DIY Elf on the Shelf

There is a new elf in the house! I have been quite smitten by all the Elf on the Shelf photos floating around the internet. I could not bring myself to drop 30 bucks on buying the little guy, though. I kept flirting with that buy button, but ultimately decided I could make an elf that would work just fine, which I did, for less than a dollar.

Here is Twinkle, our sweet elf, feeling chummy and a bit sentimental towards her old body. This little doll was the base for a crochet project that I found at Salvation Army for 99 cents. I simply popped off her head, and sewed a very basic body for her with supplies I had already on hand. The “unique” decorative trim on her hat is covering some cuts in the felt. I wanted to finish her late last night, so pieced together some tiny scraps to get her complete.

I made a few upgrades that the original Elf on the Shelf doesn’t have like polka-dot mitten hands, vintage skirt with ric rac trim, and bendy wire arms and legs. She is a little top-heavy, so needs to lean on something to sit well, but other than that she is great. She suits our all-girl team pretty well, too.

I don’t have much of a tutorial to share, since I whipped her together, not knowing what I was doing half the time. Her head is attached to the hat and felt collar with hot glue, and although I added a wooden skewer inside her torso and head to secure, I’m not sure that was necessary.

My girls are smitten with Twinkle, and we are all looking forward to her future escapades. You can follow along here.

I’ve linked up this DIY elf post here:

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5 Responses to DIY Elf on the Shelf

  1. Megan says:

    I love it!! I, too, can’t bring myself to spend the money on the Elf on a Shelf ($39.99!!). I searched high and low for an elf thing I could use instead and finally found an elf chipmunk ($7). I grabbed it, but I haven’t pulled it out yet because I’m not really happy with it, don’t think I can do some of the cute ideas I want to with a stuffed squirrel – I need the arms. But I think I could pull something together based on your thoughts and what I can find. Love it!!!

  2. Melissa says:

    Thank you for sharing. I was going to buy one this week but heard that they don’t have bendable arms and legs which is weird. I can remember the one I had a child twenty+ years ago had wire through out the body, my brother could contort that things in the most unusual positions.
    I will have to got this one a try maybe even twelve times, oh chaos 🙂

  3. Amy says:

    I love your elf. She is much cuter than the ones that come with a book. This is our third year with elf visitors. I’ve documented some of their adventures on my blog. I’d love for you to stop by.

  4. Kristiana says:

    Oh how I’ve wanted an Elf on the Shelf. It good to know I’m not the only one who doesn’t want to dish up the money for it! Did you buy the book separately, or just tell your girls the story yourself? I think yours is even cuter than the original. It’s a little frightening if I do say so myself!

    • Kristin says:

      Kristiana – I didn’t get the book. I’m not really enthusiastic about the whole “spying for Santa” aspect – so our elf is just a fun thing to wake up to every morning. I’ve told my girls she is taking a break from the North Pole, and will be going back on Christmas day.

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