Thursday, December 2, 2010

Homemade Beaded Christmas Ornaments

This year, I wanted to make sure to do lots of homemade things with my kids at Christmastime.  Ever since I can remember, my Great Grandmother used to give us lots of handmade ornaments.  To this day, I believe my mother still has them all.  One of my favorites were candy canes and wreaths made out of pipe cleaners and beads.  I wanted to start making homemade ornaments with my kids because for years to come we will have stories to tell about them each year when we pull out the decorations.

To start, I cut a pipe cleaner in half (perfect length for a candy cane).  Use a full one for a wreath.  I slipped a tribead on the end and folded the end around the bead to anchor it in place.  You can get tribeads at Michael's, AC Moore, JoAnn's, or Hobby Lobby.  I found them very cheap in bulk online at S and S worldwide:

Once I did this, the kids could string the beads on themselves.  I put the beads in a bowl in the middle of the table and went ahead making dinner.  I only had to help again when they were done to twist the end of the pipe cleaner closed- we left about 1 inch at the end for that:

For the wreath, we left about 2.5 inches on either end and when they were done, I twisted the ends into a bow:

Here are some finished products:

With our pack of 500 beads, each kid made 3 ornaments.  This was a great activity for fine motor development and patterning.

In my previous post, you can see them hanging on our tree.  My kids are soo proud of them.  If you feel inspired, you can bend the pipe cleaner into a star or triangle for a tree.  Happy ornament making!

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