DIY Mix ‘Em Up Animal Spools

DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools

Growing up with the stories of Richard Scary, I’ve always had a place in my heart for animals dressed like people. And I’m not talking about costumes for pets. No, I love animals who have their own little town and who go to work and perhaps enjoy reading books. I also like being a little silly, and I’ll bet your kids like that, too. So I’ve put those two things together.

These Mix ‘Em Up Animals can change their clothes with the twist of a spool, and they just might end up part deer, part squirrel, and part bear!

What You Need

DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools
  • Printable Mix ‘Em Up Animal Spool Templates (download here)
  • Card Stock or Paper
  • 2 1/2-inch Tall Wooden Spools
  • Scissors
  • Tape


DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools

Step 1
Print the template out and cut the strips apart.

DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools

Step 2
Tape the left edge of a paper strip to one of the spools (the left side is a little wider so there’s room for overlap).

DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools

Step 3
Wrap the strip around the spool, then secure the overlap with another piece of tape. Repeat for all of the strips and spools.

DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools

Step 4
Start stacking the spools and mixing up your own little town full of animal friends.

DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools

You might find that kids will want more than just a few stacks of spools to play with so they can create more combinations. And if the spools are sliding a bit too much, just slide an unsharpened pencil down through the centers to hold them together more.

Spools come in lots of different sizes, and smaller animals would be fun too. Just shrink the template to fit!

DIY Mix 'Em Up Animal Spools

Happy crafting!

  • Guest

    Hello!! This is SO CUTE!! Where can I get to Printable template?

  • Melissa Kojima

    Oh how fun! I really love them. They look easy to make.

  • wildolive

    Thanks! The link is in the list of materials.

  • Lori

    Any suggestions for where to get the wooden spools?

  • wildolive

    These came from Hobby Lobby, but you should be able to find them in the wood craft section at any craft store.

  • Rachel Faucett

    HI Lori,

    You can find them at Michaels Stores as well! I love this project too!


  • Rachel Faucett

    Hi Melissa,

    Right??? How are you? I log ethos project with all of my crafty heart!


  • Rachel Faucett

    Hi There,

    This would be perfect for old Thread spools! Great idea and yeah….you could make gigantic totems with all of the spools!


  • Melissa Kojima


    It’s nice hearing from you. I’m doing well. Yes, it’s a pleasure discovering them on your blog!


  • Eliana

    Good night! you can buy them online? I am from Spain .. Thank you for sharing, it’s a lovely idea to do with the kids ..

  • Gaelle

    Thank for the idea ! Il love it !

  • Misako Mimoko Eva

    ooh! i’m in love, Mollie!! what a cool and simple idea <3

  • Rachel Faucett

    Halllloooo Eva,

    Oh we love you sooooo! You’re our absolute fav textile artist. We are lucky ducks to have you!

    XOXO and Forever Always,

    Jonathan + Rachel

  • MyFamilyBuilders

    I loved the idea! I am designing a toy with the same principle. Loved it!!

  • Rachel Faucett

    Cool! Please share when you’re finished with the toy :)

  • Caroline Farley

    I love this! Can I use glue instead of tape?

  • Nancy Rector

    Those are just darling. Gonna share them on reddit and elsewhere! Thanks!

  • MyFamilyBuilders

    I will! Thanks for the interest ! :)

  • Madison Beaulieu

    Hi Marge! You can find them at Michael’s stores!

    Happy crafting!

  • Marge Wheeler

    I went to our local michaels and they had 2 1/2 inch ones but they were very skinny. is there any way you could give me a measurement for how thick they are around? thanks.

  • Madison Beaulieu

    Thank you, Nancy!! Appreciate the share!

  • wildolive

    Glue should work. Just use a small amount where the ends overlap so that you don’t get much rippling.

  • wildolive

    The ones I used came from Hobby Lobby. In measuring these again, they are closer to 2 inches tall, and the diameter is about 1-1/2 inches.

  • Miss Poipois

    Great idea ! I’m gonna follow your blog, there are many nice things ! thank you from South of France :)