How to make sheep

A few of you asked how I made the sheep from the Good Shepherd parable. The three sheep and wolf took around 20 hours for me to make, spread across one week. You might be more efficient. The sheep are paper maché figures painted white with glued-on natural wool. Here are a few close-ups of the sheep so you can see the construction.

Sheep

Underside of sheep

Materials:

  • Newspaper torn into various sizes of rectangles (for the armature)
  • Masking tape
  • Scissors
  • Newspaper cut in small strips
  • Paper maché paste – I used flour, water and a bit of white glue
  • Acrylic white paint
  • Paint brush
  • Small piece of natural wool batting
  • White glue

Step 1: Build an armature

Basically use newspaper and a lot of tape to form a sheep. I used a lot of tape.

Step 2: Build up the first paper maché layer

Dip the small strips of newspaper into the paste. Cover the entire sheep armature with these strips of newspaper. Smooth out any bubbles.

Wait for the newspaper to dry. I waited overnight. It might be dry within a couple of hours depending on the humidity.

Step 3: Build up the second and third paper maché layers

Continue adding layers of paper maché allowing each layer to dry completely before adding the next layer. (Now you may see why this took me all week long.)

Step 4: Paint the sheep

Paint the entire sheep white. Let it dry. Add a second and third coat if necessary.

Step 5: Glue on the wool

Cut a small rectangle of wool batting. Glue this around the top and sides of the sheep. Trim the edges.

Cut another smaller square or rectangle for the front chest of the sheep. Glue this and trim the edges.

Cut an even smaller rectangle for the top of the sheep’s head. Glue and trim.

Fluff the pieces together so the seams are not visible.

Cardboard sheep

After making three sheep and a wolf I ran out of time and decided to make cardboard sheep for the rest of the flock. The cardboard sheep took around half-an-hour.

Fold a piece of lightweight cardboard in half. Draw an outline of a sheep from a side-view. Place the head and back of the sheep on the fold. Draw a separate outline of ears from the side, placing the top part on the fold. Cut. Glue on the ears. Paint. Voilá, you are finished! You could add wool batting to these too. Here are a few close-ups of the cardboard sheep.

Cardboard sheep

Cardboard sheep underneath

If that is more time than you have I encourage you to search for “Catechesis of the Good Shepherd materials” and look into the sturdy wooden figures that are available. You can purchase them painted or unpainted. In my search I found a place called Garden of Francis that sells handmade, affordable wooden figures. I’ve never ordered from them, but you might check them out. There are figures on Etsy too, from time to time.

Does anyone else have good sources for materials or tutorials for making materials?

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2 Comments

Filed under Projects

2 responses to “How to make sheep

  1. Shelley

    Hi,
    I just wanted to let you know that I am so glad I found your blog. A few months ago, I began teaching CTR 5 and I have a young girl in my class that only understands sign language. Well, my sign language is very limited (almost non-existent). Anyway, I have been praying for a way to have her involved and learn the gospel at church. I have been a lover if the Montessori Method for a few years now and Just recently heard about Godly Play. I immediately began looking for an LDS version but have found nothing until now. Thank you so much for sharing. I am looking forward to each of your entries.

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