Free Pattern :: Pearly Queen Dog Collar made with Buttons

  Real friendship, like real poetry, is extremely rare - and precious as a pearl.  --  Tahar Ben Jelloun    

Real friendship, like real poetry, is extremely rare - and precious as a pearl.  --  Tahar Ben Jelloun

 

 Toony joined our family 4 years ago when we adopted her from the local Humane Society.  She is quite a character and brings us endless joy.   As she is no ordinary pooch, she deserves a collar befitting her ladyship.  Inspired by the history of the Pearly
Kings and Queens of London, I made her this pearly collar using buttons from my stash.  It makes a great gift for the canine lover on your gift list.

You will need:

  • dog collar with plastic clip, not buckle, and sized for your pooch
  • assorted pearl buttons
  • Nymo or other beading thread
  • sewing needle (sharp or milliners)
  • matches or lighter
  • scissors

Let's create!

1.     Fit the collar to your dog, adjusting the nylon strap as necessary. 

2.     Cut an arm's length of Nymo and thread your needle.  Tie a knot at the end. Use a match to melt back the tail of the knot.
        This will secure the knot and prevent it from coming undone.

3.     Stitch the buttons along the collar.  As I used a narrow collar made for small dogs, I stitched a single row of dress shirt
        buttons. If you have a Great Dane, your collar's width will be wider and will require 2-3 lines of pearl buttons to cover it.

4.     When you have finished sewing the buttons in place, tie a knot on the back of the collar.  Clip the thread and use a match to  melt back the knot's tail.

 

Free Pattern :: DIY Dog Toy

  I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love.    For me they are the role model for being alive. --- Gilda Radner

I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love.

For me they are the role model for being alive. --- Gilda Radner

Toony loves to play.  When we first adopted her from the Humane Society, she was nervous and chewed through all our other dogs toys in quick order until she got to what we call the mop which is essentially just a rope with knots on either end.

As I had some leftover shirt materials from making a t-shirt yarn rag rug, I thought I'd make a few dog toys, based on the rope model. So I took the top bits and cut off the arms.

I took one piece of the fabric and cut three parallel lines in it, stopping my cuts one inch from the edge.

I then proceeded to braid the strips together.  

Once finished braiding.  I created large overhand knots at each end, to keep it from unraveling.

Once finished, Toony seemed to know it was for her and couldn't wait to play fetch with it. For

more DIY upcycle projects take a look at these great projects from Cotopaxi -   View this photo

Free Pattern :: Crocheted T-shirt Yarn Rag Rug

 My little dog — a heartbeat at my feet. ~Edith Wharton

My little dog — a heartbeat at my feet. ~Edith Wharton

I love my dogs.  They protect me, watch over me, and provide an endless amount of joy and amusement.  Their favorite perch in the house is in the bench window seat of my studio on the second floor of our house.  They love to watch all the action on the street, barking their warning of approaching dogs and humans.  The bench seat was getting a bit torn up by their claws, so I need to add some protection and with my ever growing stash of t shirts, I decided to upcycle them into t-shirt yarn that I could crochet into a rag rug.  I wanted the rug to be substantial, machine washable and yet a  soft spot for my dogs to hang out.  As you can see above, Josie loves her new spot.  Miss Toony was jealous and decided to move in on Josie's territory.  Missing from the pic was their ensuing dog spat of snarling and snapping at each other.  Josie wanted the rug to herself.  

©2016Lindsay-Obermeyer-DIY-Rag_Rug

Want to make one for your dogs?  This is what you will need to make a rug 14" x 36".  

6 adult t-shirts
6 balls of worsted cotton (I used a variegated Sugar and Cream.)
Scissors
Ruler
Tapestry needle
H crochet hook

First, you need to cut your t-shirts into yarn. Save all the extra bits for a dog toy following in my next blog post.

Here is a great video on how to make the yarn from Upcycled Stuff.

Now to get started, you chain the width you want the project to be.  So I initially chained 14 inches.

Insert your hook into the second stitch from the hook and work a single crochet while wrapping the yarn up an around the t-shirt yarn.

Work your way along single crocheting as you go, pulling and catching the t-shirt yarn as you go. If you run out of T-shirt yarn, add more by simply overlapping the ends and working right over both.  

You will bend the t-shirt yarn as you turn to work your way across the row. Insert your hook into the last stitch of teh first row to begin.

Work your way along single crocheting as you go, pulling and catching the t-shirt yarn as you go. If you run out of T-shirt yarn, add more by simply overlapping the ends and working right over both.  

That all there is to it.  Work until you get to the desired length of your project.  To finish off, crochet one row without the t-shirt yarn to give it a nice finished edge.  Sew in all ends.  Trim off all dangling t-shirt yarn.  I know there are projects out there to crochet with the actual t-shirt yarn, but I found this process was easier on my arthritic hands and I like the extra dash of color from the cotton yarn.  Think of how cute this would be in a little girls bedroom?!   Or as a rug in the bathroom. If you are a marathon runner and have collected t-shirts from your runs, this is a fun way to repurpose them.  I do advise that you use a non-slip mat underneath it to keep it in place or if for a bench seat.  I staple gunned mine into place, so my dogs wouldn't constantly knock it off the bench when jumping up.

I've been working with the young company Cotopaxi on developing this blog post.  Their mission is sustainability and the repurposing of materials into great outdoor gear and hiking backpacks  They are a public benefit corporation based in Delaware, which means part of their corporate mission is not only sustainability but poverty alleviation.   I love it when companies take on positive change in the world as their mission!!  They've offered additional projects for you to make by upcycling your clothes into new projects. 

That all there is to it.  Work until you get to the desired length of your project.  To finish off, crochet one row without the t-shirt yarn to give it a nice finished edge.  Sew in all ends.  Trim off all dangling t-shirt yarn.  I know there are projects out there to crochet with the actual t-shirt yarn, but I found this process was easier on my arthritic hands and I like the extra dash of color from the cotton yarn.  Think of how cute this would be in a little girls bedroom?!   Or as a rug in the bathroom. If you are a marathon runner and have collected t-shirts from your runs, this is a fun way to repurpose them.  I do advise that you use a non-slip mat underneath it to keep it in place or if for a bench seat.  I staple gunned mine into place, so my dogs wouldn't constantly knock it off the bench when jumping up.

I've been working with the young company Cotopaxi on developing this blog post.  Their mission is sustainability and the repurposing of materials into great outdoor gear and hiking backpacks  They are a public benefit corporation based in Delaware, which means part of their corporate mission is not only sustainability but poverty alleviation.   I love it when companies take on positive change in the world as their mission!!  They've offered additional projects  for you to make by upcycling your clothes into new projects. 
  

   

Frugal Times / Recipe :: Homemade Gluten Free Dog Biscuits

 “Hounds follow those who feed them.” --  Otto    von Bismarck    (1st Chancellor of Germany)

“Hounds follow those who feed them.”
-- Otto von Bismarck (1st Chancellor of Germany)

My Papillons aren't at all spoiled.  Not one wit.  Toony the black and white Papillon we adopted from the Humane Society has a sensitive tummy and various allergies, so all of her dog food and treats come from a small pet food shop.  The treats get expensive, so I was looking at an alternative that I could make at home using basic ingredients and fairly low in cost. The ingredients are a tad expensive initially but may be used to make many batches.  The following is for 28 dog cookies.

Initially, I wanted something very Martha Stewart, nicely rolled out and using a heart cookie cutter to make them for their Valentine's Day treats ( remember, I told you that my dogs aren't spoiled.) This dough is too sticky to be rolled out.

Preheat oven to 350

1/2 can of canned pumpkin

2 tablespoons of organic peanut butter

2 eggs

2.5 cups of rice flour

Total cost, approximately 8 cents a cookie.  With enough ingredients left over to make at least another batch.  ( I did purchase the canned pumpkin on sale.  I tend to buy a number of cans when on sale after Thanksgiving.)

Whisk the eggs, pumpkin and peanut butter until smooth. Stir in the flour.  The dough will be stiff and slightly sticky which is why I didn't roll it out and use cookie cutters.  Instead, I used a small ice cream scoop to make equal size balls of dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. I dipped a fork into the flour and pressed the dough flat. They are a bit rough looking, but no less tasty to dogs. Bake in a 350 oven for 40 minutes.  Remove and allow to cool.  The cookies will be delightfully crisp and chewy.  Place in an airtight container and refrigerate as these treats do not contain any preservatives.

Toony LOVES these cookies.  I couldn't get a good picture of her eating one as she would grab it from my hand and run off at full speed to her favorite corner of the house.  But as you can see in the above picture, she is no nonsense when it comes to begging. Josie our other Papillon thinks she has just found her way into heaven with these cookies.   They are people -style treats just for dogs. Some recipes call for salt and spices.  The dogs don't need the salt or the spices.  As Toony is gluten sensitive, I used brown rice flour rather than wheat flour.  If you do use wheat flour, please use an organic product as many flours have been contaminated with potassium bromate.  Pumpkin helps keep your dogs regular, plus they love its flavor.

So show your 4-legged friends a little love and make them some cookies just for them.