The holiday season is always so busy and, no matter how hard I try, I can never get enough done in advance to enjoy all the season offers. My husband will tell you it’s possible, I just don’t know when to stop making new things, like ornaments! I bet you can relate.
Every year, I add one more thing to my list that will add to our holiday decorations. Last year, it was handmade topiaries for the mantel. This year, in addition to making decorative items for our home, I’m also in the throes of making gifts for our family and friends. I can’t divulge the gifts for this year, but I’m happy to share the instructions for a wire ornament made not too long ago. It’s a star that can be hung on your tree or worn as a pendant. It can be made rather quickly, so if you have any last-minute gift needs, this might fit the bill.
jig and pegs
18″ 16-gauge wire
4’ 22-gauge wire
4’ 26-gauge wire
3mm Swarovski crystal rose gold ab 2X bicone beads/5328
4mm Swarovski crystal Provence lavender ab 2X bicone beads/5328
Make the Ornament
1. Draw a star that measures 3″ across, point to point. Place the paper onto the jig or under if your jig is transparent.
2. Place the pegs into the jig at every place the line changes direction.
3. Start the base of the design by placing one end of the 16-gauge wire at the top of the star, leaving 2″ of wire extending beyond the top point (first leg). Begin wrapping the wire around the pegs, going behind and around the pegs accordingly, to create the design.
4. Once you have wrapped the wire all the way around the jig, bring the wire up and beyond the top point on the star (last leg), crossing the first leg wire. Remove the star ornament base from the jig.
Use the second leg to form a wrapped loop to finish the base of the star. Shape the star by hand or use the sharp edge of flat-nose pliers to refine the points.
5. Anchor the 22-gauge wire to any point on the star ornament. Begin wrapping the wire around in a random pattern, being careful to crisscross where the wire will stay on the base naturally but not distort the star shape. Try to wrap loosely to help create a pillow effect rather than wrapping tightly and making it flat.
Once you have wrapped all or as much of the 22-gauge wire as you wish, anchor the end to the base wire neatly and securely.
6. Once you have completed wrapping the 22-gauge wire, start wrapping the 26-gauge wire, attaching it to the base the same way you did the 22-gauge wire. Begin adding beads here and there as you wish. To keep the beads in a specific place, weave the wire under lower layers of wire and back up again. This will create a stop for the beads.
String the beads onto the wire, then weave under and back up through another wire, creating another stop. Continue on with your pattern. End this wire the same as you did the 22-gauge, or wind it up and around to the top. Trim the wire if you have excess. Your star ornament is now complete. You can either hang it using an ornament hanger, a ribbon, or wear it on a chain.
I wish all of you a wonderful holiday season and hope you’re able to take the time to do something you enjoy, whether it’s spending time with your family, making something for yourself, or just watching your favorite holiday movie.
Director of Content, Interweave