Homemade No-Sew Puppet Theatre

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

This might be one of my all-time favorite collaborations my campers have ever done. How gorgeous is that fabric? I know I’m not supposed to say that art is beautiful, and I don’t say that around my students, but to you I can say this. I mean, they did this all on their own…five-year olds! There is a video down below where you can watch them painting, and then trying their hand at puppeteering (we might need to work on this skill, ha!).

Read through for directions on how I turned this one painted sheet into a puppet theatre with just scissors and glue!

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

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Supplies:

~ One old sheet cut to a size that will fit in your doorway (or even better, some heavier fabric like canvas)

~ A plastic mat to put underneath, or you could do this outside on the grass (you would need to weigh down the corners)

~ Liquid watercolors + jars and brushes

~ Black tempera paint

~ Scissors

~ String (I used baker’s twine)

~ Tension rod

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

Process:

1. Kids paint the fabric (we used the colors: red, orange, pink, blue/green, yellow and gold).

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

2. Let the fabric dry.

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

3. Lay it back down and mark a window frame using a template. I put mine in the middle. I then used a ruler and a pencil to mark out where I was going to paint the lines.

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

4. Using black paint in painterly strokes (which means not too fussy, it’s ok if it’s not perfect), paint the window frame.

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

5. Paint the lines for the curtains.

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

6. Cut along the bottom, halfway up the sides, and down the middle.

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

7. Cut a little slice on the side of the window and thread the string through. Tie in a bow.

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

8. Fold the top over about 1.5″ – 2″ and use the glue gun to secure the casing. This is now the “pocket” for the rod to go through.

9. Put the rod through and secure it to the sides of the doorway. That’s it, you’re done!

making homemade puppets from socks

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

The kids made these cute sock puppets inspired by a thousand pictures on Pinterest. Basically, you just get some socks, yarn, fabric scraps, buttons, and a glue gun and figure out a way to make a face. I personally think sock puppets are awesome, and so hilarious when the kids figure out that their hand can make a talking mouth!

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

kids collaborate to paint the fabric in this homemade puppet theatre

YouTube video of kids making their own homemade puppet theatre

And they were off! Making up stories and taking turns presenting “the show”. This video says it all.

xo, Bar