Nosferatu Finger Puppet (In an Altoid Tin Coffin)

Inspired by the Halloween holiday and Larissa Holland’s Wee Mouse Tin House design. I found the Altoid tin first, thought “looks more like a casket than a house…” and the idea was born.

Altoids Sour Chewing Gum tin
Royal Court decoupage adhesive/sealer
One square black felt
One square charcoal felt
One square cranberry felt
Black embroidery floss
Grey embroidery floss
White embroidery floss
3/4″ craft brush
Tapestry needle

— Photo courtesy of Cinedelphia

Premiering in 1922, F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu was the first vampire story ever portrayed on motion picture and the first narrative to feature a vampire being killed by sunlight. Heavily inspired by Bram Stoker’s Dracula — so heavily inspired, Bram Stoker’s widow sued and all prints and negatives of the film were ordered destroyed — the film has become a classic in its own right, particularly for Max Shreck’s (Count Orlok) unique and terrifying look.

Working without a stencil, the design for the puppet started with the size of the tin and the size of my fingers. I cut two long squares of the charcoal felt that could be trimmed to fit the size of my finger and then cut two proportionate squares of grey felt that could be trimmed down to create Count Orlok’s head.

Once I trimmed the felt, I used the needle and embroidery floss to re-create the character’s memorable eyebrows, close-set eyes and fangs. Once the face was finished, I used the grey embroidery closs to whip-stitch to the front and back sides of the head together and to secure the head to the front part of the body. I also used the black embroidery floss to re-create the double set of buttons on the front of Count Orlok’s coat.

When the puppet was complete, I cut a long square of the cranberry felt and trimmed it down to fit inside the bottom of the tin. Once I found the right proportion, I used the craft brush to paint a bit of the decoupage adhesive on each side of the tin and glued the felt to the bottom.

My art students got a kick out of this guy. I’m making another one tonight and they voted for Lestat. Any other suggestions?

~ by blackmoodcraft on October 24, 2012.

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