I've been working with the kids every day after school on Christmas ornaments. Years ago, before children - I collected lovely vintage german glass ornaments. 8 years later....with children, I now no longer have ANY ornaments. No more glass ornaments until I can trust that my magpie children will NOT paw at them like excited kittens.
I've been trying to come up with ideas that will give my tree the wonderous sparkle that glass provides, without the breakabilty. The plastic ball ornaments just aren't doing it for me. Swarovski hotfix, and flatbacks to the rescue. I've pulled out my bejeweler, and I'm about to the spend the next month blinging everything in sight. Over the next month I'll be sharing some of my more successful projects with you.
The first one started as these adorable little birds from Jessica Jane Handmade.
Jessica uses polymer clay in her tutorial, but I wanted something a little lighter weight. I found some paper clay at my local Dollarama (I must say I LOVE that dollar store - all kids of awesome craft supplies for super cheap).
I've made some similar to the one above, but on a few, I wanted to add some extra sparkly detail using Swarovski rhinestones. On the first batch I made the mistake however of applying the rhinestones first. Once the rhinestones are in place, it's difficult to apply the glue neatly for covering the piece in glitter. I spent a very annoying hour trying to pick glue and glitter off of the rhinestones - all the while trying to hold my tongue and not curse in front of my children ;-)
The rhinestones used above were Swarovski hotfix ss10 in light colorado topaz. You'll want one of these as well:
I found it best to paint the whole piece in glue, apply the glitter and then mark out where you want to put your rhinestones. In that area, I brushed off as much glitter as possible (without making it look bare). I did this, as I wasn't sure if the rhinestones would hold over the glitter. It may in fact hold just fine.
For the wire - I used artistic wire, and I will use some assorted beads from my stash for the dangle at the bottom. I'll wait til they're all done, and then take them down to the studio. My little magpies are too bead happy to let them near my stash ;-)