Craftiness, Thrifty

Recycled Hobby Horse

11 April, 2013

Kids are awesome eh, with their incredible imaginations. Whenever I bend down to pick something up Ramona doesn’t see her mummy bending down to pick something up-  she sees a horse. Struck by my horsey ways, she will immediately clamber onto my back and yell “GIDDY UP, CLIP CLOP!” impatiently.

It basically means I can’t pick things up any more. *gazes around at messy house in ambivalent resignation*

Ramona loves horses. As she grows her favourite animal species gets bigger too. A year ago her favourite animal was the Duck, I suspect in a year it will be the Blue Whale.

I have been thinking for a while of things I can do to help ease the arrival of the new baby. I am not sure we will do the “Baby bought a pressie” thing, but I have been burrowing sticker books and puzzles away as I find them at car boot sales in order to keep her happily occupied in those first few days.

I have been meaning to craft up a hobby horse for ages and felt this would be the perfect time to get on with it, so I can bust it out for Ramona’s enjoyment while I languish on the sofa in a constant milk-machine mode with the littlest one. Maybe if she has a little horse to ride my own back won’t be so tempting. Maybe I could even start tidying again. Pahahaha.
DIY Hobby Horse from recycled bits and bobs

I couldn’t believe how easy it was to do. I completely cheated and did the whole thing with my glue gun, I am sure I will have to come back and sew bits on eventually but it meant I got the initial prototype done within half an hour. Such a delightfully quick craft.

You need:

A leg/ sleeve/ sock
Stuffing (I used a manky old cushion)
Lace or wool
A stick 
A bit of felt (I used a jumper that identically went in a hot wash)Recycled Hobby Horse Tutorial

To make this truly thrifty just find things you have around the house.  I didn’t have a sock I was prepared to sacrifice (see this lovely sock version from the magnificent Red Ted Art) so cut the leg from a pair of Ramonas old leggings, where the elastic had gone at the top. Anything could do – a sleeve from an old jumper would be ideal too. I didn’t want to buy another broom so instead used a rough bit of wood and then covered it by winding lace around it. I didn’t have red buttons so used counters from a half-lost game of Tiddlywinks. I didn’t have wool so curled lace on to the head to make the horse’s mane. Recycled Hobby Horse Craft

How to:

Turn legging inside out and sew the ankle end
Stuff with stuffing
Stick the stick inside
Bend a crease in the horses neck
Secure open end onto stick with string or glue
Wind ribbon around the point that the leggins meet the stick- keep going to bottom of the stick if wood is a bit rough
Glue on hair- either lots of wool or a bit of fabric like mine
Cut ears out of felt and pinch the bottom of it together to make them look more realistic
Stitch (*ahem* glue) ears on
Add eyes
Add ribbon to act as rein (this also keeps the head bent)

I love how every horse is going to be different. There are no measurements, just roll with it. Stick the ears and eyes on where you want, use bits and bobs from the house. Whatever you do it is going to look like some kind of awesome animal and your toddler is going to be stoked!

I am so keen to give this hobby horse to Ramona that I am willing this womb-baby to make an appearance – that is odd, eh?! Come on womb-baby!

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  • Molly - Mother's Always Right 11 April, 2013 at 7:56 am

    Absolutely LOVE this idea. You may have given me inspiration for a third birthday present coming up at the end of June!

    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:05 pm

      They will LOVE it!

  • Timpop 11 April, 2013 at 8:13 am

    Now, I’ve heard some excuses why people have messy houses. But this one takes the cake.

    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:06 pm

      *eats all the cake*

  • MsXpat 11 April, 2013 at 10:00 am

    Looks great, lots of character :0)

    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:06 pm

      Yes, he does eh? All the ones I have seen look so unique and cheeky

  • Mrs C 11 April, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    That’s fantastic!

    Have to say that the “baby brought you a present” thing worked really well for us. LMC didn’t want to know him at all at first, but once she got a gift from him it just melted all away and we’ve had no problems at all since. I know you kind of don’t want to have the association with material possessions necessarily, but just saying that it did just work for us very well.

    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:06 pm

      Ooooh, okay. That is interesting to hear… thank you, will most certainly consider it!

  • Mammasaurus 11 April, 2013 at 1:11 pm


    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:07 pm

      Thanks 😀

  • Amanda 11 April, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Brilliant idea, looks great!

    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:07 pm

      Cheers ears, lots of lovely ones across the blogosphere worth checking out too 🙂

  • Damson Lane 11 April, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    Giddy Up! This is just what we need here for my two year old who is running about and horse mad x

    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:08 pm

      What is it with horse mad two year olds, Ramona just loooves them!

  • Purplemum 11 April, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    I love this. I’m not crafty usually but I might be inspired to make this one.

    • Lucy 11 April, 2013 at 8:08 pm

      Do you know what as well? It is SO much fun to make, you will really enjoy it 🙂

  • Jo 15 April, 2013 at 4:34 am

    Oooh, that is a very handsome horse. Sort of Victorian seaside look about him.
    I made a very similar one for my then-toddlers about 13 years ago. It is still living in the 8yo’s bedroom, and the branch that I rescued from the park to construct him on is now polished smooth by the hands and backsides of many children. Now I come to think of it, I have also had to confiscate it many times for being used as a weapon…

    I also second the comment above about ‘present from the baby’. We found it was a lovely way to make the older children feel special, because it can be quite a stressful time for them. Their present was usually a doll or teddy, who could be loved, changed, fed etc as the real baby was.

    • Lucy 16 April, 2013 at 6:42 am

      Why thank you Jo. Yes, I’m imagining the stick being wielded a little violently on occasion perhaps hehe.
      Thank you for the advice: ) xx

  • Sian 16 April, 2013 at 7:45 am

    Brilliant : )
    love the previous post too, there’s nothing quite like a hug to cheer you up!

    • Lucy 17 April, 2013 at 11:24 am

      Thanks Sian *sends a hug over the webby waves*

  • Keedo Dublin 17 April, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    Wow this looks great. You’ve inspired me to have a go!

  • Thrift Shopper for Peace 17 April, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    GREAT horse. i also had a fascination with horses as a child – it lasted for years. trouble was, i lived in an apartment (flat) for my entire childhood, so a horse on the roof was not an option. sigh. i would have loved this hobby horse!

  • Vicky 19 April, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    That is incredible, I love it!

  • Lucy 20 April, 2013 at 8:11 am

    Thank you! x x

  • Stacy 25 August, 2013 at 8:33 am

    I adore your little hobby horse, it’s a great way to use that odd sock whose lost it’s twin and it’s a perfect Christmas or birthday present. You’d be paying quite a lot for one of these from the toy store. Stacy x

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