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Zippy from Rainbow replica

Discussion in 'Puppet Building and Performing' started by Arislan, Mar 2, 2011.

  1. Arislan

    Arislan New Member

    Has anyone built a replica of Zippy from RAINBOW? I would be very interested in obtaining a pattern and or list of materials.

    Thanks for any help on this!
  2. TheCreatureWork

    TheCreatureWork Active Member

    Hope this helps...

    He seems fairly easy, I would purchase Yellowish brown fleece, a Zipper :), Black and red fabric for the mouth and tongue. Blue, Black, Brown and white felt for his eyes.

    Start by building the head using wedges- 1/2 inch poly foam would work nicely. Simply measure out the wedge and then cut probably 7 wedges and then contact cement them together to form a football shape. Here is a link to wedges:

    Next, simply measure how long your zipper is. Then measure that length using a fabric tape measure onto the football head :) Then draw a straight line onto the foam head (it should be the length of the zipper). Cut along the line- this will make the mouth of Zippy. Next cut a whole at the bottom of Zippy's head- enough for your hand to fit in this will be where your hand enters the head.

    To make a mouthplate simply take a flat piece of paper, and place it into Zippy's closed mouth- making certain the paper goes right to the back of zippy's mouth- on both ends of his mouth. Like Zippy is biting the paper with the edge of the paper at the corners of Zippy's mouth. Using a marker, trace where Zippy's mouthline rests on the paper. When you take the paper out after tracing it will provide you the correct mouth distance from the front of the mouth to the back. Cut out that mouth plate and make a mouth plate using the traced piece as a template. I have a "How to Build a Mouthplate series" go here:

    Now simply Glue the mouthplate in. Now to make the fabic pattern for the head. Here is the tricky part- but you are covering a sphere so it shouldn't be too hard. Take scrap fabric and cover the head. Start from the front of the face and pin the fabric down. Pull and pin your way through the fabric until you get the pattern you desire- I recommend Dr. Puppet's Tutorial on this:
    It's the covering the head fleece tutorial.

    Once you have made the pattern for your head hand stitch the head using a ladder stitch and hot glue the fabric onto the mouthplate. Next, sew the zipper onto the mouth, cut the shape for eyes, tongue, and hot glue them on.

    For the body use this:

    Make certain he only has 3 fingers! :)

    Sew the body to the head by hand...Done!

    Hope this helps. Whew!
  3. Arislan

    Arislan New Member

    Thank you very much for this valuable information! It is really helpful. I wish I had the correct measurements but I don't think those are available anywhere. I wonder if I should use Muppet fleece from that place in Georgia or if regular fleece would work for Zippy, I want to create the most accurate possible. Unfortunately I won't be able to afford a sewing machine this month so I'm gathering the info first.

    Thanks again for that massive tutorial! :super:
  4. TheCreatureWork

    TheCreatureWork Active Member

    If you go with Antron you'll be waiting for a while as they don't have any and said there maybe some available in late April :-( I would go with ordinary fleece. I would suggest sewing by hand- you don't need no stinking sewing machine :)
  5. fragglerockr

    fragglerockr Member


    I dunno, is it just me? Every picture I pulled up of him online looked as if he were made of some sort of terrycloth vs. antron fleece. Maybe it's just the way it looks. Granted, I've never seen the show. Just a thought. Especially given the fact that Antron is kinda scarce right now. I think over at Swazzle they showed the building of Ratchet out of terrycloth.

  6. TheCreatureWork

    TheCreatureWork Active Member

    Agreed- go with the Terry Cloth
  7. Puppetsandthat

    Puppetsandthat New Member

  8. Arislan

    Arislan New Member

    Hi guys, great info on there, I'm glad it's been agreed that Zippy is terry cloth because that's a lot cheaper than antron.

    TheCreatureWork, would you have a link to a head covering tutorial that doesn't ask for money? ;-) I'm sure that there has to be similar info out there for free.

    Puppetsandthat, you made some great replicas there! And what did you use for covering that George puppet? Did you make the pattern yourself? I would love to make a George as well once I'm done with Zippy but I think the pattern would be incredibly difficult since I am new to all this.

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