DIY Fleece Swing Instructions X-small to XX Large

Allee

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2013
16,854
Media
2
62
Texas
Parrots
U2-Poppy(Poppy lives with her new mommy, Misty now) CAG-Jack, YNA, Bingo, Budgie-Piper, Cockatiel-Sweet Pea Quakers-Harry, Sammy, Wilson ***Zeke (quaker) Twinkle (budgie) forever in our hearts




Start with the perch, cut the perch with the size of your bird and the available space for the swing in mind. Natural, hard wood is best, if you use dowels, buy hard wood rather than pine, soft pine will split when you attempt to drill. I used crepe myrtle because I have a huge supply and it's the perfect wood for perches and toys. The budgie perch is birch. If you cut your own perches, you can drill through the center of a piece of wood, lengthwise, then cut slices to use for decorations. DO NOT drill your hand, I've done it, it's very painful. I scrub my wood with a bristle brush and hot water, rinse well and bake at 200 degrees fahrenheit for an hour.

Poppy's perch is wrapped with sisal cord. This isn't necessary but I wanted a pedi perch that will be easy on her feet. The sisal can be removed at a future date for a different perch texture.

For the sisal perch, you will need two holes drilled at each end of the perch, half inch apart for small, 3/4 inch for the XX-Large.

For the sides of the perch, you will need a cheap hoola hoop, the smallest diameter you can find, no glitter or metallic plastic (the method used for glitter and metallic colors is dangerous if chewed), color doesn't matter it will be covered. Cut the hoop pieces for the size swing you want. Be sure both pieces are the same length. They are curved so mark your pieces before you cut, don't let the optical illusion throw off your measurements. Drill a hole through both ends of the hoop pieces.



To put the swing together, I used untreated sisal cord but you can use SS chain, cotton rope, or colored sisal. For the largest swing I used two pieces of sisal, folded to form a loop, I used an SS ring threaded onto both pieces of cord before feeding the cord into the hoop pieces. Cut your sisal long enough to attach the perch with enough left over to tie a knot and have a few extra inches to attach toys or you can unravel the sisal and tie knots at the ends.



There is a little more than 1 1/3 yards of fleece in Poppy's swing. Lay out your fleece and cut it into strips. Make sure you cut the strips so they stretch. I don't measure, I cut a practice strip and tie it onto the hoop and adjust until I have a strip about the right size. You'll want very sharp scissors if you're making a big swing. You can use pinking sheers but your hands will hate you for it.



Tie one fleece strip through each of the four holes in the hoop pieces. This will anchor the other strips and cover the ends of the hoop pieces. Tie the knots as tight as possible, spiral the knots as you tie them and push them up close, if you line the knots up straight, all the fluff will be on one side of the swing. You can trim off the excess fleece to shape the swing. Unravel the sisal cord and attach toys or tie knots in the ends of each strand.



The toys attached to Poppy's swings are rattles found in the baby section of any department store. They come with a cloth bracelet that closes with velcro. Poppy won't chew into them but if your bird is a chewer, use toys that you know are safe for your bird.

Poppy is still grounded from the computer, but she wanted to say hi and let you know that she has slept in her swing for two nights now and she hasn't been incinerated and her feet have not melted. Her old swing is still her first love but she's thinking she may keep the new one.

 
Last edited:

RavensGryf

Supporting Member
Jan 19, 2014
14,213
57
College Station, Texas
Parrots
Red Bellied Parrot /
Ruppell's Parrot /
Bronze Winged Pionus /
English Budgie
Bourke's
Awesome Allee, thanks for posting the instructions to one of your beautiful original creations! Maybe one day I will have time to do this, I think my guys might like these!
 

JerseyWendy

New member
Jul 20, 2012
20,995
8
BRAVO, Allee!! :worship2: :emoticonc

LOVE how the swings came out, and your instructions are AWESOME, and easy to follow.

You're the best!! :D
 

Kiwibird

Well-known member
Jul 12, 2012
9,538
34
Parrots
1 BFA- Kiwi. Hatch circa 98', forever home with us Dec. 08'
Those are great Allee! Poppy looks very pleased with hers. Did you make any for your smaller flock members? I wonder if I could work out a modified version that would be stationary and use a square piece of wood? Poor old Barney can barely sit on a stationary perch, let alone a swing, but my mom said he took up a recent interest in shredding his rope perches and I wonder if he's like some fleece to chew instead? It would be really convenient for the poor arthritic little thing to have chewing material surround him:)
 
OP
Allee

Allee

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2013
16,854
Media
2
62
Texas
Parrots
U2-Poppy(Poppy lives with her new mommy, Misty now) CAG-Jack, YNA, Bingo, Budgie-Piper, Cockatiel-Sweet Pea Quakers-Harry, Sammy, Wilson ***Zeke (quaker) Twinkle (budgie) forever in our hearts
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #7
Thanks, everyone!

Those are great Allee! Poppy looks very pleased with hers. Did you make any for your smaller flock members? I wonder if I could work out a modified version that would be stationary and use a square piece of wood? Poor old Barney can barely sit on a stationary perch, let alone a swing, but my mom said he took up a recent interest in shredding his rope perches and I wonder if he's like some fleece to chew instead? It would be really convenient for the poor arthritic little thing to have chewing material surround him:)

April, I don't know if you can tell the size difference from the photos but the swings in the second pic are for left to right, quaker, budgie, cockatiel. You can make a swing to fit any size bird.

Poor Barney, I know you could make something for the senior citizen. Does he have a stationary platform? If so, maybe just tie the fleece strips to cotton ropes and hang them within reach of Barney's platform. You could also use a square piece of wood with ropes attached to the four corners and meeting at the top. It would still be a swing but with the square platform, it would probably be pretty stable. You could hang it above a perch so Barney would have easy access.
 

Kiwibird

Well-known member
Jul 12, 2012
9,538
34
Parrots
1 BFA- Kiwi. Hatch circa 98', forever home with us Dec. 08'
Thanks, everyone!

Those are great Allee! Poppy looks very pleased with hers. Did you make any for your smaller flock members? I wonder if I could work out a modified version that would be stationary and use a square piece of wood? Poor old Barney can barely sit on a stationary perch, let alone a swing, but my mom said he took up a recent interest in shredding his rope perches and I wonder if he's like some fleece to chew instead? It would be really convenient for the poor arthritic little thing to have chewing material surround him:)

April, I don't know if you can tell the size difference from the photos but the swings in the second pic are for left to right, quaker, budgie, cockatiel. You can make a swing to fit any size bird.

Poor Barney, I know you could make something for the senior citizen. Does he have a stationary platform? If so, maybe just tie the fleece strips to cotton ropes and hang them within reach of Barney's platform. You could also use a square piece of wood with ropes attached to the four corners and meeting at the top. It would still be a swing but with the square platform, it would probably be pretty stable. You could hang it above a perch so Barney would have easy access.

I think the fleece made them all look pretty close in size;) I don't know the setup of his cage at this point, just that my mom had to replace his rope perch because he was chewing it up. Barney has never taken much interested in toys, as the amazons are pretty free roaming and have each other, but I think his increasing mobility issues and inability to keep up with Lucy is making him bored:( This is a great concept to go off of though, and once we get this move over and settled, I'm definitely going to try to get something made up for the old guy:green1:
 

Terry57

Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
Nov 6, 2013
36,832
Media
47
Albums
13
6,790
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada
Parrots
Hawkhead(Darwin),YCA(Dexter),VE (Ekko),OWA(Slater),BHP(Talli),DYH(Calypso),RLA(Kimera),Alex(Xander)CBC(Phoe),IRN (Kodee,Luna,Stevie),WCP (Pisces),CAG(Justice)GCC (Jax), GSC2(Charley)
Allee, thank you so much for these awesome instructions! Ekko still loves his swing, and has been careful not to tear it up. He just likes to sit on it and cuddle.
 

SirEdwin89

New member
Mar 5, 2016
835
5
Virginia
Parrots
Confetti (9y/o CAG), Ely (5 y/o Citron SC2), Barney (3 y/o MSC2), Baby (21 y/o Senegal), Peaches (16 y/o M2)
Conan (26 y/o Harlequin Macaw)
Ohhh, these are awesome!
 

Blancaej

New member
Apr 5, 2013
2,329
4
Middlebury, VT
Parrots
CAG Quincy - BD 3/27/00. Gotcha 6/00 ~ GW Macaw Savannah - BD 6/21/93. Gotcha 4/13 ~ B&G Macaw Coqui - BD 9/3/03. Gotcha 10/13 ~ Blue Crown Conure Sidney - BD Unknown Approx 5 Years Old. Gotcha 6/15/
Nice!! :D

Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
 

Quakerella

New member
Apr 2, 2012
84
0
Canada
Parrots
3 quakers, 2 indian ringnecks, 6 lovebirds, 5 cockatiels, 1 budgie, 1 eastern rosella
Love the colours. Where did you find cotton fleece with those nice colours. I have looked but can't find any around here. Only polyester and we all know that's a no no.
 
OP
Allee

Allee

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2013
16,854
Media
2
62
Texas
Parrots
U2-Poppy(Poppy lives with her new mommy, Misty now) CAG-Jack, YNA, Bingo, Budgie-Piper, Cockatiel-Sweet Pea Quakers-Harry, Sammy, Wilson ***Zeke (quaker) Twinkle (budgie) forever in our hearts
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #13
Thank you, Quakerella! I'm not familiar with your area but I would check the bigger fabric stores or quilt shops, they usually have a nice selection of fleece prints.
 

Quakerella

New member
Apr 2, 2012
84
0
Canada
Parrots
3 quakers, 2 indian ringnecks, 6 lovebirds, 5 cockatiels, 1 budgie, 1 eastern rosella
Thanks Allee, I have checked in my immediate area, but only polyester. Will maybe go to a bigger city to find the cotton.
 

Kentuckienne

Supporting Vendor
Oct 9, 2016
2,521
519
Middle of nowhere (kentuckianna)
Parrots
Roommates include Gus, Blue and gold macaw rescue and Coco, secondhand amazon
You can tell the difference in cotton and poly fleece because the cotton fleece is smoother on one side and nappy on the other. I've never seen it in a fabric store - only the poly kind. I did a quick search for cotton fleece and most of what came up was 80 - 90% cotton, the rest polyester. I did find at least one source for 100% cotton fleece at fabric dot com. An easy test it to hold one edge of the cloth to a flame and see if it melts, indicating plastic. But why is polyester fabric bad for birds? Just about all the fuzzy bird toys/huts etc. I see in the pet store are some kind of synthetic material.
 
OP
Allee

Allee

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2013
16,854
Media
2
62
Texas
Parrots
U2-Poppy(Poppy lives with her new mommy, Misty now) CAG-Jack, YNA, Bingo, Budgie-Piper, Cockatiel-Sweet Pea Quakers-Harry, Sammy, Wilson ***Zeke (quaker) Twinkle (budgie) forever in our hearts
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #17
The fleece I've used for swings and toys has a high polyester content. As far as I know, the danger in polyester opposed to cotton is the fire retardant the fleece may be treated with, on the end of a bolt of fleece, you will usually find a warning that the fleece is NOT treated. Cotton fleece is more likely to fray than polyester fleece.
 

Quakerella

New member
Apr 2, 2012
84
0
Canada
Parrots
3 quakers, 2 indian ringnecks, 6 lovebirds, 5 cockatiels, 1 budgie, 1 eastern rosella
This is why I don't use polyester.

Polyester is a manufactured using terephthatic acid and ethylene glycol, both petroleum derivatives. Most polyester is made from recycled PET, after sterilizing of course. Tests have proven PET leaches chemicals over time. It is listed as a one time use only plastic as it allows for the growth of bacteria. Also, there were no restrictions on phthalates in clothing or textiles until 2015. Ethylene glycol is extremely toxic. To humans and to animals. It can be fatal if not immediately treated. Put these two together you get polyester.

If your polyester is dyed it may contain Cadmium, lead, and/or mercury and it probably contains Chlorobenzenes. Chlorobenzenes is mainly used to dye polyester and is toxic by skin contact or by inhalation.

The tests that have been carried out are always in high doses but this is from the U.S. Public Health Services "In animals, exposure to high concentrations of chlorobenzene
affects the brain, liver, and kidneys. Unconsciousness, tremors and
restlessness have been observed. The chemical can cause severe injury
to the liver and kidneys. Data indicate that chlorobenzene does not
affect reproduction or cause birth defects. Studies in animals have
shown that chlorobenzene can produce liver nodules, providing some but
not clear evidence of cancer risk." Again this is in high or continuous doses.

Polyester as a textile or certain apparel must be fire retardant or fire resistent as set out in the Government's Textile Flammability Regulations. To make polyester flame retardant it is coated with various chemicals which may include formaldehyde or Antimony. Most polyester in fabric stores are coated due to the law for making baby clothes.

This is just brief, but there is nothing about polyester that I feel comfortable with. I started researching polyester when I started getting sore throats, but only when wearing certain items. I also found that I seem to be sniffling more or more stuffed up when I went to bed. Sure enough my sheets were polyester or "wrinkle free". Not saying this is the only element that was causing the problem, but getting rid of it did help.
 
OP
Allee

Allee

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2013
16,854
Media
2
62
Texas
Parrots
U2-Poppy(Poppy lives with her new mommy, Misty now) CAG-Jack, YNA, Bingo, Budgie-Piper, Cockatiel-Sweet Pea Quakers-Harry, Sammy, Wilson ***Zeke (quaker) Twinkle (budgie) forever in our hearts
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #20
Thank you for posting this warning. Valid research is always appreciated, especially if it helps to keep our birds safe.
 

Most Reactions

Latest posts

Top