DIY: Suede & Leather Mouse Cat Toy

Some kitties really like the smell of leather. Here’s a simple suede & leather mouse you can make for your freaky little cat. Download the instructions and template—it’s the grey behind the directions. I’d make the mice out of some fun colors instead of boring brown. (The instructions call for punching the suede with holes and hand stitching, but I think if you have a good sewing machine and the appropriate heavy duty needle, you could sew this on your machine.)

You’ll need:

  • about 8×8″ of suede
  • some leather lacing
  • a few jingle bells
  • cardboard
  • fiberfill or something to stuff the mouse
  • good scissors
  • 2 pairs of pliers
    • good sewing machine & appropriate needle


    • sharp, heavy needle
    • awl or finishing nail
    • hammer
  • scrap wood or a few magazines you don’t care about
  • tape
  • marker

DIY: 2 Stuffed, Squeaky Dog Toy Projects

sweaterbonetoys copy

Here’s a great project to re-purpose old sweaters and turn them into squeaky bones from CraftStylish. If you use a wool sweater, you should probably felt it first.  If you don’t, then when you wash the finished toy, it may shrink into a MUCH smaller toy.  If you use cotton or acrylic, it won’t felt.  (Here are a few tutorials on felting, in case you need them: this one covers both hand & machine felting, here is a printable one on machine felting, and another on hand felting.)

You’ll need:

  • a clean, old sweater (yours, from a thrift store, etc.)
  • bone pattern–here are 3: bone #1, bone #2, bone #3
  • squeakers
  • sewing machine
  • thread
  • fiber fill or some kind of stuffing
  • a needle for hand sewing (here’s a tutorial for slip stitch for closing the toy)


Fabricbonetoy copy

The second project is for a fabric squeaky bone toy. This isn’t a difficult project and the tutorial is thorough.  You can get some fun fabric for this.  If you want to be thrifty, check the remainder table at your fabric store or check for yardage at thrift stores.  If you use a lighter cotton, you should use an inner layer of a heavier fabric like canvas or muslin.  Upholstery fabric could make some neat toys and you don’t need to buy much.

You’ll need:

  • fabric (check the remnants table & thrift stores)
  • heavier fabric like canvas or muslin if you use a lighter weight fabric for the outside
  • bone pattern–here are 3: bone #1, bone #2, bone #3
  • squeaker (the tutorial calls for a rattle)
  • sewing machine
  • thread
  • fiber fill or some kind of stuffing
  • a needle for hand sewing (here’s a tutorial for slip stitch for closing the toy)

DIY: Foxtail Toy For Dogs

diyfoxtailtoyA Foxtail toy is a ball with a nylon sock about 30 inches long sewn onto it.  It’s good for playing fetch and is easy to throw.  Saffron likes shaking the one she has.  Instructables has a tutorial on how to make your own Foxtail-type toy. You’ll need:

  • a tennis ball–an old one will work fine
  • at least 30″ of fabric (preferably lightweight nylon)
  • sewing machine
  • heavy duty thread or dental floss
  • heavy duty needle
  • possibly needle-nose pliers

The tutorial doesn’t have a template for the sock, but the dimensions should be 9 inches on one end, 2 inches on the other end, and 30 inches long.  It should taper on the center from the wide end to the narrow end.

DIY: Slingshot Ball For Dogs

Check out this tutorial on how to make your own slingshot ball for your dog or for a gift. The cheapest store-bought version, like the Go-Frr Ball, that I can find is $8.00.  You could probably make eight DIY slingshot balls for the same amount.

You’ll need some rubber balls—I’ve seen multi-packs in toy stores or you could check a dollar store—and you’ll need some surgical tubing, which you can get at many hardware stores.  For tools, you’ll need a drill and a wire coathanger.  A batch of these would make a nice gift.