Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Poppets - Finger puppets

(Children’s Hospital Finger Puppets.)

My clown called me. Today he had been to the Children’s Ward of the Hospital. One little girl, hooked up to machines and covered with bandages and blankets, would not smile or even look at him. He gave his small gift to her mother. Later, as he did his clown show for a large group, he noticed the little girl, in a wheelchair, still hooked up and covered up, at the back of the room. Only one finger peaked out of the wrappings and on that finger was a new puppet. There was a smile on her face.
The clown is a friend who visits the hospital every month and asked our knitting group to create finger puppets to take to the kids. The pattern has been worked and reworked and I think it is easy and cute. Best of all you can use some of the odd balls in your stash. Knit a smile for a child, it’s contagious!

One size: 2.5 inches tall.

Worsted weight scraps, acrylics best for washability, but any yarn is fine, self striping colors for clothes, cream for face, browns and other “hair colors” for hair.

Fingering, sock yarn, or embroidery cotton for face details, rosy-beiges for smile, and brown, blue, green for eyes. Small amounts of each.

One pair of 4.5 mm needles, small double points are convenient, but full size will work too.

Darning needle to embroider face, crochet hook to attach long hair.

20 sts and 26 rows = 4" in stockinette stitch, but not that important as they are so small.


With 4.5 mm needles and clothing color, cast on 10 sts.
Work in garter stitch (Knit each row) for 4 rows.
Work stocking stitch (knit right side, purl wrong side) for 4 rows.
Break off clothes yarn, leaving 6 inches (to close seam later).
Using face yarn work 5 rows in stocking stitch (end with wrong side facing).
Break face yarn, and leave 6 inch tail.
Using hair yarn, PURL first row.
Next row Purl again (on right side)
Next row [K1, K2 together] repeat 2 more times, K1 (7 stitches left)
Last row, P1, [P2 together] repeat to end (4 stitches left)
Using darning needle gather remaining stitches on 8 inch tail, and secure but don’t close seam yet.

While the back is open, embroider face using sock yarn or similar fine yarn. Tie the ends securely inside the puppet (see photos) and trim close to knots.

Sew the back seam with the coordination color tail of yarn and secure all loose ends in the seam.

For pony tail hair, cut 6 strands about 8 inches long. Using 3 strands, fold in half and use crochet hook to pull through near bottom of hairline in the back right side, and either braid or knot to hold in place. Repeat on back left side. (see photos).


Dorothy said...

I've made a challenge on my blog this year to knit lots of finger puppets ... do you mind if I post a link to this pattern on my site?

chris said...

No problem, I hope one day there will be a puppet on every finger of every child in every country! (or at least all the kids we know!) Chris

pinkangel said...

I work with special kids and these are wonderful........must make some for a little puppet show. Thank you so much.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chris
Just found your poppets today and went to get out my needles and yarn. OOps..
didn't have 4.5 needles. Then I checked back & realized that's Canadian size. Since I'm a former Canadian I have both sizes.
From your pictures, it looks like about size 7or 8 U.S. Please specify for those in the U.S. Looking forward to making lots of your delightful poppets.
Riv in Las Vegas

Anonymous said...

from one Niagara Region person to another ,
where is your knitting group ? :P

chris said...

My knitting group is the St. Catharines Golf and Country Club Knitters.... a private club. If you want to reach me by email, I can discuss further....
(chris knits at hotmail dot com) leave out the spaces!

Anonymous said...

I stumbled here from Ravelry, and I just want to say - St. Catharines is lucky to have people making finger puppets for the kids! I may get my five-year-old knitting these for McMaster. :)

chris said...

It so happens, the finger puppets and Puppies go to the kids ward AT McMaster! Only one day a month with my Clown Friend, so the more the merrier I say! Have fun knitting these.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it great to know that our knitting does make a difference to a child in the hospital. My knitting group is in London and we are knitting finger puppets for the Children's Hospital here.

Anonymous said...

Chris! You are an amazing lady! I just found youir web site and am so impressed with your beautiful work...and especially the lovely gift of your talent that you share with the hospital kids!! The Poppets and the Puppies are adorabll! I cannot wait to make some! Thank you for sharing!
Sue in Minnesota

Laura Caldwell said...

How cool.
I love that you are making not just poppets but puppies and kitties but can you please make a hamster or rabbit design.

thanks for reading.

go to www.video-watcher.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

how can you not love a blog entry that starts with "my clown called today"? Our social knitting group in New Westminster is on board - we're going to give finger puppets a try. We've got a lot of beginning knitters, but we're certainly keen!

Anonymous said...

Chris, I teach first grade and my mom made a set of your poppets for my class using her leftover yarn. the children absolutely love them. I call them their "Reading Buddies" and the children read to them during independent reading time. I collect them at the end of the day and hand them out the next morning so that they don't get lost and so that each child gets a chance to read to all of the "Buddies" It is amazing how much the children love them. The other teachers in my school love them and my mom is going to be very busy knitting! What a great idea and pattern. I love the kitties and dogs too! Thanks for posting the pattern on yur blogsite.

Tanya K said...

omg you rock my world with this little pattern.
I made my first one :) I named him Peter and keeping him forever. He just listens and doesnt talk back or fart or leave the toilet seat up. he he

Anonymous said...

What a great idea! I stumbled upon your blog while searching for things to make with my yarn remnants. I'm inspired! I have a ton of little balls of yarn that are just begging to be made into little puppets, I just didn't know it before now!

Anonymous said...

thanks for the puppet patterns. Great idea for reading buddies and lonely children.

Anonymous said...

So cute! I look forward to trying these. Thanks for sharing!

Peggy said...

Very nice directions! These will be a fun way to use up some odds and ends of yarn. I think my knitting group will like this.

Peggy said...

Nice directions! Thanks

Anonymous said...

These are the cuttest little things. I am thinking of making them for stuffing stuffers for my little grand-son. I will make boys instead of girls. I also want to make the puppies as well. Yhank-you for such a lovely pattern.

Alka Gudadhe said...

Oh! I saw this little, simple puppet just now. It will be wonderful charity gift. I will definitely try to make and handover to small children in my country.