Wednesday, 7 December 2016

DIY Pet Pillow Boxes + Party Popper "Christmas Crackers"


My dogs LOVE tearing into boxes, paper, cardboard rolls... they're avid recyclers, always happy to help break things down for the bin! :)  Today's post shares how to prettify your everyday recyclables into pawesome holiday/party wrapping and pressie packaging for pets (or anyone you please!).  It is shared in collaboration with our partner blog at Creativity Unmasked, where you can discover how the easy homemade custom bone, paw, and word stamps were created with instructions for creating your own. Yay!


To make your own custom wrapping papers, simply stamp away with your homemade custom stamps and/or favorite prep-fab stamps and some non-toxic ink (or paint). You can use salvaged or bought papers, and this DIY works great with normal paper, butchers/packing  paper, or kraft paper.  I have used newspaper (our local paper is free and you can't opt out) for wrapping pet pressies in the past and it works great, they have lots of fun, and it goes into the recycling afterwards; however, it can be a little messy due with ink transfer  Easy enough to clean up , but I've been hording packaging papers for Christmas this year instead, and I keep a spare roll of both kraft and butchers paper in my wrapping supplies.

To make your own pillow boxes, you'll just need to save a few cardboard tubes.  Easy and free! Toilet paper rolls are  great for small boxes, while paper towels, kitchen wraps, and other larger roll items are handy for bigger sizes. If you don't use anything that would yield a large roll but really want to make some big tubes, ask a friend or your workplace if they can save you a few.  Tips: To fold the ends but keep the body round, I like to lightly squeeze the working end of the tube to create opposing points, then fold down the sides to close the tube.  If you prefer a flat traditional pillow shape, flatten the whole tube to point/crease the sides instead of just squeezing the working end. You can reopen/close with care.

Your pets won't care, but often these tubes have residue or marks on them from whatever was once attached.  If you want to pretty these up, you can add a wrapper.  Since these are for our dogs, we don't want to use any ribbons, string, plastic tapes or other riskier items for traditional wrapping.  You could wrap in tissue paper to make a cracker (like our easy pet party poppers) or stick on a little wrapper around the tube with a touch of non-toxic glue like we did for these cuties.  They are very very quick to make...which is great because they aren't meant to last long!  Use with care and recycle the shredded remains. :)


The paw and bone stamped wrappers were created, as shown above, using small strips of stamped butchers paper just slightly longer than the circumference of the tube (overlap at the seam) and approximately the width of the tube less folded ends. The tube pinch points (see Tips above for how to close) are opposite the wrapper seam for looks, giving a nice clear top/sides with seam mid bottom. 


The WOOF and MEOW wrappers were created, as shown above, using coloured paper and stamps to create wrappers to cover the whole tube.  The paper is cut just slightly longer than the circumference of the tube (overlap at the seam) and approximately the width of the tube. Mine are a touch shy as the roll was ever so slightly bigger than my paper, so you can see a bit of exposed carboard on my end folds. For best looks, if using a single word like this, you will want to stamp so that it sits opposite the closure seam of your wrap. The tube pinch points (see Tips above for how to close) are opposite the wrapper seam for looks, giving a nice clear top/sides with seam mid bottom. 



My paper-ripping pets would enjoy opening the rolls as-is, but these are pawesome for tucking a little treat or two, a few ratting bickies inside, or perhaps even a toy for a small pet like a cat.  The finished tubes hold closed without gluing/taping the ends if you aren't using heavy fillers. Rigidity varies with different cardboard rolls. 

Remember: Playtime is always safer (and more fun!) together. Know what is/isn't suitable for your specific pet, take care, and supervise. Any wrapping you may use for pets, wither store bought or homemade, is strictly for ripping open, not for eating, and may not be suitable for some pets.

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