it's often prettiest after it's been turned upside-down.
My ornaments are done. Made. For the most part, handed out. I was a little late getting gifts in the mail this year, so I'm hoping my family and friends have lots of Christmas spirit and aren't all "I'm taking this fire-hazard down December 26". I love when I pay more in shipping than I did on the actual gift. Maybe that's a sign I'm cheap and shouldn't have shared that little tidbit. Oh, well.
A while back I pondered the DIY Christmas ornament ideas I'd found this year. My first pick went bust when I couldn't find a single one of the supplies at my local stores. As a result, I found the Vintage Inspired Bell Jar Ornaments Ashlee came up with over at My So Called Crafty Life. She's a genius. It was all very serendipitous...these were the ornaments I was meant to make. They were the perfect project to take on after a rough semester. Idle hands and all.
I picked up some vintage-y doodads from a couple of great shops: Hey Yo Yo, Tiny Things are Cute, and an Etsy shop called UglyDuckling1962. I got the darling bottle brush trees from Love it Shabby on Etsy. They all have the cutest stuff and I got my supplies super fast...this girl has mail OCD. The Loft has taken 8 days just to process my order and I'm losing my mind. I want it noooow. For the rest of this post you shall refer to me as Veruca Salt.
Anywho. I bought a 3.5" scalloped circle punch from Michael's (hello 40% off coupons!) and some cute scrapbook paper. Mario had just made his beloved Chex Mix, so I had a bunch of fun throwback boxes to use. I tried to cut out recipes and fun phrases. I used the same cutout for the scrapbook paper and rubber-cemented them together to form the bases. For the record, I think eating the box is probably a lot like eating the actual Chex. Not enough Worcestershire sauce in the world to cover up the uckyness of those little cubes.
I loaded up on plastic wine glasses from my new BFF The Dollar Store and Husband sawed off the nubs on the end, exposing the hollow stem.
Let the fun begin.
I spread my supplies out on the table and got to work, mixing and matching bases, doodads and trees. So. Fun. Except for the OCD-like perfectionism. I really should seek treatment. I had to trim a couple of the tree "trunks" so they would fit under the dome. I used a hot glue gun to secure the pieces to the base. Easy peasy.
Once I had them all how I wanted them and had ensured the domes would fit, I went about gluing them on. I am not very proficient with a hot glue gun. I'm slow, awkward, and my glue gun is SO tiny, not-hot and cheap-o. I couldn't get the glue around the rim fast or neatly enough and it wasn't working. OCD reared its ugly head. Mario came up with the idea of using my beloved Aleene's Tacky Glue. He's so wise.
I dipped the rims into the glue and centered it over my creation. They dried totally clear and the edges had a good seal so the glitter wouldn't escape. I didn't have to fret about precision or having too much glue...it just worked.
Once they were dry, I used a sheet of paper to create a funnel and poured in some white glitter I had laying around from last year's snowball ornaments. I used just enough to cover the bottom, but not so much that it obscured the little bunny and mice doodads.
I found some multi-faceted plastic beads from Joann's that covered the stem really well and used some pink jewelry-making cotton cord I also had laying around to create a loop. Then I simply secured them with hot glue.
I tried experimenting with bows and ribbon around the stem, but in the end decided to let them be. The bead was a nice decorative touch, and because we only sawed off the nub there wasn't anything unsightly to cover. Everything I tried detracted from the cuteness going on inside the dome.
We gifted them to the staff at Jared's school yesterday and they raved. I loved, loved, loved this idea, but it's always nice when others share your vision and love for something. They were relatively easy once I got the hang of it (and my glue gun), and turned out so great. These will go down in history as one of my all-time favorites.
Happy Saturday! May it be full of rest and relaxation!
P.S. If you decide to try these, show me! I'd love to see your spin on this adorable and oh-so creative idea. I was even thinking that non-Christmas themed ones would be fun. Thanks again Ashlee!