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Saturday, October 19, 2013

Halloween Costumes for Pets

Bat Wings Harness
By simply cutting some wool felt, you can help your dog or cat transform into an adorable bat. Extra felt layers help the wings stay upright. A rectangle of felt fastens the wings into a harness.
Materials:
Wing template
Three 18-by-18-inch squares wool felt, in Black (#40), by Wollfilz; purlsoho.com
Sewing machine and sewing supplies
Fabric harness, in Brown, by Martha Stewart Pets
Fabric glue
Step 1 Print wing template. Cut out 3 layers from felt. Layer together, and sew around the edges to create a 3-ply piece. Stitch lines, as shown on template, for "veins" in the wings. Step 2 Cut a 1 1/4-by-5-inch rectangle of felt. Step 3 Place it over the middle of the wings, wrap it around your pet's harness to secure, and glue the ends together.

Petaled Collar
Make your furry friend stand out this Halloween with a blooming costume using our petal or sunflower shapes.You can use a collar instead of ribbon.
Materials:
Petal Template
Or Sunflower Template
Grosgrain ribbon
One or two 18-by-18-inch squares wool felt
Sewing machine and sewing supplies
Self-adhesive
Velcro fasteners
Step 1 Cut ribbon to fit loosely around your pet’s neck, with ends overlapping 1 inch. Step 2 Print petal template or sunflower template. Trace the shape on the felt, and cut out petals. Fold them in half lengthwise, and stitch close to the fold, from the flat end to 2/3 of the way up; this will give the petals dimension. Stitch the petals to the ribbon, overlapping them by almost half. Add Velcro fasteners at the ends of the ribbon.

Spider-Dog Pet
This beloved French bulldog is all dressed up for Halloween, too. Disguised as a devious black widow spider, is out to catch the little moth Sharkey in her web!
Materials:
Basic sewing supplies
36-inch square black felt
Orange felt
Fill
Knitting needle
Fabric glue
Black dog T-shirt
Body, leg, and diamond templates
Step 1 Photocopy body, leg, and diamond templates cut out. Using the templates as guides, cut 2 body pieces and 16 leg pieces from black felt; cut 2 diamond pieces from orange felt. To make each leg, pin 2 leg pieces together and sew; using knitting needle, stuff tightly with fill. Sew body pieces together, leaving a small opening for fill. Stuff body, and sew opening closed. Glue the two diamonds to top body piece to make an hourglass shape. Step 2 Place each leg on body with the open ends sandwiching the body; hand-sew legs to body. Sew body to center of back of T-shirt. Tack along contour of body to stabilize.


Moth-Dog Pet
Your pet can become a magnificent moth by dotting gray felt wings with light yellow and black spots and using pipe cleaners as antennas.
Materials:
Basic sewing supplies
Three 12-by-18-inch pieces of stiff black felt
Fabric glue
Elastic
36-inch square gray felt
Paintbrush
8-inch square pale yellow felt
Pipe cleaners
Wing and marking templates
Step 1 Photocopy wing and marking templates; cut out. Stack 2 pieces of black felt, and cut out wing shapes. Cut a 3-inch-wide strip of black felt the length of the wings. Place wings side by side, and glue the strip along the center to hold the wings together (the side with the strip will be the underside). Step 2 Cut the elastic to fit the dog: It should start at the tops of the dog's shoulders and loop around the front legs to fit snugly, like a backpack. Tack elastic into loops, and sew onto underside of black wings. Fold gray felt in half, and align wing template with the folded edge; using the template as a guide, cut out wing shape and unfold. Trim 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch from edges so gray felt is slightly smaller than black felt. Glue gray felt to black felt with fabric glue and a paintbrush. Using the templates as guides, cut out markings from yellow and black felt; glue in place. Step 3 Cut two 1-by-13-inch strips of gray felt; fringe by cutting 3/4-inch slits every 1/4 inch with scissors. Overlap two 12-inch pipe cleaners at their midpoints, and twist together; bend as shown, with a 1 1/2-inch piece in the center. Wrap fringed felt strips around pipe cleaners, gluing in place as you go and stopping at center section. Step 4 Using the template as a guide, cut two circles from gray felt, cutting slits in one circle as indicated on template. Brush uncut circle and center piece of pipe cleaners with glue. Place pipe cleaners upright on uncut circle; place circle with slits on top. Press pipe cleaners through slits. Press down, and let dry. Cut elastic to fit snugly around the dog's head; stitch ends to uncut circle.

Felted Dog Wigs
Make your four-legged friend part of the Halloween celebration with a festive felted wig.
Materials:
Wig base template/diagram
Measuring tape
Sharp scissors
100-percent wool felt
Pencil
Step 1 Print template, enlarging or reducing to fit dog's head, if necessary. Measure between dog's ears. Using the vertical dotted line on the template as an example, trim the template so that the distance between ear hole and straight vertical line is half the measurement between the dog's ears. Step 2 Fold felt in half. Lay straight edge of template at fold. Trace template onto felt with pencil. Cut out wig base from felt and unfold. Step 3 Lay base over felting brush or pad. Begin with a small tuft of wool, laying 1/2 inch of one end on outer edge of wig base. Felt with felting needle(s) until strands appear on underside of base and are anchored securely. Continue felting around entire outer edge of wig base. Move in another 1/4 to 1/2 inch from edge and add more strands of wool in the same way. Step 4 Continue felting around base, following arrows in template diagram to place wool. For the area around each ear hole, direct wool strands toward the center of the hole before felting to base. Fold locks up and away from hole to cover felted edge. Step 5 To make a center "part," follow diagram to lay strands of wool perpendicular to center line, from ear holes inwards. About 1/4 to 1/2 inch from center of wig, lay strands of wool in opposite direction and felt to base. Fold these strands over their felted edge, back toward ear hole, to hide felted area. Step 6 To secure wig to dog's head, attach 1/2-inch felt straps to either side of wig with glue or needle and thread. Tie straps under dog's chin, or trim straps and apply Velcro fasteners to ends. Step 7 Trim and style wig to accommodate dog's eyes and ears.

Illuminated Porcupine
Let your pooch light up the room with with this one-of-a-kind porcupine costume.
Materials:
Fiber-optic strands
Scissors
Electrical tape
Floral wire
Travel aspirin bottle (cylinder-shaped)
Craft knife
Silver reflective paper
5-millimeter LED light
1-inch diameter button
Butt connectors
Red "+" wire
Black "-" wire
Dog costume pattern (head)
Dog costume pattern (body)
1/2 yard faux fur
1/2 yard wool (for lining)
Adhesive Velcro dots
2 AAA batteries and holder
Sewing machine
Lengths of Velcro for straps
Needle and thread for hand-sewing
Step 1 Start with a bunch of fiber-optic strands -- about the diameter of a dime. Cut the entire bunch to an even 20 inches, and wrap with electrical tape 1/2 inch from one end. Wrap with floral wire for extra security. Step 2 Make a tube from a travel aspirin bottle by cutting off the bottom. Roll a rectangle of silver reflective paper, and insert into tube. Insert the bundled end of fiber optics halfway into tube, and secure with electrical tape. Step 3 Pull the wires of a 5-millimeter LED through the holes of a button; secure with hot glue. Tape to sawed-off end of bottle. Step 4 Use a butt connector to attach a length of red "+" wire to the "+" wire of the LED light. Repeat with black wire for the "-" LED wire. This will create a direct current through the light once the battery holder is attached. Step 5 Download and print the pattern for the sewn part of the dog costume, measuring and adjusting to fit your dog. Once you've adjusted the paper pattern to fit, trace and cut from faux fur, then trace and cut again from wool lining. Sew the head pieces to the body pieces, lining up the center marks. Step 6 Cut a 3-by-4-inch rectangle out of wool and sew onto the center of the lining on three sides, creating a pocket. Step 7 Secure the LED tube to the wrong side of the fabric with a Velcro dot, near the neck. Step 8 Starting near the neck, poke fiber optic strands through the faux fur so that the porcupine "quills" all extend toward the back. Trim "quills" if necessary. Step 9 Cut a small slit, centered near the opening of the pocket. Pull black and red wires through slit. Step 10 Connect each wire to the wires of battery holder, using butt connectors. Step 11 Edge-stitch the faux fur and wool lining together and sew on Velcro straps.

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