The other day I was looking through pages and pages of Google images of origami figures for some new ideas when I saw this terrific dragon. Red Dragon Origami from Papercraft
I was keenly interested in how it was made and I began to search for instructions. I found that the process was called 3D origami and involved folding small rectangles of paper into triangular pieces that could be interlocked to build figures of amazing complexity.
Of course I turned to youtube and began to look for instructional videos. I find that I can learn better by watching than by reading complicated directions. So I will give links to a couple of videos that were very helpful in the process of making these intricate Lego-like pieces. There are many other videos and each one has something different to show. Watch as many as you can.
I hoped that I could use this folding technique in our Christmas challenge and I found this video on how to make a snowflake with a little less than 50 pieces. It’s a good way to learn how the process works and still have something creative to show for your time. The video is well done, but I found that I did not pay enough attention to the position of the pieces as they were interlocked. The second color is placed differently than the first. If you look closely you will see that how the pieces are shown is how they are attached to the model. 3D origami snowflake
I made my first snowflake using two colors of copy paper as shown in the video to help me understand what I was doing, but I wanted a subtler change of color on my model. I have recently discovered the Copic airbrush system and on my second effort I used that system to achieve the color and effect I wanted. I really like using markers for airbrush painting. It is easy to switch colors quickly and there is very little mess to clean up. Here is a link to a video of the air spray system in action. Copic airbrush system
I attached a button to the front of the star and then used a light coating of spray adhesive to adhere some glitter for a reflective shine. I used some fishing line to hang the ornament but ribbon or string would work just as well.
I hope you have fun as much fun making these snowflakes as I did and I will post again in four days with another project.
One of the greatest benefits of having a crafting family are how ideas are bounced, re-imaged, and re-shaped among us. I really love the Star Ornaments that Loryn made and I also just love the Chinese Fortune Garland that Cheri made. I decided to do something similar to Loryn’s stars and follow Cheri and make a garland. I am very happy with how it turned out!
Paper punch (I used 2″ seal punch)
Glue stick or pen
Yarn, string, or ribbon
I had some really shiny Christmas wrap and also had this 2″ seal paper punch. I used the paper punch to cut around 120 pieces out of the Christmas wrap. I then pulled out some thick crochet thread that is a sort-of soft gold color and is ribbonish (flat and about 1/8″ thick). I spread glue on two cut-outs and glued the crochet thread between the two pieces. You do have to be sparing with the glue as the Christmas wrap is very thin. I left around 1/4″ of the yarn visible between the cut-outs.
My garland is around 12′ long and looks great on a tree! I think this whole garland took me around 45 minutes to make. The other nice thing about this garland is that once you fold up the shapes, it takes up so little space and stores very well.
Lynne: I liked using scraps of wrapping paper to make my last ornament and I decided I would try to use up more of the pieces I have lying around. I found this tutorial on design and form with these terrific paper ornaments, but I don’t have that precision in my paper-cutting skills. Thus I drew a very loose, cartoon type tree and used that for my pattern.
You will need:
a 6 x 6 inch square piece of paper for the pattern
approximately 10, 6 x 6 inch square pieces of wrapping paper
a glue stick
When you draw the pattern, draw it full size and then fold it in half. This will be easier to do instead of trying to think of how one half of a tree will look. Don’t worry too much about how it looks. You will be surprised how good irregular lines will look in the finished ornament.
Glue the unprinted sides together and then start gluing to make a stack. Be sure to keep the folded edge straight so everything matches when the ornament is opened. I used a weight for a few minutes to make sure the glue would hold.
I traced around the pattern onto the stack and then began to cut. It seemed that more than three edges were too hard to cut, so cut what you can and then retrace the pattern from what has already been cut. When every edge has been cut, glue the two outside edges together and adjust the 3d figure until it is evenly spaced.
I added glitter and stuck an old hat pin in the top, but feel free to decorate any way you wish. I used a loop of fishing line for a hanger, but these ornaments will stand on their own if you want to use them in a centerpiece.
I knew from the beginning that I would just have to make a tree ornament for this Christmas advent. I have had one in mind, but I had no idea to execute it. I watched Loryn’s and Cheri’s tree ornaments get posted and loved each of them. My goal was to keep the ornament very simple and easy to make. This whole ornament probably took me about 30 minutes and I was Google Talking (can I use that that way?) with Mom which slows me down as we each share what we are project we are working on.
I used chenille pipe cleaners, cut in half, then wrapped candy cane style for the form of my tree. I know I keep mentioning temari lately, but I have a ton of supplies leftover and so I used some really cool fuzzy green thread from my temari stash to wrap around the chenille pipe cleaners. I really liked how the fuzzy thread looks like the needles on a pine tree. I tied the ends of the thread and glued my knots to ensure that they wouldn’t come loose.
I grabbed all the thread wrapped pipe cleaners in one group. ran some silver wire down the middle, and approximately 1″ in on the pipe cleaners, wrapped the silver wire around the group to hold it together. Then I bent all the wires down over the silver wrapping so that just the wire stuck out the top. I used this bit of wire to string the wooden star bead and make the loop for the hanger. At this point, it you didn’t put the hanger on the ornament, it actually looks really cool just as a decoration for your table, although I would recommend putting something under it as the pipe cleaners are a bit scratchy.
I love the hanger I made for this ornament. Whoever said that you needed to have plain hooks for your ornaments? I made the hanger out of more silver wire, just bending it into shape and curling the end so you didn’t poke yourself with it.
So, I was not feeling at all well this weekend and missed my Saturday post for the Ornament Advent. To make up for it, I decided to splurge and make a slightly more difficult ornament. For this ornament, I once again raided my temari ball stash and used one of the green balls for the base. It is around 3″ in diameter. I then wrapped the ribbon around the ball tacking it down first with pins and then with basting stitches.
The beads are from the giant spinner of seed beads that Mom and I bought to take with us when we went camping (yes, we like to craft while camping). I strung the beads and crossed under the ribbon, trying to make a slight draping effect while doing so. It was interesting how much heavier the ball got by the time I was finished. All those glass beads weigh more than you would think.
I then decided that I needed a bead topper and found a lovely smoky gray glass bead in my oddments and leftovers drawer that looks great. I made the hook and I was ready to go.
Cheri: My boys and I try to keep a standing date on Saturdays. We like to go and have lunch at a Chinese Restaurant in the small town where we live. I keep the fortunes as a keepsake. This is one of my favorite projects to make with them.
Fortune Cookie Fortunes
Glue or tape
Color a line around the slips with gold marker to dress it up a bit, and then glue/tape the fortunes into a circle, (make sure the fortune is on the outside). Attach them together and you have a great chain for the Christmas tree. I plan on continuing the chain throughout the year. Merry Christmas!
I love copper, as you can see here. I had some of the copper disks left and decided to make a Christmas tree mobile ornament. Just cut your sheet copper into some irregular branch-like shapes, punch holes with an upholstery needle, and assemble with jump rings. After fifteen minutes of work, a cute ornament emerges! It stands about 5″ tall and looks great on the tree!
Lynne: I was hoping that since we had Teri Partridge as a guest author today with the Champagne Cork Angel, I would not be required to have an ornament. After some discussion about fair shares and obligations, here is my ornament.
While I was cruising the net this morning for an idea for our Ornament Advent, I found an origami Christmas Star that used wrapping paper scraps. Since most of my wrapping for Christmas is done, I have lots of small pieces of paper lying around and was eager to try it.
You will need 2, 6 x 6 inch squares of wrapping paper and this tutorial by Nikki, in Stitches. And that’s it. These are the clearest directions I’ve seen for origami folding and I was able to make 2 of these ornaments in about 30 minutes.
Once I was done with the origami figure, I added glitter and then hot-glued some vintage buttons to the front and back. I had these buttons stashed in a jar, but you could use whatever you have on hand. I added some fishing line to hang the star and marked off another day on the calendar.
Our own wonderful watercolorist and art instructor Teri Partridge of the Pear Tree Gallery always teaches a full week of ornament classes in the month of December. She has agreed to join us as a guest author and post an ornament or two in our Advent Challenge. This angel is so cute and so much fun to make. Her excellent tutorial can be found here.
Cheri: This little group of dinosaurs are all dressed in their finest silver and glitter and are ready to decorate your tree.
Oven-bake clay, red and white
Paint your dinosaurs. I think you could probably spray paint them, but it is pretty cold here and I don’t think it is a good idea to spray paint in the house. (LOL)
After they are painted, (maybe 2 coats), put another coat of paint or sealer on them, and while they are still wet, sprinkle them with glitter. You could probably put a pretty heavy coat on, but I wanted them to look like they had been “kissed” with snow.
Knead a small ball of white clay and red clay, make a small coil with the white clay and roll it into a circle. Then make a small white ball for the tip of the hat. Make a small Hershey’s kiss with the red clay and stick it to the white circle. Attach the pom-pom and bake the clay according to the instructions. After they are baked and cooled, apply a little clear sealer and sprinkle with glitter.
Attach the red hat to the dinosaur with hot glue and then decide if you would like them to be doing something. I made a music book for one of the dinosaurs to make him look like he was singing and the other one with the outstretched hands was given an ornament to hold. These were both hot glued on.
I hope you like the ornaments I have made for our Christmas Advent Countdown. Wow, Christmas will be here before we know it.