BAM Family

BAM Family

Monday, September 19, 2011

Kids Crafts: Felt Puppets (A Tutorial)

A week ago we went to the library and played with their wide assortment of puppets. I had so much fun carrying on a conversation with a giraffe, astronaut and little girl (with Micah) that I wanted to try my hand at making some puppets to play with at home. 

Want to make your own? 
Here's what to do!
Wide assortment of felt pieces
Glue gun (or tacky glue)
Sewing machine

First, trace around your hand imagining your three middle fingers as the head and your pinky and thumb as arms. Be sure to leave a wide opening at the bottom for the hand to slip in and out easily. 
Fold paper in half and cut out to ensure a symmetrical puppet pattern. 

Fold your pattern in half and pin to your felt. Cut two. 
Decide what animal you what your puppet to be and cut out face shapes: eyes, ears, nose, mouth (you get the picture). This little guy is a LION so he has a bright orange and yellow mane! 
Hot glue the face on (or use tacky glue if you don't have a glue gun. Elmer's is too thin to really grip the felt so use a thicker glue. Wait a few hours (or over night) to enjoy your puppet if you don't use hot glue)
All glued!
 Pin the mane. This may be a bit tricky if you cut your mane out of a straight piece of felt like I did--it works though!
Lots o' pins! 
Pin the ears on too. I put a fold in the ears to given them a little 3D body. 
I used a straight stitch for the body and then switched to a zig-zag for around the head. 
Since there is no turning in this project (I didn't want to lose any volume in the puppet by turning it), sew really close to the edge. 
The zigzag stitch gives a little extra detail to the head (especially for the lion's mane!) and it helps grip all those pieces you are trying to sew together. 
After you are done sewing, check your seams to be sure that you caught both the back and the front. I had to sew around the head again. 
Yea! Your lion is done! Let's play! 
(Micah took this picture! Pretty good for an almost-four-year-old, right?)
My sweet Micah with his lion.
(We just can't time the smile with the camera click. Oh well.)
A puppet is a good TV watching buddy
Benji with the Lion
But one puppet isn't enough! We made a chicken too! (At Micah's specific request! And this is another one of his pictures too! I think the kid has an eye for this sort of thing...)
Micah captured a crazy moment with Mommy and the chicken. 
(Yes, it does look a bit like a turkey. But he picked out the colors. Go figure. It is a nice, brown chicken)
Have a puppet show over the back of your couch! 
(Let's hope the Lion and the Chicken don't realize they are on opposite ends of the food chain. Right now, when asked, both Lion and Chicken state that they eat "seeds." Though, there is a different, more hilarious, answer in the video below)
Yea for PUPPETS! Go ahead and make your own! 
The best part of this short video is Micah's answer when asked, "What do chickens eat?" LOL

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