Gastropod soft sculpture

As you can see, I am exceedingly proud of my latest soft sculpture: a gastropod shell. There is likely nothing in nature that is quite like it, but it may be closest in shape to a “channeled welk.”

Image from Pam Rambo of

The trickiest part to get right was the tip.  As you can see I have a hole where the tip should be; this was because the fabric strips would need to get extremely narrow as they spiral toward the tip.  But I’m pretty pleased with the results nonetheless.

As with the nautilus, I designed this in Blender. Fellow nerds: If you are interested in the math behind it, this is a good article to start with.

As with the nautilus, the gastropod was constructed it with a batik fabric fused to Peltex, a heavy duty interfacing material. Peltex is thick enough to hold the sea shell shape yet still malleable. The actual pieces are attached with a zig-zag stitch. My new heavy duty Singer sewing machine sewed them like a champ!

If you look closely, you can see that there are a few pins in the gastropod. Ultimately, some pieces need to be glued together to create the permanent shape. Keep your eyes on this space for a release of the pattern if you are inclined to make your own version.


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