Wednesday, July 25, 2007


A big thank you goes out to the guys at PROJECT PUPPET. They were the inspiration that led me to build my own puppet in the first place, and now they added a blog entry with some kind words for me and the Texas Chili Cook.
Thanks guys!

trying it on for size

Lookin' good in his new shirt. Still no arms or body to fill the shirt with though...but it's coming soon!


The cowboy shirt I ordered on ebay arrived today! I was worried that it might be too big, but the size is perfect. It's even better than I imagined. Now I can go ahead with making his arms, hands, and body.

Monday, July 16, 2007


An easy way to cover up some sloppy areas....give him shades! I just put the glasses on as a joke, but I actually kinda like it. I like that the shades are very red, to represent the red chili, since he is a Texas Chili Cook. Besides, I can't wear these glasses. If I have them on for more than ten minutes, I see red for the next half hour. Looking at the Texas Chili Cook, he reminds me of Mike Levine, the bass player from the band Triumph.

now with nose

His head is pretty much done. I made a mess attaching his nose with the hot glue gun. I put too much glue between his eyes and there was a very visible glob of glue there when it dried. Then I tried to cut it off and that only made things look even messier. So I might take his nose off somehow and re-attach it a bit higher to cover the mess....or maybe not. Maybe I will leave it the way it is. So he has a bit of crust between his eyes... big deal. It's amazing how many things I would have done differently; this is my first puppet, and I knew he wouldn't be perfect. But it is a blast making a puppet and I am very tempted to start my next one right away. But I better not get ahead of myself, I have to give this guy a body and a hat first.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

I hear ya

With his ears on, he is definitely starting to look like the Texas Chili Cook he was meant to be. All that's left to do on his head is his nose and cowboy hat. I found another place for improvement on my next puppet with the ears. Now that I know what I am looking at when I see a puppet head pattern and a fleece head covering pattern I know where the ears would go on the flat pattern. So on my next puppet I will sew the ears on, before I put the fleece over the foam. This time I just hot glued the ears to the head.


Here's the ear shape I cut out in the pic on the far left. In the middle and the right you see how the ear turned out once I sewed it together at the bottom. Now to stick it on the puppet with a glue gun.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

the perfect shirt...

...if it will fit.

I found the perfect shirt for the Texas Chili Cook on eBay. It is a boys shirt. I just hope it is small enough to fit my puppet. I may have to use my newly acquired skills on the sewing machine to tailor the shirt to fit him.

Friday, July 13, 2007


For some reason, as I was looking at my puppet, I was reminded of Harvey WallBanger, from The Hilarious House Of Frightenstein. They don't look alike in any way, so I don't know why Harvey WallBanger came to mind. So here's some pics of the puppets from that great Canadian show "The Hilarious House Of Frightenstein." Every kid growing up in Ontario in the 70's and 80's grew up watching this show. It's brilliant. Check out the fan site for more pics and info on the show.

"But by bose is bissing! Bhere's by bose?"

Don't worry your nose won't be missing for much longer. Nose, ears, and hat are all that is left on his head. Then there's the body to make. My immediate concern is his nose. He has a pointy nose, a lot like THE COUNT from Sesame Street, but not exactly. I have a feeling his nose is going to turn out quite different from the way I drew it, still pointy though, because that's a part of his character.


With all the trouble and failure of trying to get the oval eyes I want for this puppet, I found a solution. I just drew the black oval pupils with a SHARPIE and a CADOMARK marker. It doesn't leave brush strokes or raised paint areas, it looks clean enough and it's the exact shape I wanted. If it starts to fade out over time I can always try something else, but for the here and now, it's fine. Next is to give him his eye lids.


I found this great product in the craft store...FOAMIES SHEETS! I was looking for felt for my puppet's mouth and tongue, when I saw these foam sheets. They cut beautifully and cleanly, they feel nice, the colors are vibrant, and they are perfect for puppets. I already used felt in my puppet's mouth, but I will definitely use the Foamies Sheets in my next puppet's mouth. I do have a use for Foamies Sheets in this puppet though...his EYE LIDS! I was going to make them out of felt, but I am going to try the Foamies Sheets instead.

Sunday, July 8, 2007


I added his 2 teeth and his eye brows. The teeth are just cut out of foam, I didn't bother painting or coloring them white, so they are kind of yellowish, the color of the foam as I bought it. I used the same fur for his brows.


PAST- The original sketch of the character I wanted to make.
PRESENT- My progress so far, just a plain head with a moustache. He is quite different from the sketch, but he still has the makings of the right personality to be the TEXAS CHILI COOK.
FUTURE- I drew the eyes, ears, teeth, and hat and digitally added it to the present pic, to get a sense of how he will hopefully turn out.


Here's a good shot of the moustached puppet. I am very happy with how his stachio turned out. I like how it covers his top lip and how it droops off his head.


Here's where he starts to take on the personality he will become, by adding the facial features. He has a great big handlebar moustachio. The moustache fur I used is much darker than in my design sketch. I did not want to use a white fur and dye it, I would rather just use the fur as is, without dying it. Dying is a whole other process that I need to learn...but later. The seam on the neck is kind of bunched up where it meets the head. It should be smooth, but I don't mind, because it gives my Texas Chili Cook a turkey neck; and many old men have turkey necks, probably from eating all that spicy hot chili.

Head Covering

I got to use my new sewing machine for the first time. My girlfriend sewed the first couple stitches as she taught me how to use the machine. I think I did OK. So in the pics, you will see that the area around the mouth is still not complete. I need to hot glue the fabric to the inside of the lip. In the pic on the far right, you see that I added the neck piece. I'm making good progress, but there is still a loooooooooong way to go.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

head covering

I cut out the fleece head pattern, now I have to trace it onto the fleece and cut it out twice. The fleece I bought is not the right color I wanted for the "skin"." I have not decided yet if I will try to dye the fleece to get it closer to the color I want or just use the fleece as is and end up with a more pinkish skin than I prefer.

Friday, July 6, 2007

The excitement builds

I glued the felt pieces to the inside of his mouth and the neck piece with the hole. I am very happy with how he is turning out so far. His nose is going to be tricky. He has a pointy nose, and I would imagine the nose will have to be attached after I give him his fleece skin. Shaping the nose will be tough, but so will covering it with fleece and attaching it with minimal seams. And I still have not solved the eye dilemma .

hot gluing the head

This is the most progress I have made on the puppet in one day. I glued the head together with a glue gun. You can see the pins holding it together as I glued a bit at a time. In the last picture I have marked out the hole to be cut for my hand to fit in the puppet head. It's starting to look like a puppet! He has a mouth and a definite head shape. The foam is very forgiving where it was not cut perfectly in the lines I traced from the pattern. I used a lot of hot glue and was not worried about glue oozing out of the seams, because he will have fleece "skin", even so the seams turned out pretty clean. If I ever decide to make a puppet just with foam and no fleece skin, I would be more meticulous about the gluing. I hope to be as productive tomorrow as I was today on this puppet.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007


I decided that the "skin" on my puppet will be fleece, not the foam. That way I don't have to dye the foam. So I bought fleece, that is already in the color of the lavender skin tone I want for the Texas Chili Cook. I saw some great fur that I could not resist too, for a future puppet of a furry monster. But the big purchase was this sewing machine. I have never used a sewing machine before, however my girlfriend is a pro, so tomorrow she will give me sewing lessons. She also made me some fabulous, rich, luxurious curtains seen here.