How the Hoogie Puppet Came to Be

Hoogie LIVE!

Hoogie the Puppet

I commissioned a very talented lady to create a puppet of Hoogie this past summer. As you’ll see from the first photos below, she did a wonderful job. The problem was that as lovely as her puppet was, it didn’t completely look like Hoogie to me. The fur was close, but not perfect; the eyes were a little too big and close together; the face was too thin.

I am definitely not a puppet maker (!), but I visited a fabric store in September with a thought to make some little tweaks in an effort to bring the puppet closer to Dean Griffith’s rendering of Hoogie in the book. The result? I ended up covering the original puppet with friendlier fur, smaller and more widely spaced eyes, a wider face (with whiskers like Hoogie has in the book), a dress that matched the book, etc.

I think both puppets are great (see the photos below), but the new one feels more like Hoogie to me. Let me know what you think!

Hoogie Puppet 01 - Before

Hoogie – Just before we start

Hoogie Puppet 02

The first pattern pieces

Hoogie Puppet 03

There’s Hoogie’s mouth!

Hoogie Puppet 04

Hoogie’s Head!

Hoogie Puppet 05

Everything but Hoogie’s face!


The original Hoogie puppet finished! We visited with the real Hoogie (left) on Middle Child Day in Guelph, Ontario (where the real Hoogie is attending University of Guelph)


Just about to start again (of course I couldn’t have created the new Hoogie from scratch … the original puppet created was vital as a base for the new puppet)


New head (the old head is under the new head). The wider shape is more like Hoogie in the book.


New eyes (a little smaller and wider apart)


Just before I sew on Hoogie’s ears


Comparing Hoogie’s new face to the book illustration (Hoogie the puppet is looking a wee bit distressed here!)


Her new dress is now the same as the one Dean Griffiths painted in the book, but a little too tight at the bottom. I had to rip that seam open to give her more room.


Sometimes Hoogie feels like the hole in the middle of a donut! (She had a little trouble getting that donut over her eye here!)


Hoogie attends the Vaughan Book Fair

Author Helaine Becker, the Beautiful Pink Queen, Hoogie and I at Vaughan Public Library's Bookfest

Hoogie and I with Canadian author Helaine Becker (left) and a little princess who stopped by at the Vaughan Book Fair

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