Scandinavian gnomes are hugely popular right now, and rightly so- they are super adorable! These gnomes are fairly simple to make and are a fun craft since each one has its own personality. Let ArtFire show you how you can make your own family of gnomes.
WARNING: GNOME MAKING IS HIGHLY ADDICTIVE!
These adorable gnomes can be made for holidays or as permanent decor. For this example, I got together with a group of friends and we each made Valentine’s Day gnomes.
This list will give you enough materials to make at least 4 gnomes
- (1) 12” styrofoam craft cone
- (1) 9” styrofoam craft cone
- (2) 7” styrofoam craft cones
- ¼ yd craft fur
- ½ yd cotton fabric (this can be 2 different fabrics that are ¼ yd each or (1) ½ yd strip. This is for the bodies of the gnomes)
- ½ yd fleece (this will be used for the hats, so it can be one print or multiple prints, just make sure you get a total of ½ yd)
- ¼”-1” wooden balls (used for noses)
- Floral wire (if you want to bend your hat in wonky directions)
- Any embellishments that you would like to add to the body or hat (buttons, pom-poms, ribbon)
- Yarn (if you want to make hair/braids
- Hot glue gun with glue
- Cutting mat
- Box cutter
Helpful Tips (aka things we messed up on and learned from along the way)
- Holiday cotton fabric and felt are super cute, but if you want a floppy hat, fleece is the way to go!
- Pay the extra money for Mongolian fur! You will know it when you see it. It is the long flowy fur and it works so much better for the beards. It was $40/yd at the local craft store, BUT, we only needed a ¼ yard and when I used a coupon, I ended up paying just $6.
- If you have crafty friends and you are all going to make gnomes together, share! Have everyone get different colors of fur, fabric, and embellishments.
Step 1- Cover the Body
Pick one of your cotton fabrics and wrap it around a cone. Play with it so the design lines up how you like it. The fabric needs to cover the bottom of the cone, but it’s okay if a little of the cone is exposed at the top. Once you have it lined up how you like it, use the hot glue to secure the fabric to the cone. Trim the excess fabric along your glue seam.
Step 2- Make the Hat
For our group, this step was the hardest part of gnome making. Pick one of your pieces of fleece and wrap it around the top of your cone, keeping in mind that this will be where your gnome hat will sit. Mark the fabric to show how wide the fabric needs to be to make your hat. GIve yourself an extra ¼” to allow yourself room to glue the pieces together. (Ex. If you need 4” to make the hat, mark your fabric at 4 ¼ “). Cut your fabric. Now you need to decide how tall you want your hat to be. Mark this distance on your fabric. You will now find where the middle of your width of fabric meets the mark you just made for the height. The easiest way to do this is to fold your fabric in half widthwise, and mark the height where the fabric is folded. Using your ruler, mark a line from your center point to each corner. This will give you a triangle that will be the hat. If you are adding floral wire to make your hat bendy, you will now run a bead of hot glue from the tip of your triangle to 1” above the bottom of the fabric. Now, CAREFULLY glue the long edges together. Your should have a cone shape that will be your hat! If the shape is off a little bit, use your scissors to trim the fabric, or roll it under and glue.
Step 3- Add the Beard
(If you are making a gnome with braids instead of a beard, skip this step and go to Extra Step at the bottom)
Your beard will sit just under, or right along your hat. Set your hat on the gnome and then grab your strip of fur. This part is all about your personal preference. You will mark how wide you want your beard to be. Keep in mind you can always take away fur, but you can’t add it back, so in other words, it’s better to cut it a little too long than too short. Once you mark the width you want, flip your fabric upside down so that the furry side is down and the flat side is up. You will now draw your beard shape. I decided that an upside down trapezoide worked best (aka a triangle with the tip cut off). Most Norweian gnomes have pretty big beards, so we all made sure to make our beards long enough that they would cover the entire front of the body. To cut the fur, use your box cutter to score the back of the fabric. DO NOT cut all the way through. Cutting it this way ensures your beard will be soft and flowy along the edges instead of choppy. Hold your new beard up to your gnome to make sure you like the shape and size. Once you have the beard how you like it, glue it on.
Step 4- Add the Nose
Part the fur right along your hat line so that it almost looks like a mustache. Use the hot glue to add the nose. Depending on the size ball you are using, the can be pretty heavy, so make sure you hold the nose until the glue is fairly dry before you let go.
Step 5- Add any Extras
At this point you can secure your hat and be done, or you can add any embellishments you would like. You can glue any number of items onto the body or the hat: pom-poms, bells, fabric cutouts, ribbon, flowers, anything you like!
Extra Step- Adding Hair (optional)
Cut 18+ pieces of yard that are the length of your cone. Use a piece of yarn to tie all the strands together. Braid the strands. You can either use another piece of yard to tie the ends together, or use a piece of ribbon. Glue the strand to the top of your cone. You can make another braid and glue one to each side if you want your gnome to have pigtails. Jump back to Step 5 and finish up your gnome.
It’s gnome wonder these guys are so popular! We hope you have found some creative inspiration and have fun crafting your own gnomes!