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Jeruba's avatar

How can I decorate a hard cast?

Asked by Jeruba (48711points) January 12th, 2011

My injured foot has not healed after a year in a soft cast (“walking cast,” “boot”), so we are now trying immobilization in a hard cast as a last resort before surgery. As of yesterday I have a solid hard casing from just above my toes to just below my knee, and I’m lumbering around slowly and painfully on crutches.

The casting station was littered with glitter fallout. Apparently pediatric casts used to be applied there, and you could get them with embedded glitter. But alas, there was no more glitter stuff (I asked). I couldn’t even get a rainbow-colored cast sandal; someone had picked them all out and left only the black ones.

Casts used to be smooth plaster. You could write on them. You could draw on them. This one has a fine waffle texture like the weave of an Ace bandage or the knit of heavy socks; you can’t draw a smooth line on it. Everything would be pixellated, and lines would be forced to follow the uneven wrapping. I was planning to decorate mine with Sharpies in all colors, but it would just be a mess if I tried to draw on this rough surface.

All the fun has gone out of wearing a cast.

How am I going to make this look less boring for the two months that I have to wear it? I still have to be able to get clothes on and off, wrap it up when I bathe, and sleep with it, so I can’t just glue things all over it.

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31 Answers

talljasperman's avatar

Have friends write happy wishes on your cast

JilltheTooth's avatar

Well, if you still want glitter, how about some of this and the glitter of your choice? Colored seed beads might add a nice touch as well…

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

You still have to wrap it up to bathe? I thought the point of the newer waffle design was that it was waterproof…

Maybe get some fabric paints or foam paints? Or other paints? Can you maybe wrap it up in something that would be smoother?

Jeruba's avatar

@papayalily, I don’t know about that. But regardless of the outer material, it is lined with a knit fabric stockinglike thing and a cottony wrap. I can’t imagine that would feel very nice all wet and cold, and I’m not interested in growing anything inside there. Dry has to be the rule, I think, don’t you?

@JilltheTooth, my husband already nixed glitter, even though my younger son currently has a full palette of glitter glue on hand. It would get all over the place, including in the bed. But colored seed beads, now, there’s an idea! Thanks. There’s still a bagfull of them around here from my elder son’s rave days. I’ll do a test patch.

@talljasperman, thanks, but the details explained why I’m asking: the surface is too rough to write on.

I looked online to see if anybody made some kind of fabric cast cover for decoration (and to keep my toes warm), but all I found is big old boring white cast socks.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@Jeruba : Pix when it’s decorated, please!

Jeruba's avatar

Please see details: the surface is too rough to draw or write on. Thanks.

Dutchess_III's avatar

(All the fun has gone out of wearing a cast @Jeruba?? When was there ever fun in wearing a cast???!)
Well, maybe do the 60’s thing and just color in the squares in different colors….?

snowberry's avatar

Two thoughts:

It sounds like your cast is the kind that can get wet. Ask your doctor if you have not already been told. Apparently some kinds of casts can go into the tub, or whatever, and then dry out. It does not appeal to me, but hey.

Consider decorating it for the different holidays. Apply snaps that can accommodate changeable decorations. You can also make use of scarves, strings of beads, or whatever, as long as you can securely attach it without endangering yourself. I hope you heal soon!

coffeenut's avatar

@Jeruba I know what kind of cast you’re describing…..with the right marker the texture would add to the drawing….it will take longer to do….but it is do-able….I’ve seen it done

Dutchess_III's avatar

This one’s for you Jeruba! (Dad did the art work on the cast. I created the head dress from goose feathers we collected at the park. Two different themes but my grandson managed to pull them together nicely, didn’t he!)

YARNLADY's avatar

Oh, J, I’m so sorry. If it was me, I would create a bunch of pull over covers and change them from day to day.

Jeruba's avatar

@Dutchess_III, that is great! I love it! (I was being a little bit facetious about the fun of wearing a cast, you know? Ornamenting it is the only fun I can think of. I had one on the full leg from ankle to top of thigh for 4 months, right through a New England winter, when I was 29. It was more than miserable, but at least it wasn’t hot and humid.) After searching in cupboards for at least 5 minutes, the doc did offer me a pink cast, but I told him that there is no place in my life for pink.

@coffeenut, I’ll try the Sharpies in an inconspicuous location. Maybe a design based on a mosaic principle would work.

@YARNLADY, a bunch of pullover covers would be great, but I am not equipped to make them. I was thinking at least I could try dressing it up with a half yard of a nice cotton print, hemmed and fastened with Velcro. Wouldn’t you think somebody would be making and selling them?

@snowberry, I might have made a wrong assumption. I’ll call and ask tomorrow. But I still think it would be nasty and clammy while drying.

YARNLADY's avatar

@Jeruba You can find them on etsy Contact the active users with a custom order.

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Carly's avatar

I always wondered if you could drill things into it. If I ever get a cast, I’m going to put all kinds of knobs and ends on it from home depot. :P

augustlan's avatar

You could always paint it a solid color. I’m thinking purple, to match your study. :)

Wishing you a quick and successful healing!

Dutchess_III's avatar

And, after you paint it purple you glue a pretty pretty jewel into the center of each waffle! (PLEASE take a pic of whatever you decide!!!)

Jeruba's avatar

I tried out some Sharpies and found that I could make an okay design, as long as the lines don’t have to be too fine. That’s when I discovered that I don’t have a purple Sharpie! Gotta get one. And then I have to be a contortionist to decorate the whole thing that way. So far it’s just up in one inconspicuous corner.

The idea of gluing little beads in the spaces really appealed to me, but my son, who is not used to having to be the practical one, sensibly pointed out that anything I stick on there is going to come off eventually, what with wear and abrasion and so forth. Also already it is like sleeping with my bare leg rubbing against super-gritty sandpaper, even without adding applique. So I’m leaning away from that, sorry to say.

I did order one of the toe cosies on the page that @YARNLADY pointed to. Cast socks, I guess they’re called.

Yes, I will photograph my art work when it’s done and post it. I promise.

Jeruba's avatar

Ok, here are some pictures. I haven’t decided against gluing things on, but at least this is better than plain boring white.

In an odd sort of cosmic symmetry, I had to do a lot of weird stretching just as I learned to do in the yoga class that broke my arch in the first place.

augustlan's avatar

Nice! Much better than plain white.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I like that! Good job, @Jeruba , thanks for posting those!

Dutchess_III's avatar

Very nice @Jeruba! Are you an artist? I could never have done something like that, much less upside down! (I like your carpet too, btw!)

AmWiser's avatar

Very nice. I vision some trinklets glued on too. And ditto what @Dutchess_III said:-)

Dutchess_III's avatar

Hear hear! Trinkets! Maybe some flat, shiny ones, rather than raised beads?

Jeruba's avatar

Thanks! My son took one look and said, “Needs sequins.”

Artist, no, but maybe a cut above your average doodler. Some of the elements are way out of proportion, El Greco style, because I realized too late that I was drawing from an extreme angle and they would look different straight on.

That’s not my carpet. That’s the couch in the quiet corner of my room (my study), also seen in the photo labeled RembrandVanRoom. I’m spending a fair amount of time there at present.

JilltheTooth's avatar

Ooooh, comfy. I’m on my way over.

augustlan's avatar

See why I suggested purple? ;)

Jeruba's avatar

There’s room for two, @JilltheTooth.

You’re right, Auggie. The flash changes the colors, but that wall is actually quite a deep shade of purple. Two other walls are different complementary lighter shades, and the fourth is paneled.

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