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Disney Cruise & free printable


I turned 40 (gasp) on February 15th. I wanted to celebrate in a BIG way, so we went on a Disney Cruise! And not just any Disney Cruise… a Star Wars Day At Sea! I am a huge Disney fanatic, which started as a little girl and my first trip to Walt Disney World in 1984 when Epcot was brand spankin’ new! Figment and the Journey into Imagination became my absolute favorite and I was hooked on all things Disney. I carried my love of Disney with me always and had the opportunity to participate in the Disney College Program in 1998, working and learning about the Disney brand and living with and making new friends from around the world. It was spectacular.

Fish ExtenderWhile planning our Disney Cruise I heard about this fun thing called a Fish Extender. What’s that, you say? Well, each cabin door has a little hook on it that is some type of fish. And you hang a bag of sorts on this fish for people to put gifts in, and that bag is called the Fish Extender. I bought this one on Amazon and embellished it with some ribbons, our names in heat transfer vinyl and used felt to cut Mickey ears and a sailor cap. Now we just needed some gifts! Who doesn’t love getting gifts?! Anyone can sign up to participate in the Fish Extender. You have to first find your cruise group for your specific sailing on Facebook and then you get assigned some cabins (we had ten in our group). You find out their names, ages, their favorite Disney characters and if they’re celebrating anything. Then you make or buy gifts for these people and surprise them on your cruise by putting the gifts in their Fish Extender! Sound fun? It was!

Disney Fantasy luggage tagMy mind was swimming with ideas of what I was going to make. I mean, you know I was going to make something (or lots of things if you really know me)! The first thing I did was create my own Fantasy Disney Cruise ship in Silhouette Design Studio. I thought how perfect it would be to turn this adorable cruise ship into a keychain or bag tag. So I meticulously cut, weeded and layered vinyl pieces onto a 3″ round acrylic and while they took what felt like an eternity to put together, they came out adorable. I even found Mickey shaped key rings (note the image to the right is using a luggage tag but you can see the key rings in the image of the complete Fish Extender gift below). But then I thought little kids might not want the cruise ship, so kept that for the adults and made some Mickey & Minnie for the littlest cruisers and Darth Vader with waves (it IS Star Wars Day at Sea!) tags as well.


I then wanted to do a fun cabin gift that everyone could enjoy together, so I made each cabin a game of Captain Mickey Farkle. Have you played Farkle? Well, it is an awesomely addictive dice game. And we played it a lot the last cruise we were on, so it felt appropriate to share with other cruisers. I found the Mickey dice straight from Disney Parks and put them in small plastic containers. I then designed the top and used print and cut in Silhouette Design Studio on printable vinyl. The hardest part was downsizing the rules to be small enough to fit inside those tiny boxes. Lucky for you this is free printable #1! Let me know if you make some Farkle games for yourself or fellow cruise mates! Just click thru on each picture below and then right click on the full size image to save the file. {Please note these files are for personal use only!}

I realized people might need a way to keep score, since pen & paper is probably not something people add to their cruise checklist. I found some really nice small Moleskine journals and made a Mickey anchor in vinyl for the front of each. I loved the kraft paper cover. It felt beachy, like sand. I included a generic pen to keep score (but you know it was killing me to not Disney-fy the pen! LOL!).

Pixie Dust MagnetsThat seems like enough and a wonderful gift, right? Well, I wasn’t done! I wanted to make magnets to Pixie Dust and figured if I was making them anyway, I might as well include some in the Fish Extender gifts. Wait, you don’t know what Pixie Dust is?! Well, consider it a little extra special, unexpected Disney magic. This actually turned out to be one of our favorite things on the cruise! I made a bunch of magnets in various Disney designs and as we were walking the halls we would randomly leave a magnet on someone’s door. Magnets are a big thing on Disney Cruises. People decorate their doors with all kinds of magnets. We just LOVED seeing everyone’s creativity. When we found a door we loved, or if we came across someone celebrating a birthday or anniversary or graduation, BOOM, they got a magnet from us!

These bottle cap magnets are super easy to make. You first need the blank bottle caps, and no, you don’t have to go drinking lots of beer or soda. You can buy them in bulk at craft stores (or my favorite place to shop, Amazon) and the edges are a bit safer than a real bottle cap. Next, you need images in a 1″ circle. You can design your own, cut out 1″ circles from Disney scrapbook paper, or find some images online. You can buy a 1″ circle punch at the craft store too, if you don’t have a die cutting machine like my Silhouette Cameo. You then glue the circles into the bottle caps. For this, I like to use my Xyron sticker maker. It turns anything into a sticker! I used to use it all the time when I scrapbooked (before the digital scrapbooking days) and am happy to have a new use for it. Then you need some resin drops. You can mix actual resin, but why would you when you can get a 3D resin sticker? Just place one of these on top and press down evenly all over the magnet. Then you just glue a neodymium magnet to the back with a little E6000 glue. Done! And now that you know how to make the magnets, here is your second free printable, in case you want to Pixie Dust some on your next cruise! {Please note these files are for personal use only!}

Painted Disney Anchor Magnets

Knowing how many people decorate their doors with magnets, I wanted to make some fun ones with the kids. I bought some small wood anchors at the craft store and the kids and I painted them to look like our favorite Disney character or movie! My favorite is Up! I painted mine and Chewbacca for my husband. ZOO wanted a simple Baymax. And ROO chose Sorcerer Mickey. I did paint an acrylic sealer on top. Then you just glue a strong neodymium magnet on the back with a little E6000. After I took this picture, I did decide to write our names and cabin # on the bottom in a thin tip Sharpie, just in case anyone liked our magnets so much they wanted them for themselves. Not that anyone would do that on a Disney cruise, would they? I hope not. But I wanted to be certain our creations would make it back home to our kitchen fridge to enjoy for a long time!

We Do Disney house rules wood signI made another magnet from one of my favorite things I have ever made. This large 4 foot tall artwork hangs in our dining room. It is our house rules, Disney style. It took me a LONG time to word and design this with all those fonts. And then to cut all that vinyl and weed out all those little letters before applying it to the wood (which I had someone cut for me but I painted, sanded, painted and sanded!) PHEW! But I am really proud of the finished product. And since I designed it, I simply printed out a copy, laminated it and stuck some magnets on the back so we could remember our house rules while on the ship! It makes me happy every time I read it.

I seem to have gotten a little distracted away from the Fish Extender… I do that a lot. 😉 Now that we had all these little gifts to give, we needed a way to deliver them. And why not give one more gift as the bag itself! Now, I admit I am not talented in heat transfer vinyl. With my business, zoo&roo, I work with permanent vinyl, which goes on cars, acrylic, glass, etc. I do not have a heat press and cannot offer advice on heat transfer. But I figured I was good enough to cut a simple Disney Fantasy logo and iron onto some canvas bags. I actually used my flat iron for my hair! LOL! It worked great. If you plan to do lots of heat transfer, I recommend investing in a heat press. I just do not have the room for one. (Sigh, I dream of the ultimate craft space with room for so many amazing machines I currently cannot afford!)

Fish Extender giftsAnd just because I’m Amy, and an overachiever, I had to get little cruise ship charms to add to the zipper pull, as well as a cute tag that said “hope your cruise is all fun and games.” Now, I was running short on time and did not design those tags. (Again, gasp!) Even an expert crafter like myself needs to take a handout from someone else who’s already designed something beautifully.

So there you have it. Our completed Fish Extender gift!