Today is catch up day from last week when our computer and I weren't on speaking working terms. So I'll be putting up Wednesday's, Thursday's, Friday's, Saturday's, and Today's post all throughout the day. Whew! Gotta get this Christmas train back on track! So put on some Noël music, check out Sunday's post with a beautiful gift tag download, and keep your eyes peeled!
I love getting all dressed up to celebrate the holidays. Every year I dream up a new outfit, fresh for the season at hand (although, I don't always get to follow through with the outfit plan). So, I figured our Albert needed to look just as spiffy for the upcoming celebrations!
I found a piece of green linen that would do perfectly and whipped up a super classy little bow tie for our redhead. Or, as we would say in France, a noeud papillon (butterfly knot! sweet, right?).
Lookin' suave, Albert. Lookin' suave.
First, let me say no Alberts were hurt in the making of this bow tie (he actually doesn't mind his harness so the bow tie wasn't a huge leap) and I don't plan on making him wear it forever. It's really just for fun.
Second, I made you a tutorial! Don't be put off by the number of photos, this project is supper simple and fast. I just like making directions super clear.
Wanna turn your cat into James Bond? (Good luck) Here's what you'll need:
- Your chosen fabric, I used linen but cotton, silk, or thin velvet would be pretty sweet too. Just don't go for a super thick textile.
- Felt (any color. It will be hidden inside)
- Thread to match your chosen fabric
- Two sets of small plastic snaps. You'll want something that closes but isn't hard to quickly unsnap. That way, if your cat freaks, it will be easy to quickly take off and you won't be in a corner sobbing (among other reasons).
To start, cut out two rectangles of your chosen fabric 2 1/4" by 3". Cut another single rectangle of 1" by 2" for the band and finally a 1 1/2" by 2 1/2" rectangle of your felt.
1. Sew your two large rectangles completely together with a 1/4" seam all the way around. Snip off the excess thread and the corners to reduce bulk when you turn it inside out.
2. Now, be brave! Find the center of the rectangle by folding and creasing the fabric in half the short way and then pinching it in half the long way. Where the two lines intersect is the center. Still pinching the fabric the long way, and being sure that you only have the top layer of fabric in your grasp, make a little snip in the fabric. Release your hold and continue this cut with your scissors like in the photo above.
Through this slit, turn the rectangle inside out being sure to get crisp corners using a chopstick of the tip of your scissors. Once you have it completely turned out, give the rectangle a quick press then insert the felt piece which will act as a stiffener to help the bow stay looking perfectly tailored.
Using a simple whip stitch, sew the slit closed. It will be hidden in the back and under the band so don't worry about how this looks.
3. Get your bow band ready by ironing it in half the long way, then in half again on one side (bringing the right edge to the middle fold). Bring the left edge to line up with the right side fold and give it a good press. Now, flip the folded right side out so it sits on top and this way your raw edge is in the center of the band.
4. To fold your bow perfectly, start by folding it in half with the center seam i hidden in the middle of the fold. Next bring the top edge back forward to line up with that center fold and do the same with the bottom edge. Sew the fold in place by passing you needle through the center, as below, several times.
Then, wrap your ironed band around the center and whip stitch it on on the back. Again, this will be hidden by the neckband so no need for it to look perfect, just be solid.
Now for the neckband.
1. Cut an 11 1/2" by 1 1/2" rectangle of your chosen fabric. I measured both Albert's neck and his adjusted harness to find he needed a 10" band to be comfortable. So, whatever your cat's neck measurement is, add 1 1/2" to that for overlap and seam allowance to get the right length.
Iron this in half the long way and then seam it 1/4" in down the long side.Turn it inside out (I used a safety pin and a string at one end) then tuck the raw ends in 1/4" and whip stitch them closed.
For the snaps, each 'set' has a male and a female piece. Stitch one half of each of these 'sets' to the ends of the band: one at the end of the upper side of the band, the other on the bottom of the opposite end of the band (in the photo above, the band has a single twist in that is cropped out of the photo). Sew the second halves of the 'sets' 1 1/4" below the snaps you just sewed on.
3. All you have left is to put the band and the bow together! So, find the middle of the band by snapping the snaps together and folding the collar in half. Line this mark up with the back center of the bow and stitch the band to the bow along about 3/4" in the center. Bam! Bow tie.
That, my friends, is a merry cat.
If you make a cat bow tie from my tutorial, send me a photo and a link if you post about it and I'll add it to this page. I want to see your creations!