No matter what you celebrate this time of year, chances are you're going to need to buy a gift for someone, and that's where our "Bitch in a Box" series comes in! Between now and the end of the month, we (Bitch HQ staff and interns) will be taking turns writing themed gift guides designed to please even the scroogiest feminists on your shopping list. Below, my guide to making and gifting the ever-popular sock monkey.
Sock monkeys are cute, fun and great for givers with a busted budget because you can easily make them yourself! Don't make the mistake of equating sock monkey with the omnipresent Paul Frank brand. Indeed, that designer and his company might have single-handedly re-popularized this particular stuffed animal but the best thing about these creatures is they have a DIY history. Yes, this week's Bitch in a Box is a round up of three websites that give different quality how-to guides to making your own sock monkey gifts! Find a couple buttons from your drawer and if you have two socks, a needle and thread and some spare cotton, you are good to go.
Guide 1from craftbits.com is a clear tutorial with pictures of virtually every step in making your own simian friend. The guide states that you need a sewing machine which may save on time, but is definitely not necessary. (Besides, you want to hold it over the receiver's head that you made it by hand don't you?) It also requests a ruler, which unless you're working with a sock that has stripes or another design that requires exact match-up you can pass on that too. (I didn't use either for my sock monkey, and he turned out okay—he's even literate!) This guide has some good tips on stuffing the creature.
Guide 2 from sockmonkey.net features a drawn visual guide to what part of the sock corresponds to which part of the monkey. This is a helpful reference to orient yourself with what goes where before you start cutting things up!
And for those who learn best from reading instructions start to finish without pictures in the way Guide 3 from howtomakestuff has a detailed description. Don't be put off by the intimidating phrase, "One small error in measurement will wreck the puppet's appearance." It won't!
And for those of you who want to get real crafty with it, sockmonkeyfun has a guide to knitted hat and scarf accessories. If you know of an awesome guide that I didn't mention, please let us know in the comments!