So its raining cats and dogs outside and your child can't go out to play. He/she is rather grumpy and sitting in one corner looking very sad; and its breaking your heart! What do you do? Finger puppets could be a great idea to lift your child's spirits! Finger puppets are easy to make, fun to play around with, and very adorable indeed! You can develop puppet making as a hobby in your child by getting him/her intrigued about these little creatures who live on your fingers!
Paper Finger Puppets
These are probably the easiest ones to make - all you have to do is cut and paste! It is as easy as that. Paper puppets give you enough room to make mistakes - especially if you are a first-timer. Also it is possible to add details very easily. All you have to do is draw them on the paper! If you are making a cat, for example, you can use a dark-colored sketch-pen or marker and add a tongue! Layering is also a good idea. You can actually cut thin strips and add whiskers on the cat's face. Small dots could go on to be eyes, and triangles could add ears to complete the cat. Different colors can be used to make the finger puppet attractive and colorful. Cats are never yellow colored in real life - but if your child likes the color yellow, your finger puppet cat could well be yellow colored! A thin red colored strip could become the collar - and voila! You have a cat on your finger!
Felt Finger Puppets
Felt is a kind of cloth that is made without weaving fibers - it is simply made by pressing wool fibers together into sheets. Felt is very easy to model or mold into different shapes. Felt finger puppets are about as easy to make as paper finger puppets - the advantage being they are more durable. Using cloth gives you the opportunity to stitch hands, legs, ears, and tails (in case of animal finger puppets) onto your finger puppet. They definitely add more dimension to your finger puppet than can be achieved in paper finger puppets. Stitching also means you can experiment with embroidering details onto the puppet. So your finger puppet bunny can well be clad in a dinner jacket!
Crochet Finger Puppets
If you are such a crochet enthusiast that everybody in the family already has a sweater or a pair of gloves or a muffler knit by you and you are running out of things to knit, you could branch out into making crochet finger puppets! There are many interesting crochet finger puppet patterns that you can try out. The best thing about crochet finger puppets is that they won't break or tear easily - like paper finger puppets may. Plus you can wash them and keep them clean - since they are made of wool anyway! Crochet finger puppets however need a little more practice and patience than paper and felt finger puppets. You first need to master the art of crochet and then try making crochet finger puppets.
Accessorizing Your Finger Puppet
➦ Beads: Suitable beads in place of eyes can help you add a three-dimensional effect to the puppet and make it look more appealing and interesting. They can help you give a nerdy or geeky appearance to the puppet. You can even stick small glasses made out of wire onto the puppet to complete the look!
➦ Wood: The body of your puppet can be made of wood if you'd like. However, that can make the puppet a little stiff! It will restrict movement. Instead you can have just a wooden face. It will help you create the perfect expressionless guy! You can draw droopy half-closed eyes on the puppet and make it the monotonous or sleepy guy! The key here is the fact that you cannot add too many details because it is a wooden face.
➦ Spring or Wire: Small pieces of spring can be wrapped with wool to give your puppet noodle-hair! You can even use a bent wire to give your puppet dog a curved tail. Plastic wire pieces can add details like glasses to your puppet, as described earlier. Another interesting way to use spring in your finger puppet can be to make the entire puppet out of spring! Just wrap the spring around your finger and prop a head on top of the spring, and you can have a squiggly, bouncing finger puppet!
Theme-Based Finger Puppets
Everybody loves a good story - even grown-ups! Finger puppets can be a great way to tell an old story to your child in a new way! Depending on the theme of the story, you would require different finger puppets. However, you can even work the other way round and make different finger puppets - maybe based on a theme - and then weave a story around them! Here is a list of different themes you can choose to make your own array of finger puppets...
- Pet Animals
- Barn Animals
- Wild Animals
- Fruits and Vegetables
We may grow out of playing home, playing dress-up, but we will probably never grow out of cartoons! Finger puppets give you the opportunity to let out the child in you. But most importantly, they will make your kid smile his/her brightest smile! Go ahead, spread the joy...