Hey everyone, it’s me RaChil again! This week I’ve got a project that was halfway inspired by my new supplies and the other half inspired by weak cat toys.
My cats are either super-strong, destroyers of all cat playthings or store bought cat toys are cheaply made and not really worth it. Every time I bought one of those plastic cat dangle toys, heretofore referred to as Cat Crack Sticks, they barely lasted a week or two with Sooty and Marbles. I had to solve the problem somehow because my cats we’re very sad without this sort of toy around but they were really too short-lived for me to justify buying a new one whenever we needed it.
Therefore when my dad scoured me some great slightly used hand tools from a yard sale I knew I had the power to make a cat to with lasting-power. I also have been walking around my new job and looking at all the awesome stuff we sell and couldn’t wait to use some in a project, and we had just what I needed. The dowel is 1/2 in. thick and the construction string is said to hold up to 44 pounds. Neither of those is going to snap if my cat latches on bodily to the boa. (Please tell me everyone’s cat goes that psychotic for these things? ) Anyway, this cat crack stick I created has been holding up well this past week, so I think I’ve succeeded. Find out how to make your own below!
- Feather Boa
- Construction Line(found at your local hardware store!)
- Lighter (to secure construction line)
- Wooden Craft Dowel
- Acrylic Paint
- Bracelet End Clasp
- Jewelry Pliers
- Ribbon (optional, also not pictured)
- Drill/Dremel tool with drill attatchment
- Jig Saw/Dremel tool with saw attatchment
Step 1: Decide the length of your baton/pole section and mark where you want to cut. Use your clamps to keep the dowel in place while you cut.
My cut was a little jagged because I’m almost(meaning it’s on it’s last tooth) in need of a new blade but forgot to pick one up. (Even though I work in a hardware store and remembered to pick up the drill bits and construction line *sigh* you can’t be perfect I suppose.)
Back to the tutorial!
Step 2: Drill a hole through the baton/pole, near the top, as pictured below. Sand your baton down after you’ve drilled.
Step 3: Paint your baton! You could get really creative with this part and make a pattern or maybe your pet’s name on it. I chose to just go with this turquoise blue. I gave it two coats and then waited for it to dry.
Step 4: Cut a length of boa and several bits of ribbon. I made my boa about 1 foot, and made my ribbon pieces vary. This means that one boa can be used for multiple facinators. Since the bracelet findings come in a 6 pack, these supplies can last you and your kitties a long time!
Step 5: Apply a dot of E6000 to your bracelet closing and put down a bit of ribbon or two and then, then apply another dot of glue and apply your boa piece, then apply more glue, then the last few pieces of ribbon. Now leave this alone to dry, using something to keep everything pressed down and together, I used this kabob stick. It’s going to be a while, this is one of the longest parts. Maybe make some more and let them all dry at once?
When everything is dry, apply another dot of glue on top of the ribbon and then use your pliers to fold down the sides of the metal bracelet closure.
Step 6: Gather your baton, your facinator and cut a length of construction string 10-12 inches long.
Thread one end of the string through the hole you drilled in the dowel and tie a knot with the end that comes out the other side.
BEING SUPER DUPER CAREFUL, lightly run the flame over the knot to melt the string and lock the knot in. Repeat with the facinator.
And there you have it! A really simple half hour project that can mean hours of fun for you and your feline!
When your facinator has lost most of its feathers or finally been torn to shreds, just cut the string where its attached to the baton near the top and discard, then repeat steps 4-6. I estimate that 1 facinator will last 2-3 weeks of good, every other day play. Then it’ll probably be time for a replacement.
Marbles gets really into the crack stick, she starts growling and swats a lot. When marbles growls, you know she’s in hardcore kitty mode. I did my best to photograph it. She moves way too quickly.
Sooty most of the time sits back content to let Marble do all the hard work, until you really annoy him with it (swing it around his head like a fly) and then he’s hypnotized and tries with all his might to destroy the facinator. He eventually wrests it away, (hes a strong kitty, that string holds up!) and tries to drag “his kill” away. Then I have to go retrieve it and he’ll be satisfied, so we move on to playing with the kitten, or Marbles again.
Ok last one I swear, it’s too cute not to share!
I love crafting for the people I love and my pets are just furry, much preferred kinds of people. I also have a tutorial for a Cat/ Dog Basket Bed that was the guest post that led to me being a contributor here at Dream A Little Bigger! If you want to see another Marble approved post, check out my Geo Glittered Throw Pillow.
Til Next Time!