This is a perfect way to dress up your house for the Holiday's and might even be okay rolling over in to January. You can also include the kids! Instead of making real, edible gingerbread men make these up and let them decorate them with puff paint (aka "frosting"). You can also add embellishments such as buttons, ribbon and rick rack to give them a little extra cuteness. Just glue any extra's on.
- Gingerbread Man Template (Two sizes are included in the PDF Template and Instruction download)
- Large Brown Paper Grocery Bags
- String, Twine, Ribbon or Raffia Swag
- Something for tracing. I like to use white chalk. If using something permanent, trace on the non-showing side.
- Sewing Machine (although you could hand-stich each, it would be a lot of work!)
- Stuffing (100% Polyester Fiberfill - any cheap kind)
- Puff Paint - I mainly use white, but that's your prerogative
- Optional Embellishments: Rick Rack, Ribbon, Lace, Buttons...etc.
Paper Bags: Cut down the middle of ONE side (on the crease). Then cut around/off the bottom of the bag and discard.
Templates: If you are using a permanent marker/pen, trace on the printed side of the paper so that it won't show when you put them together. I personally like to use white chalk and trace right on to the showing side. I also trace and cut them a little fatter than the template.
Trace as many as you can fit, reversing the pattern to make them fit better. You will need TWO cutouts for each final gingerbread man.
Using two cutouts - plain side out - layer one, then some stuffing, then the second cutout (sandwiching the cotton). You want the cotton to stick out of the edges a little too. Roughly pin the cutout-sandwich together to keep the cotton in and in place while sewing. Now sew around the edges with white thread (or whatever colour you want) about 1/4" seam. The sewing will show so play with a zig-zag stitch or straight or even some decorative stitching. Do keep in mind you'll be making MANY of these so change it up if you want. BEFORE SEWING, read the "HANG" section (next).
There are a few methods to hang the bunting (option "a" or "b" are easiest and my choice):
- a) Make all the men, cut your string to the full length you want it to be and then hot glue it to the backs of the men.
- b) Cut lengths you want between each men, knotting each end and then sewing at the "fingertips" WHILE SEWING the men together.
- c) Cut string to the full length you want, lay across the interior (across the chest and "fingertips" BEFORE SEWING.
That's it! You can easily adapt this pattern and idea to using fabric for the gingerbread men or even doing other shapes like Christmas Tree's or snowmen. You could also mix it up and include many different shapes on one string of bunting.
If you'd like to keep this project around or want the templates, here is the PDF Template & Instructions (Gingerbread Men Bunting) for printing.