Glass ornaments might be beautiful when hung on the Christmas tree, but they can also easily be broken by children or pets. This lightweight ornament is a super easy craft to make, and the best part is, it won’t shatter when knocked down! Today we’re going to show you a simple way to make a sparkly tree ornament using some simple craft materials.
If you’d like to see how we do this craft, you can watch along with our YouTube video here:
Before you begin, gather all of the supplies that you’ll need to complete this craft. If you don’t have all of these tools in your sewing room, you can easily substitute with other items you might have around your home! For example, if you don’t have fine knitting needles you can use bamboo skewers commonly used in the kitchen.
You’ll need a coated styrofoam ball as the base, which can be picked up at most craft stores. The first step is to measure the circumference of the ball at its widest point. This will help you to space the ribs evenly.
If you need to purchase styrofoam balls to complete this project, you can purchase them online here: https://amzn.to/3modrYL
Next you will need to pierce a hole from end to end in the ball. This is the hardest part of this craft, as coated balls are quite dense. Use a long, sharp needle and some pliers to pierce the hole.
Then use a finer knitting needle or a similar tool to make sure the hole goes all the way through to the other side of the styrofoam ball.
Now that the hole is in place, you will need to make the “ribs” of the ornament. This is a #3 weight perle cotton called Eleganza™. The thicker weight of the thread will give some nice definition to the vertical lines of the ball.
You can find #3 Eleganza perle cotton on Sue Spargo’s online shop here: https://www.suespargo.com/store.php?cat=90
Using a sharp hand sewing needle with an eye large enough for the thread, cut a length of about 36 inches or 91 cm of Eleganza™ and thread the needle. Run the needle through the hole from end to end.
Before the end of the thread disappears in the ball, dab a bit of glue on the end, then bury the end in the center of the ball. Wait a few minutes for the glue to dry.
Now continue running the thread through the ball, end to end. Divide your first measurement evenly to determine the spacing of the strands. A spacing of about ¾” at the widest point works well.
We have ended up with 13 ribs. Place an appliqué pin in each strand to keep the strands spaced evenly.
When you have completed the ribs, again dab glue on the end and bury the tail inside the ball. Then allow the glue to dry.
We can now begin to weave. For this step, we’ll be using this beautiful 8 weight rayon thread called Dazzle. It has a strand of metallic added to the rayon thread, giving it a soft lustre with a hint of sparkle.
You can find Dazzle threads in a shop near you, or in our online shop here: https://shopwonderfil.co.nz/product-category/dazzle/
Thread a blunt tapestry needle with a length of Dazzle, about 24 inches or 61 cm. Starting at the top of the ball, run the needle under one of the ribs and pull it through, leaving a small tail.
Dab a bit of glue on the tail and allow it to dry.
Pull the thread back over the top of the rib you just went under to circle it, then slide it under again.
Move on to the next rib and repeat. You’ll be sliding the needle under two ribs, and back over one.
Continue around and around, using the tip of the needle to push the thread up tight to the last thread. Be careful not to pull so tight that you distort the ribs. When you come to the end of your thread, you can glue it to the ball surface, and then go back to the previous rib with the new strand to carry on.
When you get approximately ¼” above the middle of the ball, pull out the appliqué pins or move them down.
Run a row of braid under the ribs.
Fold ends under and hand stitch the ends together.
Slide your join under one of the ribs to hide.
Continue on with the Dazzle until you come to the end of the ball, then once again hide the tail in the center of the ball.
To finish the ball, we’re going to add a string of sparkly beads that will hang from the ornament. Thread a sharp hand sewing needle a long strand of Dazzle, about 8 inches or 20 cm, and run it through the center of the ball.
Run the needle through the center hole of a bead, then back up through the ball.
If you’re on the lookout for a bead cap like the one we’ve used, you can find a wide variety of gorgeous bead covers made by local creators here: https://www.etsy.com/market/golden_bead_caps
Run both of these strands through another bead, knot together, and then knot again about 2 inches up to create a hanging loop.
A dab of glue at each knot will keep it all secure, and ensure that the knots won’t come undone.
And there’s your completed ornament! This fun, sparkly ornament is the perfect addition to any tree that requires some more sturdy décor.
This is a fun craft to do while you are enjoying all those Christmas movies! If you make these charming decorations you can tag us on Instagram using the hashtag #wonderfil, and we might just share it to inspire others! You can find these threads and more in a shop near you, or on our online shop by visiting www.shopwonderfil.co.nz. You can also sign up for our free newsletter to receive more educational sewing tips, tutorials, and free patterns. Register by clicking here! We’ll see you again next time!