One More Wreath

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This wreath thing is really addictive! After deciding to do my daughter’s wreath in purple and silver, I still had all those red and green ornaments that were just begging for a place among this year’s decor.

I also needed a special gift for my friend and supervisor at work. We have been friends for years and she was instrumental earlier this year in helping me attain my job that I love so much.

What better idea than something hand crafted with love?

This one turned out to be a slightly different style and less busy than the previous two.  My husband actually liked this one the best of all.

My friend was thrilled and displayed it in her office all day for everyone to see before taking it home at the end of the day.

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Wreath Redo

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Having created a wreath for my daughter, and having had all the remaining ornaments strewn all over my craft table, I was inspired to redo my own wreath.

My original wreath was a number of years old.  The base was a styrofoam ring and after many years of enjoyment, it had fallen into disrepair.  I had thought it would just be a matter of reattaching the ornaments that had come off and reinforcing the glue in places, but upon examination, it became clear it was time to start over.

I had hoped to salvage as many ornaments as I could, so I carefully disassembled it.  I soon found that the years and the hot glue had done a number on many of them.  I was able to salvage some, but others were a total loss.  Luckily I had plenty on hand so I was not lacking.

The new wreath base is an artificial pine wreath.  It was so much easier to work with than the original styrofoam.  I remember what a lengthy process it was to have to hold the ornaments in place until the glue cooled and solidified.  I also remember burning all my fingertips in the process.  The pine base was definitely a quicker and safer option.

I finished it up and hung it on the door right about the time my husband came in from work.  “Wow!  Could you fit any more ornaments on it?” was his reaction.

Playing along with him I told him, “Yes, I probably could,” but we both agreed that the wreath was perfect as it was.

There are still more ornaments on my table.  Hmm…  Could I run out to purchase another wreath base?  Should I?  It’s so tempting!

Girlie Girl’s Wreath

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It’s hard to believe it’s been nearly six years since I made an ornament wreath, but my original blog post below testifies to that fact:

Crafting with Capri – Ornament Wreaths

These wreaths are so much fun and the results are always stunning.

I created this wreath for especially my daughter.  She now has a home of her own and I had been planning to make her a wreath since she moved there.

My original plan was to do one in red and green holiday colors, but when I pulled out the stash of ornaments I had been collecting for some time now, I found a bunch of purple ones.  I also had inherited quite a number of silver ornaments my Mom no longer wanted.  It didn’t take me long to determine this new direction was the right way to go.  Purple is her favorite color and she has always preferred silver over gold.

She was in town this weekend for a big holiday event with friends and would be breezing in and out before leaving for home.  I only had a short time to get the wreath done and have it to surprise her as well as for her to be able to enjoy during the holiday season.  So I set to work.

I was so pleased that it went together effortlessly.  Not only did it have ornaments from her maternal grandmother, but the purple bead garland came from necklaces we all wore at her paternal grandmother’s memorial service.  The finished wreath had all the bling and sparkle that is so representative of my daughter.

I had it hanging on the door  waiting to surprise her when she came in. She was thrilled. While we were putting lunch together, she kept disappearing from the kitchen.  She would come back to tell me she had to go look at her wreath again.

With that statement, I’m not sure which one of us got the better Christmas present!

 

 

Wine Cork Reindeer

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A little bit of research revealed to me that I had neglected to post these little cuties when I created them for gifts two years ago.

The result of another Google search, these little reindeer are made from a whole cork for the body and then corks which have been cut in half for their head and legs.  Some hot glue holds them together and they are embellished with googly eyes and a shiny red bead for the nose.  The antlers are from some small bits of stiff twine.  I formed the ears and tail out of white polymer clay that I over baked just a bit to get the tan color

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They were so much fun and I knew all my wine drinking friends would enjoy them so I made an entire herd!

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They are just too cute hanging on the tree!

Wine Cork Ornaments

I needed to come up with two wine themed ornaments for a holiday party we were attending.  One for the hostess and one for the ornament exchange.

A quick Google search yielded the perfect idea.  Wine cork snowflakes!  And I had all the materials on hand.  The original idea used satin ribbon, but I liked the look of the sheer ribbon much better.

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I cut the corks in half and then painted tacky glue on the uncut ends and dipped them in iridescent glitter.  Once they were dry, I hot glued them together.  The ribbon going around the outside was cut to 21 inches.  I used a dab of hot glue on the bottom to hold the ribbon in place while I tied it around the outside of the corks and knotted it at both the top of the corks and at the very end creating the hanger for the ornament.  A second length of ribbon was tied in a bow over the first knot.  The finishing touch was to hot glue the silver plastic snow flakes in place.

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I was thrilled with how they came out!  I made two more.  One for me and one for my daughter.  Once I locate more snowflake embellishments I plan to make more for gifts and craft shows.

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The ornament I received in the exchange was a bunch of grapes also created from wine corks.  I have another new idea!  You can bet I’m now on the look out for purple glitter!

Home Sweet Home

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In March, my daughter moved to a new apartment. Her new place has a much better layout and as a result has a cozy small house feel to it. Her front door is recessed with a small alcove that protects it from the elements.  As cute as the red door was, it was just begging for a little something extra.

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A wreath!  The traditional sign of welcome!  What could be more perfect for her new home?

She selected a grape vine wreath and then left the rest up to me.  Even though the wreath was somewhat protected by the alcove, it still would be exposed to the elements so to find materials I made my first stop Dollar Tree.  It was my lucky day.  I found grasses, pretty flowers, little birds, and a butterfly.

I had found a small birds nest that had fallen out of a tree outside my office a few weeks earlier.  It was just the right size for the little birds.  As a naturalist, my daughter adores birds and I knew she would be thrilled with them and the small nest.

Many years ago at church camp, she had been dubbed “The Highly Carbonated Butterfly”. Ever since, butterflies have been very special and symbolic to her.  Much like the little yellow birds, the bright yellow butterfly stood out.  Besides, I knew there was no way I could make her any arrangement without including a butterfly.

Once I had all the materials, it was just a matter of some scissors, wire cutters, and hot glue to put it all together.

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She’s actually had her wreath since April. It has taken me a while to post this project as I neglected to take photos before I gave it to her.  I also kept forgetting to ask her to send me a photo.

It was just what her door needed and I was so pleased with how happy she was with it.

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This  was a project from a number of years ago when I was a member of Ink or Dye.

The post for this technique can be found here.

The materials for this project included ordinary white ceramic tiles purchased from Lowes or Home Depot, alcohol inks, and applicator tools.

It was so much fun to create these beautiful tiles and the results were spectacular.

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I had chosen not to stamp an image and unfortunately set my tiles aside in a safe place to finish later.  And then I forgot them!  I know it had been at least four years as that was when I left the Ink Or Dye group to become a Band Mom.  Now that my trombone playing son is headed off to college, I am rediscovering and revisiting a number of things in my craft room.

I found the tiles and my can of acrylic sealant and was quite proud of myself for actually finding closer to this project.

I learned quite quickly that if I sprayed too close to the tiles, the inks started to dissolve and I lost some of the definition in my creations.  I then backed off and things went much better.  I was careful not to touch the inked surfaces and allowed the sealant to dry completely before handling them.

Even dry, the surfaces seemed rather fragile so I decided not to move them but to carefully carry them from my back patio down to my craft room on the very same cardboard I had used when I sprayed them.  Corrugated isn’t always as strong as it looks.  Sadly I lost three of them to gravity.

Once the surviving tiles were safe on my work table in my craft room, I let them rest another few days.

I’d like to say there was a happy ending, but unfortunately there was not.  While the sealant may have done trick in preserving the ink patterns, it resulted in another issue.  It made the ink surface brittle and enabled the color to scrape off with very little effort at all.

I was very disappointed that there was no way for me to preserve my creations let along encorporate them into some other project.  But since I began blogging, I resolved that I would post my failures as well as my successes.

Initially I was frustrated that this did not appear to be a project with any lasting benefits.  Then, while preparing this article, I reread the original instructions.  What did I learn?

  • Acrylic sealant was NOT the way to go.
  • Don’t carry fragile items on a piece of cardboard.
  • If you’ve left a project, be sure to go back a reread the instructions BEFORE picking it up again.

Just when I was ready to pass my ceramic tiles on to another crafter, this information has me wanting to revisit this project and do it the right way.  There is hope!  I will be adding Diamond Glaze to my shopping list.  (I already have the tissue paper.)

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