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3 ways to make your own gonk

December 13, 2022

Gonks have taken over Christmas! The cute little snub-nosed Nordic dolls are everywhere in the shops, but if you’d rather make your own, crafters and influencers have been sharing how to make a gonk with wool, socks and even foliage! So get your Stacey Solomon-style Christmas crafting on and follow these steps to the cutest DIY decs…

1. How to make a gonk with socks

Stacey Solomon often shares Christmas craft ideas on her Instagram feed, and her DIY sock gonk is a good one to replicate. This is the perfect way to breathe new life into old socks, reduce waste, amuse the kids and create a cute little Nordic mascot – or several – for the house.

You will need

  • a long sock (striped works well but tights will also do the job)
  • a scrap of orange or red fabric
  • needle and thread
  • glue
  • rice and/or oats
  • cotton wool for stuffing
  • a fake fluffy beard

Method

  1. To make the body, cut the sock underneath the heel, fill it with rice and/or oats and then tie the top. Keep the rest of the sock.
  2. For the hat, take the scrap of orange or red fabric and cut it into a triangle – the larger the triangle, the larger the hat. Using your needle and thread, overlap and stitch two sides together to make a gonk hat. Stuff it with some cotton wool, then glue the hat to the body of the gonk.
  3. Make the beard by cutting a triangle out of some fake fur and gluing it on. At a push you could use some cotton wool for this, but it probably won’t last very long if you have kids or pets!
  4. For the nose, Stacey cut a floating candle in half, popped it inside an old pop sock, and glued it on top of the beard, just underneath the hat. You could also stuff the nose with cotton wool, or just ball up a old pop sock.
  5. Legs are optional! But if you want your gonk to sit on a shelf, then adding dangly legs is a nice touch. To make them, take the rest of the sock, cut it in half lengthways, stitch or glue the long edges together to make a tube, stick or glue one end together (these will be his feet, so try and make it neat), then stuff with cotton wool and stitch or glue to the body. Et voila, you have a sock gonk!

2. How to make a gonk with foliage

A gonk made of foliage is perfect for plant lovers, foragers and those who love to make a real statement with their Christmas decorations. Make it as tall and elaborate as you like – if you have wreath-making skills, you’re already halfway there. Here are 10 steps to making your own foliage gonk…

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~ Karen Walker, Editor, Good Homes

You will need

  • a conical wire tomato cage
  • cable ties or wire
  • tape
  • a Santa hat
  • nylon stocking and cotton
  • 10-12 evergreen branches (fir and cedar leaves are recommended)
  • mittens

Method

  1. Tape the wires at the top of the tomato cage together
  2. Attach the largest branches, facing downwards, around the bottom of the tomato cage using wire or cable ties. Overlap the branches and keep going until you’ve covered the bottom of the cage.
  3. Add a second layer lightly higher up the cage, leaving a gap of around 4 inches at the top of the cage (this is where the hate will sit). Continue until you reach the level of fullness you want to achieve.
  4. Make sure the ends of the branches point in towards the wire cage, so the hat sits neatly on top of them.
  5. Dress the top of the cage with the Santa hat, stuffing it if you think it needs extra body and pinning it at the back to create a neat shape.
  6. To make the nose, stuff cotton into a nylon stocking. Stuff it only half way down, then tie the two ends together and stuff them between the branches. Attach with wire if the branches don’t hold the nose in place firmly.
  7. Attach the nose to the gonk’s face, just below the brim of the hat.
  8. Fill in any gaps with extra branches and trim any branches that hang down too long.
  9. If you like, you can add red mittens for an extra feature, attaching with wire.

3. How to make a gonk with wool

This cute little wool gonk is simple to make and perfect to add to the Christmas tree or your festive table or mantlescape. This is a great rainy day kids activity in the run up to Christmas, or you can make them to dish out to gifts for friends and family.

You will need

  • the cardboard tubes from finished kitchen or toilet rolls
  • white wool for the beard and coloured wool for the hats
  • glue gun
  • cotton wool (for stuffing)
  • a wooden bead or similar for a nose

Method

  1. To make the hat, cut a cardboard kitchen or toilet roll tube into pieces about half an inch wide. The cut the coloured wool into 9-inch strands (you will need around 30).
  2. Fold the wool in half and loop it around the piece of carboard tube, pulling the ends through the loop, leaving the strands dangling loosely.
  3. Continue to do this until you can see no longer see any of the cardboard tube.
  4. Using one last strand of the coloured wool, tie all the dangling strands together to form a kind of beanie hat. Trim any strands that are too long.
  5. To make the beard, wrap white wool around four fingers until you think it is thick enough, tie it around the middle, then cut the loops to make a pompom.
  6. Stuff the hat with cotton wool.
  7. Using the glue gun, add glue around the rim of the hat and sick the pompom beard to it.
  8. For the nose, glue the wooden bead under the brim of the hat.
  9. Add a loop around the top of the gonk if you wish to hang it from the tree.


MORE DIY CHRISTMAS DECS

A message from the editor:

Let us help you create the home of your dreams! Get ideas & inspiration from Good Homes every month, delivered direct to your door. Visit goodhomesmagazine.com/newsletter to sign up for the weekly Good Homes newsletter. Meet the Good Homes team at Ideal Home Show and be inspired by our on-trend roomsets.

~ Karen Walker, Editor, Good Homes