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Clown Figure

A spry clown ornament plays on the German cotton-wool Christmas figurines of the late 1800s.

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2006


  • Two Styrofoam balls (one 1-inch and one 2-inch)

  • Pipe cleaners

  • Cotton batting

  • Craft glue

  • Water

  • Paintbrush

  • Scissors

  • Pins

  • Permanent marker

  • Floral pip

  • Patterned paper

  • 1/4-inch pom poms

  • Red honeycomb paper

  • Tweezers


  1. Mix 2 parts craft glue and 1 part water. Tear a few small pieces cotton batting; press around a 1-inch Styrofoam ball (for head). Using a flat paintbrush, saturate batting with glue mixture, pressing onto foam. Repeat with a 2-inch ball (for body). Let dry 1 hour. Repeat process to apply a second layer.

  2. Cut 4 strips batting: two 1 inch wide (for legs) and two 2 5/8 inches wide (for arms). Brush 1 strip at a time with glue mixture, and wrap end of a cotton pipe cleaner twice; trim excess. Trim leg pipe cleaners to 1 3/4 inches. Trim arm pipe cleaners to 3 3/4 inches. Attach head to body with 1 1/4 inches of pipe cleaner, leaving a 1/2-inch neck (use a pin to make holes in body). Attach arms and legs; cover seams with more batting and glue.

  3. Draw face. Insert a trimmed floral pip for nose (we painted ours red). Trace hat template onto patterned paper. Cut out; use craft glue to secure at seam. Glue a 1/4-inch pom-pom to hat, then glue hat to head. Glue 2 more pom-poms to body.

  4. Trace collar template onto red honeycomb paper (position paper so that its lines are perpendicular to dotted line on template). Cut out; place double-sided tape on 1 side. Unfold; fasten around neck, pinching closed with tweezers.

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