Monday, July 23, 2012

What the heck is a fish extender?

Fish extenders...have you heard about these? I hadn't, until I started researching the Disney Cruise. Honestly, this is a super fun idea! Here is the lowdown.

Participating a fish extender exchange is a fun way to add a little magic to your cruise. It's a Secret Santa of sorts. Outside each stateroom is a metal fish hanger....
People then hang fish extenders to these hangers in hopes of receiving fun little gifts. Most people "meet" up on the Disney boards, find a group of people that want to participate in the exchange, and then when they all jump aboard, they find everyone's staterooms and put some goodies in the pockets of the extenders. It's exactly like a stocking at Christmas!

So what does a fish extender look like? Well, it could be anything. It could be baskets, fabric pockets, tote bags, actual stockings...just whatever you fancy. You can make your own, or buy some off of ebay or etsy. Click HERE for a link to an etsy seller...and HERE.....and HERE

Well, to buy or not to buy. Remember, we are having to be really careful so that we can have this cruise paid off in while I would love to buy one of these awesome, embroidered extenders....I have to make ours. PS. I don't sew. So I started thinking about what would be an easy, no-sew option for me to make.

Enter....The Powell Family Fish Extender!

For this, I used black mini canvas tote bags, ribbon, and felt. I wanted to keep it in the classic Disney red, yellow, and black theme. I cut the handles off the tote bags, cut red squares of felt, and used some fabric glue to attach the felt to the totes. I then glued these super cute yellow glitter buttons to the corners of the felt, cut out Mickey heads, and glued them on as well. 

Next came the ribbon. I layered a thinner black polka dot ribbon on top of a wide yellow ribbon with glue. Measured out the right length to hang the totes, and used heavy duty fabric glue to attach the ribbon to the totes. I made a conscious decision not to add names to it, because it looked too cluttered. Then I added a dowel rod with ribbon, added some extra polka dot streamers, and this is done! The width of the wall where this will hang is only 8 inches. Anything more than that and it will get caught in your stateroom door. These totes are 5 inches by 6 inches. Perfect for the wall and perfect for all the little trinkets we can put in them. I spent less than $10 for the totes and ribbon :) Love it!

Instead of joining a huge FE group, we are going to use this extender as our family gift exchange. Each morning we will put goodies in it for our boys as a fun little surprise. They have no idea...and I am going to do my best to keep it a surprise. Maybe Mickey or Donald will come by and drop some goodies in as well!


  1. What a super neat idea! Yours is really cute and perfect for your cruise. So fun.

  2. What cruise are you going on? We're on the Magic in December out of Galveston!