TWENTY of them!
Yes, you read that right, this one’s going to be about making stick horses IN MASS. You can obviously make just one, but we did 20 for Aaliyah’s 3rd birthday. I’ve got some shortcuts that will make this project not super easy but totally fun. It took me about 3 weeks to make them but that’s 3 weeks of working on them just a couple hours (at most a day) so with a little planning you can totally do this.
Materials (For 1 horse – multiply for however many you’re going to make)
- Broom stick or PVC pipe (we don’t use traditional broom here so I used PVC pipes instead)
- Brown spray paint (if you’re using PVC pipes)
- Thick Yarn, Jute Rope, or whatever you want to use for the hair
- Felt, in 2 colors
- Googly craft eyes
- Artificial Craft Leather
- Plastic or metal rings
- Liquid Glue
- Hot Glue Gun
Some of the materials may not make sense but as you see the pictures, it’ll be come obvious.
The Pipes (If you’re using broom sticks, skip this step)
1. Line up the PVC pipes against a wall. You’re going to want to cover the wall and the floor with tarp or an old sheet. It’s best to do this indoors otherwise the wind will blow the paint everywhere and this will take forever. You’ll paint them on one side, let them dry. Then rotate them and paint the other side. If you’re lucky it’ll be good enough otherwise you’ll need to do spray some more on whatever didn’t get covered.
2. Cut 1 in x 12 in strip of felt, one for each horse. This is going to make the base of the mane. You can adjust the length if you want.
3. Cut LOTS of the yarn or jute, and I mean lots. I liked longer hair for the mane so I cut each piece about 18 in.
4. Glue your horse hair to the felt strip as shown above. It’s a good idea to use liquid glue.
Get ready to burn yourself, cause you’ll be using a hot glue gun and I can almost guarantee you’ll get a few scars to remember this project by.
5. Cut 2 quarter circles for the each ear. One about 4 in in length and one 3.5 in.
6. Glue both pieces together as shown above.
7. Then fold the ear in half and glue. Next fold the edges back and glue both sides. You’ll want to hold it together with a clothes pin or anything heavy until it dries – easier on your fingers that way too.
Assembling the Horse
7. Stuff the socks, only to the heel though.
8. Put the stick into the heel of the sock and finish the stuffing.
9. Put liquid glue right at the opening of the sock, grab it tight and tie it off with the yarn or jute.
10. The finishing touches are all about putting on the eyes, ears, mane and optionally the reins. You’ll want to do it in the order below cause it makes placing things easier.
- Using the hot glue gun, put on the mane
- Again, with the hot glue gun, put on both the ears. Make them as symmetrical as possible.
- Using liquid glue, put the eyes on.
11. For the reins, you’ll kind of need to do it as you go because each horse gets stuffed a little differently, which means the sizes will be different. But you’ll basically need 3 strips of leather: 2 small ones for the nose and 1 long one for around the neck. Each strip should be about 3/4 in wide.
- First staple one small one around ring 1, then staple the same strip on ring 2
- Staple the second small strip on ring 2
- Hold the strips and ring around the nose of the horse and staple the second strip back onto ring 1, make sure its nice and snug
- Staple the long strip on ring 1, take it around the neck and staple it onto ring 2
That’s it! It seems complicated, but once you make one or two you realize how easy it is. And it’s all about the doing each section at a time – do all the manes, then do all the ears, then assemble them all, etc. You’ll get a rhythm going. Make sure to get your kiddo involved, Aaliyah loved “gluing” the hairs to the main and holding the jute as I assembled the horses. Made it all way easier to keep her involved.
Let me know if you make any!