Being a fellow of frugality out of necessity, God led me to create ventriloquist figures cheaply. I find plush animals at thrift stores or rummage sales and convert them into puppets. I have about $3.00 in this one, counting glue and felt. I mean for this to be a help to others that have tight budgets.
I am learning what to look for in plush animals. #1 is the size must be big enough to be seen well. #2 the mouth must be big enough to fit my hand, # 3 does the construction of it lend itself to conversions?
This is a step-by-step conversion of a frog into a ventriloquist figure.
Froggie has a big enough body and mouth.
However, the depth of the head is shallow. This was a bit of a problem. The design of the head wasn’t very good for converting.
The first step is to open the back seam and remove the stuffing that is in the way.
Next I turn the head inside out and cut any threads that the manufacturer had to maintain the animal’s shape.
Next, I cut the threads of the mouth seam and measure and fit cardboard for the mouth.
Now to cover the cardboard in fabric. I used pink felt for this one. Cut and glue on the back side of the cardboard.
I then made a sleeve (a cylinder shape that fits around my forearm) to go from the mouth to the back seam. This keeps my hand out of the batting and therefore making a mess.
I then put the sleeve over the mouth and and trimmed it, then glued it on the back side.
Now I have a basic sock puppet that will go inside the frog.
I slid the sleeve in the mouth and out the back, then glued the mouth in place.
I then cut and glue the sleeve along the opening in the back. (I forgot to take this picture, sorry).
Here is the finished product.
The shallowness of his head isn’t too big of a deal, but personally I would like it with a thicker head.
I am learning to pick better animals. Sometimes I just get one for clothes or eyes for another figure. Contrary to what some people may think, I can learn and am learning. The trick is to remember what I have learned.