Sunday, October 19, 2014

Pilgrim Man and Gal Stick Figures "Give Thanks" Assembly Guide

Create this pair of standing pilgrim figures
to adorn a holiday display or shelf this Thanksgiving season.
Each is approx. 9.25" tall, and in the form of
a "flat" paper doll. A center back support keeps them upright. 

Flange tabs insert into the oval base boxes
so they can stand upright.
Offset shapes included in file so that the figures
can be used as paper dolls or other decorations individually,
without stand.
Each holds a swag banner that together says

From SnapDragon Snippets,
and available for purchase and download as an svg file
through Snap Dragon Snippets website,
soon from SVG Attic, and from
the Silhouette America online store.

1. Identify and cut the shapes.
Here are the pieces for the Pilgrim Man stick figure and stand. Some of the shapes have been pre-assembled to help them make sense. 

NOTE that the maple brown base shapes (upper left) include one that has the support "stand" tab on the bottom. Use this base shape as the back layer. The other base shape can be used to create a figure to use or display without the base. But you can also use him as the "glue-to" base for the figure with the stand, which also makes it sturdier.

Read through the tutorial to further identify these shapes.

Here are the pieces for the Pilgrim Gal.

She also has two base layers, one with support tab and one without.

In both groupings, the swag banner flags have been pre-folded over the twine with letters attached.

An optional shape is included in the file to cut the "twine" shape from paper, if preferred.

For twine, cut a length approx. 18" long, then trim to size when assembly is complete.

Assembly is practically identical for either figure. The Pilgrim Man will be in more detail, 

2. Position and attach the suit base shape on the front of the base shape without the bottom support tab. There is a narrow offset margin around the figure's decorative shapes that will also help with placement. Take care to center the shape so that the margin is equal beyond each edge, except where layered shapes cause an offset "bump-out", such as where the man's collar is wider than the suit bases.

For the Gal: Position, center and attach the dress base shape on the larger, offset base shape without the support tab at bottom.
3. Layer other shapes on top of, or next to, the suit base, including the left and right side suit body shapes, cuffs with buttons, hands , belt and buckle, socks with shoes and buckles. Use the offset bump-outs to help with placement. Make sure the hand and base punch circles line up exactly.

4. Bend the nose cutout slightly to give it some definition, then center and place the head/face shape at suit shapes' neck edge.

5. Complete the decor shapes: hair; eyes; collar with bow; hat with band, buckle and brim (buckle should probably go on the band, but he has kind of a humorous swagger with it this erroneous way that I like). Cut file includes an optional cheek cutout. I have substituted a little Q-Tip and blusher instead. The mouth would go on last.

6. For the stick figure with stand, attach the assembled figure with base to the base shape that includes the bottom support tabs.

For the Gal: layer and assemble the decor shapes on the base in similar fashion: socks, shoes and buckles; collar and buttons; cuffs and hands; face, hair, hat back and front, heart.

Blush cheeks or use cheek shape as for Man.

For the stick figure with stand, attach the assembled figure with base to the base shape that includes the bottom support tabs.

6. Prepare the back support shape by folding at the vertical center line perforation as "mountain" or inward fold, side tabs fold outward ("valley" folds).

7. Apply adhesive to the backside of the center triangular shaped areas and bottom tabs, then refold and press until secure. 

8. Apply adhesive to the side tabs of the support, then position it centered on the backside of the assembly (center dash lines provide guide for centering) with the tab bottom edge even with the figure base bottom tab edge (small dash cuts on base will help guide the vertical placement).

Apply pressure to the side tabs until secure.

9. Identify the LID and BASE boxing strips that go together. 
LID shapes have a tiny triangle and circle cut in the end tabs. The triangle should point UP during assembly.
BASE shapes have a tiny square (near bottom) and double circle symbols in end tabs.

Overlap the straight end of shorter strip over the end tab to perforation line. Make sure the horizontal perf lines are lined up exactly, then glue together.

 10. Prepare the joined upper boxing strip by folding on the vertical perforations, and folding the upper connection tabs, and the bottom rim tabs back.

11. Leave the non-tab end rim tab unfolded. Fold all other rim tabs back and glue in place.

12. Position and attach the optional decorative leaf sprig shapes on the lid shape (includes the slots).

13. Locate the widest section of the long boxing strip. This is the FRONT. Line up the lid front edge with the front section perf line, overlap edge to perforation, and glue in place. Hold and apply pressure until secure.

14. Bend the next section tab (toward shorter end) into position so that the lid edge overlaps and aligns with the perforation line, and glue in place. Hold until secure.

Continue working toward the short end until all section tabs are attached.

15. Repeat the alignment and attaching process for each of the section tabs and lid edges working with the longest portion of the strip until all but the last tab are in place.

16. Apply adhesive to BOTH the final top tab and the strip end tab, then position each in the same step. End tab will slide under the opposite end of strip edge, as was done when strips were joined in step 9 above.

17. Fold and glue down the final rim tab.

18. To position figure, insert the base tab near feet into the cross slot, and the support tab into the perpendicular slot, and push the tabs in until the figure's bottom edges are seated fully at the top of the lid.

This is the final position. If you want the figure to be permanently attached to the box stand, you can tape or apply other adhesive at the slot edges on the inside of the lid where it will be hidden.

19. Repeat the assembly process in steps 10-17 to assemble the box BASE.

20. To complete the box, slide the base into the bottom of the lid. This will be a snug fit, so the slide base straight in. Add adhesive between the boxing layers if desired (but the fit may make this unnecessary. 

NOTE: This image shows the box parts being fit together without the figure in place, but it can likewise be accomplished with figure in place.

21. Assemble the swags. Cut a length of twine approx. 18" long (or use curved cut shape). Fold the flags at the perf line, place over the twine, position as desired (mine are a generous 1/8" apart), then glue in place. Glue letters onto fronts.

22. To attach twine, thread through hand hole punches, adjust ends so swags hang evenly, then glue in place on the backside. If desired, form a loop with the excess and glue in place. When dried, trim excess.

Hope you'll have fun
thinking of clever ways to use these figures.
One variation is to place the figures side by side,
overlapping and attaching center hands,
then creating one long banner swag on 
a longer piece of twine that hangs across both figures,
from the right hand of one across to the left hand of the other.

Perhaps the flags could hold the names of
party goers for an elaborate place card.
Or come up with your own favorite holiday phrase
as a substitute.


  1. I just bought these at the Silhouette Store. Can't wait to see the entire tutorial. Thanks for giving us a tutorial on this! I'll check back later to see if it's up. Smiles! :) Janis

  2. Your tutorials for Silhouette are great help! Thank you so much. I hope you keep posting :)

    1. Thanks for the kind words and encouragement. It means a lot.