A mum of two has explained exactly how she put together a stunning mermaid pram for her daughter for a bargain price.
Bex Ellis-Dunstan, 31, from Newton Abbot, came up with the idea while trying to create an outfit for her daughter Penny, four months, to attend a festival in.
"My husband came up with the idea of our daughter going as a mermaid to the pirate festival we attend every year," the mum-of-two told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk .
"There were mermaids in a tank last time so we thought it would be a good theme to go with. Our oldest son has a pirate ship buggy which my dad and I upgrade each year and I wanted to do something special for our daughter.
"When he mentioned a mermaid, I thought of her sitting in a clam, and so the clam pram idea was born!”
To make it, Bex combined Facebook Marketplace bargains with supplies she already had in the house.
"We thought about different ways to create a clam shell, and how to fit it around a buggy,” she said.
"We use a lot of second hand materials and things we already have when crafting. I found someone selling a clam shaped sand and water tray for £5 on Facebook marketplace and thought it would be perfect as the clam frame.
“Luckily, we had an old buggy which I had bought second hand a couple of years ago also.
"I cut into the shell and made channels and holes so it would slot around the frame of the pram. That was probably the hardest bit, figuring out how it fit!
"We used cloth tape and hot glue to create the lines on the shell and newspaper to create a clam lip.
"I bought some spray paint online and on sale in Wilkinson’s and sprayed the shells white, nude and pearlescent.
"I found some pink material for 50p at a charity store to cover the seat, and used felt and left over material from my daughter's mermaid costume for seaweed and ocean critters.
"Overall, I think I spent around £25 on it.”
And Bex couldn't be happier with the final result – as well as the process.
"I had amazing fun making it,” she said.
"I love making costumes and craft projects, especially for my children.
"I’m really happy with how it turned out – almost better than I expected it to be. It’s got a lot of attention already, so I imagine at the festival it will be a hit. It won’t be hard to miss us!"
She also had some advice for people looking to create their own special projects.
“My tips would be to look for secondhand items. If it’s cheap or free, then if it doesn’t work you haven’t lost much," Bex said.
"Also, use what you have already. It’s amazing what you have lurking around the house. Old prams and half cans of spay paint really do come in handy!
"If you want to create something big, think about transporting it. Make sure it can come apart and go back together! Give yourself a lot of time to create it.
"But most of all, have fun with it and enjoy the process."
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