Before the birth of Ava I had already concluded that my soon to be 5-year-old daughter should have a proper birthday party — no excuses. For months and months she’d been talking about a ‘pony’ birthday (probably secretly hoping we would get her a real horse), which is not an easy theme for a party, especially if you don’t want to end up with loads of plastic trash!! So, 9 days after giving birth, my husband (still on paternity leave — this is Europe!) and my mother-in-law and I spent a whole evening making 7 stick horses for my daughter’s party. I got some rough instructions from This Vintage Chica, went to the market to get broomsticks, stuffing, and decoration, and to HEMA for some groovy socks, biggest size. We worked hard and stayed up late, but the result was a HUGE success! Part of the party was about personalising the horses with letters and glitters, and part was a horse racetrack, and of course all the girls got to take their own stick horse home. The kids absolutely loved their horses and are still playing with them today.
If you feel like making your own stick horse — it’s pretty easy, you don’t need a sewing machine at all. An (old) broomstick and an (old) sock will do. Here’s the how-to:
First, cut the broomstick to the appropriate length for your child’s height, and use a hand saw to make a ridge in the sticks, about 30 cm / 1 foot from the top.
Fill the socks with stuffing.
Use buttons for the eyes, and wool for the manes.
We used 2 colours felt for the ears — we cut it in 1/4 circle shapes…
… and wrinkled it to get ear shapes.
Attach the ears with needle and thread — messy is ok.
Attach the horse heads to the sticks (stick should go all the way up to the sock’s heel), and add more padding around the stick. Tightly secure the sock around the groove in the wood using a piece of twine.
We used leather strips, bells and curtain cords to make bridles.
At the party, we let the children personalise their horses.
And built a track in our garden for a proper horse race…
Have fun!!! And please do share pictures of your horses, if you get around to make them!!