Not all craft elements are created equal so I am sharing the best gnome making supplies. From fabric and feet to noses and accessories, we will talk about all things DIY gnome.
The Best Gnome Making Supplies
Here at Ruffles and Rain Boots, I love to share Christmas gnomes, non-seasonal gnomes, gnome patterns, and well – just pretty much all things gnome. If you’re new here, get ready because I’ve been doing this a long time.
You can translate that to read: I’ve made a lot of mistakes. It’s funny, but true – I can’t tell you how many times I went to use a fun fabric and it completely slid right off my gnome. Or, I went to hot glue something on and it melted right before my eyes! I’d like to avoid those mistakes, so let’s get started.
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how to Make Gnome Beards and Braids
I am constantly asked about gnome beards and braids – and friends, I LOVE talking about them all! So I put together this resource on how to make gnome beards and braids, choosing fur, and even alternative materials to use. Just click the picture to check it out (it will open in a new window so you can come back to this).
How to Choose Fabric for Gnomes
I’m going to split this out because I feel this is dependent upon seasons. Now, I won’t bore you with all the seasons, but I would like to highlight one: Christmas.
How to Choose Fabric for Christmas Gnomes
Holiday gnomes are some of my favorite to make. I make them lush, plush, soft, and people go wild for them! Knowing what materials to buy did not come naturally to me – I have worked with some material which has made me want to PULL MY HAIR OUT! So, to avoid you doing the same to your luscious locks, here are a few tips.
Christmas gnomes look amazing in the following fabrics:
- fleece – this is SO forgiving, needs no hemming, and is available in so many colors
- minky – yes, this is one of my favorite fabrics to work with because it’s so much fun to touch
- felt – not all felt is created equal… always look for premium felt
- flannel – a quality flannel can be the perfect body or hat material (might have to add a stabilizer)
- knits – these are not for the beginner gnome maker as most have a good bit of stretch, but there are some fun knit patterns for the holidays
In the picture below, you can see I use premium felt, flannel, and minky fabrics in addition to a premium fur to create a soft, cozy set of stacking gnomes.
How to Choose Fabric for Gnomes (non-Christmas)
The same fabrics above apply to non-holiday gnomes, of course – buy those in non-Christmas colors and craft your heart out! But, consider adding fabrics such as gauze, quilting cottons, and even specialty fabrics such as sequins, sheers, and more.
When you pair these with the right accessories, they can really make a gnome wow-worthy! Speaking of accessories…
How to Make a Gnome Nose
Now, friends… There is a lot of fun to be had here so I want to spark your imagination with a few off-the-chain ideas. But before we get to new ideas for gnome noses, here are a few classic and beloved options.
Clay Gnome Nose
It is ridiculously easy to make a TON of clay noses in a small period of time. I love sitting and listening to my books on Audible while whipping up noses and hands. The shapes I tend to make most are rounds but also love making ovals and squished little noses (just press them into the mat to fatten them).
A few creative ways I’ve used clay for noses are:
- as a show-stopping schnoz for this spooky witch gnome
- to add a lot of character with little effort for this easy Grinch gnome
Wood Bead or Wood Round Gnome Noses
Another staple in my gnome-making craft room are wood beads and rounds. You can find the ones I buy most often here.
One bit of advice: venture out beyond the craft stores for these. There are so many amazing sellers (and ridiculously good prices) on Amazon. There are even a few sellers I recommend on Etsy for fun wood accessories for gnomes.
Gnome Noses made from Nylon (Pantyhose or Knitwear)
Whether you try buying pantyhose or peds (low-show or no-show socks), making your own nylon gnome noses is a fun experiment and can really change the look of your cutie. To make a gnome nose from a pantyhose material:
- cut nylon into a circle (it is recommended to double up on lighter colored nylons)
- stuff with polyfill
- tie off with string (or sew the circle in the round with a running stitch and pull tight)
- affix to gnome; optional: add blush or chalk pastels to add a light color to the nose
Other Materials and Ideas for Gnome Noses
As with anything creative, we don’t want to limit ourselves when. making gnomes. Here are a few more ideas for noses:
- pompoms (on the first version of this Mickey Mouse gnome)
- pony beads taken from your child’s art bin (used on these popular Christmas gnome ornaments)
- felt rounds (as used on this reindeer gnome)
- cork (on the original version of the Bob Ross gnome)
- small holiday ornaments and foam balls (used them on this set of Christmas gnomes)
- beads (usually round or oval)
- doll faces (eyes and mouth covered by hat and beard)
- ping pong balls (for larger or outdoor gnomes)
- paper crafting brads accents
Where to Find Gnome Accessories (or Make)
If you are new to me, you might not know this but I make a LOT of my gnome extras from polymer clay (like the coffee and cocoa tutorials you find on my YouTube channel here). I just love getting creative when I’m drawing up a new gnome.
- Etsy – Oh, I am addicted to hunting down cool shops who make the most creative accessories. They don’t advertise them for gnomes, but they are pretty easy to find with a quick search. Sometimes they are done for me, sometimes I need to paint them – either way, it’s a great place to check for extras.
- Craft Stores – I love finding grapevine wreaths and other accessories in the craft stores. A few places within the stores to look: floral add-on section, doll area, wreath pick bins, the fairy garden area, jewelry-making, and the buttons section.
- DIY – No matter what size gnomes I make, I can whip up a little bit of extra decoration using polymer clay and my Cricut cutting machine. The sky is the limit! And listen – I am no clay artist, so give it a try.
- Doll Accessories – A lot of the 18″ doll accessories make perfectly-sized add-ons for my larger cozy gnomes (sewing pattern).
Gnome Feet, Gnome Shoes, and Gnome Boots
I have an entire gnome shoes and boots series (I’m working on the videos, but the gnome shoes and boots patterns are here). Now, to get started…
There are quite a few ways to make gnome feet and I am still exploring them all. So far, I’ve placed gnomes on plaques, used Christmas ornaments for sock gnomes, created tall standing gnomes with weighted shoes, and even made clay and fleece little gnome feet.
Whew – that’s a lot, right? Here are a few ideas to get you thinking how you might want to make your gnome feet and whether or not you’d like to make your own shoes.
- Bigfoot Gnome – This easy sitting gnome has the most bubbly toes you’ve ever wanted to tickle.
- Half Foot Standing Gnome – These peek-a-boo feet are just the thing to get started with clay.
- Mummy Gnome (coming soon) – If you are interested in learning how to make toes with fleece, you should start here.
Over to You – What Questions Do You Have?
Although I’ve been making gnomes for years, I try something new with every single one of my creations. Is there any technique you’d like to see or have me test (so you don’t have to)? ;) Just comment below.
The How to Make Gnomes Series
Now that you’ve read all about the best gnome supplies to have on hand, read these articles:
- How to Make Gnomes Series 1: Gnome Beards and Braids
- Read Sock Gnomes: Your Questions Answered
- Get Inspired with These Sock Gnomes
Please Share to Facebook or Save to Pinterest
Are you in any of the amazing gnome groups on Facebook? If so, please give articles like this a share in them – it helps me out so much. If saving these ideas for later is more your thing, go ahead and save this article to Pinterest so you (and others) can find it. I really am so very grateful when you share.