Wedding Bauble Decorations – Instructions

Materials

1.  Papier Mache ball from craft shop.  Any size it doesn’t matter.

2.  A magazine, a sheet of paper, what ever colour you want.  I went for gold or blue.

Instructions

1.  So I started with a single sheet of paper.  I happen to have a circular cutter where I cut out approx 20 2 inch circles.  Now you can draw round a circular shape and then cut out with scissors, as the edges do not have to be perfect.  The key thing is to keep the discarded section that has the circular holes in.

IMG_1266

2.  Cut the discarded section into bits, as we’re going to use the left overs first as the base for the ball.

IMG_1268

3.  Organize the sections and the circles ready for glueing.

IMG_1269

 

I also had a lollipop / popsicle stick to help stick down the edges of the paper.

4.  Hold the ball in one hand and add glue with the other.

IMG_1270

 

Then start added the paper scraps first.  I glued a line around the whole of the ball.

IMG_1271

5.  Then I added the circles on top.  If you do the circles first you get all these little spaces and I found I was wasting paper by trying to cover them up.  Add the scraps first then the circles filled the globe.

IMG_1272

I merged the edges to the ball with the stick.

6.  I made sure all the ball was covered and then left it for an hour.  I then went over the edges again with the stick or pushed them down with my fingers.

 

 

IMG_1273

 

7.  I left the ball overnight to dry.  Next is to cover the whole ball in varnish.  You need to cover the ball in varnish, leave it to dry then add another layer.  I’m doing about 5-8 layers.  I’ll post the images once I’m done.

 

The Basic Bear Instructions

20140123-223721.jpg

Materials

  1. Brown & Gold Sculpey III (and a little red for the nose)
  2. Tools, rolling pin, pin tool

How to make the bear

1.  Take one stick of the brown clay, and cut in half, cut the half in half again (to get two quarters), take one of the quarters and cut in half (to get two eights).  It’s easier than it sounds.  You cut a half, half the half, half the quarter and then you get the pieces!

2.  Take the quarter of a stick, and roll into a ball.  Then using the technique first introduced when we looked at dog ornaments for Christmas, place the ball onto the work surface and slowly roll backwards and forward using your finger very gently, to create a valley in the clay.  You want to have two balls, and the valley will become the teddy’s neck.

20140123-223728.jpg

The idea is that there are not two balls for the head/body, as the neck is the weakest place in this piece.

2.  Next, Take the eighth of clay, chop in half to create to blocks.  We’re going to make the legs.  Roll these on your work surface using the palm of your hand.  You want two fat sausages, rather than thin snakes.  Then pinch one end to create a cone.  I push my thumb into the circular end of the clay, to create an indent.

20140123-223736.jpg

3.  Take an eighth of the clay and roll on the work surface with the palm of your hand.  Create a long sausage, probably 5cm/2 inches long.  Cut in the middle.  Pinch the cut end with your fingers.  Then shape to create a spoon shape, this will be his hands.  Repeat with the other arm/hand.

20140123-223746.jpg

4.  Take two of the eighths and chop in half, so you have four little squares of clay.  Roll into four balls.  With the first ball, flatten slightly to about 1.5cm/quarter inch.    Then cut the disc in half for his ears.

20140123-223754.jpg

5.  With the other three balls, take one and flatten it thinner than the ears.  Then place the other two balls into the middle of the flat disc.  Curl up one of the edges of the disc, and merge at the back.  This should make his cheeks and mouth.

20140123-223801.jpg

6.  Take a little bit of the gold and create three disc, one large enough to cover the bears belly, and two for the bottoms of his feet.

7.  Now it’s time to assemble the bear.  First place the body on the work surface and slightly flatten the back.  (You can add him to a background if you want).  Add the gold disc for his belly.  Next add the arms and legs.  I just push the legs and arms in slightly, then I turn the piece over and add a thin snake of clay on the join.  I merge the snake into the legs and body, and the arms and the body.  This makes the joins more solid (check out the Clay Techniques for discussion on joins).  I slightly flatten his face, then add the cheeks and mouth.  Finally I add the ears, again adding a little snake behind each ear/head join and merging the clay.  Finally I add the eye/whisker detail with a pin tool.

Valentines Clay Tags – Instructions

Materials

  1. Red and/or White Sculpey III – I could get about 3 tags from one block of clay.
  2. 4 Lollipop sticks/ Rolling Pin /Flat thin clay blade.
  3. Oblong cookie cutter (square is fine as well), 1.5 inch by 2 inch.
  4. Ribbon
  5. Metal type face letters (optional)
  6. Heart cutters (optional)

How to make the basic tag

1.  Using the techniques I introduced when making the background for the Christmas ornaments, I use two lollipop sticks taped together as my guides, I roll the clay into a ball then flatten it.  I place the clay in-between the two lots of lollipop sticks and use the rolling pin to create a nice flat smooth surface.

20140113-213022.jpg

20140113-213042.jpg

2.  I use a cutter or a pin tool (like a toothpick) to create a hole where I can hang the ribbon.

20140113-213109.jpg

Note that I’ve chosen to keep the tag inside the cutter, I haven’t pushed it out at this point.  I wanted to retain the rectangular shape and I find when you start decorating any slight pressure flattens out the edges.  I tried different methods (e.g. decorating then cutting out the rectangle) and found keeping the tag within the cutter while I decorated it, and only pushing the tag out onto the cookie tray for baking, had the best results.

Decorating the Tag

Now it’s time to decorate.  I made quite a few labels, testing out different techniques:

1.  Cutting out - using cookie cutters I cut out heart shapes in the clay.  I also cut out individual heart shapes and baked those separately to add to the front of the tag.

20140113-213122.jpg

2.  Adding Clay Shapes – I cut out heart shapes and added them to the front of the tag.

3.  Impressions:  You can get plastic texture sheets for clay.  Once you have a flat clay surface, place the plastic texture sheet over the top of the right side of the clay and your lollipop sticks and using a rolling pin, apply pressure evenly across the whole piece.

20140113-213051.jpg

20140113-213100.jpg

 

4.  Stamping:  I have letter stamps, so I stamped love multiple times into the tag at different angles.  You can use any type of stamps you have.

20140113-213133.jpg

5.  Adding after baking:  I had some material flowers left over from the summer, that have an adhesive back, so I stenciled letters and cut them out, and stuck the letters onto a tag after I’d baked and glazed the tag.  Wait for the glaze to dry before applying.

20140113-213142.jpg

Some Shapes were finished before I baked, others I added to after.  I glazed each piece once the clay cooled after baking.  I then finished by adding the ribbon or twine.  Note I used very large jewelry clips for some tags.  I also found odds and ends I’d picked up over the years, like a key with a heart and the heart lock, which I added as well.  It doesn’t matter that you don’t have the exact same items, just look at the craft supplies you have, and see what works.  Adding beads would also work.

5.  The tags can be used on cards, as ornaments or as tags on presents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recycling Christmas Cards

20140107-202545.jpg

Every year I create tags by recycling Christmas cards.  I use scissors with different cutting edges (straight, zigzag, ornate).

If a card is large I create multiple tags, using both front and back of the cards. I try to use anywhere that hasn’t been written on. I then add the tags into the box with my Christmas ornaments then I’m all set for next year.