…yes, you read that right! I made a wheelchair, but not for a person, for a puppet! :)
My daughters and I work with the puppet ministry at our church on Wednesday nights. We use puppets to act out the weekly story for the 6-12 year olds. It’s been fun and a challenge! This year the stories center around a little boy with Cerebral Palsy. He is in a wheel chair, so the puppet that plays Peter also needs to be in a wheel chair. That presented two problems. First, to order one was going to be $50 before shipping! That just went against my thrifty nature….$50 for a puppet wheel chair??? But, if we were going to make one, it would have to be very light. Have you ever held your arm up in the air with a weight on it for any length of time? Trust me those fabric puppets weigh a TON after about 5 minutes on your up-stretched arm! So, I tried foam, but that wouldn’t hold the puppet up without some sort of a frame around it. After a little frustration, it hit me and I went and raided my sons K’nex! This is what my daughters and I came up with:
We just started putting pieces together until we had a frame that resembled a wheel chair! We were short one piece for the back of the footrest, and had to use a connector and two smaller pieces, but you can’t see it when Peter is in the chair! :-) I spray painted the frame black, because each of the different size pieces and the connectors were different colors! I hot glued the fabric around the frame and then cut a slit in the back of the seat so that the puppeteer could slip their hand through and into the back of the puppet.
A side view:
The wheels are made of foam and reinforced with some electrical tape. The white dot is velcro so Peter’s hand can stick to the wheel as if he’s pushing himself.
We caught Peter by surprise here…
With a little warning, he tried to give us a more dignified pose!
It’s not very heavy at all and the kids love it!! That makes me happy!
Next project is the table top puppet stage…the wheel chair in the picture up top is perched on the frame I put together with pvc pipe. I have to sew a curtain for it and we’ll be ready to roll next week!
Once that’s all done, I’ll feel free to finish some of my fall projects! :-)
I’m sharing this project at
and spotlighting it here:
There are some very inspiring projects at both places, so check them out!