Tail keychains have become very popular over recent years, not just as a way to keep your keys handy, but also as a costume or fashion accessory. Any type of tanned animal tail can be used. I normally make mine from fox, coyote, raccoon, and mink. The tails in the above photo are from farm-raised foxes, though the tail I have used in my demonstration here is from a coyote.
Step 1: Getting Started
The materials you will need for this project are:
-1 tanned animal tail of your choice
- Metal key ring
- strip of leather (about 6")
- scissors or other item sharp enough to pierce leather
Step 2: Adding the Leather Loop
Turn your tail upside-down so the leather underside is facing you. Part the hairs to fully expose the leather and use your scissors to punch a small hole, about 1/2" down from the top of the tail.
Then begin working your lace through the hole. The scissors or other pointed object may be used to aid in this process.
Step 3: Add the Key Ring
After you have pushed the lace all the way through the hole, slide the keyring on and tie the lace into a sturdy knot at the back of the tail. This completes the keyring attachment process.
Step 4: Finish and Wear!
Now that you've attached the keyring to your tail, brush the hairs thoroughly to remove any mats or tangles that may have occurred during handling. And you're finished! Large tails like this coyote can be worn as a costume or fashion-statement piece, and smaller ones like the white mink tail in the 3rd photo, may be used to keep your keys or decorate handbags, purses, or other such accessories.
Many people love collecting tails, so I keep all the ones I cut off pelts during my other projects, add keychains to them and resell at various local events. It's a great way to make use of every part of the animal!