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Alibi Exchange: Flying Puppets

This week, our wonderful Designer, Trina Bramman, has created beautiful flying puppets for you to make at home. Choose from various different templates – maybe a bird? A butterfly? A dragon? Or even a winged horse!

Trina has been careful to use bits and bobs that we hope you can find around your house. She’s put together a step by step guide with pictures too, to help you along the way. We hope you enjoy yourselves and, if you fancy it, do send any films and photographs of your puppets to us at info@theatrealibi.co.uk.

We’d really love to see them.

To view some of the brilliant flying puppets we’ve been sent:


Thank you for sending them in!

How to make the puppeT

For these instructions, we’ve chosen to make a bird, but you could choose to make any of the amazing creatures shown in the videos below. All the templates for the different puppet shapes are also below. Don’t worry you don’t have to draw them yourselves, unless you want to of course!

Things you will need are:

  • A pencil
  • Some paper
  • Some thin card
  • A small piece of corrugated card
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • And if you want to colour it in, felt tips, crayons or paint

The pieces you will cut out in paper are:

  • An 8.5cm sq
  • A pair of wings – See template at the bottom of the page
  • A tail – See template at the bottom of the page 

The pieces you will cut out in thin card are:

  • 2 bodies – See template at the bottom of the page 
  • 2 wing rods – See template at the bottom of the page 


If you want to colour your creature in it is easier if you do it now before you start sticking it all together. 

  1. Roll the square of paper around the pencil and glue it closed. It should be loose enough to slide up and down the pencil but not too loose.
  2. Line up the card rods with the bottom of the tube and glue them to opposite sides of the tube. Make a little fold at the ends of each rod. This little folded bit will stick to the wings later. Set this aside for now. 
  3. Poke the point of the pencil in between the layers of the corrugated card. Don’t poke it all the way through, just about half way up. Take the pencil out and put a little glue in the hole, poke the pencil back in and leave to dry. 
  4. Snip the corners off the corrugated card so it fits inside the body without poking out. Glue one side of the body to the corrugated card. Flip it over and put glue on the other side of the corrugated card, the head and the tail. Line up the second body piece and stick it down.
  5. Cut feather shapes into the back edges of the wings if you want to. Fold up the bottom edge where the dotted line is. Glue the folded section to the top edge of the bird’s back. Flip the whole thing over and glue on the second wings.
  6. Position the wings so that they are pointing upwards. Making sure the cardboard rods don’t get bent, slide the tube all the way up the pencil until it touches the bottom of the body. Then stick the little folded ends of the rods to the wings, one at a time. Be careful the glue doesn’t spread further down the rods or the bird won’t fly. Leave the glue to dry before the next bit. Now when you slide the tube up and down the pencil the wings should flap.
  7. Pinch the pointy bit of the tail just along the dotted line (don’t fold the whole thing in half). Put a little glue either side of the bird’s body at the tail end. Pinch the tail onto the end of the body to make it stick.

Now your bird is ready to fly!


Downloadable instructions:


Templates to try:

Bird Template Seagull Template Butterfly Template Dragon Template Horse Template