My latest project is a bit of an homage to Dr. Seuss – it’s based on a pop-up ‘Cat in the Hat’ costume I made for my eldest son’s ‘dress up as a literary character’ day at school.
As you’ll have noticed the hat includes a pop-up lid that reveals some hidden cats – I started off with a manually opened version, but later pimped it up so it could be operated by pulling a ring at the back of the hat.
I’ve provided instructions for making both the simple version, and the more complex ‘remote release spring-loaded’ version that, because it unfolds as it opens, allows for a much bigger picture of the cats. For the latter, I’ve had to condense the instructions somewhat – so perhaps that version is for those wanting a bit more of an engineering challenge! You can also print out the artwork for the bow and the cats, they were drawn freehand by me, based on Dr. Seuss’s original drawings, I’m not taking any credit for them!
It’s been written by Maggy Woodley – the prolific crafter behind the massively successful Red Ted Art blog. Maggy has been a great help to me over the last couple of years, so it’s a real privilege to give her lovely new book a big shout-out!
Please go check it out, it’s full of truly cute craft projects that make use of materials you’ll find lying around your house – except for the googly eyes, you’ll need to buy them (but they are worth it)!
Phew! This craft project has been a bit of a monster (excuse the pun) – I finished making the shark 3 weeks ago, but it has taken me ages to complete the hand drawn tutorial. Anyway, it’s all done now, and I hope you like it.
The Shark is made from Fimo – a polymer modelling clay manufactured by Staedtler. This is the first time I have used a polymer clay, it’s great fun and easy to use, and of course the best thing is you can harden it by baking it in the oven. You can also use wire to support your model, which is really useful, and made it possible to create the shark shown above.
My original idea was to create a toast rack where the shark looks like it is eating the toast. That didn’t really work out (I couldn’t make it big enough) however it works really well with cheese straws, bread sticks and even pencils. Oh… and for a bit of gory fun I also made a half-eaten Fimo fish to hook on to its teeth.
How to make one
Please note: You will obviously still need to ‘bake’ your model to harden it. Also, there are several makes of polymer clay, I used Fimo, which is readily available in the UK, and I think, available globally.
I had huge ambition. I was going to create something intricate and inspiring from my son’s Play-doh. Think of the Sony Bravia Play-doh bunnies TV ad, but bigger and better.
I threw myself into the task… green, yellow, purple, black, blue … there were pots, lids, and little balls of play-doh everywhere. I was going great guns. 3 hours later my masterpiece was complete. A splash, splat and spill!