How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by Gabriel G on Sep 01, 2008
I'm going to share a technique I recently learned on making eyes from spoons and other easy to find materials. I want to share this for all of you to benefit from what I've learned and hopefully won't have trouble with spoon eyes anymore! I used to have trouble making eyes from spoons, I couldn't stand using them because it always had an ugly end that had to be covered in some way and I couldn't just use the spoon uncovered.
This technique is what I learned from Carrie Murphy, those of you that know about Christian Puppetry or I-Fest know she's amazing as a builder, puppeteer and more importantly, as a Christian minister. Hopefully you find this helpful! If you have any questions feel free to ask!

1) I bought these spoons at the Dollar Tree and at Walmart. Try to stock up on different sized spoons with different shapes so you have more options when making a puppet. However, I try to stay away from the spoons with ridges on the edges, just because it's harder to smooth them down.
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For the pupils, my two favorites are Googley Eyes and Black Buttons.
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2) I use stainless steel scissors when cutting the handle off,
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if you do it slowly you can elimate getting too much of the handle and can already start to give the eye its shape.
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3) Next, I use a nail file to shape the eyes. I tried sand paper before I learned this technique and it just wouldn't work for me. Nail Files [also called Emery Boards] have two different sides, the dark side is for Shaping and the light side is for Finishing.
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I use the dark side to shape away until I get a nice shape and the smooth it off with the light side and voila! Beautiful eye shape that doesn't scream SPOON. [The top one still has the ridge on it, I didn't file it down completely out of laziness, it's there for photo purposes]
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4) Now for the pupils! Personally, I DESPISE googly eyes with a PASSION! Eerrrr.. sorry.. Anyways off my rant,
I do, however, buy different sized googley eyes for a reason. I cut off the plastic eye shape and harvest the perfectly round pupil!
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Another way to do the pupil is with black buttons. I buy the ones that are slightly rounded and have no design but are smooth and glossy. It gives the eyes a nice finish. To get rid of the back, I cut it off with my trusty scissors as close as I can to the button. Then I file away wit the dark side of the nail file and smooth it off with the light side.
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5) Finally I just hot glue the pupil in place, as most of you probably know, try to make the eyes slightly cross-eyed as it gives them puppet amazing focus. Play around with the eyes until its just right.
If I want to give the eyes eyelids or eyelashes I cut them from foamies, sticky felt and scraps of antron fleece. I trace the eye shape on the side that WON'T show and draw and cut the shape I need.
Here are the finished eyes.
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I'm still experimenting with this so its a learning experience for us all.

And finally, here are some cool work-in-progress of the beautiful puppets Carrie made for the Dream Team Performance "The Squire and the Scroll". They were ALL made from spoons and buttons. Enjoy!
Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by Angel on Sep 01, 2008
Thanks!  I have used spoons before, but I like the look of the ones you are showing here.  I like the idea of using the nail files, I'm always looking for sand paper.  All I had to do was look in my purse, duh   Thanks for the pictures... we love pictures here.

Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by Angel on Sep 01, 2008
The puppets are so cute.

Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by Toon Asylum on Sep 01, 2008
Great job...Thanks for sharing.
Also a tip for the guys out there(if you don't have a nail file in your purse like angel...LOL)
You can use the manly Dremel tool!!!!

Nice tutorial Gdub!!!  very easy to follow and loved all the pics!

Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by puppetlady on Sep 01, 2008
I hadn't thought of harvesting a pupil from a google eye! Clever!
I too like you samples.
I use a belt sander on my spoons.  Ever try the belt sander on your fingernails?
Not a good idea.  The scar on my thumb nail has almost healed.
Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by DrPuppet on Sep 01, 2008
Wonderfull! Absolutely excellent!! I never thought to use the googly eye pupals for eye dots or the buttons. I adore your idea and love to learn something new. Thank you!

Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by StiqPuppet Productions on Sep 01, 2008
Great little is always neat to learn something new....thanks!

Daryl H
Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by Rcdspoon on Sep 01, 2008
Wicked...I'm going to try that technique on my next dragon!!

Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by LJ on Sep 01, 2008
THANKS!!  It is nice to see how others do spoon eyes!  I never thought of using the black buttons as pupils!
Re: How to Make Eyes from Spoons Posted by Gabriel G on Sep 02, 2008
@Angel Thank you! And yeah, it saves time for you!

@ToonAsylum You're welcome! And I don't have a dremel unfortunately, I felt really weird when I went to WalMart to buy a pack of nail files!! LOL But Glad you like the tutorial!

@puppetlady Hehe thanks! It finally gives them a purpose! And thanks. And I don't have very many power tools so I thought a nail file was great since I found they're pretty cheap [and I just found a pack in my parent's bathroom so i know where to go if i run out!!]
And gaaah I'll be sure to never try that!

@DrPuppet Thanks I'm extremely glad [and flattered] a builder as amazing as you was able to learn something from this! And you're welcome =D

@stigman Thanks and No Problem!

@Rcdspoon Great, be sure to send me some pictures!

@LJ You're welcome =D Now go out and buy some buttons!

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