Tuesday, November 22, 2011

pocket pals

It's been a little busy here for a few weeks and blogging fell by the wayside to allow for some dedicated family and personal regeneration time.  One of the events that was part of the hectic past few weeks was our school's annual Heart of Advent crafting day.  It's an afternoon for our Waldorf community to come together and share time, ideas, stories, traditions and inspiration for the upcoming holiday season.

This year I was on the organizing committee and so devoted the weeks building up to the affair making sure all the pieces were in place.  I then spent the entire Saturday of our gathering enjoying teaching friends new and old how to make these cute little Pocket Pals.  With St. Nicholas Day fast approaching, I think they make a perfect boot filler but they would, of course, make great stocking stuffers or gift toppers for Christmas as well.

To make these darling play fellows, one will need:
1 16mm wooden bead
2 8mm wooden beads
1 pipe cleaner
a small piece of felt
embroidery floss
an acorn cap (optional)
wool roving for stuffing and hair (optional)
an embroidery needle

Begin by bending the pipe cleaner into the configuration shown here so that the distance from A to B is only slightly wider than the width of the fabric (enough to accommodate the bead hands).  This one is about 3" from tip to tip.  Twist the two loose bottom wires together.

Glue the small beads over the two side ends of the pipe cleaner to make the hands and the larger bead onto the top for the head.
Set aside to dry.

Trace a body pattern onto the felt fabric.  Lay two sheets, one atop the other, prior to cutting or cut each separately to create two identical body pieces.  Feel free to make these two different colors or even to change the body shape.  (At our Heart of Advent table, folks made heart bodies, angel bodies and even one shaped to look like a little Lego guy.)


If desired, embroider a symbol, design, letter or pattern onto one or both body pieces (or sew on a button or patch).  (For Basic Embroidery Stitch instructions search the internet or click here.)

Lay the two body pieces together with embellishments facing out and, using embroidery floss, begin blanket stitching them together just slightly off center (at one side of the "neck").  (For very clear blanket stitch instructions, click here.)

Before turning the first corner (at the wrist), place the pipe cleaner armature inside the two felt pieces.  Stitch around the corner (holding the hand in place) and continue until reaching the next "wrist".

Before finishing off the top of the arm, stuff the figure with a bit of wool roving (or whatever stuffing you have on hand) being sure to pad the pointy wire bits.


Decorate the face and head as desired with wool roving, an acorn cap or even a felt gnome hat.

Gift or keep for yourself and enjoy!


  1. Oh so cool, I will share this with my sister, who child goes to a Waldorf Kindergarten and soon to be in class one. cheers Marie

  2. Hey you! I have had quite a few e-mails about these pocket people. Linking to your tutorial tonight :) Hope you are having a great week 'off'. Happy Thanksgiving. We miss you guys!!

  3. I was just admiring these the other day. Thank you so much for sharing the tutorial!

  4. I'm glad folks are enjoying these. Hi to you too Nicole! Naiya is already missing your girls. With this weather and the week off we're mostly housebound and feeling inspired to create all kinds of cozy caves and indoor structures. Happy Thanksgiving to you (and everyone else) as well!

  5. These are so cute! I love how you made them. I am a new follower from For The Kids Fridays. Vicky from Mess For Less

  6. Welcome Vicky! Glad you like them :)

  7. I am glad you shared this tutorial, I love these little dolls, what a wonderful little stocking stuffer!

  8. These are so cute! Thanks for showing me how to do it.


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