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Felt Marble Maze DIY ~ How to Sew One for OCC Shoeboxes

Marble Maze tutorial and pattern designed to put in an Operation Christmas Child shoebox.

I  kept seeing Marble Mazes around the net and decided I'd try to make some for my Operation Christmas Child shoebox packing.  Basically you sew a marble between two pieces of fabric and sew a maze for it to be pushed thru.  Most that I
saw were very plain, but I saw one on Twin Dragon Flies Design that had a decorative fabric for the back.  I used a different fabric for the back, too, and I used appliques for the beginning and ending points.  I tried to make three different levels of mazes so I could include them in 2-4, 5-9 and 10-14 year old Operation Christmas Child boxes.

Felt Marble Mazes

1 – Piece Felt

1 – Piece fabric (or another piece of felt

1 – Round marble or flat floral marble (I used the large marble for the younger child’s version and a regular size marble for the older children’s versions).

2 – Appliqués—one for marking the beginning of the maze and one to mark the end.  You could also use a picture cut from a scrap of fabric. I think a mouse and piece of cheese would be cute.  I just used what appliqués I could find at the store (this craft store offers free supplies if you lend them your items for display—I’ll be sharing about this later).

Graph paper to make your maze.  Or use this one at Twin Dragonfly Designs (I used it in one of mine--you can see images of my three below and use any you'd like).  You can also search “free printable mazes” online—they will be a little more complicated but will give you ideas.

Paper to copy or trace maze onto.

Thread that contrasts with the felt.


  1. Design a maze--I have photos of mine below (or use mine or thisone at Twin Dragonfly Designs).  For a large size marble you need approx. 1 3/4” paths and for small ones you need approx. 1”.
  2. Copy or trace maze design on paper (you will sew right on this) or draw it onto your felt if you’d like to. Cut fabric to match felt piece (or cut both if your felt did not come in a piece).
  3. Cut fabric to match size of felt square (mine are about 11 x 8)
  4. Using the maze design mark where the beginning and ending are.  Attach appliqués in these spots. If they are iron on, reinforce ones with thread that will be used by young children.  Remember to leave about 1/2 to 3/4 inches of fabric between them and the edge of the felt to allow for seam allowance and a border.  Large appliques may get in the way of the maze stitching—if they are iron on they can be added after it is sewn.
  5. Right sides together stitch around outer edges using 1/4 to 3/8” seams (whichever you like).
  6. Leave one side partially open to turn.  Be sure to leave part of the marble trail open to be able to insert marble into the maze.
  7. Turn and press—press under seam allowance where left open and pin.
  8. Attach paper with maze design onto felt or draw on your design.  I like to use scotch tape rolled up between the lines.
  9. Stitch making sure to back stitch at all beginnings & endings (it is a good idea to back stitch and corners, too, for more reinforcement).  I learned that using a small stitch and a large needle makes tearing the paper off easier.
  10. Tear off the paper.
  11. Insert the marble—be sure it is inside the maze.
  12. Slip stitch the opening.
  13. Optional:  stitch along the outside edges.
The design on the right is from  Twin Dragon Flies Design (I had to edit a bit to fit my felt piece).

Check out Threading My Way's ongoing linky party for toys to get ideas and patterns.

We have several other toy tutorials here on Simply Shoeboxes including a Travel Tic-Tac-Toe Game Pattern.  You can find them, along with all of our tutorials, in this link:  Patterns & Tutorials for Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Gifts.

Design and instructions copyright Simply Shoeboxes.  Please enjoy using this design for your personal use and for gift giving.


Karen said...

this is a great tutorial! Thank you so much for sharing!

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Glad you found it helpful, Karen.

Bethany said...

This is a wonderful tutorial! I will definitely be making several of these. Thank you!!

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

So glad to hear it, Bethany! I never know if the tutorials help anyone or not.

Missy Pea said...

Thanks for the tutorial. I think it's really neat that you do so many crafts for Operation Christmas Child boxes. Can you share your mazes for printing?

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

No, Mrs P, I am sorry, I don't have a way to share them.

Danielle said...

Thanks so much for this! I just made three, one for each of my two children and one for a friends daughter. Will be perfect as a quiet book page when I get around to making more pages (Im making all the pages separately, as I get time, and once I have enough Ill collate them all into a book.... just have to remember to make them all the same size lol!). I used buttons instead of appliqués as I found it easier, but will be making some as a gift for our childcare centre and will appliqué those for safety I think!

Sarah said...

You're welcome! Thanks for sharing! The coupons sound cute!

Disclosure: Links on Simply Shoeboxes may be affiliate partners or referrals.