Monday, October 22, 2007

Our Tin Dog.


Last Halloween, K wanted to be Sara Jane Smith, one of Doctor Who's companions. If you don't know who Doctor Who could possibly be, and you live in the U.S., it's not surprising. A quick stop by the official BBC Doctor Who site,, should do the trick.

(WARNING: Doctor Who is highly addictive and really entertaining, especially if you are either 8 years old or in graduate school (not much difference really.) Watching Doctor Who, especially the Pertwee years, could result in odd desires to speak with lispy british accents and wear velvet dinner jackets with frilly collars. The Baker years can induce irrational knitting urges and mild nausea, respectively. More recent episodes can generate loud squeeeeing noises from little girls who now think big ears and a british accents are just the bomb.)

We warned K that she would cause confusion and vacant stares wherever she went, but she was determined. She designed and put together her entire costume. Per instructions, I made her the cutest pair of navy blue culottes using the instructions on,, 1940 Modern Pattern Design, chapter 9. They turned out so well, I was amazed. And she looked just like Sarah Jane, right down to the boots.

Now all she needed was her mechanical friend, K9. I wasn't quite sure how we were going to put him together, but, it turns out that a bit of cardboard, paper mache, wire, PVC pipe, wood, roller skate wheels, 50 ld test fishing line, spray paint, bike reflectors, hose and an old portable phone make a rather cute little K9. I love the cat collar, K's idea, so cute. We rigged K9 to be pulled by a bit of fishing line, so it looked like he was following her around. Very good effect.

And she was a hit. Everywhere she went, K had a pack of boys following her around. Turns out even very basic renditions of mechanical dogs are downright awesome. Buttons, it's all about the buttons. The dozen or so people we met during all of Halloween, who knew who she was, recognized her immediately and were so thrilled it was funny. A very, nice, and normally very quiet librarian we had seen many times, almost climbed over her desk to get a better look. For weeks after she smiled and waved every time she saw us.

This year K wants to be Ginny Weasley. Better get to work.


Tab said...

This is perfectly amazing. My son wanted to be "The Doctor" from the newer series, this year, but I couldn't figure out a way for him to be recognizable to anyone his age. I never even thought of adding a prop. I'm quite sure that I will have to do much better next year. Thanks for posting it. I think it's quite amazing, and so will my hubby and boys when they see.

pj said...

Thank you!

Props are definitely the thing. No one may know who you are, but everyone loves a sonic screw driver. Especially the one that writes in invisible ink!

Happy Halloween!

Electric Bearbearina said...

That K-9 is amazing!!!
Well done :)
I shan't show this to my niece, lest she expect me to make her one next Halloween.

pj said...


You should show your niece and make one with her. :)

We had a lot of fun making K9 and it really was very easy. And the other kids all loved him.

And don't forget to add some buttons. Kids love buttons.

StillNotGinger said...


StillNotGinger said...

Awesome! I might make a K-9 for my cousins for Christmas.... I got them addicted to Who, and now they love Sarah Jane and K-9. XD

pj said...

*shrieks* Thanks! Our K9 was quite easy really, just cardboard and silver paper. K had such a great time when she was Sarah Jane for Halloween. My goodness, that was three years ago! We always thought it would be fabulous to fit a robot mechanism inside and drive K9 around and program him to speak. Maybe one day.

Have fun making your K9!