Folkmanis Puppets: Piglet

folkmanis pigletMy second Folkmanis puppet is the Piglet. I have to confess, as I sat here looking at him reclining on my bed — he’s rather large, about 14 inches from nose to curly tail (not corkscrew curly, but it’s making a good start) — the first thought that came to my mind was the title of a Tony Hillerman mystery, The Sinister Pig. With his half-closed eyes and slightly open mouth, he looks — well, hungry. (Although now that I think on it, that seems appropriate for a piglet.) I couldn’t help but remember, looking at him, that pigs are omnivorous.

To the basics: as one has come to expect, the workmanship on the Piglet is top-notch: seams are tight, no loose threads, materials of the highest quality. The white plush body is accented by beige-pink hooves, nose, and ear linings of fine-grained velveteen. Detailing is apt: not only is the nose appropriately dimpled, with tightly embroidered nostrils, but the trotters are stitched to indicate that he has two hooves, but nothing ostentatious — or that might lead to problems down the road with tears or splits.

The possibilities for expressiveness are somewhat limited in this one: the opening for the hand is large enough to be comfortable, even for me, but there is no way to move the front legs — action is limited to the mouth and face: one can open and close the mouth, and by means of a loop inside the head, furrow the brow (have you ever seen a pig with a furrowed brow?). One interesting note: the inside of the mouth is hard,, although the visible parts are covered in felt. While it gives a nice degree of control, it also limits the possibilities for expression.

The tag contains interesting facts about pigs — did you know they’re related to giraffes (very distantly)? — and a poem by Joanna Carter titled “My Pet Piglet,” which sort of captures the feel of this one.

He’s going back on the bed. He seems very comfortable there, and he’ll keep it safe for me.

About Robert Tilendis

Robert M. Tilendis lives a deceptively quiet life. He has made money as a dishwasher, errand boy, legal librarian, arts administrator, shipping expert, free-lance writer and editor, and probably a few other things he’s tried very hard to forget about. He has also been a student of history, art, theater, psychology, ceramics, and dance. Through it all, he has been an artist and poet, just to provide a little stability in his life. Along about January of every year, he wonders why he still lives someplace as mundane as Chicago; it must be that he likes it there.

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