Ice Bow

Guys… I’m obsessed with making bows. If I thought, as a woman in her mid-twentys, I could get away with wearing bows in my hair I would. Until then, I’ll just have to settle for making bows for my pups.

Without further ado, the first in my Snow Series, the Ice Bow!

Ice Bow DIY
It has a pretty glass bead in the middle, hence ice bow!

Step 1: Gather and cut your ribbon! The colors and types are optional, but I would definitely suggest using a two-inch wide, a one-inch wide, and a half-inch wide. For my little eight-pound pup I made my ribbons about seven inches long , the bow will be a little less than half that length when finished (for seven-inch pieces, the bow will be a bit less than 3.5 inches long).

Cutting strips of ribbon
Note: I recomend making the half-inch wide piece twice as long as I did above. I found that making it the same length as the other ribbons was too short. 

Step 2: Fold the ends of the two-inch ribbon into the middle and sew through it, loosly gathering it before knotting off your thread. Fold both blue pieces the same way then gather them both on the thread, sewing them onto the white piece.

Putting the Bow Together
In the fourth image I show you how I sewed on the ribbon, in-out in-out, and I recommend you do the same. It will pleat nicely. 

Step 3: Tie the half-inch ribbon around the other two ribbons in a nice bow!

Tie half-inch ribbon on
To get the half-inch ribbon to stay out nicely, you can dab a little hot glue behind the loops.

Step 4: Sew on the button! I recommend a button with two holes that way you can just sew around the bulk of the bow.

Sew on the button

Step 5: Add the eastic! I use a strip of felt, glue one end on, glue over the whole strip, let it dry, slide the elastic on, then glue down the other end.

Adding the elastic
I hot glue over the felt strip to keep it from stretching out. 

Voila! Refer to top of DIY for adorable picture of finished bow!

Please make, make changes, update, and let me know how it goes! Collaborative projects make for the best projects!!

xxEGinny

 

Collar Flowers

The Problem: I’ve got some old flowers cluttering up my house.

Initial flowers
The offenders. Actually, they’re just really pretty so I want to use them!

The Solution: Make them into beautiful collar decorations!

All flowers
For now I’ve made four, but they’re so easy to make more of!

Collar Flower DIY

To make this a doable project for all levels, I wanted to experiment with different ways of making these. Therefore each of the four flowers above will have their own how-to!

(Little) Table of contents:

  • No-sew flower with button
  • No-sew flower without button
  • Sew flower with button
  • Sew flower without button

No-sew flower with button

Step 1: Take apart the flower.

Taking apart the flower
Get rid of all that uncomfortable green plastic!
Taking apart flower
Keep the petals stacked as you go and don’t forget that last petal in the middle!

Step 2: Glue the flowers together.

Gluing flowers
Cut out a small circle of felt and use that as the base for the flower. Use very thin layers of glue because it will all stack up and make the flower really thick.

Step 3: Add the button.

Gluing the button on
You guessed it – trusty ol’ hot glue!

Step 4: Add the elastic.

Adding elastic
Cut out a small strip of felt and use it to loop on the elastic. Gluing the elastic right onto the flower wont hold as well and may even melt it!

No-sew flower without button

Step 1: Glue the flower petals in a stack.

Gluing the flower together
Make sure to use thin layers of glue between flower petals so it doesn’t get too thick.

Step 2: Fold the flower stack first in half, then in quarters, gluing the seams

Folding the flower

Step 3: Cut the bottom of the flower off to flatten it and glue it onto a small circle of felt.

Making the flower bottom flat

Step 4: Add the elastic

Adding the elastic
Cut out a small strip of felt, glue one side onto your felt circle, put the elastic on it, then glue down the other side. Using the strip of felt to hold on the elastic will make it last longer!

Sew flower with button

Step 1: Sew your stack of flowers together with a small circle of felt on the bottom.

Sewing petals together
If you start your needle in the middle of the stack, you can easily hide your knot.
Solving a stuck needle
If you’re impulsive like me and start gluing before you decide you want to sew the flower, the glues gonna make your needle stick. Thimbles help, but I find pilers to be the most helpful!

Don’t forget to sew your button on the front! I found it helpful to sew the petals together a bit before sewing on the button.

Step 2: Sew on the elastic. Simply loop your thread around the elastic and pull tight to secure.

Sewing on the elastic

Sew flower without button

Step 1: Sew the petals together.

Sewing the petals together

Step 2: Fold the flower stack first in half, then in quarters, sewing the seams as you go.

Folding the flower

Step 3: Sew a small felt circle onto the base.

Sewing on the felt
I also sewed around the edges of the felt, pulling in petals to flatten the outside a bit.

Step 4: Sew on the elastic. Simply loop your thread around the elastic and pull tight to secure.

Sew the elastic on

There ya go! Four different collar flowers. I wasn’t sure how my dogs would like these, I was afraid they might be itchy, but they don’t bother them at all! As I type, the little tan Havanese is laying on my lap, completely passed out, with her multi-colored flower on.

xxEGinny

Halloween Bows

The Problem: Bows are way too small to be as expensive as they are.

Original Halloween Bow
This perfect little girl came home from the groomers with this adorable little Halloween bow on and she didn’t seem to mind it at all. Thus begins her life of being a dog always wearing a bow.

But when we checked online for some new bows for her, we quickly learned they cost what, in my opinion, is way more than a piece of ribbon should. Plus, we didn’t really need 20 Halloween bows in particular, just a couple, then a couple for the other seasons. So when I found myself at the Dollar Store (as I often do) I figured I could just make my own and make them inexpensively the way I wanted to make them!

The Solution: Make them myself!

They’re pretty fun to make and there are so many different types of bows out there! So for a whopping total of $2, I could probably make at least ten bows. I started with three.

Dog Bows cover

Supplies: All I bought were Halloween rings and some ribbon. You’ll also need some sort of small elastic. I used those little hair elastics I had on hand.

Supplies

Tools:

  • Exacto knife
  • Scissors
  • Needle + thread
  • Hot glue gun + sticks
  • A piece of foam board (that’s what I used, but you just need something relatively flat and a little longer than you want the width of your bow. It’ll make sense in the instructions)

Spider Bow

Step one: Find something flat and a little longer than how long you want the bow. I used a piece of foam board about 3.5” in length. Cardboard or folded paper would work well too. Then go ahead and wrap your ribbon around it three times (twice in the back). Ignore the pins, those are just there so I could take the picture! Once you’re all wrapped up, take some tape and lay it over the three pieces to keep them from unraveling.

Wrapping the ribbon

The yellow in the middle of the the ribbon in the second pictures is chalk from one of my favorte tools! Apparently it’s called a Chalk Wheel. Personally I found mine in my grandmother’s quilting kit. It makes things super easy to mark up and nothing is permanent. 10/10 will buy more chalk powder for mine when it runs out!

Step two: Sew across the ribbons.

Sewing together
Use the tape to help you slip the ribbon off your stencil and onto a surface you can sew on. Sew through the center of the ribbons, making sure you’re getting the back two lengths of ribbon too. There’s no special way to do this, but I tried to get through each length of ribbon twice for a tighter gathering.

Step three: Gether the ribbons and knot to secure. I do the ol’ make a loop and sew through it for my knot.

Gathering
Gently push the ribbons to the end of the thread to gather them. After that, wrap the thread around where its gathered and knot to secure.
Pretty bow!
The bow part’s done!

Step four: Cut the ring part off the spider.

Cutting the ring off the spider
I used my exacto. The plastic is pretty thin so it was pretty easy.

Step five: Hot glue the spider onto the bow.

Spider on bow
Not too shabby, eh?

Step six: Sew on the elastic.

Sewing on the elastic
Hold the elastic between two fingers and sew a loop around it onto the back of the bow. That way you’ll have a double elastic to loop over the collar.

Spider bow is done!

Bat Bow

Step one: Measure out how big you’d like your bow to be. I’m using the same piece of foam board I used to measure the spider bow.

Measuring size
Like the spider bow, the final size of the bow will be slightly smaller than the how long your loops are now, but not by much.

Step two: Measure out four more. If you’d prefer, you can shorten these ribbon lengths so that each ribbon you cut it a little shorter than the last, but I chose to this later on.Five lengths of ribbon

Step three: Loop each ribbon length and stack it on top of the last, making sure that each place where the ribbon loop comes together is facing down. Here’s where I eyeballed each loop that I made to make it a little smaller than the last.

Stacking the ribbons
I pinned my loops down to my foam board as I made them, to help keep them straight and make sure the ends of all of my lengths were overlapping.
Alternative bow
If you want, you can rotate some of the loops to end up with a more flowery bow!

Step four: Sew directly through where the pin was a few times, then sew an elastic on just like how the spider one was done.

Putting on the elastic
Like the spider bow, hold the elastic between two fingers and loop the thread over the center to attach it. That way you’ll loop both sides of the elastic over the collar to attach it.

Step five: Cut the ring part off, same as the spider, and go ahead and hot glue it on!

Gluing on the bat
Voila!
Skull Bow
My personal favorite

Step one: Cut five pieces of ribbon all the same length (just a little longer than you want the bow to be in diameter). Cut a “V” shape out of each end.

Cut out five ribbon sections

Step two: Sew in and out of each strip of ribbon, right in the middle.

Sewing the pieces together

Step three: Holding both sides of the ribbons, gently pull the thread so that each ribbon gathers one at a time. Doing those slowly will help the ribbons from twisting which is not as cute.

Ruffling the bow

Step four: Thread the needle back through the stack of ribbons, wrap it around the center, then tie it off to secure it all together.

Tying off the bow
You can choose to sew the elastic on now, but personally, I tied off the bow then sewed the elastic on separately to make sure nothing got twisted.

Step five: After cutting the ring part off with an exacto (see spider bow) go ahead and glue the skull onto the center of the bow!

Gluing on the skull
Voila!

I had way too much fun with these bows; they get addicting to make! I’ll more than likely do a few new how-tos for some different bows later. I want to get a bunch of different colors which are wicked cheap on Amazon (like these which have excellent reviews) and play around some more.

Until then, thanks for reading! Please comment with any questions, comments, or pictures from trying these bows or altering them! The best ideas are the ones built upon 🙂

xxEGinny

Dog Self Feeder

The Problem:

For my first solution post, I’m going to use my four-legged furry nephew!

Riley playing with ball
I mean come on, that face

He’s a three-year-old Havanese named Riley. He self-feeds (his food is left down for him to eat whenever he’s hungry) but he lives with another pup who will eat any and all food left on the floor, so now we can’t leave his food down or she will eat it all.

Shih tzu
The culprit – an adorable little piggy

Fix number one is this super cool puppy feeder by The Q on Youtube! Check it out here: DIY Puppy Dog Food Dispenser from Cardboard at Home. See, Havanese are little dogs, but they have these enormous paws! We call them “magic paws” because whenever he wants something, he bats at it and usually gets it. Seriously, we could probably put him on a small raft in a roaring ocean and those paws would hold him steady! So when I saw this video, it seemed perfect. Riley could use his big ol’ magic paws to bat at the release sign and get his food! Here are the results:

GIF

He looks up the ramp, where the food comes from, to get more. Hitting the sign to the right doesn’t make sense to him.

First rule of design: there’s no such thing as dumb people, only dumb products (or in this case not using it for what it’s designed for). I wanted to make the feeder inherit, something he could figure out without even having to be taught. By looking at the previous design, I could see that he wants to put his nose where he knows the food is, so let’s make this happen!

The Solution:

First I just want to lay out the pattern for you. I used craft foam to make my feeder (Dollar Store guys, it’s so cheap), which is generally .125″ thick, so you can see I’ve accounted for that in my pattern. You could use a bunch of different types of materials for this, cardboard is most notable, but chipboard would work too, even wood! Wood would (hah) require some pattern alterations, of course. Something I learned is that dog food is greasy, so any absorbent materials (like cardboard) won’t last long.

Pattern pieces
“Rough” meaning to make this work, you’ll need to do some tinkering as you build.

My tools of choice: a cutting mat, an exacto knife, a ruler, a pen, pins, tweezers, and a hot glue gun.

Here’s the back piece. I didn’t cut the holes out until later but I suggest you do, there’s no reason not to. Now is also the time to crease the two hinges: the one above the window and the one below.
back piece folded
The back piece, cut out and folded. The bottom piece is longer than it needs to be so I can cut it to size later.
Sides
The two sides all cut out. I just measured out one then traced it. So much easier!
Gluing one side on
Just glue the top to the top of the window (that crease). I used hot glue, nice and fast.
Marking the door swing
To measure where to put the inner shelf, hold a pen against the bottom of the window, and swing the hinge to mark how low it goes. If you put the shelf within that arch, the door won’t be able to swing.

GIF Door swing with shelf

Getting the shelf in the right place will take a little trial and error, but here’s how it works once you have it fitted!

skewer supports
I didn’t trust the foam board to withstand much pressure, so I just glued on some skewers. Popsicle sticks, toothpicks, paper clips, anything with a little rigidity will work.

Go ahead and glue on the other side and let’s get the elastic placed!

Marking where the elastic goes
This is a view of the feeder looking at the front window. The elastic needs to be placed at the bottom of the window so that when the window is pushed in, the elastic pushes it back out. How do we mark exactly where to thread the elastic through the walls? Here’s my foam board/cardboard (not so) secret: pins! They can mark they can hold while glue dries, they’re super useful!
Threading the elastic
This part can be a bit tricky, but thread an elastic through one side of the feeder (through the hole you just marked) securing it with a paperclip, and out the other side securing it the same way. I made a little threader with a paperclip to help me.

By the way, see that messy, crumpled up foam board around where I cut out the window? My exacto blade was too dull and needed changing… oops.

Making room for the elastic
Now that the elastic is secured, I noticed that there wasn’t enough room for it when the window was pushed back. The elastic got wedged between the window and the sides of the feeder. Solution? Just cut a little of the window out exactly where the elastic is, creating a little channel for it.
Window
This was in the recycling, perfect window! As long as it’s a bit of a tougher clear plastic it will do. I had to get rid of the label though and for those who don’t know the magic of Goo Gone, learn it, live it, love it.
Flattening the window
Since my window was a little curved, I glued it into a frame to flatten it then glued the frame on top of my window space in the feeder.

You probably noticed that by this point I’d already glued in the food slide, but I kind of jumped the gun by doing that, so I suggest you do it now.

The food slide
Compared to everything else this is easy-peasy! Simply cut out the food slide and walls, glue the walls on (on top of the slide, not to the sides of it or it won’t fit) and slice some angles into the walls of one side so you can angle it under the hole in the shelf where the food comes out.
Attaching the slide slant
Gluing in the slide slant is just a matter of looking where the food needs to go. Look where the hole on your shelf is, where the food falls, and glue the slant so that food is forced into the hole. If it’s glued too far back, food will get stuck behind the hole.

Now’s a good time to glue on the back and top pieces. They’re more or less there for looks, covering up the inner workings of the feeder.

Creating the door
Like I said, I didn’t cut out the door until now but I suggest you do it while the piece is flat, there’s no reason not to. Then I simply used a paperclip, flattened it, created a handle shape, and poked it into the door, securing it on the other side.

Dare I say it… you’re done!

I think he's got it!

xxEGinny