Saturday, October 17, 2009

Ornament Tutorial

I had an idea for an ornament a few years ago and made a bunch of them for my siblings using clear glass balls. This time around I'm using glass topped tins. They idea is this: A snowman kit, everything you need to build a snowman, snow, a scarf, arms, nose, buttons, eyes, mouth, and hat. The tag says "Snowman Kit Some Assembly Required". I love fun and clever ornaments and I was rather proud to think of one on my own!

Here is one that is finished. The bow is made from a fabulous ribbon we carry in our store. It's called "Puff Dotty" ribbon. We have both satin and grosgrain in 5 colors. There are puffed up dots of different sizes all along the length and width of the ribbon. It's an incredible ribbon and it's impossible to resist touching it when you see it!

OK, now for the tutorial: Step 1, gather the ingredients. I used 3" clear top tins.

For the "snow" inside the ornament, I like using these iridescent sprinkles. Last time I checked they were available from JoAnn. They're also really cheap, which is a plus. When I made the glass ball ornaments, I used snow that looked more like real snow. Over the years, the other kind of snow has made the inside of the balls a bit cloudy, which the iridescent snow does not seem to do.
Now, decide what you want your snowman parts to look like. This time around, I opted for stamped scarves. Last time, I used thin strips of plaid fabric, and even frayed the ends to make it look like a real scarf. The hats, noses, and arms are all from a Cuttlebug snowman die, "Snow Fun". To make the hat band, I cut a super thin (probably 1/16") strip of cardstock with a pair of scissors and glued it to the hat using a Quickie Glue Pen. The "mouths, eyes, and buttons" are just black beads. Last time I made noses from Fimo clay and baked them. This time....#1: no Fimo, #2: no desire to go get some, nor to make noses when I can just die cut them.

Next, cut a circle to fit inside the tin and adhere it to the bottom of the tin. I used the closest Nestabilities size that would fit in the tin. It doesn't matter if there is space around the edge because it will be covered by the rim of the top of the tin anyway. I would not suggest using a tin smaller than 2" because it will be too cramped inside and you will not have enough room to shake around the snowman pieces and snow.

Next, add your snowman pieces and snow. I suggest pouring a pile of snow into the tin, then put the lid on and see how it looks. You don't want too much, nor too little snow. I have found that about 1/2 full when tipped up on it's side is just about right. It's hard to gauge when the tin is laying flat.

Next, close the tin and cut a piece of patterned paper 3/4" wide and 9 1/2" long. I used Basic Grey's Eskimo Kisses paper here. It is only 6" long, so I had to cut two pieces. Put adhesive all over the back of the paper strip(s), and I do mean all over. You want a strong adhesive such as ATG or red line tape. You will be sorry if you try to use Mono adhesive. Cut a piece of sheer ribbon long enough to go around the tin with about 3 inches to spare. Determine which side of your ornament is the top. Some patterned papers don't have an "up" side, but if you scroll down to the last photo, you will see that I forgot to check this when making my first sample ornament. My patterned paper lies sideways! Ugh!! Now, put a glue dot at the top of the ornament, where the knot from the sheer ribbon will lie. I used 5/8" white organdy with a silver edge from Pink Hedgehog Paper Crafts. Tie the sheer ribbon around the the ornament tightly, making sure to tug the knot until it is nice and tight. Snip the ends very close to the knot. Cut a piece of cord about 6"-8" in length, place both cut ends together, and tie in a knot. Slip the knot under the sheer ribbon knot as shown in the photo. Note that the knotted end is toward the front of the ornament.

Now, pull up the knotted end and slip the looped end through the opposite loop. Look carefully, you can see the detail. Trust me, this will make the knots all end up in the right place. I played around with it to find the right direction.

Tug gently on the loop end until the knot tightens around the sheer ribbon knot.

Tie a bow with any ribbon you desire. 7/8" or larger works best, but you can really use anything. For this ornament, I also used white sheer with a silver edge.

Next, add your finishing touches as desired. The "instructions" are computer generated, then punched out using an SU tag punch, the mat is the larger SU tag punch. Sometimes I use a Versamarker and emboss "snow" around the edges of the tag using Iridescent Ice embossing powder. I added a snowflake cut using my Cuttlebug (rhinestone in the center). I also stamped snowflakes on the white part of the tag. (Darn sideways ornaments, this is why you need to pay attention to which way is up when you start tying ribbons! LOL

Enjoy, and please share your versions of my project. I'd love to see your take on it!


Dawn said...

too cute Heidi!

SueB said...

GREAT idea, Heidi - TFS!

Country Mouse said...

These ornaments are adorable and so fitting for us Texans!!! Cute,cute blog!!!

~Erica said...

Love it! Thank you for sharing!

Amy said...

OMG! I absolutely LOVE this idea. I'm making some for sure!! TFS!

Gwen said...

Love it! Thanks for sharing!

Lori Craig said...

Very, very cute!