Summer Crafts from the Farm Store

Last Updated by Heather Benson on

Vetrap, Coflex, Coban---whatever you call it, may be one of the most underrated materials when it comes to crafting. The soft, stretchy material that sticks only to itself can be used for a huge variety of crafts and offers the imagination endless opportunities.

What is it?

Originally developed by the Minnesota company 3-M, Vetrap or Coban as it is called in human medical practice is an elastic "cohesive bandage" (thus Coban) material that adheres only to itself, not the surfaces on which it is used.  It is commonly used as a compression bandage on both humans and livestock because it won't stick to limbs, hair or clothing. The material is soft, breathable and easy to shape.  It is those very qualities that also make it perfect for crafting.

Screen Shot 2019-06-05 at 10.29.37 AM.png

Where do I find it?

While you can purchase cohesive bandages in the first aid section of many drugstores, the more economical option is to find your local farm store (Tractor Supply, Bomgaars, etc) and buy the livestock version.  It is typically found in the horse section of the store. Extensively used in the equine industry for both injuries and "flair", the livestock version comes in a huge variety of colors and is found at a much lower price.  Generally, a 4 inch by 5 yard roll of Vetrap (also sold under other brands as CoFlex, Powerflex, etc) can be purchased for $3 or less.  It comes in a huge variety of colors and designs.

IMG_2556.jpegCohesive bandage display at a farm store, in the equine section.

IMG_2572.jpegCohesive bandages stick only to themselves, making the easy to use and easy to clean up!

What do I do with it?

The real question is, what DON'T you do with it!  The material lends itself to creating a wide variety of projects---it cuts easily with a child's scissors and because it adheres to itself, you can "sew" edges of material into a new design simply by pressing them together. By putting bigger pieces together or sticking it over a mold (cardboard, paper, etc), it also sculpts into shapes almost like clay. While older kids and even adults may aim for higher designs, it is easy enough to use that even the smallest of hands can shape their creations with it. The material is also easy to clean up as it isn't "sticky" like tape and small pieces can be vacuumed or swept with ease.

IMG_2568.jpegCohesive bandages can be cut by children's scissors and attached by simply pressing together.

One of the first projects that jumps into many young minds is making doll clothes.  The stretchy material lends itself well to this task---easily cutting into small design components and the simple attachment mechanism of pressing it together lends itself well to even the smallest of hands.  If you don't like how it looks the first time, just pull apart and rearrange!

13346775_10157063327725381_3739715480549286437_n.jpgEven the youngest designers can make doll clothes with Vetrap...and including matching headbands for themselves!

Kids can scale things up to creating their own clothes as well!  Headbands, dresses, even shoes (with the help of a little cardboard structure underneath) can all be made with the material--no sewing needed!

IMG_2575.jpeg

56426961_10161699568130381_7613068070348652544_n.jpg

As cohesive bandages are often used in the equestrian community, many young equestrians choose to use the material to make "tack" for their model horses.  Saddles, bridles, blankets and leg wraps are all easily made with a few snips of the scissors.  Decorations for other toys can be made too--an army backpack for a toy soldier or window dressings for a doll house.  The possibilities are endless!

Cohesive bandages can also be made into entirely new toys.  Crumpled paper makes the perfect superstructure to wrap the bandage around and then "sculpt" into any character or shape that comes to mind. An ER tech in California has made an entire side business and successful Instagram account entirely out of cohesive bandage creations.

Screen Shot 2019-06-05 at 11.07.52 AM.pngBert and Ernie from CobanimalsCobanimals Instagram

Screen Shot 2019-06-05 at 11.08.16 AM.pngCookie Monster from CobanimalsCobanimals Instagram

Fun, safe, easy to clean up and easy to use, cohesive bandage is the unsung hero of summertime kids crafts!

 

 

 

subscribe to education email updates food blog link image learning blog link living blog link news and information blog link science and technology blog link sports blog link image

Fun activities and projects for kids, educational resources for parents and teachers, and links to SDPB and PBS learning media!

Visit SDPB's Education Site!

Related content from SDPB Radio

Augustana University Partners with Flandreau Indian School for Archival Re-Presentations

Augustana University is partnering with Flandreau Indian School and the Washington Pavilion for a project that...

In the Moment News: June 8-14

In The Moment News is a new podcast recaping news of the week. Find it every Friday afternoon. SDPB's Victoria Wicks...

Outgoing USD School of Education Dean Talks Research and Policy for the Success of Students of Color

During his time as dean of the University of South Dakota's School of Education, Donald Easton-Brooks formed a...

Statewide Teacher Mentoring Program Graduates Second Cohort

The second cohort to complete a state-wide, two-year teaching mentorship program celebrated in Sioux Falls Thursday....

Pierre Teacher Retires After 49 Years

In The Moment ... May 20, 2019 Show 579 Hour 2 Jay Mickelson has been a teacher in the Pierre School District for 49...