Kuchi Kopi Light Up Puppet From Bob's Burgers (2023)

Introduction: Kuchi Kopi Light Up Puppet From Bob's Burgers

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About: Hi! I'm Natasha. I'm a Tech-Crafter, Maker, and the Designer of TechnoChic DIY Tech-Craft Kits. Technology should be chic! More About TechnoChic »

Louise Belcher is the best.

Sharp wit? Check. Mischievous shenanigans? Check. I had to be her for Halloween.

Kuchi Kopi Light Up Puppet From Bob's Burgers (5)

But after making my Louise costume, it only seemed appropriate that Louise bring her favorite object along too - her Kuchi Kopi Nightlight! And so I wanted to bring along my favorite object as well. Enter My Boyfriend Matt!

Is he a nightlight? A Mask? A Puppet? A Costume? YES. YES. YES. YES.

Kuchi Kopi Light Up Puppet From Bob's Burgers (6)

About this tutorial:

The Goal: Light it up!

This project was a challenge because Kuchi Kopi is a nightlight and therefore should light up! From what I can see in the cartoon, Kuchi Kopi is most likely a small plastic toy with a single bulb inside that glows evenly around its body. To accomplish the glow in the form of a mask, I used a 5V strip of LEDs and placed them strategically throughout the build.

Clear Materials:

To create a structure for the LEDs (and allow for space to diffuse the light), I used all clear materials so that I could mount the lights inside and face them outward. A combination of rigid clear plastic bowls, plastic wrap, clear packing tape, and hot glue enabled me to sculpt the form while letting the light shine through.

Fabric Covering:

My original plan was to use a plastic tablecloth-like fabric to cover the exterior, but the fabric I found wouldn't stretch in a way that would allow for even distribution. I even tried heating it up - and that was a smelly disaster!

Felt was the answer!

I had originally ruled out felt because I was sure that illuminating it would be ugly, but after my first fabric failed, I was pleasantly surprised with the result! The muppet-like vibe was consistent with the cartoon feel from the animation, and when the felt was smoothed over the armature, it diffused the light quite evenly. In fact, the in-person look of this project is even better than the photographs you see here (the camera makes the "hot spots" more visible.) The extra bonus was that the felt looks great with the lights on or off. :)

Kuchi Kopi Light Up Puppet From Bob's Burgers (7)

I hope you enjoy learning how I made this Kuchi Kopi Mask! If you want to see more of my work, you can follow me here on Instructables and on Instagram and YouTube - Please Subscribe! You can also buy tech-craft kits designed by me at TechnoChic.net.

I've also included links to all of the supplies. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission on purchases made through the links below, and that helps me make more tutorials like this. :)

Step 1: Gather Supplies

Step 2: Drill Holes in the Bowls

Drill 2 holes in each bowl:

  • Place the holes 1 inch from the edge of the bowl and 2 inches apart.
  • Go slowly with the drill to prevent cracking the plastic.
  • The holes should be large enough to thread your zip ties through.

Step 3: Connect the Bowls With Zip Ties

  • Thread the zip ties through the holes to make a strong connection as shown.
  • Trim the zip tie tails when finished.

Step 4: Print a Template

To make the mask shape accurate to Kuchi Kopi's proportions, I printed a template that I made from the first image. Here's how to make one:

  • Measure the bowls and draw two white circles in Illustrator (or other graphics editor) to match their size. Place one on top of the other like a snowman, to represent the bowls in the previous step. (I used white circles to save on printer ink.)
  • Enlarge the Kuchi Kopi image so that the head part is slightly larger than the top bowl/white circle. It's ok if the image becomes pixelated, we just need the general shape.
  • Print the template and tile the pages together.

Step 5: Place the Bowls

  • Place the bowls on the template to make sure the size is accurate.

Step 6: Plug in the Lights

The LED lights will be taped inside the clear bowl and face outward to illuminate the Kuchi Kopi nightlight from behind. This is why clear materials are needed for the stuffing. Poly-fill won't diffuse the light in a pleasant way.

  • Power up the lights and place them under the bowl while sculpting so that you can build up the scrunches of plastic wrap evenly.

Step 7: Sculpt With Plastic Wrap

The goal will be to build up "scrunches" of plastic wrap to fill out the shape.

  • Scrunch the plastic wrap and adhere it to the bowl with clear packing tape.
  • Experiment with different ways to scrunch the wrap - the "more scrunched" areas will diffuse the light more, and "flatter scrunched" areas will let more light through directly.
  • Try to imagine the 3D shape and work towards it - Kuchi Kopi has such a smooth bulbous shape!
    • Tip: Add a final layer of packing tape over the body to help smooth the surface and prepare it to be covered with felt.

Step 8: Make Space for the Eyes

  • Before sculpting the head, draw 2, 3-inch circles on the top bowl to mark where to leave a space for the eyes as shown.

Step 9: Sculpt the Eyes

  • Use clear plastic soap molds to create 3D eyes. This will still allow the mask-wearer to see out of the mask.
  • Cut out the circular molds, then cover them with two layers of white tulle fabric to make them appear white on the outside.
  • Use hot-glue to adhere the tulle in place and trim the excess.

Step 10: Cover the Body With Felt

  • Start by stretching the green felt so that it starts to bulge in the center. Drape the stretched part over Kuchi Kopi's belly and secure the Felt around the sides with hot glue.
  • Trim the excess felt.
  • A seam around the neck will make the shape easier to drape. The finished look has a bow tie around the neck so the seam will be hidden.

Step 11: Add a Head Strap

  • Add a strap of black elastic to the back of Kuchi Kopi's head to attach it to the wearer's head.
  • Try it on for size.
  • Continue to add felt to Kuchi Kopi's head.

Step 12: Cut Out the Eyes

  • Using a rotary cutter, trim the felt away from the eyes.

Step 13: Attach the Soap Mold Eyes

  • Glue the soap mold eyes in place.
  • Add a strip of felt around the eyes to cover the seam.
  • Add the mouth and eye pupil details - cut them from black felt and attach with hot glue.

Step 14: Sculpt the Ears

  • Using scrunches of plastic wrap, sculpt the ears. Use the original template as a guide for the size.
  • Cover the ears with felt.
  • Stitch the ears in place with a needle and green thread.

Step 15: Make the Arms

  • Using scrunches of plastic wrap, sculpt the arms as shown. Use the original template as a guide for the size.
  • Cover the arms with felt, making sure the seam is on the backside of the arm.
  • Stitch the arms to the body, using the original template to inform their location.

Step 16: Add Puppet Rods to the Arms

  • Paint two thin dowels black
  • Stitch a small rectangle of black felt to the end of the arms.
  • Use hot-glue to attach the felt to the dowel, wrapping it around the dowel. The felt should create a hinge to move the arm freely using the dowel.
  • Add a piece of velcro to the other end of the dowel, and stick the other side of the velcro to Kuchi Kopi's body. This will allow the puppet rods to have a resting place when the wearer isn't using them.

Step 17: Place the Lights

  • Place the USB power pack in the center of the mask. I used two clips that are manufactured as tablecloth clips to hold mine-- but there could be many other solutions for this as well.
  • Now that the location of the USB connector is defined, slowly snake the LED lights around and tape them in place facing the plastic bowl. As you go, check the front of the mask to be sure they are being diffused evenly throughout the piece.
  • When all the lights are placed, add a piece of cardboard to the top and bottom bowls. This will prevent light from leaking backward and illuminating the person's clothing. And, more importantly, prevent the light from shining in their eyes. I also added cardboard "tunnels" to the headpiece to provide holes to see through.
  • Add a piece of black felt to the areas where the face will touch the mask to make it more comfortable to wear. (the black rectangle in the center.)

Step 18: Add the Bow Tie

  • Add a strip of blue paper around the neck, covering the seam in the felt.
  • Sculpt a paper bow tie and glue it in place.

Step 19: Kuchi Kopi Is Ready for a Night on the Town!

Wear all black to blend in with the night, and meet up with "Louise" to enjoy your Halloween!

Fun fact: Our Halloween plans were completely changed when we became lucky winners of the Hamilton Lottery! (Pre-Covid) We got to see the show for $10 each --- but we worked so hard on the costumes that we wore them right to the show. It was so fun to walk through midtown and hear everyone cheer for Light-Up Kuchi Kopi!


Kuchi Kopi Light Up Puppet From Bob's Burgers (8)

Kuchi Kopi Light Up Puppet From Bob's Burgers (9)

I hope you enjoy this tutorial! If you want to see more of my work, you can follow me here on Instructables and on Instagram and YouTube - Please Subscribe! You can also buy tech-craft kits designed by me at TechnoChic.net.

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