"Cheaper than taxidermy and nothing has to die." Since 2003 John Murphy has been making Stupid Sock Creatures - wacky, wonderful sock toys. In his 2005 kit he shares his secrets and includes the materials to get started.
They're easy enough for older kids to make on their own and imperfections only add to their charm. Use the included socks or your own favorites - we have a drawer full of orphaned socks that would love a second life as a child's toy.
For inspiration, see Murphy's Stupid Sock Creatures gallery or search "stupid sock creatures" at Flickr to see creations by people who bought the kit. If you want a creature made by Murphy himself (or his new recruit, Ian Dennis) you can place an order on the website.
For more sock animal inspiration, check out this Slink from last month.