15 January, 2017

Quiet Book Finger Puppets

Since giving birth to my son, I've turned a lot of my crafting attention to creating quiet books and other items that he would enjoy. I made a lot of the items in his nursery when I was pregnant and wanted to continue to expand into things that he could actually play with. I stumbled upon Quiet Books and became hooked!

I decided to create a Noah's Ark page with finger puppet animals. I gathered inspiration from Pinterest and happened upon these Circus Animal Finger Puppets from On the Cutting Floor. I thought they were adorable and just the right size, but not quite what I had in mind. I printed out the pattern and modified it to fit my needs. You can download my modified version here.

I use the following Blanket Stitch from Imagine Our Life for all of my finger puppets. It is quick and clean and extremely easy to use once you get the hang of it! I love the look of the clean lines that it gives when sewing with felt and use it on all my edges, even when I'm not sewing two pieces together.

Okay, on to the instructions!

First, gather your supplies:

  • Yellow felt
  • Brown felt
  • Brown embroidery thread (divided into strands of 2)
  • Embroidery needle
  • Scissors
  • Finger Puppet Pattern

1) Using the yellow felt, cut out the face, ears and base bodies (notice one of my bases is missing part of its head. I used a scrap piece from my first attempt at a giraffe, it worked out just fine for this). Using the brown felt, cut out the horns and 2-4 square/rectangle shapes for the spots. These can be any size you'd like.

2) Thread your needle with embroidery thread. As I said before, I split the 6-stringed thread into 2 because it is thinner and easier to use. You can do this or continue with it as normal. Lay out your pieces as a visual so you can see where each will be.

3) Insert your needle into the top right corner, starting from the bottom side and pulling up. Angle the right each behind the top right corner of the face and attach it using the blanket stitch. Continue across the top of the face, attaching both ears and horns.

4) When you reach the end of the face, move upwards and stitch around the ear.

5) Place the face on top of one of the bodies and stitch down the side, bottom, and opposite side of the face, connecting the two pieces of felt. Finish stitching around the second ear.

 6) Place the spots on the body and stitch them in place.

7) On the face, stitch two small dots toward the bottom of the nose for nostrils, and two larger stitches higher up for eyes. (Pretend I took a picture of this)

8) Place the second body base on the bottom of the piece you've already worked. Start on the bottom right and stitch upwards. When you reach the face, try to restitch into the same spots you've already made to create a clean look. At the top of the head, do not restitch the face to the base. Simply stitch the two bases together creating a small pocket. There is no use for this but the face would look weird if you went through all three layers.

9) Stop at the bottom of the left side of body and tie off. Make sure you do not stitch along the bottom as this would close off the opening for your finger.

Enjoy your finger puppets! 

Listed below are the variations I made of the female and male puppets.

Lion - Female: add stomach and mask / Male: add stomach and mane with mask on top (black dots on cheeks for both)
Tiger - Female: add stomach and mask / Male: add mask (black whiskers on cheeks and black stripes on stomach for both)
Elephant - Female: add stomach / Male: add stomach and tusks underneath head
Monkey - Female: add stomach / Male: add stomach
Hippo - Female: add stomach / Male: add stomach