First I go to Soft Star Shoes and look through the leather that is left over from making shoes. I find the ones that are big enough for a circle and sometimes I get littler ones for the faces. I also get pieces of fur scraps to use for the tails.
Then a grown-up uses the leather clicker machine to cut out circles because the machine is dangerous for kids.
Next we choose one leather and one suede circle for each pancake. The one I'm showing has a red leather back and yellowish suede face. Then we put catnip and fluff in the middle. The fluff is from the fur - little bits come off when it is cut for shoe linings.
leather circle with catnip and fluff and glue around the edge
Then we glue the leather and suede circles together with the filling inside, and then we pick a furry tail and glue it on too. We hold it together with clips until the glue dries.
filled with tail attached, drying
After the glue dries, a grown-up punches the holes around the edges of the leather, but not the edges of the tail.
punching the holes - it's too hard for kids
We pick some embroidery floss by what looks good and then we sew the edges of the pancake together. Most of the floss came from my great-grandma, Grammy - my grandma found it in her things after she died and gave it to me. Also Leah from Soft Star Shoes bought me some more at a thrift store.
sewing the edges together
Next comes my favorite part, making the faces! When I get the scraps from Soft Star Shoes, they also give me little leather shapes like moons, stars, hearts. Plus, DeAnn from Soft Star Shoes made me some special little pieces shaped like ovals with stars in the middle, for eyes.
picking the pieces to make the face
I glue the pieces onto the blank pancake and that turns it into a faced pancake.
making the tag
The very last step is making the tag and tying it onto the pancake. None of the names are alike. You pick a name after the Playful Pancake is finished, so the name fits it.
cutie is finished!
Even though it is a lot of work, I choose to do it because I like to help people. It is a lot easier for us here to make Playful Pancakes than it is for a child in Sudan to do most anything. And when we make these we have fun, but the kids in Sudan aren't having a fun time at all, especially the ones who walk all day just to get water.