Plastic or rubber animals (hollow)
Ribbon or cord
I’ve become so addicted to making new things from cheap toy animals that I’ve now purchased set after set of plastic beasts. Horses, dogs, kittens, giraffes, elephants, and other animals can be turned into all sorts of new things for your home. Make a napkin holder, a photo stand, a pincushion, and much more, just by using a couple of plastic animals. They can also be cut in half to make drawer pulls, cabinet knobs, jewelry holders, and other nice things. So, it’s no surprise that I am here to suggest yet another plastic animal project: curtain tie-backs.
Some toy animals are better than others when it comes to making curtain tie-backs. A plastic or a rubber animal will work but you’ll find a hollow plastic one the easiest to make a hole in. The hole is necessary to hang a ribbon that will tie back the curtain. The size of the animal is up to you but shouldn’t be too large or too tiny. An animal that is standing on all fours is a great selection since you’ll be able to make a hole on the animal’s back. You could also make a hole in the top of his head.
A hot nail can help you make a hole quickly. Hold or wear a potholder, hold a pair of pliers, and hold the nail with the pliers. The nail should be very tiny – just large enough to make an initial hole. Heat the nail on a burner and push it through the back or the head of the toy animal. Put in an eye hook so that you can thread the tie-back through it. If the hardware is loose or wiggles, remove it, put a bit of hot glue over the hole, and screw it back in again.
Some notes about the curtain tie-back arrangement: Use a small animal for a small window and a larger animal for a longer or larger window. Also, the eye hook that you install in the animal can be small if you intend to just put a cord through it, but can be much larger if you want to put a wide tie-back or a wide piece of ribbon through it. However, if the eye hook is too large it will look quite awkward on the animal. In some cases, you can tie the curtain back, thread a cord through the eye hook, and simply tie the cord around the original tie-back.
Make lamb or teddy bear tie-backs for a nursery, dinosaur tie-backs for a boy’s room, cows or chickens for a kitchen, and tigers or giraffes for a living room. Use the animals as they are or paint them. You can even paint them with metallic paint and they look especially awesome. When you turn toy animals into curtain tie-back accents you can create anything from a farm theme to a prehistoric look; the possibilities are endless.