DIY Moana Fish Extender

DIY Moana Fish Extender

Disney Cruise DIY

Minimalist DIY

I have decided to coin the term minimalist DIY for my arts and crafts projects.  This is because due to time constraints, because of my full time job, all of my projects are done with the minimal amount of time, supplies, and effort necessary.  I’ve basically done all the research on Pinterest, Google, Etsy, etc. for you to show you how I produced a great craft and product with minimal investment.

What is a Fish Extender?

It’s basically hanging pockets for that hook outside your Disney Cruise Line cabin door, which is often a fish, or some other sea creature.

  • You have a pocket for every cabin member, where others can place notes and gifts.
  • You can then also sign up for a Fish Extender Group on facebook, Cruises are listed by ship and date, to participate in a gift exchange.
  • Facebook Disney Cruise groups also have meet and greets, recipe exchanges, book exchanges, and mixologies.
  • Each fish extender group is usually limited to about 10 cabins and you need to provide one gift per person or one gift per cabin and deliver it to their fish extender sometime during your cruise.
  • You have the option of signing up for multiple gift exchange groups to maximize your loot.

Because this was our first cruise I only signed up for one fish extender group, but I’ll probably sign up for several if we are fortunate enough to sail with Disney Cruise Line again.

Moana Fish Extender Disney Cruise

The first thing I will tell you is that I really debated about whether or not to buy our fish extender.  They produce some absolutely outstanding ones for sale on Etsy here, that run from $30-$60, totally customizable for you.  Of course this would be the most minimal option for you as far as time goes.  However, I chose not to buy one because this is the most expensive option and because I wanted to do the crafting and felt like I could make it more originally and uniquely us.

Our entire door theme was based on Moana.  Of course we love the movie and we’re from Hawaii so it just made sense.  I bought a four pocket hanging organizer from Amazon.  It comes with hooks which I discarded.  I liked the brown trim because it matched the Moana theme and thus tied a matching brown ribbon to the top.  This hanging organizer can also be spray painted to the color of your choice.

Specific steps for construction of each pocket:

Mickey Heads Pockets 1 and 2: Moana Fish Extender Mickey Head Pocket Top

Moana Fish Extender Mickey Head Pocket 2

  1. Discard hooks that come with fish extender and tie a matching ribbon into the top 2 holes
  2. Hawaiian print material was glued on using a hot glue gun, though I am positive you could also use E6000.
  3. I folded the edges to make nice clean edged lines.
  4. Using my Cricut Explore Air I cut out 2 Mickey heads with our names on adhesive vinyl.
  5. Without a Cricut you could very easily use a Mickey head template here and cut out or write your names on your Mickey heads as well.
  6. The finished Mickey Heads were peeled off and stuck on, and I also put some glue to really stick them on and ensure they wouldn’t fall off.

Moana Pocket 3:

  1. Moana Pocket Fish Extender PocketFirst the middle was covered with flesh colored paper again using a glue gun.
  2. The top half of the pocket was covered with red construction paper that I patterned 6 pointed flower designs with a red pen and cut the bottom edge in a wave pattern to match Moana’s red top.
  3. The skirt was made out of a small woven lauhala gift bag that I cut in half in a zig-zag pattern and then attached a red ribbon.
  4. I bought the Moana Necklace, but I have seen numerous DIY tutorials if you’re feeling really crafty and have the time, and attached it using staples and my trusty glue gun.
  5. The white band was a ribbon I knotted in regular intervals to simulate a shell band pattern.
  6. The name was cut out using my Cricut, but you could use a computer or freehand the name as well.


Maui Pocket 4:  Moana Fish Extender Maui Pocket

  1. I printed Maui’s tattoos found here on flesh colored paper cut it to fit the pocket and covered it with adhesive paper to protect it from rubbing and fading.
  2. The leaves were from a fake lei/haku (head crown of greenery), left over from the kids’s May Day program, that I took apart and glued on.
  3. Using the handles from the bag I deconstructed to make Moana’s skirt I made Maui’s tied raffia belt, which you could also make easily by braiding craft
  4. store raffia.
  5. The final embellishment was the Maui fishhook necklace I attached with a stapler and glue.
  6. I used the Cricut again, to cut out my son’s name in adhesive vinyl, which made adding his name a peel and stick process.

See more all about our Disney Wonder Alaska Cruise here which was the most wonderful and magical vacation!

Click the picture below for a youtube video so you can see the Moana DIY Fish Extender from all angles.

Below is a picture and a link to the exact 4 pocket hanging organizer that I bought from Amazon and used to make our super easy DIY Moana Fish Extender, followed by the necklace I got on AliExpress.  I’ve also placed some helpful links to other supplies I used during its construction. Moana Necklace $1.81 Free shipping – 12Pcs Bone Fish Hook Necklace $9.99 Free Shipping

  Circuit Explore Air $179.99 normally $249.99


The links are here for your convenience.  I am an affiliate and may make a small commission if you should buy products using the links provided.  I only recommend products that I have bought myself, used, and loved.

Other Posts You May Enjoy:

 Disney Cruise Fish Extender Gifts Received


  Easy Fish Extender Gifts


 Top 5 reasons to choose the Disney Wonder Alaska Cruise

3 thoughts on “DIY Moana Fish Extender

  1. That’s super cute (we are big Moana fans)! It looks nothing like the original organizer. How much time did it take??? I feel like I’d have to plan at least a month in advance to get something like that done, heheheh. Very cool tho.

  2. Very cool (Moana fans over here)! It looks nothing like the original organizer. How long did it take you???

  3. I did the prep work for awhile, collecting all the materials. The actual construction took a whole night while the kids were sleeping. It was worth the finished product and seeing how much they loved their little fish extender gifts/goodies.

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