I wanted a new porch gnome this fall and came up with this fun and easy tomato cage gnome. In just 10 minutes, I had a giant gnome at the ready!
Tomato Cage Gnome
Here at Ruffles and Rain Boots, we love decorating the porch to go along with all the fun farmhouse touches on the inside of the house. I mean, coming home to the fun inside is made even better when there’s a gnome to greet you at the porch! So, when I found this old sweater when I was cleaning out a closet, I knew exactly what I was going to do with it!
Isn’t that just fantastic to take an old, otherwise undesirable sweater and upcycle it into a gnome that you genuinely love?! Projects like this just energize me to make more! So, grab an old tomato cage from the garden and let’s get started.
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Tips to Make this Porch GNome Using a Tomato Cage
- There’s no particular pattern to make this porch gnome because every tomato cage is different and your sweaters will be different…everything will be different. But you don’t need a pattern. This easy gnome comes together so quick.
- When you’re making the nose for this gnome, I chose to make the felt ball pom pom with hot glue. But, if you have a needle and thread, this can be done with a running stitch so much faster and easier. I just ended up doing this to make sure the whole project could be done no-sew. So, it’s up to you!
- You can use traditional beard materials for this gnome’s beard. But I wanted to try something new, something I’d never tried before but had always intrigued me: loop yarn. It was definitely fun, but it took a lot more yarn than I anticipated. So keep that in mind.
How Do I Make this Tomato Cage Gnome?
I’m so glad you asked. Below is our written tutorial. If you’re a visual learner, check our full tomato cage gnome video tutorial here on YouTube.
- 1 Tomato Cage
- 1 Sheet EVA Foam
- 1 Adult-Size Turtleneck Sweater
- 4 Child-size Mittens
- Scrap Fabric
- 1 Ball Loop Yarn
- 1/2 yd Fleece
- Floral Wire
- 1 Pool Noodle
- Scrap Felt
- Small Amount of Polyfill
- Hot Glue Gun & Glue
- Wire Cutters
- Wrap the EVA foam around the exterior of the tomato cage and hot glue it in place. I wrapped the bottom edge of the foam around the bottom of the tomato cage, to keep the bottom of the cage from being visible, but it turned out to be unnecessary.
- Slide the sweater over the tomato cage with the neck of the sweater around the narrow base of the tomato cage. Bunch the tines of the base of the tomato cage together tightly with the neck of the sweater and secure this with the floral wire.
- Cut the pool noodle into equal-length quarters. Slide a floral wire into the center of two of the quarters of pool noodle, then place a mitten onto one end of the pool noodles. Hot glue the mitten in place. Repeat with the other two pool noodles, creating the forms for the two arms.
- Slide these pool noodle arm forms up into the sleeves of the sweater, rolling the sleeve up at the wrist, as necessary. Use floral wire at the shoulder of the gnome to hold the arms up, if desired.
- Make the gnome beard by cutting a piece of scrap fabric in a large "U" shape. Hot glue strips of loop yarn to on side of the "U" shaped fabric, long enough to cover the fabric and dangle a bit longer. Build up layers of the yarn as much as desired, covering the entire fabric.
- Make a nose by cutting a 6-8 -inch diameter circle of felt, then placing a small amount of polyfill in the center. Hot glue the edges of the circle together, creating a pom pom.
- Glue the pom pom nose onto the beard, about an inch below the top of the beard.
- Glue the beard onto the gnome, about 2 inches above the shoulders.
- Lay out the fleece fabric and cut a large triangle, the base of which being large enough to wrap around the tomato cage at the shoulders.
- Hot glue the long edges of the triangle together, forming a cone. Fold the edge of the base over inside the cone by about a half inch and hot glue in place, forming a hem.
- Tuck this hat down onto the top of the gnome and hot glue it into a wrinkle over the nose, then glue it down in the back and on the sides to secure the hat completely.
- Make the feet by tucking the thumb of one of the mittens into the mitten itself and hot gluing it in place. Repeat with the other mitten.
- Fill each mitten with a small portion of polyfill.
- Tuck each mitten up under the sweater, folding the opening of the mitten around the tomato cage bottom, in line with the arms. Hot glue the mittens in place.
- Then set your gnome out on the porch and enjoy!
For more farmhouse gnome tutorials, visit Ruffles and Rain Boots!
More Porch Gnome Tutorials You Might Like
- Garden Style Clay Pot Gnome – One of the first gnomes I ever made, this little clay pot gnome is just about the best and easiest way to bring a gnome to your porch or garden!
- Gnome Sweet Gnome Porch Gnome Trio – A little wood, a saw and some glue inspired me to fix up a fun set of gnomes to display a little sign by my front door!
- Farmhouse Gnomes from Logs for the Porch – You aren’t going to find an easier way to make a gnome made of logs. And making this little set of log gnomes is simple and fun!
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