Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Free Knitting Pattern Dog Chew-No-More Leg Cover

My dog, Gibson, has been fighting bladder cancer for the past few years. Although there is no cure for canine bladder cancer, he has beat the odds and has lived much longer than expected. He has good days and bad days, but is still very happy.

Gibson has tried several different treatments. For awhile, he was getting IV chemotherapy. Just like in humans, there are risks that come with chemotherapy. He had a reaction to an injection that he received in his upper front leg. He kept chewing and licking the spot, which made the irritation worse. 

I looked around at the store for something to cover it, but could not find anything that would stay on his leg and he would leave alone.

I created this to cover the wound and prevent him from further irritating the sore. He was still able to pull it down with his teeth, so I attached a piece of elastic to wrap around it and hold it up. It worked perfectly! Gibson left it alone long enough to heal.

Materials Needed:
  • Worsted Weight Yarn - If this is going to be on a sore, natural fibers will be less irritating than synthetic fibers. 
  • Set of four size 7 double-pointed knitting needles, or size needed to obtain gauge.
Optional Materials: 
  • Roll of 1 inch wide elastic band.
  • Needle and thread.
  • Fasteners - I used the fasteners from an old set of sheet straps.

With size 7 dpns, cast on 20 stitches. 
Join in the round, and work in K1, P1 ribbing for 5 rounds. 
Evenly increase 4 stitches on the next round and continue in the K1, P1 ribbing until work from beginning measures about 1 ¾ inches.

Elbow Opening: Cast off 12 stitches loosely in ribbing. Rib to the end of the round. Cast on 12 stitches and rejoin in round. Work 5 rounds in K1, P1 ribbing. Knit all stitches in round until work from the elbow opening measures about 4 ¾ inches (or the length needed for your dog’s leg). Decrease 4 stitches evenly on the next round. Work 8 rounds in k1, P1 ribbing. Cast off in ribbing. Weave in ends.

Elastic band: Cut a piece of 1 inch wide elastic long enough to wrap around the dog. Make sure it is not too loose so the dog can pull the cover down, but you don’t want it too tight to make it uncomfortable. My dog is a fat lab, and the elastic I used was about 27 ½ inches. You can either sew it directly to the leg cover or attach some kind of fastener to be able to remove the strap.

Notes: I made this for a large lab’s leg. You may have to adjust the number of stitches and/or change the yarn or needle size to obtain a size that fits your dog.
You can download the pdf of this pattern here or from the Ravelry website. While you are on the Ravelry website, be sure to check out some of my other projects on my project page!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

DIY Mod Podge Snowman Luminary

I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. We are supposed to get our first big snow storm of the season tonight. Up to 16 inches of snow has been predicted, so I decided to make a snowman. Luckily, this snowman does not require you to go out in the cold!

You probably have everything needed to make this snowman luminary right at your home, so you can make this for free! This is also a great activity for kids of any age.

Needed Materials:
Jar (any size)
School Glue and water or Mod Podge
Paint Brush or Sponge
Tissue Paper
Miscellaneous Craft Supplies

Step 1: Prepare your supplies.

Take your tissue paper and cut or tear it into small pieces. The size and shape do no need to be uniform. If you are making this with a small child, I suggest using bigger pieces so it does not take as long to make.

Mix equal amounts of glue and water to make a Mod Podge mixture. You could also use store bought Mod Podge, but mixing glue and water works just as well. I like mine to be a little more watery, so I add more water than glue to the mixture, but that is just my preference.

Step 2: Paint on the glue/water. Just do a small section at a time.

Step 3: Start randomly placing the tissue paper on the portion of the jar with the mixture on it.

Step 4: Continue to paint small sections with the mixture and putting on the tissue paper. This does not need to be neat. Just place the tissue paper any place in any direction.

Step 5: Once that layer has dried a little bit, add another layer by painting the glue/water mix over the layer you just made and then adding more tissue paper. Continue this process adding more layers of tissue paper.

Step 6: Once you have as many layers as you want, paint the entire jar one last time with the glue/water mix to make sure all the edges of the tissue paper are securely fastened.

Step 7: Allow your jar to dry.

Step 8: Decorate your jar. I used felt to make the snowman face and buttons. I added a sock to the top for a hat. You can use whatever you want to decorate your snowman. 

Some ideas:
Black and orange colored tissue paper for the face
Small buttons for the buttons
Pom poms and a pipe cleaner for ear muffs
Mitten for a hat
Pipe cleaners for arms
Braid some yarn together to make a scarf 

These are cute just like this, but you could also make these into luminaries. Simply place an LED tea light or a small strand of Christmas lights inside the jar.

Not only are these Snowman Luminaries cute decorations, they make good night lights for any of town guests. Also, if your guests need to get up during the night, they can switch on the light inside the jar and use it as a flash light. These would make perfect gifts for kids to make for grandparents or teachers.