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Elf on the Shelf Hack to Make Bendable Arms and Legs (Plus Elf on the Shelf Ideas)

Elf on the Shelf Hack to Make Bendable Arms and Legs

The Elf on the Shelf has been a holiday tradition in my family for the past five years. Aspen the Elf first showed up at our house when my daughter was almost a year old. She has had fun hiding around our house for my kids to find, and she even followed us to and from New York last year.

During the first year of the Elf on the Shelf, I left Aspen intact right out of the box. Her hands were sewn together, so she was able to hang on her own and sit with her hands in her lap. Eventually, however, I clipped the sewing on her hands to give her more mobility. With all the cute ideas for posing her that I saw from other Elves, I wanted her arms to move freely. This year I upped the ante again and hacked Aspen to make her arms and legs bendable.

To hack my Elf on the Shelf, I started by purchasing some mirror hanging wire. I already had red and white thread and other sewing tools on hand. I then carefully removed a few stitches in the seams of Aspen’s hands. I only had to remove three stitches on each hand. I then bent the end of the wire over into a loop to prevent the pointy end from poking through the Elf. I then slid the bent end through the open seam, up through the arm, and into the shoulder. I then clipped the wire and bent the other end into a loop as well. I finally tucked the end of the wire into the Elf’s hand and resewed the seam with white thread. I repeated the same process on the other arm and then the two legs.

With just a little hand sewing and a few pieces of wire, I was able to make my Elf on the Shelf bendable and poseable. I love that I can bend Aspen’s legs and arms at the knees and elbows. She looks much more realistic, and she is so much easier to pose all over the house. You too can make your own Elf bendable with my quick and easy Elf on the Shelf hack.

Elf on the Shelf with Hack Materials Inserting the Wire in the Elf's Arm

Bending the End of the Wire in the Elf's Arm Resewing the Elf's Hand

Hacking the Elf's Leg Bendable Elf on the Shelf

For some ideas for posing your Elf, check out the past four years of the Christmas adventures of Aspen the Elf.

Elf on the Shelf Ideas

The Elf in the Christmas Tree

The Elf in the Christmas Tree

The Elf on Elmo

The Elf on Elmo

The Elf with the Peanuts Gang

The Elf with the Peanuts Gang

The Elf on the Record Player

The Elf on the Record Player

The Elf on the Baby Swing

The Elf on the Baby Swing

The Elf on the Mantel

The Elf on the Mantel

The Elf on the Miniature Christmas Tree

The Elf on the Miniature Christmas Tree

The Elf on the Bookshelf

The Elf on the Bookshelf

The Elf on the Cat Tree

The Elf on the Cat Tree

The Elf on the Advent Wreath

The Elf on the Advent Wreath

The Elf on the Christmas Gift

The Elf on the Christmas Gift

The Elf in the Crib

The Elf in the Crib

The Elf by the Baby Pool

The Elf by the Baby Pool

The Elf on the Rocking Horse

The Elf on the Rocking Horse

The Elf on the Wrapping Paper

The Elf on the Wrapping Paper

The Elf on the Baby Shampoo

The Elf on the Baby Shampoo

The Elf in the Sleep Sack

The Elf in the Sleep Sack

The Elf in the Moose Mug

The Elf in the Moose Mug

The Elf with Snoopy

The Elf with Snoopy

The Elf in the Ball Pit

The Elf in the Ball Pit

The Elf with the Bubble Lights

The Elf with the Bubble Lights

The Elf on the Pantry Door

The Elf on the Pantry Door

The Elf Under the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree

The Elf Under the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree

The Elf on the Teddy Bear

The Elf on the Teddy Bear

The Elf Returns to Santa

The Elf Returns to Santa

The Elf and the Elf Donuts

The Elf and the Elf Donuts

The Elf and the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree

The Elf and the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree

The Elf and the Peacock

The Elf and the Peacock

The Elf and the Harry Potter Figurines

The Elf and the Harry Potter Figurines

The Elf in the Freezer

The Elf in the Freezer

The Elf in the White Christmas Tree

The Elf in the White Christmas Tree

The Elf on the Christmas Lights

The Elf on the Christmas Lights

The Elf on the Cloth Diapers

The Elf on the Cloth Diaper

The Elf on the Stockings

The Elf on the Stockings

The Elf on the Drum Set

The Elf on the Drum Set

The Elf on the Christmas Wreath

The Elf on the Christmas Wreath

The Elf on the Measuring Cups

The Elf on the Measuring Cups

The Elf and the Peanuts Gang

The Elf and the Peanuts Gang

The Elf on the Musical Wreath

The Elf and the Musical Wreath

The Elf on Snoopy

The Elf on Snoopy

The Elf on the Christmas Duck-oration Wreath

The Elf on the Christmas Duck-oration Wreath

The Elf in the Refrigerator

The Elf in the Refrigerator

The Elf on the Shutters

The Elf on the Shutters

The Elf on the Lights

The Elf on the Lights

The Elf and the Elmo Ornament

The Elf and the Elmo Ornament

The Elf on the Cabinet Drawer

The Elf on the Cabinet Drawer

The Elf on the Hallmark Sled

The Elf on the Hallmark Sled

The Elf in the Stand Mixer

The Elf in the Stand Mixer

The Elf on the Christmas Star

The Elf on the Christmas Star

The Elf and the Santa Snoopy

The Elf and the Santa Snoopy

The Elf and the Book

The Elf and the Book

The Elf and the Lighted Wreath

The Elf and the Lighted Wreath

The Elf and the Fridge

The Elf and the Fridge

The Elf Stuck to the Wall

The Elf Stuck to the Wall

The Elf and the Christmas Village

The Elf and the Christmas Village

The Elf Swinging on the Christmas Lights

The Elf Swinging on the Christmas Lights

The Elf on the Ceiling Fan

The Elf on the Ceiling Fan

The Elf and the Baby Fence

The Elf and the Baby Fence

The Elf on the Chandelier

The Elf on the Chandelier

The Elf and the Shutters

The Elf and the Shutters

The Elf on the Popcorn Strand

The Elf on the Popcorn Strand

The Elf on the Christmas Wreath

The Elf on the Christmas Wreath

The Elf in the Christmas Tree

The Elf in the Christmas Tree

The Elf on the Shower Curtain

The Elf on the Shower Curtain

The Elf on the Advent Calendar

The Elf on the Advent Calendar

The Elf on the Measuring Cup Hook

The Elf on the Measuring Cup Hook

The Elf on the Key Rack

The Elf on the Key Rack

The Elf on the Fireplace

The Elf on the Fireplace

The Elf on the Tinker Toy Chair

The Elf on the Tinker Toy Chair

The Elf in the Elf Tree

The Elf in the Elf Tree

The Elf on the Baby Gate

The Elf on the Baby Gate

The Elf on the Freezer

The Elf on the Freezer

The Elf on the Baby Swing

The Elf on the Baby Swing

The Elf and the Reindeer Food

The Elf and the Reindeer Food

The Elf and the Christmas Lights

The Elf and the Christmas Lights

The Elf and the Cat Tree

The Elf and the Cat Tree

The Elf and the Curtain Rod

The Elf and the Curtain Rod

The Elf and the TV

The Elf and the TV

The Elf and the Refrigerator

The Elf and the Refrigerator

The Elf Sleeping in the Christmas Tree

The Elf Sleeping in the Christmas Tree

The Elf on the Kitchen Cabinet

The Elf on the Kitchen Cabinet

The Elf and the Tissues

The Elf and the Tissues

The Elf and the Linen Closet

The Elf and the Linen Closet

The Elf and the Circuit Breaker Box

The Elf and the Circuit Breaker Box

The Elf and the Coat Hook

The Elf and the Coat Hook

The Elf and the Microwave

The Elf and the Microwave

The Elf and the Bathroom Lights

The Elf and the Bathroom Lights

The Elf and the Lamp

The Elf and the Lamp

The Elf and the Door Chain

The Elf and the Door Chain

The Elf and the Silverware Drawer

The Elf and the Silverware Drawer

The Elf and the Peppermint Ice Cream

The Elf and the Peppermint Ice Cream

The Elf and the Seatbelt

The Elf and the Seatbelt

The Elf and the Van Door

The Elf and the Van Door

The Elf and the Scotch Tape

The Elf and the Scotch Tape

The Elf and the Small Christmas Tree

The Elf and the Small Christmas Tree

The Elf and the Thumbtacks

The Elf and the Thumbtacks

The Elf and the Green Light

The Elf and the Green Light

The Elf with the Reindeer Food

The Elf with the Reindeer Food

Which is your favorite Elf hiding spot?

Image Credits

Elf on the Shelf Hack to Make Bendable Arms and Legs © 2016 Heather Johnson
Elf on the Shelf with Hack Materials © 2016 Heather Johnson
Inserting the Wire in the Elf’s Arm © 2016 Heather Johnson
Bending the End of the Wire in the Elf’s Arm © 2016 Heather Johnson
Resewing the Elf’s Hand © 2016 Heather Johnson
Hacking the Elf’s Leg © 2016 Heather Johnson
Bendable Elf on the Shelf © 2016 Heather Johnson

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