Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Jake the Dog Plastic Bag Holder

Hello! Do you feel like practical things are made so much better with just a touch of impracticality? Like, I have a rice spoon. Boring. I have a rice spoon that is a pastel pink rabbit and its ears are the spoon scoop - excellent!! I decided recently that I really needed a plastic bag holder - and that it should totally look like Jake the Dog.

My Jake has a 65cm long torso and, including his arms and legs, is about 118cm long in total. He is only 14cm wide though; I can't decide if I like the skinny look best (because it kind of looks like he really has stretched) or if I should have made him wider.

To make Jake, I started off by cutting two wide strips of yellow fabric (15cm wide and 70cm long), six skinny strips (5cm wide and 35cm long), and two really long skinny pieces (5cm wide and 72cm long).

Then I used a plate to round off both ends of the wide strips of fabric; this will be Jake's head and bottom.

In one of the wide strips, I cut two holes with a 10cm diameter. I didn't want to make a traditional plastic bag holder where the bags go in and out the top and bottom because I thought it would make Jake look a bit weird. This solution, to be honest, also looks a bit weird! So I guess it's up to you which weird you like best ~___^

I sewed two skinny strips in half and threaded them with about 27cm of elastic.

I folded up the raw ends and sewed them closed, which prevents the elastic from moving around and makes the next step slightly easier.

I pinned the elasticated strips in place around the holes and sewed the raw edges together. 

The result are these strange scrunchie looking openings. I think I could have made the elasticated strips wider, but these openings work well enough as is.

The next step was to make Jake's facial features. To make the ears I drew a square 5cm by 7cm and then curved off one of the short sides. I cut four of them, sewed them into pairs, and lightly stuffed them. I also made a tail, 4cm wide at the base and 1cm at the tip and 7cm long, which I sewed and stuffed the same way as the ears.

 Jake's eyes have two pieces each; the black circles are 3cm diameter and the white circles are 2.5cm. His nose is 1.5cm in diameter and his mouth is the same size, but cut in half to make a semi-circle. His eyes, nose, and mouth are all felt. To make the puffy thing that his nose sits on, I drew a circle eight cm in diameter and then turned it into a shallow horse-shoe shape. I cut out two pieces, seamed the raw edges leaving a small gap, turned it right way round, and stuffed it with polyfill. I sewed all of the facial pieces on by hand.

For the legs I used the four leftover skinny pieces; I just rounded off the ends, sewed them together, and turned them right way round to stuff them. I stuffed them pretty firmly, but left a large gap at the top to make them easier to sew to Jake's body.

The arms are made from the really long skinny pieces of fabric. There is no need to round the edges because both ends are sewn into Jake's torso, but otherwise they are made the same way. I didn't take a photo of the next step (d'oh!) but all that is left to do is to pin the ears, arms, legs, and tail onto the torso and sew the torso together; you don't need to leave a gap because you can use the holes for the plastic bags as turning holes! Then you can turn Jake the right way around and - ta da!

Jake the Dog Plastic Bag Holder!

He managed to fit in our entire plastic bag hoard, and he really brightens up the laundry room, so I'm very glad I've made him!

- Lisa xx