Wild Space Kitties!

Space-Kitties-titleshot-alphamom

Calling all Wild Space Kitties! Here’s a costume that is purrrrrfect for you.

(This was supposed to appear as a DIY costume craft on alphamom.com but it turns out that Space Kitty is a beer company and not appropriate for a parenting site but guess what? I can totally post it here! Beer, schemer. Let’s make Wild Space Kitties a thing!)

First off a warning: This costume is ridiculously easy and ridiculously difficult at the same time. If you’ve never sewed with faux fur then this would be a great project to start with because guess what? You CAN do it! It was my first time sewing fur and I did it! Go me! But it’s also ridiculously messy, so check your OCD at the door.

Space-Kitty-supplies-alphamom

Here is what you’ll need:

  • 2 yards or more of faux fur
  • thread (color doesn’t matter because it does not show up in this wild mess of fur)
  • a sewing machine
  • fabric scissors
  • a wire coat hanger
  • a large dowel or broom handle to wrap your coat hanger wire around (This was Payam’s brilliant idea.)
  • ribbon or long skinny piece of t-shirt fabric (leftover fabric from this craft works great)

Space-Kitty-cutting-alphamom

Lay out your fabric fur-side down. You can create a pattern from a paper bag or some paper or you can free-hand it. Your pieces need to roughly look like the drawing below: 2 head pieces, two paws (one piece each) and two tail pieces.

Print

Faux fur is such a mess when you cut it. The loose fur floats all over the place. Just accept that it’s going to make a mess and make the best of it. Think of it as magical dust floating all around you making everything pretty and fuzzy. Sew somewhere that is easy to vacuum later and keep some packing tape on hand. You can even tape down where you are going to cut first and control some of the mess that way. (If you have any OCD tendencies I would definitely recommend using tape to control the fuzz.)

Okay, now that we have that out of the way let’s just get in there and make a mess. It’s worth it.

Space-Kitty-pieces-for-sewing-alphamom

Cut your pieces. Then lay them out how you are going to sew them.

Fold the paw pieces in half. Lay the front of the cat head (fur facing in) on top of the back of the cat head (fur to fur). Lay your tail pieces together, fur to fur. Pin. (Or don’t. I lived on the wild side and didn’t pin. My fur slightly crept askew as I sewed but I found it didn’t really matter that much. I just trimmed the uneven parts at the end and it didn’t show anyway. Fur is very forgiving.)

Now get ready to sew! Set machine to a zig zag stitch and get in there!

Space-Kitty-sewing-1-alphamom

Sew the outer edges of the cat head together like you were creating a cat-head pillow while leaving the inside head-hole un-finished. Fur doesn’t need a finishing seam. Win!

Sew your tail together, leaving the butt-end open. This is where you will insert your wire later.

Sew around one side of your paws, leaving the bottom open to insert hands into.

After you are done sewing, cut your threads and trim off any excess fur that might be sticking out. This will make it easier to turn inside-out later. Snip your rounded corners with a small snip, being careful not to snip over your stitches of course.

Then turn everything inside out.

Space-Kitty-inside-out-alphamom

Remove any lose fur. Shake it out. Do a little dance. Fur everywhere!

Next is a really important step that was thought up by Payam and I failed to photograph it because he did it in the garage for me while I was sewing. Take your coat hanger hanger and un-bend it. (Pliers will help.) Then carefully wrap it around a thick dowel or broom handle to create a long spring-like coil. This is the magical wire that will make your space kitty tail pliable and yet stiff and not pokey and sharp like normal wire would be. Thank you Payam!

Space-Kitty-tail-attachment-alphamom

After you’ve turned your tail inside out, insert this coil into your tail. Then close up the end and sew your ribbon or t-shirt string over the closed ending. This tie will make it so you can tie your tail around your waist like so. Wear a big hoodie over top (Because hoodies are a very important Space Kitty wardrobe piece. I will make this a thing, I swear.) and you’ll never know it was just tied on and not actually attached.

Then put on your hat and fur mittens, draw on a kitty nose and whiskers with white eye-liner pencil and you are now a space kitty!  Light-up blinky space boots optional.

Space-Kitty-glamour-shot-alphamom

Happy Trick-or-Treating!

Ball. Ball. Ball.

spreckles-5

You know what this whole “blogging daily” experience has taught me? That I don’t need to blog every day. I know. Sad but true. Hear me out.

Before I tried this, I was making myself feel so guilty for not blogging everyday. I thought that if I just put the effort in I could have a booming website.  I would beat myself up daily for being such a failure and not even trying. Meanwhile, days and days would go by and this site would get dustier and dustier. BUT! While it was getting dustier I was focusing on other things, like working-out every day or writing books or creating really unique photoshoots for my clients or walking my damn dogs all over the planet. (I do a lot of dog walking…)

I decided to shut that inner nagging voice up with this blogging-everyday exercise and guess what I figured out?!! I suck at blogging every day! I actually don’t have that much that is interesting to say! Who knew?!! (Probably everyone.)

Maybe it’s okay not to blog every day. I mean, how much can I ramble and be entertaining? Not that much! Sure, I was entertaining back in the day when there weren’t a million bloggers creating amazing content but now there are and here I am just blowing raspberries into the wind. I have my loyal buddies (Hello guys! I love you!) who love every single sentence I ever write but you gotta admit I wasn’t really showing up with my A-game. Sigh.

So I might call it off. I know you understand. I think I’m just going to keep doing what I was doing and showing up here when I actually have something interesting to share. But maybe at least try to show up once a week. Even a week round-up post could be fun. Like a list or something.

All of this is very navel-gazing and meta. So let’s move on to more important things:

spreckles-4

SPRECKLES! Having three dogs has pushed us over the limit of sane dog owners. It’s a circus around here. Have you ever tried petting three jealous dogs at the same time? You have to use two hands and a foot. And if you don’t, one dog will paw at you with her extremely long dog toenails and give you bruises on your legs. The other will bark so loudly it will wake up the whole house and the other will jump up on your lap, lick your nose OR worse, growl at the other dogs, which can be a little scary.

I know it’s my own fault for spoiling them rotten with petting sessions but I can’t not spoil them! My heart doesn’t work the way a disciplinarian’s should. (Have you seen my kid?) I am the pied piper of the dogs. They follow me everywhere because they know I’m a sucker with a big, fat softie-dog-loving heart. I can be counted on to give them snacks, play with them and have three-limbed petting sessions at all hours of the day.

I try to play ball with Spreckles, because she is the crazy ball-loving type, but the other dogs do not play ball and insist on interrupting our games rudely. It’s mayhem.

spreckles-3

How could you ignore that face?

spreckles-2

Here, Mom, I haz ball. You can haz ball.

spreckles-1

See ball. It there. Stop all this drinking coffee and focus on ball. I has razor focus on ball.

Ball. Ball. Ball.