How to Build a Custom Puppet – Part 5

This is part 5 of a video series about how I build my custom puppets. It is not meant to be a tutorial or for beginners. I don’t go into a lot of details, just outlining how I currently build most of my puppets. This series is meant to be an overview of how much supplies, tools and time it takes to build a “Muppet-y” style puppet. I’m also sharing what I’ve learned in the hopes of helping out fellow puppet builders.

I love building puppets. I build my puppets as a hobby and on a tight budget.

How to Sew the Arms and Hands
Super Duper Time Saving Tip

One of the most time saving tips I’ve ever seen was the technique about how to cut out and sew the arm/hands from the Project Puppet patterns. You trace around the arm/hand on the fleece and sew first before cutting out. I have accidentally cut out the arm/hand first and then tried to sew around those tiny fingers. I gave up in frustration and just started over by retracing the pattern and sewing on the tracing line before cutting out.

I use this technique quite a bit on other puppet building projects. It works perfectly on sewing the tiny little ears for my line of animal puppet patterns available from Etsy or our website store.

Trace and Sew

Trace the arm/hand pattern on fleece. Do not cut out. Sew all around the arm/hand on the tracing line. Leave the gap near the karate chop part of the hand open, so you can stuff the foam hand made in Part 4 up inside when turned right side out. Also leave the gap open at the top of the arm. That is where you will stuff poly-fil in the arm.


After stuffing the foam hand in, sew the gap closed. It takes little bit of work to stuff the hand in, but it does fit. Do not sew the top of the arm gap closed. That is where the arm will be attached to the puppet.

Stuff the arms with Poly-fil to the desired fullness and repeat for the second arm.

Part 6 is How to Make a Foam Torso.