Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Holiday Spinners

The year has gone by so quickly!  I am getting ready to celebrate the holidays and so happy to be back in Arizona where I belong.  Don't have my tree up yet but decided to try making some ornaments to hang in the windows or wherever they seem to fit.

If you'd like to try creating some of your own, you will need -
Delight™ air dry modeling compound
scrap piece of board or cardboard, about 4" x 8"
acrylic paints
a fishing swivel
plain paper
white glue
rolling pin
plastic wrap
masking tape
monofilament or thread
round toothpick
craft knife
decorative bead or beads, as desired

Here is the pattern I designed for this project:
if you click on the image it should take you to a page where you can print it.

Print the pattern, but out the semicircular shape with the tabs.  Use the guide at the edge to mark 2 pairs of parallel lines onto cardboard, then mark line perpendicular to those at approximately 2" intervals, as shown.

Roll clay out to 1/16" thickness.  place circular pattern cutout lightly on clay and trace around it with a craft knife.  Gently lift out the cut out piece and place it onto the cardboard, aligning the top tab with the top line as shown.  Press the tab portion onto the cardboard just enough to make it stick, then add a piece of tape to hold it in place.

Now carefully lift up the bottom edge and turn it to the other side, creating a twist in the piece.  Align it with the marks on the cardboard, press and tape into place.

Repeat the process for the next piece -

you will need two for each ornament (or, you can try adding one or more extras onto a single ornament if you like).
Set the clay curves aside to dry.

Remove the clip on the fishing swivel, if there is one, and use pliers to pinch one of the end loops on the swivel to make it smaller than the ball in the center, as shown.

Cut a strip of paper the width of the top tabbed section on the pattern and about 1" to 1 1/2" long.  Roll the strip around a toothpick, then place the swivel inside and tighten or loosen the strip so that it fits snugly onto the swivel.  Glue the paper roll into a tube, but do NOT glue it to the swivel.  Make another paper tube for the bottom tab.

Prepare the string for your ornament by putting a stop bead on the end.
cut a strip of paper the same size or just slightly smaller than the hole in your bead.

Fold the paper in half, tie the end of a length of monofilament around the paper (12" to 14" of monofilament should be more than enough - it's better to have it longer than you need it at this point, so you have room for tying off the ends later).  Fold the paper in half again, keeping the monofilament in the fold.  Pull both ends of the monofilament up through the bead, put glue on both sides of the paper and pull it up into the bead to hold the monofilament snugly.  (clip off the ends of the paper if it is sticking out below the bottom of the bead.  Trim the extra "tail" off the monofilament so you have a single strand coming from the top of the bead.

When the clay pieces are dry, trim the tabs off in line with the marks on the cardboard.  Glue a paper tube to each end of the curved clay as shown, making sure that the tubes are in line with each other.

When the glue is dry, attach another clay twist to the other side.

It should appear to be a figure eight when looking through the lined-up tubes from the top or bottom of the ornament.

Allow the glue to dry, then paint as desired.

To string the ornament, put the monofilament with the bead on the end that you prepared earlier up through the bottom tube.  If desired, add a center bead in the center of the ornament by either knotting the monofilament where you want the bead to sit and gluing the bead in place, or by wrapping a piece of tape around the line and securing the bead to it with glue.

Thread the monofilament through the top tube of the ornament, through the bottom (squished) end of the swivel, then back through the top tube of the ornament.  Pull the swivel snugly into the tube, then make a knot in the monofilament to hold it in place.

Hang it up and blow on it gently to watch it spin, or place in a breezy doorway or window.

I hope each of you have Marvelously Happy Holidays, whichever ones you celebrate!

Thanks for joining me here again!  As always, play, experiment, and have fun!

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