Toys Of Clothespins
You can make cunning, soft, downy hens and roosters simply of raw cotton and clothespins . The little creatures may be pure white, dark colored, or part dark and part light, according to the cotton used.
Fig. 101—Soft, downy hens and roosters.
have the same kind of foundation. It is made by sliding the prongs of two clothespins into each other . Be sure the clothespins, when together, stand firm on the prong ends, for these form the legs and feet of the chickens.
|Fig. 102—Slide the prongs of|
two clothespins together.
|Fig. 103—Tie a piece of raw|
cotton over the head of
With a string tie a piece of raw cotton over the head of one clothespin; have the string tight, but the cotton cover rather loose. Bring the cotton partly down the clothespin and tie it again ; then use your fingers to shape the top cotton into the form of a rooster's head; gently pull a little of it out to make the beak; tie a string around the beak where it joins the head, and, with thumb and finger slightly dampened, twist the end of the beak into a point . Cotton which comes in sheets is best for the tail, but the other will do. Lay the centre of a generous piece of cotton over the head of the second clothespin, plait the loose ends around the pin, and fasten with a string, making the edge of the tail in a line with the opening of the prongs of the pin. Cut the folded end rounded on top, and slit it up a short distance into wide fringe to form the long feathers of the rooster's tail .
Fig. 104—Pull a little of the cotton out to make a beak.
Fig. 105—A fine little rooster that will move his little head.
With another piece of cotton cover the back and sides of the rooster, as you would put a saddle on a horse. Bring the edges of the cover together down the neck and body; when fitted lift the cover, put paste here and there on its under side near the edge, replace the cover and it will stick fast; then, with the top of a wire hairpin, push the edges of the cover, front and back, in between the open prongs of the clothespin. Ink round bits of paper and paste on the rooster for eyes; make his comb and wattles of red tissue paper , and you will have a fine rooster which can actually
Move His Little Cotton Head
up and down, fast or slow, as you wish. To make him do so, hold the front leg steady with your left hand, while with your right hand you raise and lower the other leg. Try it, and see how naturally the little fellow appears to pick up corn in an eager, hungry manner.
Fig. 106—The little hen.
Fashion the hen in the same way you made the rooster, only have the tail smaller and without long feathers . The comb on the hen must also be smaller than that on the rooster. The general shape of the hen is the same as that of the rooster. Notice that the direction of outline along the lower edge of tail and body is one continuous slanting line; remember this when adjusting the tail that it may not stand out backward at right angles from the body.
The Little Lambs
Fig. 107—Making a downy little lamb out of a clothespin.
are made in much the same way as the chickens. Slide two clothespins together for the foundation ; tie a wad of cotton over the head of one pin, then pull the head out a trifle on each side for ears, and tie with a string as you made the rooster's beak. Cover the second clothespin, making the upper part, which extends down, quite thick; then lift the upper part, and bring it across to the lamb's neck, for the little animal must have an almost level back . Cut a piece of cotton large enough to cover the entire back and sides of the lamb, lay it over the lamb like a very large saddle, and fasten it in place with paste. Use small inked papers for eyes, and tie a gay ribbon around his neck . Make a number of little lambs, for they are so attractive and pretty grouped together .
Fig. 108—Tie a gay ribbon around the lamb's neck.
Fig. 109—The group of sheep.
has the same kind of foundation as the lamb, but stretched out more, bringing the heads of the pins lower and farther apart. He needs very long ears, so they must be of separate pieces of sheet cotton tied to the head. Make his head rather large, and in other respects manufacture him much the same as the lamb.
Fig. 110—Such a funny little long-eared rabbit.
Fig. 111—The doggie's head is large.
The Ears and Tail of a Dog
are too large for pulling out and tying from the main piece of cotton, so cut them separate and tie on at the proper places. Make the doggie's head large, and the saddle-like cover thick, that the little fellow may be plump and fat; cut inked paper for eyes and end of nose; with these exceptions the work is the same as on the lamb .
When tying beaks, ears, and tails of the various animals, cut the string ends close to the knot; then the string will sink into the cotton.
Fig. 112—Begin to dress the doll in this way.
Fig. 113—A strip of cotton for arms.
To dress a
Little Girl Doll,
cut a strip of cotton extending from below the neck line of the clothespin to within a short distance of the ends of the prongs; tie the cotton in gathers around the lower edge of the neck, and again lower down at the belt line . Make the arms of a strip of cotton about four and a quarter inches long and one inch wide; slash in the middle a short distance, and slip the strip over the head of the pin ; bend at the shoulders, fold remaining lengths once for arms, and, with dampened thumb and finger, lightly twist the ends into hands. The edges of the cotton forming arms and hands will cling together. Tie a bright ribbon sash around Miss Dolly's waist; then make her hair of a strip of dark raw cotton; fit and press it on the wooden head, twisting the ends to resemble long braids; pinch the cotton up on the top of the head to form a pompadour; when adjusted take the wig off; cover the wooden head with paste, and replace the wig, setting it well back from the front of the head. Fasten a ribbon bow back of the pompadour, and tie the braids together at the nape of the neck with another ribbon; then ink the features. Insert the ends of the prongs of the clothespin forming dolly's feet into a small piece of double-faced corrugated straw board, fasten them in with paste, and the little girl will stand alone . The doll's back is shown in .
Fig. 114—Little girl doll made of a clothespin and dressed in raw cotton.
Fig. 115—Miss Dolly's back.
Fig. 116—The clothespin boy.
stand in the same manner; fashion his hair of dark cotton, his trousers of a strip of white cotton tied around the waist and pushed in between the prongs of the clothespins. Cut the coat from a folded piece of cotton, a hole in the centre of the fold for the head to pass through; straight sleeves horizontally cut along the fold; and the remainder in sacque form like a Japanese coat or pajamas. The sleeves form the arms and the hands of the boy.
Fasten a belt high at the back and low in the front around his waist, giving the coat a Russian-blouse effect; make him a ribbon bow necktie, and ink the features.
These small people are very bewitching, as are also the animals.
You can color the sheet cotton slightly here and there with water-color paint if you are clever with a paint brush. As you work with these little dolls and animals you will find ever so many ways to vary them in effect. They are so soft and fluffy that a baby can play with them without injury, and a school or college boy may be amused by being presented with one, appropriately dressed, as a souvenir of pleasant experiences at a college luncheon or dinner.
To make a foot-ball player, finish the blouse without necktie or belt; make the shoulders wide and the hair rather short, like a college boy's rough head. So much for the boy. Paste a letter cut out of colored paper on the front of the blouse to make it look like a college sweater, and gather the trousers in a little at the knees. You can tuck an egg-shaped ball made of brown raw wool under one arm for a realistic touch, if you choose.
Little girl dolls may be similarly made to represent basket-ball players in short skirts and school or college sweaters, with appropriate emblems on the front, for a special entertainment.
Making these figures is much less trouble than dressing dolls entails, and much more of a novelty, too. They take so many shapes that they fit almost any occasion.
In fact, the possibilities of these cotton and clothespin toys are almost endless in the hands of ingenious young people.
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