For our two weeks of summer school, the theme is "volunteerism". So we set up activities and lessons around that theme. One of the trips we will be taking the students on is to a local animal shelter to donate toys, blankets, etc. to the cats and dogs there. So we had to come up with some ideas of items the students could make to donate and cat toys seemed like a no-brainer.
They are very easy to pull together quickly and a hit with cats! I used my two cats, Sushi and Stormy, as quality control and they both very much approved. Sushi likes to rub all over catnip toys, usually gets the zoomies and then passes out. Stormy basically slobbers all over catnip toys. Kinda gross. But he gets a good bit of exercise as he throws the toy around and then chases after it. They usually end up in his water bowl.
This Instructable is for catnip filled fortune cookie toes. You can make them with a sewing machine or glue, but I decided my students should learn to hand-sew.
circle pattern (I traced a roll of tape onto heavy paper)
Needle & thread
Step 1: Prep
Make a pattern by tracing something circular onto heavy paper. I used a 1/2 full roll of masking tape, the outside of it and the inside, to get two different size cookies. Cut the pattern out.
Trace the circle pattern onto felt or fabric. If you are using fabric, make sure to trace on the wrong side of the fabric. Cut out the circle. Also cut out a small rectangular piece to be the fortune. I did about 1/4" wide and 1" long.
Step 2: Cookie Shaping
Fold the cookie in half and sew a 1/2-3/4" line along the folded edge. Tie off.
Next, holding the circle with the folded edge vertical, turn the cookie horizontal with the open edges facing out. I use my thumb and index fingers to fold the edges back (so that the sewed folded edge is inside the cookie and not visible).
You want to hold the thread as tight as you can so the stitches don't show. This is a problem some of my students had as it was their first time hand sewing, as we continue making these toys the stitches will become less and less obvious.
Step 3: Sew!
Starting at one edge, sew up the cookie about 1/2 way around. I put the needle inside the cookie so the tail of the thread wouldn't poke out and then I did straight up and down stitches, small and close together. I also used a contrasting thread. You could use embroidery thread for this.
At one of the ends, stick your fortune tag inside the cookie and sew it together with the cookie sides. It doesn't matter where you put it.
Step 4: Stuffing!
The stuffing I started with adding a little batting and then catnip and then more batting. My thinking was the batting would keep the catnip from leaking out. I also added a little more batting in as I finished sewing up the cookie. I put more batting towards the ends of the cookie and not so much in the middle so the cookie would keep its shape.
You could also do 100% catnip, but I don't have enough available for that.
Step 5: Fortune
After you've stuffed the cookie, finish sewing around the edge. Also, before closing up, add a small tag--it'll look like the fortune from the cookie. I just stick it anywhere and sew it along with the edges. Tie off and you're done!
Step 6: Fabric Cookies
If you decide to do fabric over felt, I've found that the easiest thing to do (without using a sewing machine) is use embroidery thread and sew all along the edges to cover any potential fraying fabrics. At the end I put a little bell or something extra fun for the cats.
The last picture was after Stormy spent 30 minutes playing with the fortune cookie and was about to pass out.
Participated in the