I am lucky enough to be a foster mom to a 3-year-old mutt named Gracie. She had a hard life—two years on the street, hit by a car, in and out of shelters, and nearly put down. Then she met me, and today she’s the most spoiled doggie in town! After a shy beginning, she slowly warmed up and now we’re the best of friends. I enjoy cooking dinner for her, running with her, and playing with her whenever I can. And boy, does she love toys!
While looking at a pile of sweater bits left over from previous projects, I could think of only one thing—toys for Gracie! Recycling saves room in a landfill and is more affordable than the store-bought toys. Win-win!
What You’ll Need:
• Old sweater (I use washable sweaters so I can clean the toy when it gets dirty)
• Pack of squeakers (for dogs)
• Pack of organic cat nip (for cats)
• Sewing machine
• Hand needle
How It’s Done:
1. Gather the sweater or sweater parts. You can use any part of a sweater to make your toys. If you’re using a large sweater, you should get about four toys: one from each of the sleeves, one from the back and one from the front.
2. Draw and cut out a bone-shaped pattern from a large sheet of paper. My pattern measures 12 inches long, 9 inches at the widest part, and 5 inches at the middle. Adjust measurements to your liking.
3. Pin the pattern onto the sweater material.
4. Cut out the bone-shaped pieces.
5. Pin the two fabric pieces together.
6. Sew the two pieces together using a 3/8-inch seam allowance. Leave a 2-inch hole along the side, and turn your bone right-side out.
7. Fill your toy with stuffing and squeakers (I use one at each end) and sew up the hole.
8. Make sure to sew it up nice and tight, especially if you have a dog or cat who likes to play rough.
Once your toy is sewn up, it’s ready for play! As with all toys, it’s best to supervise your pet when she is playing with her new sweater toy.
To see more of Erica Kern’s projects, please visit: Etsy.com/Shop/MyImaginaryBoyfriend