Introduction: Making a Beaded Marionette Puppet

This tutorial is to make a small puppet out of beads and string.

You will need
Large beads 18 (I have used 10mm beads here)
Small beads 28 (i have used 6mm beads here)
string (for beading)
thin string or thin fishing wire for moving limbs (fishing wire works best, I have used cotton thread for this turorial so you can see where the strings go).

This is easiest to make if you have a 'volunteer hand' (ie someone who can help you by holding up the puppet while you work on it).

Step 1: Making the Head

Cut about a 30cm length of your beading string and thread through 4 large beads.

Tie a knot leaving equal lengths of string either side of the knot. (see picture)

Thread two beads on one of the ends of string and attach it to the opposite side string (see picture)
Tighten string.

Repeat with the other end of string and tie ends of string together.

Step 2: Neck

Thread a single large bead through both ends of string.

Then take another seperate 30cm length of string.
Tie this string to the other string (so now you have 4 strings coming out of puppet).

Step 3: Arms

Choose the two shortest lengths of string coming out of puppet.
These will be the arms.

On one arm thread 3 small beads then 1 large bead then 3 small beads.
Then tie a knot.

When tying the knot remember that this puppet needs to move so do not tie it too close to the beads (leave a couple of mm)
Then get 2 extra short pieces of string and tie them to the end of the arm (fingers)

Repeat on the other side.

Trim the fingers.

Step 4: Body

Thread the two long strings through 3 large beads then tie a knot.

Step 5: Legs

On each longer bit of string thread 4 small beads 1 large bead, 4 small beads and then 1 large.
Tie a knot (around the bead this time).
Again make sure the knot is not too tight up against the beads (need room for movement of limb).

Beadman is born.

Step 6: Making Beadman Into a Puppet

Have a friend put on the glove.

Hold their hand in a slightly curved position.

Get a needle and thread and tie Beadman's head to the string then sew the string to the palm of the glove so that beadman hangs a few cm below it (careful not to prick your friend).

Step 7: Adding Movement

Now you want to tie strings from each of the limbs to the fingers of the glove.

Ask you friend to keep their hand in the same position with Beadman dangling underneath.

If using a right handed glove:
Tie Beadman's left elbow to the point where the index finger bends and Beadman's left hand to the tip of the index finger.
strings should be taught but arm should still hang at Beadmans side.

Repeat with  Right arm, attaching it to the pinky finger of the glove.

Attach left leg to middle finger (knee to bend and foot to tip)

Attach right leg to ring finger.

Step 8: Take Beadman for a Walk

Trim all the ends of string neatly.


Careful when putting him down as to avoid tangling strings.

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