This sweet and simple DIY finger puppet project is the perfect first introduction to sewing. A simple whip stitch is introduced while the little details are simply glued on to prevent frustration. The fun of these little finger puppets will last long after the making is done. Playing with them may be the best part!
I love working with felt when introducing any kind of sewing with kids. It’s sturdy, not slippery, the edges don’t fray, and it’s super cheap so they can experiement and make mistakes without worrying. Assorted packs like this one with 48 awesome colors will keep kids busy for making puppets plus dozens of other projects from their own imagination.
Cutting your template…..
Cut an oblong shape from two layers of felt. It should be bigger than if you just traced your finger to allow for the depth of your finger. There are no details included in this step, just the basic form. Every puppet looks the same right now!
The whip stitch….
Really, you could use any stitch to attach the two pieces of felt that make up the body of your finger puppets. I like the whip stitch because it’s pretty and strong- and easy! Thread your needle with embroidery thread, tie a knot in the end and start at one corner of your puppet. (The bottom will be left open so your finger has a place to go!)
Go up through the two layers of felt, around the cut edges and back up through the two layers. Every stitch will loop around the edges creating a neat little finish. Go through all layers a few times at the end of your stitching to create a knot.
Your kiddo has had a little experience with needle and thread at this point. You could definitely keep going and sew any and all details on this way. We chose to use fabric glue for the details since they are tiny and I didn’t want their adorableness tainted with frustration.
Now is the time for your finger puppets to take on a personality of their own. Ears, eyes, whiskers; all of it can get from felt. Sharp scissors are a must for these little details!
If you’re using glue be sure to put something between the two layers of the body of your puppets as you work. If you don’t keep the layers separate chances are good they will end up glued together. Trust me.
I like working on creating a whole from smaller shapes because it’s a lot less overwhelming to think of complex shapes in this way. It’s much easier to cut out a circle for an eye than cutting out an entire cat. Check out this post (with free printable) about the element of shape.