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OT Puppet Help

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  • magiclblingbling
    Hey guys, Sorry this is a bit OT but I really need help on this. I m trying to make a pretty complex hand puppet and I ve got a genral Idea of what I m doing
    Message 1 of 3 , Dec 7, 2005
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      Hey guys,
      Sorry this is a bit OT but I really need help on this. I'm trying to
      make a pretty complex hand puppet and I've got a genral Idea of what
      I'm doing but I have a few specific questions.

      1. What kind of material can I use for th puppet's skin? It almost
      looks like felt, but I just don;t know how to do that.

      2. Is there any way to replicate the nice detailed face (ex. the nose
      and such)?

      3. What kind of batting/stuffing would you guys recommend for this
      project? I think I have like teddy bear stuffing but I'm not sure it
      will be stiff enough.

      4. Is the head/mouth movement as simple as it looks? I just want to
      make this puppet workable and sturdy so...yeah.

      OK, here's some reference pictures:

      http://the-op.com/images/episode/216/000058_sm.jpg

      It's on the box on the left of you screen. Small pic but good general
      shape.

      Good shot of the entire head:
      http://the-op.com/images/episode/216/000172_sm.jpg

      CU of face:
      http://the-op.com/media/image2.php?ep=216&i=7569&cat=6200

      ANY information you can give me about this sort of thing would be
      really helpful!
      Nicole
    • Loretta Armstrong
      Most of the time puppets aren t made like we think they are. I know a lot of the Muppets are carved from foam. This gives the detail and strength you need. I
      Message 2 of 3 , Dec 8, 2005
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        Most of the time puppets aren't made like we think they are. I know a lot of the Muppets are carved from foam. This gives the detail and strength you need. I would recomend looking around for Muppet construction and see what you can find. There are a number of books (mostly older) that show some muppet construction.
        Good Luck!
        Loretta


        magiclblingbling <DeadDoveDoNotEat@...> wrote:
        Hey guys,
        Sorry this is a bit OT but I really need help on this. I'm trying to
        make a pretty complex hand puppet and I've got a genral Idea of what
        I'm doing but I have a few specific questions.

        1. What kind of material can I use for th puppet's skin? It almost
        looks like felt, but I just don;t know how to do that.

        2. Is there any way to replicate the nice detailed face (ex. the nose
        and such)?

        3. What kind of batting/stuffing would you guys recommend for this
        project? I think I have like teddy bear stuffing but I'm not sure it
        will be stiff enough.

        4. Is the head/mouth movement as simple as it looks? I just want to
        make this puppet workable and sturdy so...yeah.



        Fibre Arts, a cappella, costuming, and fun!
        http://www.laminathegreat.com

        Read and comment on your scriptures daily.
        http://www.weblayouts.net/scriptures






        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • nanniemouse
        ... to ... what ... nose ... it ... general ... Finally, something I know about. The puppet is probably made of Foam. Basically it is upholstery foam cut,
        Message 3 of 3 , Dec 8, 2005
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          > Hey guys,
          > Sorry this is a bit OT but I really need help on this. I'm trying
          to
          > make a pretty complex hand puppet and I've got a genral Idea of
          what
          > I'm doing but I have a few specific questions.
          >
          > 1. What kind of material can I use for th puppet's skin? It almost
          > looks like felt, but I just don;t know how to do that.
          >
          > 2. Is there any way to replicate the nice detailed face (ex. the
          nose
          > and such)?
          >
          > 3. What kind of batting/stuffing would you guys recommend for this
          > project? I think I have like teddy bear stuffing but I'm not sure
          it
          > will be stiff enough.
          >
          > 4. Is the head/mouth movement as simple as it looks? I just want to
          > make this puppet workable and sturdy so...yeah.
          >
          > OK, here's some reference pictures:
          >
          > http://the-op.com/images/episode/216/000058_sm.jpg
          >
          > It's on the box on the left of you screen. Small pic but good
          general
          > shape.
          >
          > Good shot of the entire head:
          > http://the-op.com/images/episode/216/000172_sm.jpg
          >
          > CU of face:
          > http://the-op.com/media/image2.php?ep=216&i=7569&cat=6200
          >
          > ANY information you can give me about this sort of thing would be
          > really helpful!
          > Nicole
          >


          Finally, something I know about. The puppet is probably made of
          Foam. Basically it is upholstery foam cut, shaped , glued together
          and covered with fabric. I use 1" thick.

          This puppet looks like the top of the head is made into a bowl like
          shape, this could be done by cutting wedge shaped sections and
          glueing them edge to edge. Foam needs to be glued with special
          adhesive. You can get it at Upholstery supply stores or over the net
          at places like:
          http://site.iwebcenters.com/afoammart_2/foammarthome.html

          Remember VENTILATION. This stuff is rough on lungs. Spray both
          surfaces, this is contact cement. Consider the placement
          permanent. You can occassionally move a piece if it's still wet,
          but it is rarely successful. Dry fit and check before gluing. A
          couple of straigt pins can help.

          The "jaw" looks like half a "bowl". You glue the "lips" to a mouth
          peace made of two half circle shaped pieces of stiff cardboard,
          sandwiched between two circles of felt so that there is a hinge
          formed by the felt. I would cover the head with fabric before
          inserting the mouth, but it looks like this puppet was covered after
          the mouth was glued and stitched to the edge instead of glued under.

          A semi-circcle of foam is fitted above and below the mouth piece,
          so you can slip your hand in between the cardboard and the foam in
          order to control the movement. The exact placement and size
          depends on the puppeteer's comfort. I like a fairly tight fit.
          Experiment with it a little.

          The "skin" looks like felt molded in a Doll face mold and then
          stretched over the foam. This is the difficult part. Felt can be
          molded when wet, but you do not want to wet your foam. It takes
          forever to dry and it speeds the disintagration of the foam. So,
          you will have to find or make a hard mold for your face. Check Felt
          doll supplies on the net, or you can make a mold out of instant
          paper mache, just be sure to sand it smooth. Lumps will show. If
          you make a mold, make the entire front top of the face. It will be
          smoother.

          Cut the rest of the felt bigger than you need, fit using pins to
          hold it and then mark (chalk is good) and cut, you will get a
          smoother fit. Dont forget seam allowences. I would make them
          small, fold them under and stitch the seams together while pinned
          to the puppet. I don't remember what the stitch is called, but you
          take a little stitch in the fold, cross over to the other side and
          take another stich in that fold and pull the two sides together.
          Hand stitching is tedious, but will help hold the shape. Again, it
          will be smoother. A little poly fill under the cheeks will keep
          them plump.

          Stitch on lips.

          Remember, the bottom back of the head and the neck are nothing but
          fabric, to give easy movement. Don't be stingy, a little extra
          fabric will make the movement smoother.

          If you don't need an exact duplicate you can use "dolly skin"
          stretch fabric and pads of polyfil and needle sculpt the nose.

          The body is foam as well, probably dressed in childrens clothes.

          I'm sorry i can't give any more detailed instructions, but I would
          need to see more of the puppet. I hope I helped.

          Kathleen
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