Saturday, January 31, 2009

King of Hearts Puppet

Here is a 'King of Hearts' jumping jack puppet I have been designing for Kindergarten. A little complicated for a group of 5 yr olds but I think fine with small groups. I was also working on a 'Queen of Hearts' puppet but the jumping jack motion seemed a little unlady like......still figuring that out.
I think I'll convert it to a big Valentine Heart Man puppet...stay tuned for that one.
If you want to give this a go here is the directions:
Materials Required:
- thin cardboard (like from a ceral box)
- paper fasteners, mine are a little large..I think you can get a size smaller
- paint, markers, crayons, whatever medium you want to add color
- Mod Podge (optional), for a shiny longlasting finish
- string
- large bead
- embellishements (optional)
- hole punch
Print off template onto cartidge paper or even cardstock.
Cut out pieces and glue to thin cardboard. I usually trace onto the cardboard using the printed pattern piece as a template, cut it out, and then glue the two pieces together. You don't have to use the card but it will be more durable with it.
Add color with medium of your choice.
Punch holes where indicated...for the small holes I used an awl but you can use a large needle.
Add detail to your puppet. I used some metallic paint .
Add a coat or two of Mod Podge to get that shiny finish and to make your puppet more durable.
I also added a coat on the back.
Let dry.
Taking your paper fasteners put puppet together.
For the moving parts do not fasten too tightly. You want there to be ease of movement.
Now to string your puppet. I used two different gauges of string. Attach small pieces of string to all the small holes securing with a knot. You will have to use a needle or awl for this.
I used crochet cotton for this as it was thin enough to thread my needle.
Take a long piece of heavier string for your main pull. About 20" or so. Place the arms and legs at rest before you tie..this is important!
Tie to the main pull, make sure there is about 2 inches of slack in the strings that are attached to the arms and legs. Try to get the slack to be equal between the 2 arms and the 2 legs.
It should look something like this.
If your arms aren't moving well you may have to seperate the strings onto 2 pulls like this. If your puppet isn't moving well consider these:
...... joints are too tight so loosen fasteners
...... not enough slack in the smaller strings attached to arms and legs
..... need to seperate arm attachments by using two pulls.
.... slack between the arms and legs is not equal on both sides
I added a wood bead at the bottom for a pull.
I also decided to add some bling to the crown.
Finally make a hole at the top with your awl or neeedle to attach a loop for hanging. There you go a dancing 'King of Hearts'
Have fun!
see you next time


  1. i love this. I submitted it to Stumble Upon! Any account holders should give this the Thumbs up.

    Gorgeous work. Well done!

  2. I love it - and I think a Queen of hearts with red and white striped bloomers would be fabulous! Ladylike is VERY over-rated!

  3. Isabel, Thank you very much for the rccommendation to Stumble Upon. I appreciate the support.
    FairiesNest, It was fun and not that hard once I worked it out. It turns out Kindergarten will be doing this with their Grade 6 buddies before Valentine's Day.
    Badness Jones, You are probably right, as it is some of the girls in Kindergarten just assumed she was the Queen in her riding for me!