Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Make // Light-up Bejeweled Ornament

When I initially started dreaming-up this ornament, I wanted to use pearl and rhinestone brooches and other luxe-looking jewelry pieces. But after a couple years of pricing new and vintage jewels, I knew that one expensive $50-$100 ornament wasn't going to make the cut. If I'm going to spend that much money, I'd rather just buy a collector's piece.

Then, on a recent trip to the craft store, I came across a large package of pretty jewelry-quality beads. With their translucent qualities,  I knew exactly what I wanted to do with them.

I was the kid who couldn't get enough of  Lite-Brite... In my book, it's so much better if it lights up! :)

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DIY Illuminated Ornament

materials needed:
clear acrylic fillable ornament-- must be able to open. mine measures 80mm.
translucent jewelry beads
high temp hot glue gun
battery-powered votive
twine to hang ornament

The instructions are easy. The ornaments I used are fillable and the seam is right down the center of the ornament. Open your ornament and select the half that overlaps the other half. Start by gluing down beads around the seams of this half of the ornament.

I glued flowers and leaves as close to the seam as possible without gluing over it. It's fine to have the leaves or flowers overlap the seam, and you'll actually want to do this to 'hide' the seam.  Just keep the glue away. This is key if you want to be able to open your ornament to put in the light.

When the seams of the first half are covered, then snap the ornament back together. The top loops (where you attach the hanger) should align. Then start gluing beads on the seams of the other half of the ornament.

Once the seams are done, continue to cover the rest of the ornament with beads. One large packet of the laliberi beads was enough to cover one 80 mm ornament with more to spare. I picked up the beads at Joanns and, with a coupon, spent around $6.

Now it's time to pop in the light. I used a battery-powered votive that came in a set from Costco. I've had these for years and they are still going strong.

I'm still debating whether to glue some small rhinestones in the center of each flower... I'm a little behind on my projects this year so, we'll see!

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