Wire and Bead Christmas Decorations part 2

Following on from my last post on how to make wire and bead Christmas decorations (which you can read here), here is another tutorial for making a wire and bead decoration.

It requires the same materials and the same kind of techniques, it’s just a bit more fiddly!

Christmas Tree Christmas DecorationPicMonkey Collage tree decoration

You will need: beads (I used small round green beads, small faceted beads and slightly larger red beads), florists’ wire, tape, ribbon, needle and thread, round nosed pliers (optional).IMG_1333

1. From the florists’ wire, cut 2 pieces measuring 11 cm, 2 pieces measuring 15 cm and 2 pieces measuring 18.5 cm.

2. Take one of the pieces of wire and bend the end into a loop.

IMG_1267

 

Continue to bend the rest of the wire round into a short, open spiral.IMG_1268

Repeat for the other pieces of wire. The overall effect of the finished ornament will be better if the spirals on the shorter pieces of wire a tighter than on the longer pieces.IMG_1272

4. Start threading the beads onto the wire. I used a mixture of round and faceted beads with some larger red ones to give the impression of baubles. Leave a couple of cm of wire at the top to allow for joining the pieces together.IMG_1311

Keep going until you have threaded beads onto all the pieces of wire.IMG_1310

5. This is the fiddly part! You might want to move your decoration bits onto a tray at this point. I did not and as a result ended up grovelling around under the table picking beads up off the floor when I dropped them!

Cut a piece of tape and lay it on the table sticky side up. Place the pieces of wire onto the tape so that the unbeaded ends are on the tape and close together. Wrap the tape around the ends to hold them. Bend or trim any wire protruding from the top.IMG_1317

6. Wrap some ribbon round the top to hide the tape. Tie in a bow.IMG_13207. Sew a few stitches into the ribbon at the back of the decoration, leaving a tail several cm. Tie the ends together to make a loop. IMG_1335

You might need to adjust your decoration by bending the branches of tree.IMG_1324

It might make a nice gift for somebody. What do you think?

 

 

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Wire and Bead Christmas Decorations

It’s good to have some sparkle on your Christmas tree, right? Non sparkly tree decorations are fine, but we also need some twinkly ones!

Here is 2 tutorials for making your own sparkly, twinkly Christmas decorations. They are very easy to make so get the kids on board too! They are both made in the same way. Just bend the wire into the shape you want (cookie cutters ahoy!), thread the beads on and add a loop of ribbon.

How to Make Wire and Bead Christmas Decorations

You will need: wire (I used florists’ wire), beads, ribbon or strong thread, star shaped cookie cutter (optional), round nosed pliers (optional).

Star Shaped Christmas Decorationstar wire and bead decoration

1. Bend a piece of wire around a star shaped cookie cutter. If you do not have one, you could either just bend it into a star, or you could draw a star shape and use that as a template. Leave some wire spare for making loops at the top of the star.star wire and bead decorationstar wire and bead decoration

2. Thread beads onto the wire. I used a variety of larger seed beads and small faceted beads. You might need to unbend your star a little bit to get the beads round the corners.star wire and bead decoration

3. When you have covered the star, make a loop at either end. If you have round nosed pliers, you could use those. Otherwise you could bend the ends round a pencil.star wire and bead decoration4. Thread a piece of ribbon through the loops and tie the ends together.star wire and bead decoration

 

Spiral Christmas Tree Decorationspiral tree wire and bead decoration

 

1. Starting at one end of the length of wire, bend it into a loop. Leave a little bit of wire at the end.spiral tree wire and bead decoration2. Keep bending the wire round so that it makes a flat spiral.spiral tree wire and bead decorationspiral tree wire and bead decoration

 

3. Take the end in the middle of the spiral. Using round nosed pliers, make a small loop. If you do not have round nosed pliers, bend the wire round a skewer or a cocktail stick. Stretch the spiral.spiral tree wire and bead decoration

 

4. Starting at the bottom, thread beads onto the wire. I used a mixture of small round and faceted green beads and some larger red beads. spiral tree wire and bead decoration

 

5. When threading on the beads, leave a little bit spare to bend around the last bead to hold.

Happy sparkly crafting!

 

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Fabric Christmas Decorations part 5

Following on from the cookie cutter decorations tutorial, here is another fabric Christmas decoration you can make if you have a holly shaped cutter. If you don’t have one, it doesn’t matter because you can make your own holly leaf template. I actually couldn’t find mine in the box of cookie cutters and I couldn’t be bothered to hunt, so I drew my own template and you can too!

Felt Holly Christmas Decorationfelt holly decoration

You will need: scraps of green felt, paper and pencil, holly shaped cookie cutter (optional), red beads (6 – 8 mm, or sequins might do the job if you don’t have any beads), ribbon.

1. To make the template, either draw round your holly cookie cutter or draw your own. If you are making your own, this is the easiest way!

Draw a line 6 cm long. Starting at one end of the line, draw 4 shallow curves one after the other, so that the end of the second curve is roughly level with the middle of the line and the end of the fourth curve joins the other end of the line. Do the same with the other half of the leaf.holly leaf template

2. Using your template, cut 6 leaves from green felt.IMG_1166

3. Take 2 of the leaves and topstitch around the edge. I hand sewed mine for a change from using the sewing machine, but the machine would have been quicker. Repeat for the other leaves so that you end up with 3.

4. Overlap the ends and sew them together. A few stitches should be enough to hold them. Don’t worry too much about it looking messy, you’ll be covering those stitches in a minute!IMG_1233

5. Sew some beads onto the middle of the decoration, covering the stitches holding the leaves together.IMG_1237

6. Sew a loop of ribbon to the back.

I was going to hang mine on the Christmas tree, but I think a row of them sewn to a length of ribbon might be better! What do you think?

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Fabric Christmas Decorations part 4

One of the things I am finding out as I am making fabric Christmas decorations is how great they are for using up scraps! I actually haven’t needed to buy fabric or anything else to make any of these, I’ve used stuff I already had, fabric, ribbon and buttons. The Patchwork Star, the little gingham heart and these other decorations can be made from scraps to small to be much use for anything else.

This tutorial is great for using up scraps of felt! They are very easy to make, crafty minded children could even make them and it’s another use for those Christmas cookie cutters!

Cookie Cutter Christmas Tree Decorations

You will need: cookie cutters, scraps of felt, polyester filling, needle and thread or sewing machine, embroidery thread/ buttons/ ribbon to decorate.IMG_1154

1. Gather your cookie cutters and draw round them onto paper.Cut out.IMG_1161

2. Using your paper templates, cut out the pieces from the felt. You will need two for each decoration.IMG_1167

3. Take one of the pieces and decorate however you choose! I embroidered some French knots for the gingerbread man’s features and buttons and chain stitch for his scarf. IMG_1181If you are not up for embroidery, you could use buttons and ribbon instead.

4. Place a small amount of polyester filling in the middle of one of the felt pieces. IMG_1196Pin the other piece on top.IMG_1197

5. Sew around the edge. I hand sewed the gingerbread man because I felt like a change! IMG_1212

6. For hanging your decoration either make a loop with a piece of embroidery thread, or sew a ribbon loop to the top.

IMG_1214Here he is, finished!

IMG_1215Here are some others I made with the other cookie cutters.IMG_1152IMG_1151IMG_1148

 

 

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Fabric Christmas Decorations part 3

Here is another easy little tutorial for fabric Christmas decorations. It is a patchwork star made using 12 diamonds, 6 for the front and 6 for the back. This is a perfect scrap project as the star can be made as large or as small as you like.

How to Make a Patchwork Star

patchwork star christmas tree decoration fabric

Star Tree Decoration

1. Make or find a diamond template. If you are making your own template, 2 equilateral triangles next to each other will make a diamond. Triangles with sides measuring 7 cm will make a star approximately 17 cm high.

2. Using the template, cut out 12 diamonds. Divide into 2 groups of 6 and arrange each group into  star shape. You might find it useful to take a photograph at this point to help remember how you have arranged them.

Patchwork pieces arranged

Patchwork pieces arranged

3. Starting with one group, take 2 pieces, put the right sides together and sew along one edge. Open out and press seam.

Join 2 pieces along one edge, RS together

Join 2 pieces along one edge, RS together

4. Add another piece in the same way and press seam. Put it to one side and repeat for the other three pieces. Then join the two halves together. Sewing the pieces together in this way so that you make 2 halves of one star and then sew them together will be easier and neater than sewing each piece on separately.

Join 2 halves of star, RS together

Join 2 halves of star, RS together

5. Repeat for the other group. Sew a button into the centre of each star.

6. Take a piece of ribbon and fold in half. Match the raw edges with where you want the top of the star to be .Place on top of one of the stars, with the right side up. Make sure that the loop of the ribbon is pointing downwards.  Put the other star on top with the right side down. Pin together, ensuring that the ribbon is well out of the way of where you are going to sew.

7. Sew around the edges, leaving an opening along one edge. Turn out. Stuff with polyester filling and sew up the opening.

I actually have one ready as a kit!star kit If you would like to buy it, please feel free to send me a message!

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