Talking Tiki Head Posted by boycharles on Apr 03, 2014
Hello everyone,

I'm new to making puppets and in the works of constructing a talking tiki head character for my after school program. I've been trying to find the best way to approach this build but would really appreciate the input.

The tiki head would be coming out of a box and have a moveable mouth and blinking eyelids.

I considered making the whole thing out of Foam, and just placing it in the box but I really wanted that wooden feel.

Any suggestions?

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Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by boycharles on Apr 03, 2014
Also this thing is supposed to be muppet in feel. not trying to have a wooden puppet.
it's supposed to be a silly character that does trivia questions.
Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by Na on Apr 03, 2014
My first thought would be to use papier mache over foam, and use some paper that has a wood grain.

But then I remembered this:,8514.0.html

You might find that something like that is a better solution given you want a more muppet-y feel.
Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by Out of the Box Puppets on Apr 03, 2014
What size are you making?

I'd suggest high density foam. Sculpted then sprayed with plasti dip then air brushed or sponge painted to look wooden.


Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by Shawn on Apr 03, 2014
You could even use regular "soft" foam and carve or add some wood lines into it much like Julie did on her tree puppet that Na linked to. Then use a floral spray paint to paint it. On brand is called "Design Master".  Really bad smell so use outside but you can paint on regular foam with it and it will dry all the way and hurt the foam.  This would give you the look of wood but still keep it in the cartoon puppet feel.
Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by boycharles on Apr 03, 2014
I'm thinking the size will be around 16 x 30 I haven't started building the box I am going to place it in, but Im using a table as a guide for how big I want it to be.

Julie I loved what you did with the Tree Trunk Puppet and I might go with that style for the outer mask portion of the puppet.

I have to get a little creative with the mouth because it has to be able to open wide as well to allow prizes to be let out. Not sure how many of you are familiar with a lot of the Audrey II puppets from Little Shop of Horrors but the final plant always had the little spot in the back of the mouth that allowed people to be eaten. thats what Im trying to do.
Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by Out of the Box Puppets on Apr 04, 2014
Would you explain more on your concept for it 'coming out of a box'? Do you mean it's going to rise up out of the box? Be attached to the front of a box as your drawing suggest?

Why have the prizes come out of the mouth? Why not below like a vending machine?

This is an ealier version of the same technique I used similar to the tree technique...only this is just a face....Message ImageMessage ImageMessage ImageMessage Image
Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by boycharles on Apr 08, 2014
The Face is attached to the box, and I wanted the kids to come up and grab the prize from the tiki's mouth to be able to have a gag where the puppet closes its mouth before they grab the prize or closes its mouth on their hand lol. but I'm willing to reconsider it if it doesn't work out.

Now that face is beautiful and if I'm understanding the technique fully you just put the hot glue to stick it on specific parts then go back and sew? sorry I'm so new to making puppets and these pictures kinda blow my mind! its exactly what i want to do.
Re: Talking Tiki Head Posted by Shawn on Apr 09, 2014
Yes you can use hot glue or contact cement to glue on the foam pieces. You then cover the entire thing in the fabric you want to use.  I think that with this one Julie used spray foam glue to adhere the fabric to the foam base. This can be a bit tricky to do and takes a bit of patience. If you spray just the foam then you can kind of reposition the fabric a bit right after you lay it on if you get it a bit wrong but the fabric won't stick quite as well down the line. Better to spray both foam and back side of fabric and let get tacky then lay it on. Even with that technique some times you can reposition if you don't press the two together real well till you get it where you want.  The beauty of this project is that a few wrinkles don't really hurt!   Sometimes when I am laying fabric over something like this that has deep creases with big valleys and peaks I keep the glue gun handy to get the fabric to hold down in the deep crevices. Be careful though this can get messy and if your fabric is thin the glue can bleed through and show.
Re: Posted by DrPuppet on Apr 09, 2014
I agree with shawn deep crevices NEED HOT glue or eventually the spray glue will weaken and it pulls up.

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