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Seasonal Style

Cats on the Prowl

Use your crafting magic to transform fence pickets into a family of black cats that can easily adorn your mantel or be propped on your porch amid pumpkins, straw bales and other seasonal fare. For a colorful touch, consider tying a Halloween-themed ribbon bow around the neck of some or all of the cats.

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• Five dog-eared fence pickets
• 1/2" trim
• Black and gray craft paint
• Black permanent marker
• 15-gauge wire
• Glass pebbles or marbles
• Metal tacks or studs
• Screws
• Jigsaw
• Paintbrushes
• Drill
• File
• Craft glue
• Wire cutter
• Staple gun and staples

Trim dog-eared pickets with a jigsaw to make five cats: one 20" tall, two 18" tall and two 16" tall. Cut two 32" long crossbars from 1/2" trim. Carefully trim each picket to shape ears and a neck. Paint all the wood pieces black and then dry brush with gray paint. Drill small holes for eyes and enlarge the holes with a file. Push glass pebbles into the holes, securing with glue. Drill small holes for wire whiskers. Cut a length of 15-gauge wire for each whisker, shape, and then push the end through a hole. On the back, bend the wire flat, trim excess, and staple to hold. Push in metal tacks or studs for the mouth and nose. To assemble, lay the short and tall cats on top of the crossbars and place the medium cats behind. Align the pickets 3/4" apart, with the bottoms even. Pre-drill holes and then drive in screws to attach each picket to the crossbars.

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Give each cat a unique expression by using different materials for the facial features.

This project originally appeared in the 2019 issue of Country Sampler Autumn Decorating. Issues are still available.

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