Old, old post.. But other people might be looking for the info. I have more recently found the gummed paper tape at Riot Art and Craft Stores in Perth.. there's one in Garden City, Booragoon, and one in Carousel, Cannington, and probably others too! It was relatively cheap, so wouldn't cost much to make a customizable dress form.
I love the fabric in most of those carriers! I also like the alteration of a traditional mei tai to use buckles, because I think it then adds appeal for people who have only been exposed to more mainstream baby carriers... And could be their gate way to trying traditional mei tais, wraps, etc! Anything that promotes baby wearing is great in my books!
Hehe I think the kids would find it pretty entertaining if the cat was green for a day.. or blue.. or pink! If its okay with their mother, maybe buy them a pack of coloured fabric markers (that are kept hidden other times) and letting them draw on some of their own plain old tshirts? They'd love being able to wear clothes they've decorated themselves, and if you use old clothes, it wouldn't be too expensive, and the markers could be used another time. In Australia, I got a pack of the markers for about $10, so other places would be even cheaper I think!
And just remember that having a grandma around who loves them and cares about them while they're going through difficult things, that will mean the world to them!
I havent had the same issue so dont know anything definate that will work in her situation, so hopefully someone else can help with that, but I thought of a few things that you might be able to contemplate. Can she have tooth floss? I ask because the part that cuts the tooth floss can be used to cut thread/yarn, people use them to go on planes when scissors aren't allowed. It could be worth asking anyway. In regards to sculpture type stuff I thought of clays or play doughs... they can be worked (at least therapuetically) by hand, and she can create and recreate, even though she doesn't have access to a kiln or something for permanant sculpture. It would still fill time. Painting? I figure she might not be allowed paint brushes incase they are adapted for weapons, but finger painting could be something she might be able to learn some real skill at... or foam pieces used as a brush, or anything else you can think of. Drawing, if she is allowed pencils.. if not pencils, maybe shes allowed crayons? Maybe if she had some books about drawing as well, if its not something shes previously been interested in. Beading? Beads and string.. although she may have the cutting problem with that unless allowed tooth floss or something. What about those beads that you arrange in shapes/designs on the boards and then iron? Whilst she can't iron them, as a kid I had HOURS of amusement just arranging them in designs and then starting again. If anything else comes to mind ill pop back. Hope you can find something!
If you have the supplies.. simple things like colouring in might work well. You could print out the outline of a pumpkin and let them decorate their own pumpkins. Whilst not a craft project, play dough is cheap to make, pleasant to play with (i swear it has therapeutic values!) and it can provide hours of entertainment with the most simple of tools (pop sticks, rolling pin, cookie cutters, plus any purpose made play dough toys you might have). They could create things with the play dough, and then recreate as well!