Tuesday, 23 December 2014

DIY Christmas baubles / decorations

Every year at the run up to christmas I promise myself that this will be the year when I make at least some of the umpteen ornaments and decorations that I have piling up on my 'Pinterest' list and every year I seem to end up saying "I'll start earlier next year". Of course I never do 'start earlier' because making christmas decorations doesn't seem a priority in the months when the weather is fine and I can be gardening or in the workshop making garden structures.
This year was no exception, not so much due to productivity on the garden front but more to do with illness and/or loss of mojo. So now, feeling rested and relaxed after a much needed vacation to Mexico I'm finding myself frantically trying to make new ornaments and baubles with just 2 days left to the big day itself knowing that once christmas day has passed I'll once again return to thinking "I'll start earlier next year".
The problem with this frantic need to create a masterpiece is that I'm cutting corners and trying to get a professional look in a quarter of the time using materials that really aren't going to cut the mustard so I've decided enough is enough - I really will simply have to 'start earlier next year'.

Before I went away I did manage to complete a set of 6 personalised baubles for the tree using my new favourite crafty product - vinyl.
I cannot believe I wasn't aware of vinyl and its crafty gorgeousness before now but I really didn't, not until I came across it on 'Pinterest' and once I saw what it could do I knew I had to try a small project using vinyl and my Cricut. It's safe to say I am now so in love with vinyl projects that I'm saving up for a Silhouette Cameo to unleash a whole new load of ideas and projects.

The baubles turned out pretty good for my very first vinyl attempt and they look great on the tree. There are various tutorials all over the internet and 'Youtube' so I won't bore anyone with the precise steps that I followed to create these

For the most part they were relatively easy and I was only restricted by the few fonts I had on Cricut cartridges (another reason to get a Silhouette cameo).
The hardest letters no matter which font I used were the 'O' and the 'W', it doesn't matter what method I used to put those letters on they all resulted in at least one crease and in the end I had to accept that no one was going to scrutinise them closely enough to notice.
The ribbon was fiddly more than difficult but I suspect it was more the hack handed way I was going about doing it than it being a difficult job. I have a tendency to choose the quick route over the correct route too many times even though I know it's going to end in frustration and a less than perfect finished look - this is something I seriously need to work on.

Another  project completed and showing the 'quick route' result is these xmas baubles

Don't laugh! I told you the result from the 'quick route' is always less than perfect.
What you see here is my attempt at a bauble xmas tree only I couldn't be bothered with sorting the baubles first, working out a configuration that worked or even to fix the trigger on my glue gun first!
With a broken glue gun trigger I literally had to somehow hold the gun in a position that meant I could hold it and push the glue stick through in one hand while holding the baubles together in the other hand - I do not recommend this method! This resulted in burnt fingers and glue going everywhere because I could not control the gun holding it in that manner, hence why you see alot of solid glue in the finished project. This angle is the better angle, the other side is atrocious.
I would happily have thrown the whole thing away but for some bizarre reason my husband likes it - hmmmmm maybe it's a sympathy thing, maybe he felt bad for me.
Needless to say I am replacing the glue gun!

Another project that should have been easy but tested my patience was the very simple baubles in a giant teacup

These things just never turn out the way I imagined even when I don't take the quick route.  I'm not entirely sure what I expected or why I don't particularly like it (maybe it needs to be a xmas teacup) but it's staying for now and then I'll rethink it next year.

This could be my last post before Christmas day so in the words of Clement Moore "Happy christmas to all, and to all a good night"

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