- 2 to 3 socks depending on the style you make.
- Fur. I purchased mine from Joann fabrics, but you could get yours from other brands or stores. There were several different colors available.
- Hot glue and hot glue gun
- Either a wooden bead and some paint or some blush make up depending on the type of nose you want.
- Twine or ribbon
- Extra accent pieces. I used a wooden snowflake I already had.
- If you want to make the apron for the girl gnome, then you will also need some felt and two little buttons.
- Rice to fill the gnomes and help them stand up.
- If you make taller hats, then you may want to fill the hats with cotton filler or Styrofoam.
I started out filling my gnome base with rice. Once I got a good size body, I tied off the top of my sock with some string. I made a triple knot to make sure it was good and tight. I also applied a little hot glue to the knot for extra security. I then cut off any extra sock I did not need. You could cut your sock before you fill it, but I prefer cutting it after it is filled so I make sure I left enough sock. If you are making a big nose with the sock, then you will want to use a white sock to fill with rice. If you are using a wooden nose for your gnome, then you can use any color you want.
For the male gnome I wanted a big nose. So, I grabbed a chunk of the rice inside the sock about where I wanted the nose to be. I then tied it off with some string. My boyfriend helped my tie things as I help the different pieces. It was nice having the extra set of hands. If you do not have an extra set of hands, then it might help to wrap a rubber band around the different things you need to tie off. This will help hold them in place so you can tie them. Over time rubber brands lose their elasticity and brake. They can also become sticky over time. So, I do not recommend leaving the rubber bands on your gnomes. Once the nose is made, I took a little blush make up and patted it on his nose to give it a little color.
I then took a gray sock, or color of sock you want the body to be, and put it over the white sock. I got a rough estimate of how big this sock needed to be and cut off the extra. I then refit the colored sock over the white rice filled sock and glued it in place by placing a small strip of hot glue around the edges. Make sure to leave the nose sticking out.
For the beard I cut a square out of my fur fabric that was about 4 inches across by about 3 inches long. I held my fur up against my gnome to get my rough estimate. Your sizes may be different depending on how big or little you make your gnome. When cutting the fur try to cut just the backing and not the fur itself. You will want some fur to stick out on the sides and bottom. If you cut a little of the fur, you can cover it up with the extra fur when you fluff it out. Once I had my fur cut out, I held it up against my gnome and made little trims where needed. I rounded out the edges of my fur. You will also need to cut out a wedge at the top of your fur for the nose. Once the fur fits to your liking you can glue it in place. I only placed hot glue around the top of the fur to glue it in place. Just a little warning the fur sheds a lot. I had white hair everywhere.
The next step was making the hat. When I was little I liked to wear toe socks. I am not sure if you can even find these types of socks anymore, but this is what I used for my hats. I recommend placing the sock you are going to use for your hat up against your gnome to get a rough estimate on how long you want your hat to be. I made relatively short hats. Cut your sock a little longer than you want, because you will need a little extra to roll the ends. I then tied the tip of my sock off, in my case the toes. You could leave you hat sock untied and just glue a cotton ball or something to the end if you want. I tied mine off and then cut 3 slits in each toe piece. If you are just using a normal sock, then you could just cut slits in the tip you tied off. I then glued some twine around my string to make it look nicer. I also made a bow out of my twine and glued it in place.
For my first gnome, the male gnome, I glued the hat in place first, then tried to roll the edges up. With my second gnome, the lady, I found it was easier and nicer to roll the edges of the sock and place a little glue to hold them in place first, then glue the hat on the gnome. The rolled edges make the ends look nicer and cleaner. It also creates the rim of the hat. My male gnome needed a little something extra, so I glued a small wooden snowflake to his hat. Add any extra embellishments you want to your gnome. You could even make hands for your gnomes if you want.
For the lady gnome I filled my colored sock with the rice, since I was just using a wooden bead for her nose. My wooden bead was already pink, but it was a very bright pink. So, I painted my wooden bead a lighter pink.
The colored sock filled with rice was done in the same way as the male gnome. I filled the sock with rice to my liking, then tied it off at the top with a triple knot and a little hot glue to keep it secure. I then cut off any extra sock I had left.
I also made the sock hat in the same way as I did for the male gnome. The only difference was I initially only glued the sock hat in the back. It is important to not glue the hat all the way in place yet, because we will need to glue the hair and apron under the hat.
To make the hair for the lady gnome you will need three strips of fur for each braid. I made my braids about 3 inches long. This was the same length as my male gnomes’ beard, so I thought it would be a good length for the braids as well. The three strips were probably about ½ an inch wide. I did not measure these. Once I had my three strips of fur cut out, I used my hot glue gun to glue the tips of the fur strips together. I then braided the fur like you would someone’s hair, going back and forth. Once I got to the end, I tried initially to tie the twine like a hair tie at the end, but it just slipped out. So, I redid my braid, but this time I glued the ends at the back. I then made a bow with the twine and wrapped the twine around the end of hair to make it look like they were holding the braids. I repeated the same thing for the other braid. I then lifted the hat and glued the braids on the side of the gnome’s head, under the rim of the hat.
By this time my wooden nose paint was dry. I tucked the nose just slightly under the rim of the hat and glued it in place. Since the braids do not cover the gnome’s body she seemed very plain. You could make hands for your gnome and have her hold flowers or something, but I decided to make her an apron instead.
To make the apron you will need some felt. I held my felt up against my gnome and cut a square out. I then cinched the top of the square and applied glue to hold the cinches in place. You could also use a needle and thread to make this pleated like design. I then glued this in place on my gnome. Next, I made a strip to go across the top of the skits part of the apron to make it look nicer/finished. I made this piece just stop under my gnome’s hair, but you could make it wrap all the way around your gnome and tie it in a bow in the back to make it look more realistic. I then cut two thin strips out of my felt. These two pieces are glued just under the hat and go all the way down to the apron, just past the rim of the apron. Next, I cut a little rectangle out of my felt and glued it between the two strips and the top of the apron. This is the top part of the apron. The final touch, which I think makes all the difference, is to glue two small buttons to either side of the apron. If your apron is a little long, you could always trim the bottom with some scissors.
I did not add any additional decretive pieces to my lady gnome since her hat already had snowflakes on it. You could add a small design to the apron as well. I might have added a small snowflake to one side of the bottom of her apron if I thought about it while I was making her.
I was very happy with how these two gnomes turned out. I was not huge into gnomes, but I really like these two. They are my first gnome décor pieces I own. They were fun to make, and maybe next year I will add to my gnome collection. Each one can have so much personality. I would love to see the gnomes you make.