There are two ways we make puppets with movable hands, arm rods or hand pockets/ arm sleeves. Arm rods only move the arms, whereas arm sleeves allow for movable hands and fingers. Arm rods attach to the arms and you can use one or two at a time, with a bit of practice. With our arm sleeves, the hand comprises a glove which you can put your hand inside and work the fingers.
Puppets with living puppets style arm sleeves
If you’re looking for really good control of the puppet’s hands, try our living puppet style arm sleeves or hand pockets. They’re super easy to use because it’s just like moving your own hands. It makes the puppet really life like, and allows it to do all kinds of things like sign language, picking things up, playing musical instruments and more!
Custom Puppets with one movable hand/ arm sleeve
The puppet has one or two gloves for hands, so you can use one of your hands to operate the mouth and the other to work one hand. It’s great for gesticulating while talking and makes the puppet much more convincing. In the video above, the puppet has one movable hand and is being worked by one person.
Puppets with two movable hands
Alternatively, two people can operate the puppet together, one person can do the mouth and the other the hands. Below is an example of a custom puppet with two arm sleeves, operated by two people. This is great for sign language puppets!
Let us know if your hands are particularly big or particularly small when you place your order, we will make sure that the puppet arm sleeves fit your hands.
Pablo the puppet (above) also has blinking eyelids and movable eyebrows! You can find out more about these optional extras here, or hang on for next Monday, when I will talk in more detail about blinking eyes and how we do them.
Custom Built Hand and Rod Puppets
Arm rods easily attach and detach from you puppet’s arms using elastic bands. With a bit of practice, you can move one or both of your puppet’s arms while moving the mouth with your other hand.
Here you can see an example of one of our custom likeness puppets with an arm rod.