How to make Ornaments & Standing Pinecone Wee Folk

Pinecone Elves and Fairies that stand on their own are at the end of this tutorial

This is the kind little Pine Cone Fairy that we will make in this tutorial. This is a Fir tree pinecone. You can use other pine cones that are an appropriate size too, and adjust the size of the wooden bead for the head , so that it fits your pine cone.

 These are the materials used in the project.   The pine cone is from a Fir tree, a Spruce cone or other kinds will also work. The cap is from an Oak acorn, the wings are dried White Oak leaves, the hair is wool roving, bits of felt and wool , small wood beads for hands, pipe cleaner, and wood bead for head.

This is a tutorial for making a basic Pine Cone Fairy ornament.  It is meant to be a springboard for your own ideas and materials. Feel free to use different kinds of cones and caps.  Wings can also be made from paper, felt, netting or many other things. Many variations of hair and dress can also be created.  The dried leaves become fairly fragile  with time and it helps to coat the front and back with a coating with glue.  I also keep a little box of dried leaves and maple seed pods for wings, so I always have replacements.  Leaves also vary and White oak leaves are sturdier than Black Oak. For my work with making wee folk, I always use bamboo fondu sticks or shish kabob sticks for applying glue. They are great for getting to hard to get places when working with small items.
The sequence of these steps may be altered if  you choose,  Some things I have done in a sequence that allows other parts to keep drying while you work.  You may find a different way to do these steps also.  If you do  not want to use the cordless drill, you could make a hole with a hand tool, carefully so the cap does not crack.

Apply glue to the little stem at the top of the pine cone, this is a  cone from a Douglas Fir tree. If there is not a stem on your cone, you can drill a little hole and put a tooth pick or twig in it that extends for enough out of the hole for the bead head to go over it. Make sure there is ample glue inside the bead hole , to adhere to the cone. The head bead size of this project is 20 mm.

Place wooden bead head over stem and onto glue. Hold a bit until the glue has set up. Carefully lie down pine cone with head to dry a bit while you start the other parts of the ornament. I also use rubber bands frequently to hold things while they dry.

Next are the hair, hands and hat!

Drill two holes carefully in the acorn cap, on each side of the stem, about 3/ 16th apart.  The drill bit should be small, just large enough for the string to go through.

Put string through the drilled holes, with long ends extending out the top to form hanging loop.

Add a drop of glue between the drilled holes. Tie a knot at the base of the string at the cap and also one at the end to form the loop that the ornament will hang by.
Let sit to dry.

Now for the hair attachment~

Glue is put onto the back of the head first (make sure it is the back!)  On the front, the glue is put around an imaginary hairline, leaving the full face. The glue is spread with a bamboo stick used in the kitchen ( fondue stick) or tooth pick

Apply hair piece, The end for the "bangs" in the front, just to the top of the forehead. The long part can hang down the back, it will probably have to be parted around the wings, and brought forward, braided or put up. It is okay if the hair seems too full or fuzzy, as it can be trimmed as desired.

Next will be the arms

I usually cut the pipe cleaner about the length of the pinecone. This piece was 3" long. The beads are small, with a hole big enough for the pipe cleaner. The size is 7.5 mm.  Attach a bead to each end of the pipe cleaner.

The pipe cleaner, with beads attached, is glued onto the upper part of the pinecone, about 1/8" lower than the neck. It is good to hold this long enough for the glue to set up enough to hold the arms in place while the glue dried.  It is good to let the ornament rest long enough for glued arms to set up enough to stay in place as you continue to work.

A bit of colored wool (your choice!) is wrapped around the pipe cleaner to give the arms some fullness. I usually use a bit of glue under the wool, and also needle felt the wool to make it more compact if necessary.

Glue is placed in a ring on the top of the head, where the cap will sit. You will want enough glue to go down through the hair, but not be squishing out. Getting the right amount of glue comes with practice and experience!

A ring of glue on the inside of the cap is also good.

Carefully place the acorn with glue inside onto the hair and head, making sure to keep all the glue inside. This needs to be held until it will stay put and then let dry a while so that it will not move as  you continue to work on the ornament. 

Apply glue in a spot for where the wings will touch, this will be in the upper back about where the pipe cleaner is. You want to make sure that the each leaf will be touching glue when they are placed.

Take the two chosen leaves and place them carefully on the glue, trying to make them even and positioned right when looking from the front. Hold these carefully until the glue takes and then let dry enough that you can place the felt piece on the leaves without them moving.

Apply glue to the back of the green felt heart, just enough to coer the surface, you do not want glue oozing out the sides, if it does wipe with a sponge or cloth to remove excess.

The felt heart is placed over the spot where the leaves come together. It is good to hold it a bit until the glue is sticking and then gently lay it down on it's back to let the glue thoroughly dry.

I have added a painted face to the Pine Cone Fairy , it can also be left with out a face  or just pink cheeks or eyes, it is entirely as you please.

Here are three versions, the Fairy on the left is made from a spruce pine cone and is larger, the center is an Elf with a handsewn cap and beard and the third is our little Fairy we just made.  These ornaments are even cute with no arms or wings made out of paper or felt or other creative things you can think of.

I am adding a couple more versions of this little one that I made from Sequoia Redwood Pinecones and Coastal Redwood Pine cones. 
Standing Gnomes and Wee folk are made by making the pinecone flat on the bottom with a rasp or saw and then glueing a wooden or cardboard circle on for more stability. I find a small limb, about an 1" in diameter and cut little slices on my saw.
Here are more standing pine cone wee folk.You can see the variations in hair styles, hats and clothes. They all have a little wood circle on the bottom of the cone.
Two more standing versions , the little girl gnome is playing inside a giant Bur Oak acorn cap. Happy Autumn!

This sweet little Wee one with her heart was made for the Heart Wreath
Tutorial, and gives you ideas of how you can change the appearance of
the Pinecone Fairies to suit different occasions. This one included painting
the pine cone first. The crown is a poppy seed pod  cut in half.

 Thank you for visit Willodel Tutorials!

All content of this post are protected by my copyright and may not be copied, transferred or used with out my permission. Thank you.   Copyright 2016 by Lucinda Claire Macy


  1. Awesome! I love this! It was a bad year for acorn caps where I live, so I definitely want to make this next year! Thanks so much!

  2. NO worry!!! I collected acorn caps as if there would never be another!!! I have never seen the bounty of acorns in my life that I saw this year. Let me send you some!

  3. Thank you so much for this tutorial ! I will do this with my childs, my son is very enthusiastic with pictures...

  4. What a cute tutorial! I love the leaf wings they are so gorgeous!! Thank you for sharing~

    1. Anyone having extra pieces for this little fairy and others I would appreciate a care package, I have not been able to find the little wooden balls for the head and seriously can't find different pieces for caps, I have a few acorn caps but that is it around here. I have gone to 3 different towns around here and no one carries the little wooden heads or any of the leaves for the wings, I am anxious to try this so if any of you fellow crafters can afford to share please let me know. email is

    2. Hi Donna,
      The wooden balls can be found in abundance on Etsy, you just search 22 mm wooden balls or beads , or larger or smaller if you prefer. They can also be bought on amazon. I have also found them in second hand shops in the craft area and on old macrame plant hangers, darker colored, but they can be painted. If you cannot find acorn caps on walks in the woods or park, they too are easily found on etsy and ebay. You might also choose a different kind of hat, one made from felt, heavy paper, or other cloth. I find many things at thrift stores to repurpose and use for crafting.

  5. These are so lovely Lucinda! My daughter just saw them and can't wait for us to visit her grandparents in Europe, we might still be able to collect the pinecones and acorn caps. . .

  6. wonderful! I do have a lot acorn caps if , when you get back, you still need some, let me know!




  8. Love, love, love! will be making these today!


  9. These are soooooooooo fabulous!!!!!!!!!!!!! To cute for words!...
    Having the boys make these for a handwork clas..thank you Lucinda!

    xoxo Jacci

  10. I've linked up to this post in my current blog post., thanks for the inspiration! I'll be posting about how our ornaments came out on Friday.

  11. We made our own versions of these today, only ours are pine cone mice instead :-) Thanks so much for sharing this great activity! Julie of This Cosy Life linked to it on her blog, and it looked like so much fun, we just had to try it.

  12. They are so super cute. If only it wasn't spring here!

  13. This craft is absolutely adorable and soooo very perfectly Waldorf. I'm a Waldorf school mom in Colorado looking for the perfect craft to offer at our school's winter faire. I must go gather newly fallen leaves and hopefully (fingers crossed) a good supply of acorn caps! Already have the cones! Thank you!!!

  14. Hello!!! My granddaughter's 3rd birthday party is in September and she's having a FAERY PARTY!!! I'm so excited to have found these little faery's!!! Thank you so much, Hazel's Grambie

  15. Hi,first time I've seen your blog & love it these little people are so cute & would love make some after Holiday's,Hope you & Family have Merry Christmas & happy Holiday's ..Thank's

  16. Love your blog & little people hope learn make one two after Holiday's over Thank's...

  17. I love your tutorial! We have Garry Oak trees with shallow acorn caps. I'd love to have some of those huge acorn caps that you used in your tutorial, though! I've made some fairies with wood bead heads, and felt clothes, and gave them silk flower wings. They look cute. I'd like to try making some fairies like yours! They are soooooo adorable! Hugs from, Janet in Canada: )

  18. Hi! I love your tutorial! The Fir cone fairies are sweet! We don't have oak trees like yours. I wish we did! I'd love to try making a fairy like yours! Then I could put some in our Christmas tree! Autumn is my favourite time of year, and when I was a little girl, I used to collect leaves of different colours and press them in big heavy books. I guess we all did that at one time or another. Your use of nature's seeds and cones is fab! A great craft for kids, too! Thanks for sharing your tutorial! Hugs! Janet in Canada

  19. Thanks for the clear instructions...your creations are darling. I hope to craft some of these with my granddaughters.

  20. Your ideas are wonderful and thank you so much for sharing your talent with others.
    I will be out walking in the woods this afternoon.

  21. It is extremely nice to see the greatest details presented in an easy and understanding manner, Just saying thanks wouldn’t just be enough, for the fantastic fluency in your writing. useful reference

  22. Lovely project! Unfortunally I can't find pinecones and acorns like yours, in Italy! 😭

  23. Maravillosos, gracias por compartir