Thursday, 5 May 2016
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Cinco de Mayo Puppy Fiesta Fun

Cinco de Mayo puppy fiesta homemade treats, DIY fringed bandana, and cactus toys

It all started with the green dot minky fleece....it was just begging to be a cactus toy!  I bought it months and months ago and into the craft stash it went, patiently waiting for Cinco de Mayo.

The materials and craft supplies used in making the cactus toy shown are:
  • Fabric (I used a green minky dot)
  • Scissors
  • Stuffing
  • Squeakers
  • Sewing Supplies Can be fully hand sewn if you wish, but will be much quicker/easier if you have a sewing machine. Basic sewing skills are needed - nothing too fancy or difficult!

Step-by-step making DIY stuffed cactus dog toys for Cinco de Mayo

Stuffed (softie) dog toys follow the same basic principles as you would use if sewing (or buying) for a small child - no loose parts to nibble free and everything securely stitched into a sturdy toy.

To make a cactus softie like the ones shown:

  • Cut two identical cactus shapes (i.e. each the full size for your finished your toy plus seam allowances). If you are trying to max-out a remnant, try folding the fabric in half and making one long cactus along the fold (as shown below) and using the extras for a second toy.  Cacti are easy to freehand, but if you aren't comfortable free-handing, draw it first on paper to make your own template or download a free template. 
  • Position the cacti pieces together print/pattern side in (if your fabric has a front/back, like my minky) to prepare for sewing. Pinning is optional.
  • Sew together, stopping with a large enough gap to reverse and add fill. 
  • Reverse through the gap so that the seams are inside and your fabric is right-side-out.
  • Stuff and (optional) add squeakers.  Amazon sells squeakers if you can't find any in your local shops.
  • Sew the toy closed, trim any threads if/as needed, and enjoy!

Safety first, furfriends! Remember, no matter what a toy is made of or how it's made, toys are meant for supervised interactive play. Know your dog before giving him/her any new toy. Some dogs try to eat toys/parts (whether bought or handmade) and that's dangerous. Toys are for playing, and playtime is always safer (and more fun!) with you involved. You can read more on our dog toy safety page, including tips and helpful links for safer playtime. Have fun and play safe!

DIY stuffed cactus dog toys for Cinco de Mayo

The materials and craft supplies used in making the fringed bandanas shown are:
  • Tapestry-style fabric
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Supplies 
Step-by-step making a fringed dog bandana for Cinco de Mayo

To make a fringed pet bandana like the ones shown:
  • With attention to the pattern and weave of your material, cut a triangle (half a square on a diagonal / right isosceles triangle), such that the long edge is big enough to fit loosely around you pet's neck plus extra to tie a small knot.  If you aren't comfortable with guesstimating the size, you can use a collar as a gauge or loosely measure your pet's neck.  
  • Sew the top edge using an overlock-style (shown) or finished seam of your choice.
  • Sew a small equal portion along the top edge on each side using an overlock-style (shown) or finished seam of your choice to create a finished section of bandana large enough for knotting. (see the tip below for an alternative version).
  • Sew an unfinished seam, curving in slightly from the stopping point of your finished edge above to create a seam allowance, then continuing straight along the side, inside the point, and up the other side before curving out to meet your opposite finished edge. This seam allowance will be the fringe of your bandana. With the exception of the meeting points to your finished seam, try to make sure that you leave a nice even allowance around the edge for fringing.
  • Incrementally unravel the seam allowance, creating a fringe. Tip: It's handy to have a small container for gathering your loose threads at this stage.  Be patient - this may take a while.
  • Trim to even up any irregular threads along the fringe.

🧩 TIP: For a simpler (and more durable) top edge and tie, check out our DIY fringed flannel dog bandana. It uses a binding trim along the top edge, which looks and works great with a fringed bandana, and is what I would use to make a similar bandana a in the future. :)

I didn't make any special Cinco de Mayo dog treats this year as our freezer is already brimming with goodies; however, here's quick adaptation that can be used with any treat: simply dip the dog treat in a combo of melted carob and peanut butter then sprinkle with toppings for a perfect party pup pop. Small treats and quantities are best, as this is an indulgent party treat.

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