This post is by contributor Sarah!
Why is it that no matter how fascinating or expensive a toy is, children are often just as (if not more) interested in the box it came in? Like empty boxes, there are many things that my baby gravitates to, and often they aren’t the ones I expect.
One of those unexpected things for us is fabric tags. She loves to seek out the tags on her fabric toys and play with them instead of the toy itself! Toy makers have capitalized on this by adding ribbon tags to many of their designs.
I decided to make our own tag toy based on her fascination with tags. I keep the ribbons that come on gifts and packaging to reuse. Creating this little toy was a great way to use up this stash!
To make a simple tag toy you’ll need:
- A sewing needle
- Variety of ribbon
I tried to choose ribbons that had a variety of textures. In addition to creating something I thought my little one would find interesting, I also wanted to make this a sensory experience for her. Rather than just use the satin ribbons like those on her manufactured toys, I included some cotton woven ribbon and grosgrain. I also tried to choose some different sizes and colors to add interest.
First, I cut the ribbons into more manageable lengths. Then, after threading a needle, I folded one ribbon into the size loops I desired. I stitched through the bottom of the loops and then back again to make sure they were secure. I repeated with a second ribbon.
I found that it was easier to secure the loops of each individual ribbon with a stitch or two first, then add it to the bunch. I continued the process with different colors and textures of ribbon until I was satisfied with its fullness. The number of different ribbons is totally up to you, experiment and see what your baby likes the best!
The tag toy was a big hit. She enjoys running her fingers along the different types of ribbon, pulling them out one at a time and squishing it all together. It is great fine motor practice as she pinches the thin ribbons. All in all, this quick recycled project turned out to be fantastic for quiet play.
About the Author:
Sarah Benton Feitlinger, M.Ed. is a former Preschool-6th science teacher, mom, blogger and science curriculum developer. She is passionate about educating children, and loves anything and everything science! Check out her blog, Share it! Science for fun science activities, lessons, science news, learning product reviews and other resources for kids, teachers, homeschoolers and parents.