I couldn’t resist the newest DIYFluffies (manatee!) pattern, and bought it immediately. I love manatees and I love plushies, and I love DIYFluffies plushie patterns especially.
It came out a little wonky, but cute enough, and was absolutely easy enough for me to want to give it another try. This was the first time I tried attaching details like eyes, and nostrils with satin stitch and I think with some practice I can probably get them looking quite nice. Fabric is a cheap fleece blanket from IKEA which seems to be discontinued now, which is a pity since it’s pretty much the perfect manatee colour. Eyes are bits of felt from Stoff og Stil I cut into extremely wobbly circles.
I made Nightshade a little tent to hide and snuggle in, based on the pattern and tutorial by Kid Giddy on Sew Mama Sew. I only used the sewing instructions as I had to make it bigger than the original, and ended up drafting a pattern myself.
I finally decided to just make the pattern weights that I so sorely need. I was tired of piling various sewing tools on top of my pattern/fabric to hold it down. I’d been putting off making my own sewn weights because all the patterns and tutorials I’d found demanded hand sewing to finish them off. Well, I hate hand sewing, hence no pattern weights were made.
After making a number of the pattern weights using the free pattern so kindly provided by Tea Rose Home, it turns out I don’t actually hate hand sewing, I quite like it. I’m terrible at it, but at least I won’t avoid it in the future.
I made a pop up thread catcher for Mr Blue, as his embroidery tends to leave tiny bits of floss floating all over. It was tricky and took a goodly amount of hand sewing, but was very doable. The tutorial I used from quilary avoids as much hand sewing as possible. One deer damask ice tile fat quarter from Spoonflower, an empty Weetabix box, a batting scrap and some ½” rigilene boning later…
Nightshade adores being outside, but due to his breeder’s requirements and the *extremely* dangerous road that is way too close to our house, he is destined to be an indoor cat. He has his own fenced-in area attached to the front of the house, and we also take him outside on a harness.
So far we’ve tried three different styles of commercial harnesses designed for cats.
The standard kitten harness which consists of a belly band and a neck band connected across the shoulders.
The figure of 8 loop-around-the-shoulders style, and
The Puppia style of soft harness which is so popular for little snub nosed dogs.
All of which Nightshade has slipped out of, without even trying particularly hard. Slinky cats are apparently harder to keep in a harness than their plumper compatriots.
So then I turned to Erin of Dog Under My Desk and her wonderful Little Dog Harness tutorial. As with all her tutorials and patterns, it was very easy to understand and packed with photos which are very helpful to a beginner like me.
I used the Sammy sized template, and it fits a skinny, slinky 4 kg Siamese very well! I may try to redraft the neck band in the future to get a better fit for a cat neck/chest, but so far it is absolutely the best fitting harness Nightshade has worn. And he tolerates it so much better than the other harnesses. Putting it on is a breeze, and once it is on, he doesn’t even seem to know it’s there.
Pepper now has his Halloween costume in the bag! I’m pretty proud of it, even if it doesn’t look amazing close up, because neither does it look horrendous. All in all, I’m pleased with it, and glad I made a toile/muslin first.
KwikSew 3629 – view A
Size Made: S with size M neck & chest strap. Made For: Pepper Tools Used: Sewing machine, point turner. Notions Used: I used Vlieseline H 250 / Vilene H 250 / Fliselina H 250 to fusible interfacing to stiffen the collar, and four nylon cable ties instead of boning. The cable ties worked really well, since they aren’t doing much more than stiffening. Changes: I made a muslin using some cheap cotton from Ikea, which made me realise that Chesty McFattyChest needed bigger straps than the size S provided.
Shantung Sateen Black UL-455 from Fabric.com Amount: .9 m / 1 yard Contents: 100% polyester Fabric Weight: lightweight Washing: Dry Clean Width: 152 cm/ 60″ Description: This reversible gorgeous shantung sateen (also known as shantung satin) fabric has a smooth shiny sateen side and a shantung finish on the other side. The shantung side of the fabric has a nubby texture similar to silk dupioni, but with more sheen and luster due to the satin side of the fabric.
Polyester Lining Red UO-934 from Fabric.com Amount: .9 m / 1 yard Contents: 100% polyester Fabric Weight: Very lightweight Washing: Dry Clean Width: 147 cm/ 58″ Description: Add a touch of luxury to any garment by lining it with this ultra soft and very lightweight polyester lining fabric. Lining garments helps with the shape, drape and overall structure of the garment.