Monday, September 29, 2014

Stories of the Autumn Gnomes plus Tutorial

Look who we caught crawling around in the fallen leaves outside...

Yes, the gnomes are making their last minute preparations before they move underground for the winter.

I stitched these little cuties together, feeling all Waldorf-inspired this last week.

Then I handed them off to the littles to play with. With a few questions like, "What are the gnomes doing to get ready for winter?" Chobie was galloping about the yard immersed in his make-believe world.

As part of our homeschool life for this week, we'll be translating his imaginative play into a creative writing project.

After playing with these gnomes for a while, we will sit down together to recall the gnome adventures. Next we will write it down, then make a little book that we can illustrate together.


While we work on that you can make some little fall time gnomes of your own.

First cut out the pieces from felt in colors of your choice. The body is 3" tall by about 2" wide. The hats are just a bit wider than the bodies at the base. Select complimentary colored thread. I used two threads of embroidery floss to emphasize the stitching on this project.

The hats are just triangle shaped instead of rounded at the bottom like they should be to turn out completely even around the bottom edge. I would do that for a larger doll, but these little gnomes are so tiny that it's not very noticeable in the end.

Next sew the edges together for the bodies. I used a blanket stitch around the edges to make it a bit more fancy. Leave an opening at the neck to insert the armature and attach the head later.

Again, I used blanket stitch around the bottom of the hat

then joined the edges with the final stitch.

Without cutting the thread, I did a few quick stitches to the top of the hat.

From here we run into a little problem. How do you hide the knot when you tie off and cut the thread?  Re-thread the needle back through the hat to get it out the bottom. Then tied the knot on the inside of the bottom instead.

The body armature is next. I made them from pipe cleaner. Fold a full pipe cleaner in half first

then fold the arms

and the legs, using the body piece as a guide for get the correct length.

Getting the armature into the body is a little tricky, but the pipecleaner bends enough to give it enough give to wiggle in there. To get around that, you could make the armature first, then sew the body around it.  I pressed the legs together to get them into the neck hole.

Once they are inside you can manipulate the pipe cleaners through the body to get them into the perfect place.

Finally, use some hot glue on the stem sticking out the body to attach the head. Put the stem through the hole in a 25mm wooden bead.

Attach the hat with hot glue too, and allow to dry.

Repeat with as many Autumn colors of felt as desired.

Happy gnome making!

What fall crafts have you been working on?

This post is part of the
Mum Of One

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  1. i am useless with needles but i think i could do some of these.

    thank you for sharing your post with the #pinitparty

  2. These are adorable! The kids would love them.

  3. Um I need to make these! My husband has a weird gnome obsession lol!