Ostrich Marionette – Fifi from Sing Along With Tobee!

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Ostrich Marionette - Fifi from Sing Along With Tobee!

Have you watched the Pinocchio Song episode of Sing Along with Tobee? Here are the instructions for making your very own Ostrich Marionette, just like the one featured in the show!

Ostrich Marionette Ostrich Marionette

Materials

  • fishing line, embroidery thread, or yarn – any will do!
  • 2 foam balls (one 2.5” and and one 1.75 ”)
  • 2 large popsicle sticks
  • 2 large beads (for feet)
  • beads (for legs and neck)
  • small piece fun foam (for the beak and toes)
  • 2 large washers
  • drill and fine drill bit to fit string size
  • feathers for wings and tail
  • 6 paperclips
  • side cutters/pliers
  • 1 marabou feather boa or plastic lei
  • craft glue gun
  • googley eyes
Ostrich Marionette

Steps

Step 1 – Prep the tie off points clips
Open and cut 6 paperclips in half using side cutters or pliers – 4 for the body and 2 for the head. Puncture the paper clips ends into the foam balls referencing placement. These will be used to attach the string. When gluing into place leave about 1/4” or more sticking out, this will help to access the tie off clips once the ball is covered. Add glue to help secure clips into place.
Placement

  • Body- Large ball: Add a paperclip to the top centre for the body, to front centre for the neck and both sides centre for the legs.
  • Head – Small ball: Add paperclip ends to the top center for the head and back center for the neck.
Ostrich Marionette

Step 2 – Beading
LEGS – Cut 2 lengths of string at 13”. The extra length is added to help tie knots later. For the feet, string a large bead and tie a knot at the end of the string, repeat for the second leg. Add smaller beads for the leg for a total length of about 9” for both legs.
NECK – Cut one length of string at 10”. Leave a couple inches of string before your first bead. Tie a knot to hold it in place add about 5”- 6” of beads in total length.

Ostrich Marionette

Step 3 – Gluing
Glue the feather boa to the foam balls for the head and neck. Make sure to leave space to access your paper clip ends. Glue washers to the bottom of both feet beads.

Step 4 – Attach legs and neck
Attach the beaded legs to the clips on the side of the covered body ball. Tie off and trim excess string. Tie the string of neck beads to the front of the body ball, then to the back of head ball. Tie off and trim excess string.

Ostrich Marionette

Step 5 – Making the Puppet handle
With a glue gun and 2 large popsicle sticks, glue the cross piece stick at 1/3 from the bottom to the vertical stick. Drill small holes to the tip of the sticks, the top the two sides and the centre of the cross.

Step 6 – Attaching the puppet to the puppeteering handle
Cut 4 generous lengths of fishing line all of the same length. Decide whether you would like to use the puppet while standing up or cut lengths shorter to use the puppet on a table. Tie fishing line lengths to all 3 holes on the tip of the puppeteering handle and tie off. Fish the last remaining line through the center hole and tie a bead on the end of the string.
TIP: Pulling this bead will give you extra body movement by letting the head go down and gesture eating.

Attach the center string from the handle to the top paperclip on the body ball. Adjust to your desired height. Make sure there is enough leg string to tie off the at the top of the foot bead. Make sure the legs are in a straight upright position and feet have contact with the standing surface. After legs are equally balanced and tied off attach the top of the head to the string on the tip of the puppeteering handle.

Ostrich Marionette

Step 7 – Details
For the beak fold a small piece of fun foam and cut a triangle shape repeat by making one smaller. Glue the larger one on top and smaller inside. Glue on both eyes. To add more details, glue feathers on the side for wings and at the back for a tail. We’ve also added 2 toes on each foot cut from fun foam as an Ostrich has only two toes!

Sing Along With Tobee episode – The Pinocchio

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