your finger(s) in and start pulling out the stuffing, or in the case of Beanies hold them over a garbage can and start dumping out the “beans”.

Once you have your animal gutted the easiest way to fill it back up is by using a funnel. Just stick the funnel into the hole you have cut in the seam. What do you fill it with, you ask? BBs (lead shot)! These can be easily purchased from most stores that sell fire arms; I purchased ours from Walmart. Fill your animal as full as you like. The final step is sewing your seam shut! No need to be a seamstress so just take a needle and thread and stitch away! Viola!