Sock puppets can be made with a child, for a child or for adults who occasionally need to entertain children. A sock puppet can be a human or an animal or any type of creature you wish, and it can be decorated as creatively or simply as you like. Take the time to make a stuffed sock puppet and it will add dimension and stability to the finished product.
Stuffing the puppet
Fold the round piece of cardboard in half. Place the fold of the cardboard between your thumb and forefinger so that it opens and closes like a wide mouth with your finger movements. Smear white craft glue on the side not touching your fingers.
Place the sock that will be the outward-facing body of the puppet on your hand, over the cardboard. Allow the cardboard to open and push the seam of the sock into it against the glue. Allow it to dry.
Take a small amount of fibre fill and push it into the bottom of the sock, nestling it around the cardboard mouthpiece.
Put your second sock inside of the first sock. Adjust it so that your four fingers cover the top part of the cardboard on the side that will be the top of the puppet's face and your thumb is under the bottom side where the puppet's chin will be.
Stuff small amounts of fibre fill carefully with your other hand into the space between the two socks. This will make your sock puppet's body fuller and more cushioned than the average sock puppet. Don't overstuff it. Smooth the stuffing out as you go along so that it is evenly dispersed.
If you want your sock puppet to have any distinguishing shapes, such as a hump on its back or bumps and ridges down the side, build that area up with stuffing.
Finishing the sock animal
When the stuffing reaches about an inch or two from the end of the sock, carefully remove your hand so you don't pull the inner sock out of the puppet. Do this by grasping the puppet's face firmly, making sure you have both layers of socks, and sliding your hand out gently.
Sew the edges of the two socks together so the fibre fill stuffing cannot escape. You can tuck in the edges or cut off excess first if you don't want the puppet to come too far down your arm.
Sew some spots to secure the socks together at the front face of the puppet, such as on either side of the mouth for dimples or where the eyes, nose or ears will be placed. Make sure you're going through both layers of socks with your needle and thread.
Decorate your puppet as you desire. Add eyes, ears, a nose, teeth or a tongue on the inside of the mouth, scales, horns or anything else you desire. Features can be painted on, created from buttons, felt or embroidery thread.
Use yarn to make a wig for your puppet. Loop yarn around a small piece of cardboard several times, slide it off and tie it at the centre with another piece of yarn, this will be the part in the hair. Trim the ends of the loop and glue or sew it to the puppet's head. Make long hair to braid or put in pigtails. Cut a circle of black felt the same size as the cardboard and glue it to the puppet's mouth on the outside of the face to add dimension to the mouth. Cut a red or pink felt tongue to glue inside at the crease.
Sew on any buttons or eyes securely or use felt or embroidered features for puppets used by young children, to avoid choking hazards.
Things you need
- 2 adult-sized socks
- 10-cm (4-inch) round piece of cardboard
- White craft glue
- Fibre fill