Sunday, June 9, 2013

Mommy-Made Gifts, a Fun Fishing Game

Back when I first started window shopping for Lucy's birthday gifts I realized a lot of the stuff I wanted to get for her was for her age specifically and would be ether frustrating if Michael tried to join in (Playmobil sets) or was stuff that was above his current capabilities (Games and Puzzles). I like the kids to give each other a gift every year for their birthday that they can do together and as I started thinking about this.... ding ding ding! A magnetic fishing game! Perfect! Now to find one I liked (haha - sometimes a hard task).

Much to my chagrin, most of the sets online were plastic - I don't mind plastic, they just looked "plastic." Does that make sense? The one set I found that I liked a lot was this one, made by Janod - but I really didn't want to spend $20... My next stop was Pinterest (maybe should have been my first stop?) and I found this adorable idea:
(I've tried to follow the link but the original post doesn't exist anymore :-/ ) 
The moment I saw this pin, I knew I was going to make Lucy a fishing game! And as I started gathering supplies - I had 90% of the needed supplies already on hand. 

Usually I'd just give you a link to the tutorial I followed and give you a few things I learned along the way - but because there isn't a tutorial, I thought I'd share a little one of my own! :) Let me know if you have any questions! 

1. Gather your supplies.
 You'll need 
  • Felt
  • Coordinating fabric scraps
  • A large blue piece of fabric (this will be your water - totally optional).
  • Pinking Sheers
  • Scissors
  • Fish Shape Template (I freehanded mine and cut it out of regular paper) and Fish Face Template (using your Fish body template as a guide, make a face template)
  • Coordinating Buttons
  • Sewing Machine
  • Coordinating thread (optional but fun)
  • Twine or ribbon
  • Magnets
  • Embroidery Thread
  • Hot Glue Gun and Glue
  • A sturdy but slender dowel
2. Using your Fish Body Template, trace and cut out the pieces of your fishies from both the felt and fabric. When cutting the felt, use straight scissors and when cutting the fabric, use pinking sheers and cut inside your guide (that way they will be a bit smaller than the felt ones). Using the Fish Face template, cut a piece out of the felt*.

*I learned the hard way - my first round of fish faces were too short and didn't end up covering the magnet's I purchased. So take magnet size into consideration when you cut out your faces. You can also double up the felt on the face to make it more sturdy - I ended up doing this with round 2 faces because my felt is pretty cheep and I didn't want the magnet to make it "pull" after it had been used for awhile. 

3. Match up your coordinating buttons with your fabric fishes - sit back and admire your work thus far.

4. Using your sewing machine, straight stitch around the fish. This secures your fabric fish to the coordinating felt fish.

5. Glue your Magnet onto the "face area" of your fish. I used E6000. This step is optional, but I didn't want the magnet "Floating" around in the face of the fish, I worried it would result in misshapen fish. Haha, maybe I was over thinking it, but I did it. :)

 Here is the packaging from the magnets I purchased. I got two packs from Hobby Lobby.

6. Sew your button eyes onto the fish faces. (These were Round 1 faces :-/ I had to do this step twice... )

7. I used Embroidery Thread and stitched my faces onto the bodies - I had hopped to do this step with my sewing machine, but my magnets were too large and my machine couldn't stitch around them. Oh well, that's what you get for purchasing economical but strong magnets (seriously you can spend a lot of money on magnets!).

8. Make "Worms" - be creative! I sandwiched my twine string in between two pieces of felt with "worms" sewn on. My "worms" are crosses between hooks and bugs... I like them, but they might not make the kids think "bait" upon first look. Haha
I zig-zagged my string to a piece of felt, before sewing the fabric on so the stitching would be "hidden." After prepping both sides, I glued a magnet between the two sides and stiched around the edging with embroidery thread. 

 Testing testing 1 2 3! It works! :) 
9. Make your Fishing Rods, I had my dowel into two equal pieces (Brad did this step for me) and then I glued the twine onto them.
 My Handy-Dandy-Crafting-Tray! Everyone needs one. No Joke. 

 I eyeballed how long I wanted the drop to be from Rod to Worm and glued my twine straight back about 3 inches onto the dowel. 

 Then I rolled the twine around, attaching it with hot glue. 

 I finished the end by putting hot glue on the tip, laying my raw end onto it and covering as much as I could with my "worm string" make sense? I hope the above picture is worth a thousand words. Haha :)

 Finished fishing rods! 

10. Optional, hem your "water" fabric. I didn't have navy thread, so I got fancy with a decorative stitch and a different color blue. 
This is old light-blocking curtain fabric from our Chicago Condo - I've used it to line Michael's current curtains and had the perfect amount left for this project! :) Yeah for using what you've got!
11. Sit back and admire your hard work!

(Optional) Try it out before the kids see! :)

I hope that was clear! Again, please ask questions if I need to clarify or completely left something out!

I had everything except the Magnets and Twine (I had JUST run out!) - so I was able to make this fun game for $7 

I can't wait for Lucy to get her "fishing game" from Michael on Friday - 5 more days.... :) 

1 comment:

Anne @ Planting Sequoias said...

Adorable! Now I want a set for myself!