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Help with Fabric Selection

Discussion in 'Puppet Building and Performing' started by jediX, Nov 24, 2003.

  1. jediX

    jediX Active Member

    I plan on rebuilding my old puppets in the next month so I can use them in the pilot episode of the show my friend and I are planning to put on our college's channel next year. So, what I need help with right now is picking out a good fabric to build my lizard character out of. Basically, I'm basing him off of Lenny the Lizard...puppet style, color, etc. I'm going to pad the body a little bit with foam a-la Kermit, but none to form the head. What type of fabric do you think I should use to build this? I'm thinking something that looks almost reptilian and "slimy"... very much like my original puppet's fabric. However, this fabric picks up lint very easily and wears terribly. Thanks in advance. If you want to see pictures of the current puppet, I can put them up.
  2. Beebers

    Beebers New Member

    There are fabrics available in any decent fabric store or outlet, usually a felt-like or smooth surface texture, with zillions of small flexible shining/iridescent bits on them, in oval shapes, etc., in colors contrasting the background. These show up beautifully on-camera and are most lizardy.

    Believe it or not Wal-Mart is a good source for materials. Also www.osgoodtextiles.com.
  3. jediX

    jediX Active Member

    How durable are they? Do they stretch much, if at all?
  4. Phantom

    Phantom New Member

    I saw some fabric at a Jo-Ann etc. that was a spandex type of material with an overlay of metallic fish-net (openings of about 3/8") in green, yellow, orange and hot pink. They were really dazzling. I was thinking that they would be perfect for a snake or, in your case, a lizard. It seems like it was cheap too.

    Ben
  5. jediX

    jediX Active Member

    Thanks.... I'm going to go out to JoAnn and see what I can come up with. I got some red velvet there a couple years ago when I built my Imperial Guard uniform, so I'm pretty sure I can find something...
  6. jediX

    jediX Active Member

    Well I'm back... I ended up going with this olive-colored suedecloth.
  7. Beebers

    Beebers New Member


    They're totally durable. We're constantly moving our puppets around, in and out of the house, cars, etc., and you'd never know it to look at them.

    The decorations stay on forever. I'm sure there's a name for the fabrics I described but I don't know what it would be. Some are stretchy, some not.

    Another option, which opens a world of possibilites:
    There's a sheet paper you buy by the yard, with a dry adhesive backing on it. You apply this to any fabric, hot-iron it, let cool, peel the paper off. You can cut this into any and all shapes of any size, no matter how small, with no fraying of edges. You then iron your shapes onto any background fabrics you like, as many layers as you want. The paper comes with instructions. I really recommend this because it gives you a new universe of creative options.
  8. jediX

    jediX Active Member

    The fabric is under control, now I just need to form a large lower jaw and smaller upper one out of foam to keep the mouth's shape. I'll link to photos as I get them done.


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