By General Crafts Contributor Michelle
Create a menagerie of woodland creatures to inhabit your Christmas tree this year. Make them for yourself, to give as presents, or to adorn gifts–these forest friends are sure to bring a smile!
Here’s what you’ll need to make your own:
- Yarn: I used brown, orange, white and grey
- Felt: white, brown, pink, black, and other various colors for scarves
- 3/16 in. pom-poms: I used black and pink
- Orange bump chenille stems (for fox tail)
- Acrylic craft paint: black and white
- Royal Soft Grip Sable Paint Brush – Detail 10/0
- Hot glue gun and glue sticks
- Tapestry needle
- Twine for hanging
- 8.5″x11″ piece of stiff cardboard
- 4″x4″ piece of stiff cardboard
All of the animals start with the same, basic technique of yarn wrapping. Hold the end of your yarn at the one edge of the long side of your cardboard. Begin wrapping it around the cardboard tightly, but not so tightly that you won’t be able to slip it off when you’re done. Wrap it 25 times around the cardboard, cut the yarn, and carefully slid the yarn loops off the cardboard.
Tie a piece of yarn around the middle of the yarn bundle. Wrap it around once, and tie again to secure it.
Fold the yarn bundle in half at where you just knotted it, and tie another piece of yarn about 1″ down from the knotted place on the top, around the now folded bundle. This will form the little round head.
Take another piece of yarn, and tie it around the bundle about and inch down from the head that you just formed, this will be the tummy.
Divide the loops that are left at the bottom into two sections to form legs. Make each section into a little bundle by tying a piece of yarn as close to the bottom of each section as possible. You have now finished the body, and will next make the arms.
To make the arms, wrap your 4″ piece of cardboard 20 times with yarn, in the same manner you did to make the body. Carefully slide the loops off of the cardboard, and tie a piece of yarn as close to each end of the bundle as possible, to form the hands.
Using the end of a pen, or marker, carefully poke a hole through the yarn on the tummy section of the body.
Remove the pen, and use it, and your finger, to push the arm bundle through the body. Pull it so it so the arms hang out evenly on both sides.
Trim any long pieces of yarn, and cut the loops on the hands and feet, and trim until even.
To make the animal faces, cut a small heart-like shape out of felt, but instead of a point at the bottom, make it rounded. Glue a pom-pom at the bottom, for a nose, cut ears, and make tails (Cut a bump of orange chenille for fox, glue a white pom-pom for bunny).
Use your detail brush to make small black dots of acrylic paint for eyes. On the fox you can add some black to the tips of the ears, and some white to the end of the tail.
To make the owls, begin making the body just like you did for the other animals, but stop after you tie the bundle for the head, don’t tie a tummy bundle, but instead, move down, and tie the whole bundle together about 3/4″ from the bottom, so the bottom loops form the tail feathers. Cut the felt shape for the face, but cut a triangle for a beak instead of a pom-pom nose, cut long teardrop shapes for wings, 6 little triangles for toes, and little triangles for the “ears” on top of the head.
Cut long, narrow strips of felt and tie on for scarves. Decorate the scarves as desired with painted designs like snowflakes, or cut little pieces of felt to glue onto them.
Use your tapestry needle to add a piece of twine to the top of the heads to form loops for hanging.
I made a fox, owls, bear and bunny–what other cute animals could you make?