Last year I participated for the first time in the Art Bead Scene hosted ornament blog hop. I’ve been an admirer of the ornament hop for some time, and finally decided it was time to jump in. I ended up making a whole passel of ornaments as gifts for Christmas last year, and I decided it would become a yearly tradition. I like to make homemade gifts, but have struggled with what sorts of things I can make easily but would still be enjoyed by a variety of recipients. Turns out ornaments are just the thing!
As I did last year, I wanted to focus on a technique I’d learned this year as I made my ornaments. I didn’t have to think hard about this b/c in October I attended my very first Humblebeads “Inspired by Nature” retreat. I loved every moment of it and knew I wanted to use one of the classes as my inspiration for the ornaments. One of the classes we took was on her famously popular “faux tin” technique and I decided to try it for my ornaments this year. The hard part was deciding on my images because there are so many to choose from! I settled on two – one of a nativity manger scene and one of a winter bird nest.
This was the first time I’ve done this technique from start to finish on my own, and I identified several areas of improvement for next time. But it was exciting to create something from this new technique! For each piece, I created a stable/house shape and also cut out copper backing pieces. These were textured and patinated and layered with the faux metal images. I used screw rivets to secure the two pieces together. I tried several options for the “roof” of the design and finally settled on tiny wired greenery – I liked how it gave the ornaments a wintry, outdoor feel and brought some color into the ornaments. A hand-formed wire hanger finishes them off.
I’m really excited by this technique and have lots of ideas in my imagination to try. I had some extra room and also created a pendant from the bird nest design, and I hope to convert that into a necklace before too long. It’s been a wonderful adventure to learn new techniques and design processes as I put together these ornaments.
Blessings to all,