If you are embarking on a puppet-making project with your children or planning a puppet show-themed birthday party for them, you will need to know how to create a puppet theatre. It might sound daunting, but there is a simple way to construct a small stage using a doorway in your home and a curtain. Keep the kids entertained for hours with a puppet theatre that they will be impressed to know you made yourself.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
Things you need
- Fabric (contrasting with curtain fabric)
- Measuring tape
- Safety pins
- Glue gun
- Needle and thread (optional)
- Third fabric (optional)
Measure the doorway and select a curtain or piece of fabric that is at least half an inch wider than the frame of the doorway you intend to use. The fabric should be at least half the height of the doorway.
Lay the curtain on the floor or a good cutting surface and measure a 15- to 20-inch square in the centre. Mark the square with chalk. Cut out the square. The opening will be the stage.
Measure a square of contrasting fabric that is a bit larger than the stage opening. Cut out the contrasting square, and then cut it in half. Do not cut it diagonally. Use safety pins to attach the top of each piece of the contrasting fabric to the top of the back of the stage opening to resemble curtains.
Cut two 12-inch long pieces of ribbon, tie each piece into a bow and pin one to each side of the front of the stage opening, about a third of the way from the bottom of the opening. The bows will be positioned to look as though they are tying back the contrasting fabric curtains, though the curtains will be separately pinned back in a later step.
Glue strips of ribbon around the edges of each side of the stage opening to frame it. For a longer lasting doorway theatre, sew the curtains and ribbon bows in place or use a glue gun to fasten them. Pin back the curtains at the ribbon bows so it looks like the curtains are tied back. Sew or glue the curtains in place if you desire.
Pin, sew or glue a ribbon loop to each top corner of the curtain. Measure the height at which you would like to hang the puppet theatre, and then hammer a nail into each side of the door frame.
Slip the ribbon loops over the nails to hang your puppet theatre. Your children can stand or kneel behind the curtain and use the opening as a stage for their puppet performance.
Tips and warnings
- Save your puppet theatre and bring it out when a rainy day rolls around.
- Have your children create their own puppets to go with your puppet theatre.
- If your children are helping you with the project, supervise them at all times to avoid injury.
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