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Topic: With tutorial! Retired Computer Mice  (Read 21229 times)
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Hi from Belgium!

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« on: September 21, 2010 04:17:03 AM »

I designed and made these out of used wireless computer mice:

I hope you like them.
If anyone is interested, I could make some sort of tutorial.
Ow, and please feel free to make your own additions to a worldwide family of retired computer mice.
Comments and questions are most welcome!
Kind regards,

added on September 24:
This is how I made them!
step 1
I cleaned the mouse and (if necessary) removed the batteries and scroll ball.
step 2
I glued the mouse to a piece of 3mm grey felt. I made sure there was enough felt at the back of the mouse to cut on a tail.
I let the glue dry for several hours, then cut the felt around the mouse an cut on a tail (be careful not to cut it off!).
Of course you can use a different material for the bottom of the mouse. You could also add a tail later on, from a different material.
step 3
I used two half-round black shank buttons for the eyes. I cut off the shanks and glued them to (what was to become) the mouse's face.
You could use alternatives like black beads, or flat black buttons, or felt. If you use felt, you might want to use some white paint for highlights (so it looks like the eyes are reflecting light).
step 4
I crocheted a snout, using a 3mm crochet hook and some leftover yarn. I made a chain of 18 stitches, then SC in spirals, decreasing 3 stitches in each row. When I had 3 stitches left, I weaved in the tail, but did not (!) cut it off. Instead I used it to sew a little black bead to the end of the snout.
You could use a bead of a different colour, for instance pink. In fact, you could even make the entire snout out of pink yarn.
Or, if you don't crochet, you could make the snout out of a different material (like felt, or leather, or paper-mache).
I stuffed the snout with a little bit of the same yarn, then glued it to the mouse's face. I did not like how the edge looked after the glue dried and then decided to crochet another chain of 20 stitches and glued it around the base of the snout (this is of course optional).
I used some thin black nylon thread that I had lying around for whiskers. Black nylon hairs of a brush will do fine too (or any kind of black wire). I used three and stuck them through the snout, right behind the little bead. To secure them in place, I used a few drops of clear nailpolish.
step 5
I made ears out of black leather (a leather upholstery sample). I first made a paper template: I drew a 3cm circle (with the help of a template). Then I drew a vertical line from the middle of the circle, 3cm down. From there a horizontal line (using the vertical line as the middle point) of 2cm. Then I connected the sides of the circle with the outer points of the horizontal line.
I know, it sounds complicated, but you will get a drawing that has a perfect half circle at the top and then a cone getting slimmer going down.
I was not done yet. I wanted the ears to stand up straight. To achieve that, I cut out a slim triangle at the base of the template, right in the middle, pointing upwards.
Then I traced the paper template twice on the back of my piece of leather, cut it out, and cut out the triangle.
Next I glued the ears on the mouse's head, closing the two sides of the triangle against eachother.
step 6
Now your mouse is ready to get dressed!
You could use all kinds of materials to dress your mouse. Gluing on pieces of paper, felt or fabric is probably the easiest way.
But (of course...) I went for the hardest way and made real clothes! That is: they look like real clothes on top of the mouse, but under the mouse there is nothing but the layer of felt from the beginning.
step 7
Pants! I used jeans for two of my mice and a dark brown stretchy trousers fabric for the girly one. I did not draw up a pattern, since the mice all have different shapes and sizes. Instead I just winged them (I think I have redone all three of them at least once, so you will need some patience and percevierence).
First I cut a piece of fabric that was larger then I actually needed (you can cut the extras off, but you cannot cut any fabric on...). I then layed the mouse on its side on a piece of paper and tried to draw the curve of its back. I then folded the fabric in half (right side in) and handstitched the curve (that I traced from the paper mold). Then I tried it on (and usually had to make adjustments). If the shape is right, cut off most of the seam, so it won't make a big ridge over the back of the mouse.
For the jeans I topstitched the seam with orange embroidery thread.
Then I attached the jeans to the butt of the mouse, with double-sided tape. I did it bit by bit, so there was room to stretch and correct.
When it was attached perfectly, I cut off the excess fabric at the bottom. To prefend the jeans from fraying, I glued the bottom edge to the mouse.
I did not worry about the top of the jeans, since they would be covered by the top clothes.
step 8
The top!
I made three different tops:
- A knitted red sweater.
- A green cotton polkadotted blouse.
- A grey hoodie.
Again: no patterns drawn, I just winged them.
First you want to take the measurements and perhaps draw them on a piece of paper.
The advantages of using knitting or crocheting is that it will stretch. The disadvantage is that you cannot cut of any excess if they turn out too big.
I used the same technique of taping (with double-sided tape) the tops on bit by bit. I even used double-sided tape to hem the blouse and the top part of the hoodie. And to attach the hood to the sweater.
To get neat edges where the tops touch the sides of the mouse, I sewed them onto the felt (at the underside of the mouse) and, if necessary, used clear nail polish to make sure the fabric wouldn't fray.
step 9
I decided my girly mouse needed some earrings to go with her blouse. Therefore I punched her leather ears and used silverplated jumprings and glass beads.

Well, that was about it.
I hope it all made sense to you, since English is not my first language.
If you have any more questions, please feel free to ask!
I hope you will have as much fun as I had, making your retired computer mice.
Kind regards,

PS (7 Dec. 2015): I made a new addition to the family: Santa Mouse.
You can find him here: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=442058.msg5356424#msg5356424
« Last Edit: December 07, 2015 12:23:54 PM by BeaG » THIS ROCKS   Logged

« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2010 04:24:13 AM »

Love them! A tute would be lovely if you have the time.

I'm looking for Simplicity 6340 (the 1970's sailor dress). PM me if you've got a copy to swop or sell! Cheesy
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« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2010 04:32:46 AM »

How cute!

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« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2010 07:21:07 AM »

Thank you, MagicalGirl and Just as I am!

« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2010 07:57:51 AM »

Adorable - and what a great idea! Smiley

I've got a new website! www.thisbirdsabsurd.com and I'm still on Etsy www.thisbirdsabsurd.etsy.com
And find me on Facebook!  Thisbirdsabsurd
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« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2010 10:41:26 AM »

Thank you!

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... and that's why I don't like cricket

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« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2010 08:20:06 AM »

Oh they are just adorable!!  This could come in very handy for xmas pressies, I have several geeky friends that would defo love this and we have tons of old mice kicking around, squuuueeeeee Wink

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Hi from Belgium!

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« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2010 11:25:55 AM »

Thank you!
I'm looking forward to seeing more retired computer mice.
I'm sure you can all come up with your own design, but as soon as I find the time, I will add a description of how I made mine.

« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2010 12:20:10 PM »

Oh, fun idea Cheesy

I love tiny hoodie. Infact, I love all the details.
They are so cute! Cheesy

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Hi from Belgium!

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« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2010 10:31:49 PM »

Thank you, Gregs!

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