Frequently Asked Questions

Here I will try to address common questions that I tend to receive.
I've added these as they came to me, so they are not organized in any particular order.

1. Do you give discounts to churches or other ministries?
Yes and no. Most of my clientele are churches, some sort of public-service organization like Police or Fire departments, and/or not for profit groups. It would be unfair for me to determine who's ministry or organization deserves a discount and who's
doesn't. However, I keep ALL of my prices as low as possible so that everyone can get equally low prices.

2. How soon can I get my puppets?
There are a lot of variables that play a role in project deadlines. The majority of incoming orders are custom made and I ask that you allow at least 6 weeks for delivery. It can, and likely will, be shipped sooner!

Some variables would include the time of year when placing your order; obviously holidays may be more booked than say January or February. Also, I try to keep most popular supplies in stock, however if you order a puppet that requires a special wig, custom clothing, etc. then supply shopping and shipping times will have to be considered in the time allowed to complete your order.

I ship USPS usually via Priority Mail with online tracking anywhere in the USA, unless otherwise asked. Keep that, and your distance from my location here in Creston, North Carolina in mind.

You can always request a rush order for an additional cost. This does not mean it becomes an overnight shipment, it is simply an "over time" charge for my extra time working evenings and/or weekends so that your project skips in line to be sent out sooner than existing orders. Overnight shipping is also available at an additional cost.

3. Can I tour your workshop? You may be surprised to hear that many puppet builders work from space in their homes. Often, conditions are such that it's more like a warehouse instead of the glamorous show room that you may envision. Such is the case with my shop, it's very much lived in. Bolts of fabric, shelves lining the walls of various supplies, tools, tables, extension, cords.... you get the idea  =)

4. How can I make one of your puppets?
I'm glad that you want to make your own puppets, and wish you the best. However, being that it is my livelihood, information on the construction and ingredients of my copyrighted product is not available to the public.

A good start for you would be to visit our Puppet Making page to start your research and practice, practice, practice! I have provided dozens of helpful tips, known patterns, diagrams, tutorials, and other helpful guides to help you in your journey.

**~ You might be surprised that the purchase of a pattern, fabric, foam, and supplies do more damage to your wallet. Unless you have time (and money)  to spend on the trial and error of amateur puppet building, you may find that your best bet is buying some great looking quality puppets from me  and put your efforts towards other aspects of your project instead. Its your call. ~**

5. What is the difference between a 16" hand puppet
and a 26" professional puppet?
Other than size, these two types of puppets have a few other differences. The 26" professional puppet has a foam base head and body covered with fabric. Included in the price is one metal style rod arm controller that goes inside a rod receiver mechanism that is hidden inside the puppets hand. Basically, this means that the rod arm controller is removable and the type that professional puppeteers use. Also, this size puppet can wear clothing from any children's department that is sized for a 3 or 4 year old child.

The 16" hand puppet has a foam base head that isTom
covered with fabric just like the larger puppets. However, the body does not have a foam structure like the larger puppet. Another difference is that the arm rods are wooden and have a rubber band that wrap around the puppets wrist. The rubber bands are transparent, but the wooden rod is a little more visible to the audience than the metal one is. Also, the 16" puppet comes standard with a permanent shirt, but a custom outfit can be made for a little more money, or you could purchase small outfits made for teddy bears as some of those will fit these smaller puppets.

The Build-A-Bear Workshop would be a good source for finding a wide variety of clothing, accessories, & shoes in an appropriate size for the 16" puppet product line as well. If you don't have a store located in your area, the direct web link above or eBay would be a good place to purchase these items online.

Frog puppet6. What is the difference between Muppet Fleece and Standard Fleece?
Antron Fleece (aka Muppet fleece) is a slightly thicker, more durable, higher quality fabric than the standard fleece. It is the same fabric that Jim Henson used to make some of his popular Muppet characters (Kermit, Animal, Scooter, etc) and it's still used by professional builders of puppets and sports mascots today. Jim loved this fabric for its ability to hide seams and the way it looked on camera. The standard fleece has a habit of absorbing light and looking flat in photos and on screen. In contrast, the Muppet fleece contains thin fibers that reflect a little bit of light; resulting in a puppet that looks more dimensional and expressive.

7. Do your puppets come with arm-rod controllers?
Yes, each professional puppet comes with one arm-rod controller. It is removable and is versatile so that you can maneuver either hand. Extra controllers can be purchased from our Puppet Making page. They don't come with Bug Buddy or finger puppet characters because... well, they don't have arms!  =)

8. Can you send me my order now and bill me later?
Nope. Sorry. All orders are pre-paid. You can pay via credit card, debit card, bank account transfer, or e-check through www.paypal.com.

9. Do you offer a layaway plan?
Yes, I will accept layaway with a reasonable down payment and allow you up to 6 months to either make small installments at your convenience or pay the remaining balance in full before the deadline date. There is an additional $25 charge for layaway plans. Payments must be paid in full by the deadline date or your puppet will be sold at auction. There are no refunds.

alien puppet10. When I buy your copyrighted puppets, what restrictions apply to me?
You have the right to perform with your puppet on stage, but not to reproduce it in any other form...for example, you do not have the right to make toys that look like my characters. If you use my puppets to create your own non-commercial visual media like a video, or put the image of them on your advertising material, you must include (when reasonably possible) text that credits me properly by company name or website address: Puppet Planet (year) OR  "www.puppet-planet.com".

If you are interested in purchasing "Exclusive Rights" and/or "Media Use Rights" for use of my puppets in commercial media projects like video, DVD, Webcast, TV, etc. Please email: puppetplanetsales@gmail.com

11. Can I commission you to make me a replica of a Muppet or other Trademarked / Copyrighted character?
I cannot in good conscience sell replicas of characters that belong to someone else. Furthermore, copying another persons work would be injurious to my reputation as a professional puppet builder/designer. It is comparable to stealing, and any puppet builder who is willing to do this type of work is breaking the law. It doesn't matter if the replica is "just for display",  it's still illegal.

Contact me for a Custom Puppet and I can help you develop
ideas for an original character of that you would be proud to perform with, display, or give as a unique gift. I can help you design a character with the same high quality as the professional ones you enjoy watching on TV.

12. Who owns the rights to a custom puppet character?
Custom puppets are offered several ways: The more popular and least expensive method is to have one made on a non-exclusive basis. I have the option to add it to my line of available characters and keep the rights to it here. Additional media rights can be purchased on a non-exclusive basis for most of my character designs.

The next step up is exclusive stage rights where you are the only customer for the puppet and you buy the rights for stage use only but we keep the pattern rights here.

Puppets on the Moon
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