DIY: Raised Dog Bowls from Vintage Suitcase

Raised bowls from suitcase

Cool upcycling! Do you remember this really popular post on making pet beds out of vintage suitcases.  Here’s a project that transforms a vintage suitcase into a raised food & water bowl station.

Redditor, reallifedog, made this for his girlfriend and very kindly posted a good tutorial.  I just love clever people!  He points out he used standard hand tools except for a welder for the legs.  Don’t have a welder?  No worries—you can buy furniture legs at hardware stores and online.

(I’m assuming reallifedog is male.  I did some snooping and found pics of his that show a guy’s hands.  Yes, I’m that thorough obsessive compulsive about researching posts.)

Have an itch to make something?  Here are a TON of posts on DIY projects and tips!

DIY: 6 Dog Coats & Sweaters Round-Up

Last week’s post on the DIY Dog Rain Coat got me to thinking about all the other DIY dog coats & sweaters I’ve written about.  Here are a bunch of tutorials on how to make your dog her own coat—everything from upcycling to sewing to knitting to even weaving.

Cardigan Coat



Dog Raincoat from Old Jacket (for people) with pattern



Woven Coat with pattern



Oil Cloth Coat with 2 patterns



Sock Sweater



2 Different Sweaters to Knit



Though it’s not a tutorial, this is a great idea! Check out these super cool coats made out of broken umbrellas created by Taryn Zychal.

DIY: Over 30 Different Cat Toys To Sew, Knit, Crochet, or Assemble

Here are a ton of DIY cat toys!  One of my pet peeves (groan!) is ugly pet toys .  I like them to be colorful, cute, and/or funny, and the easiest way to achieve that is to make your own.  The great thing about DIY cat toys is they take very little fabric, yarn, etc. and they’re usually quick to make.  All of the toys below will make nice gifts for kitties and their people.  Have fun!

Adorable hearts, cupcakes, strawberries, roses, & chocolates.

Kitty fortune cookies.


No-sew feathers and fish.



Suede mouse.



Beautiful birdies.



Easy to sew mouse, fish, & sausage.



Supper fuzzy mouse.


Adorable sushi—nigiri & futomaki.



Feather spinner toy & wand.



Felt bird, mouse, & fish.


Cute mice, olives, & owls.


DIY: 15 Foraging Toys For Birds!

Birds need mental stimulation just like cats and dogs and pretty much every animal.  Working for food is a great way to provide that stimulation.  It can also be a great way to get your bird to eat foods in usually rejects.  Wild birds spend most of their time foraging for food, so it’s a strong drive.  Enrich your birds life with ways to foster that drive.  Making your own foraging toys will help save you money too.  You may need to make it easy for them at first to get the treats, but they’ll catch on quickly.  Supervise your birds!

  1. A foraging toy for birds who haven’t learned to forage is this seeds-in-a-cork foraging toy.
  2. Put nuts, veggies, etc. in those little tiny cereal boxes or raisin boxes and let your bird tear into the box to retrieve the goodies.
  3. 2 nifty foraging toys—one that doubles as a swing made from paper & another made with paper muffin cups.
  4. String uncooked pasta, veggies, or fruit you dried on string and hang in you bird’s cage.
  5. A recipe for seed kabobs on wooden spoons.
  6. Great foraging mat for birds who ground forage.
  7. Drill holes in a stick and stuff them with nuts or other treats.
  8. Video on 2 foraging toys—nuts & seeds pressed into untreated balsa wood, a treat in a small dixie cup then twisted shut.
  9. Wrap some treats in paper, stuff into an empty toilet paper roll, and fold the ends shut.
  10. Another version of the toilet paper roll toy uses Kiote Koins (dried yucca chips).
  11. Here’s a recipe for little popcorn balls on popsicle sticks.
  12. Wrap treats in coffee filters and tie shut.
  13. Clever idea to put unpopped popcorn kernels in small whiffle balls, wrap it damp paper towel and microwave a short time until the kernels pop inside the ball. (scroll to 2nd post)
  14. Super easy rice cake foraging toy.
  15. Brilliant stacked foraging toy made using origami.

DIY: Cardboard Cat Rocket

Too cute!  I’ve made cat houses out of cardboard, but nothing as nifty as this.  Check out the superb cardboard rocket tutorial at Craftzine from Haley Pierson-Cox, who has her own site, The Zen of Making full of DIY goodness.  There are even carpet squares for each level.  Haley uses actual screws and nuts to hold the rocket together, for the most part, instead of glue, which gives the rocket more structural integrity and avoids exposing your kitty friends to any chemicals in the glue.  I don’t know how much of an issue that is unless your cat eats glue, but I do like how the hardware looks in the final product.  Have fun—your kitty will be over the moon!

You’ll need:

  • 4 cardboard boxes, 20″ x 20″ x 20″ square single-walled cartons
  • 2 carpet squares, 20″ x 20″
  • 68 #10 washers
  • 34 #10 nuts
  • 18 1/2″ #10 screws
  • 16 3/8″ #10 screws
  • Screwdriver, optional
  • Wrench, optional
  • Tape measure
  • Box cutter
  • Long ruler or yardstick
  • Pencil or marker
  • Thumb tack
  • String
  • Drill or awl
  • Duct tape
  • Hot glue gun
  • Bone folder
  • Paint, in your favorite colors – Haley used Crayola Washable Kid’s Paint
  • Paint brushes/sponges