MAKING FELTED BENDY GNOMES TUTORIAL




This shows the materials needed for the gnome and the shaped body. The bending of the wire is helped by using needle nose pliers. The bends should be tight so they will fit through bead holes.  The head and hand beads have glue in them.
The proportions are made for and "average " gnome, though  you are of course able to change these to make a more characterized figure, longer legs, shorter legs, larger head, etc.
The florist wire body is now wrapped in pipe cleaner as a base for the carded wool to be wrapped around it.
Make sure that no sharp ends can be felt from the pipe cleaners. These can be pinched in with the needle nose pliers.
For this size gnome, I generally use two or three long pipe cleaners. The shell feet are attached by drilling a small hole in the center , toward the back for the concave side of the shell. This hole would be about 3/32". The florist wire is poked through the hole and bent at a 45 degree angle,  so there is a small "L" shape , about 1/8" to form a foot in the shell.
This bend should not be lower than the bottom of the shell.
This shows adding glue to fill the underside of the shell feet. Fill the glue to the top, it is important to keep the florist wire below the surface of the shell edges.  After the glue dries over night, the shape of the feet are traced on felt and cut out and glued to the bottom of the foot.  It is important to maintain "flatness" in this process for the gnome to be able to stand.  The next step will be wrapping the body with with wool to fill it out.
This is the gnome body before dressing. As the wool is wrapped around the wire frame, it is needle felted  to make a firm and tight, especially around the arm and leg joints where it will be bending.  A dab of glue can be used to secure the wool when you begin if desired. There is a great variety of  shapes, from stout and pudgy to tall and slender, all  done with wool wrapping and length of wire body. The tutorial shows an average shape and height, but with shorter legs and a larger body, it would take a whole different look. The length of arms is generally established by the hands hitting mid thigh when in dropped position.  Notice how the gnome is able to stand with the pistachio shell feet!!!
This concept is a major break through in the world of standing gnomes!  It was thought of my daughter and we are glad to share it!




 This is how the figure looks with the "clothes" needle felted to the body.  For this step I often use what is called "pre-felt" and is thin and easy to work with. The boots are laced with brown yarn over a wool"legging".

This is the back view of the gnome before adding hair and a hat.
The wire nub a the top is easily covered by hair and the hat, if  you were not having a hat, the wire top could be cut off and the hole filled with Tacky glue.
Here is the little Gnomad Gnome all  finished. Glue was applied to the part of the head that is covered by hair , patted down and let dry. The acorn cap was glued on over the hair, making sure that there was glue where the cap contacted the hair and head.  If there is too much "loose " hair, the cap may not secure it self to the actual head.  Keep this in mind as you put the hair and cap on.    Her hair looked better dark, so I traded it for the red I was originally going to use.  Her hat is a large acorn cap, which works wonderfully.  She is standing with her pet Yak, who is also made the same way with wire, pipe cleaners and will roving. 


 

 Here are two felted bendy gnomes as well as a wooden gnome from the Painting Pixie shop. They are playing in their Mossy Tree Trunk House.  The mouse is needle felted also. The "dishes" can be made from a tutorial on seed pod dishes on this blog also.





This is Father Elf in Holiday attire, and a helper elf.  In the this case the clothing and hat was for Father elf was made from red wood felt, which I hand sewed and then fitted on the body. His feet are wool with felt glued no the bottom.

Please feel free to ask for any details I have overlooked or questions that you might have!
lucindamacy.co@gmail.com


All content of this post is protected by my copyright and may not be copied, transferred or used with out my permission. Thank you.   Copyright 2015 by Lucinda Claire Macy


18 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing. What an awesome tutorial. I can't wait to try!

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  2. Utterly magical. I've made dolls similar, but they didn't look quite as good as yours. Maybe I'll stick to knitting....

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  3. They are beautiful, Lucinda! I hope I find the time to make some in the near future! I can see why people want to buy them. They are so pretty!

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  4. Lucinda, you're an amazing artist with a delightful eye toward the magical. How generous of you to share this tutorial. I want to develop a love of nature and an unbounded imagination in my grandson before he is caught up with all the electronic toys that suck it away. Thanks for this!

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  5. gracias por compartir...saludos desde Chile.

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  6. These are the most adorable creations I've ever seen! Thank you for sharing the tutorial. I may just have to try it!
    Love the wee houses too. Wishing you continued success! : )
    ~ Karen

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  7. WOW absolutely love these. I think I will put away the crochet hooks and needles and start doing this. Thank you for all the wonderful information. xx jujus the happy hooker soon to be a feeling felter !!!!

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  8. what do you use to draw on the face?

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    1. Hi there~ I hand paint my faces right onto the wood with a small paint brush and non-toxic paints that I mix to get the colors I like.

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  9. Thank you for this wonderful tutorial. What a great site!

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    1. Thank you for visiting my blog :-)

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  10. Good evening!

    My name is Anastasia, I am the author of the blog rat-felt.ru. I love your creativity! =) Can I translate some of your needle felting tutorials into Russian and post on my blog with a link to your site or page in social networks?

    Thanks in advance.
    Sincerely, Anastasia.

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    1. Greetings Anastasia and thank you for your interest.
      Everything on my blog is original work and is copyrighted as such. When others want to share the content, they provide a link on a social media site and if needed , the viewers can use Google Translation to understand instructions, which is free on the internet. I could provide you with a title page photo and then you could make the link to my blog if you wanted to share it. I generally share my work through my Willodel Facebook page:
      www.facebook.com/Willodel
      Take care , Lucinda

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  11. Hi Lucinda, could you tell me the size of bead [and the hole diameter] please ? I have looked on ebay for them but the choice of size and size of the hole is bewildering ! Jan UK

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    1. Hi Dottie! Thank you for dropping by my site:-) The size bead is a 20 mm. I would say the hole opening is 4 mm, but I am guessing! This is large enough for florist wire, size 20gauge or pipe cleaners to be doubled and poked through. You may have a bead with the smaller size hole for stringing like a necklace. If you have tools, you could drill a bigger hole. If cannot get the double thickness of your wire through, you could cut the top where it is bent and just put one peice of wire though, winding the other part at the neck. Use ample glue and let dry thorughly. Does this help?

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  12. I'm so happy to find this tutorial!!! Wonderful, inspiring work you do. Please tell me how you drill the hole in the Pistacio?Warmest greetings from new Zealand.

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    1. Hello ! Thank you for visiting my site:-)
      I drill the hole in the pistachio with a small hand drill and small bit. The drill bit should be about the same size as the wire going into it, but big enough to slip through. If you so not have access to a drill , write me again and I will describe an alternative shoe using a cardboard sole and then wrapped with wool.

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