While the elves are busy making all the toys, these cheerful chaps are hanging out and taking it easy before their biggest night of the year – Christmas eve – comes around. You can make your own herd of woodland reindeer by shaping chenille sticks into bodies and wrapping each frame with tufts of wool roving. Bend and shape them as desired, and don’t forget to tie jingle bells around their necks!
Gather your supplies
For 1 reindeer
White chenille sticks; white wool roving; clear-drying tacky glue; hairspray; felting needle and pink wool roving or pink fine-tip permanent marker; 25cm x 5mm red satin ribbon; 5mm-diameter golden jingle bell
Step 1 Cut chenille sticks to the following lengths: 1 piece 30cm, 3 pieces 15cm, 1 piece 9.5cm and 1 piece 7cm.
Step 2 Pull off thin, flat pieces of wool roving. Wrap each chenille stick length with pieces of wool roving. Use your fingertips to rub a small quantity of glue over each wool-wrapped stick.
Step 3 Bend the 30cm wrapped stick to make a loop about 5cm wide for the ears.
Step 4 Bend the wrapped stick back over top of ears to form head shape. Bend wrapped stick into an L-shape that extends down from back of head for about 5-6.5cm, then bends to form the main part of body. Bend the end of the stick into a loop for the tail.
Step 5 Bend 2 of the 15cm wrapped sticks in half. Wrap tightly around the body, 1 at each end, for legs.
Step 6 Pull off a thin, flat ribbon of wool roving and wrap it around head and ears. Secure by wrapping it around the neck and rubbing a small quantity of glue onto the wrapped neck and ears.
Step 7 Arrange remaining 15cm, 9.5cm and 7cm wrapped sticks on your work surface. Twist the smallest piece tightly around the centres of the other 2 pieces to make the antlers.
Step 8 Place the antlers on the head and wrap a thin ribbon of roving around the antlers and head, crisscrossing roving around the head. Secure by wrapping the roving around the neck and rubbing a small quantity of glue over the end.
Step 9 Beginning at the neck, wrap a long strip of roving around and down to fill out the neck and body. Wrap the roving around the body and tail, in a figure-eight motion, and fill out the middle of body.
Step 10 Spray reindeer lightly with hairspray to hold body shape. Pull off tiny tufts of pink roving and use a felting needle to needle-felt them to the inside of the ears, or use a pink marker instead. Thread the bell onto the ribbon and tie around reindeer’s neck. Bend the antlers to curve slightly forward.