Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Celtic Knot Bell Ornament

Thought I'd post this project as a follow-on to the Himmeli-Look Bell
tutorial, my previous blogpost. It's made in exactly the same way - so you're up to speed. All you need are the print-and-cut files, and you're good to go:


The bell has a jingle-bell clapper. I opted for practically no-frills - but a velvet-y green ribbon would look lush as a finishing touch!

... and here's a link to an earlier project which co-ordinates with the bell:
Celtic Knot Pillow-Purse 

Monday, 24 August 2015

Himmeli-Look Bell Tutorial

The Himmeli-look-alike binge continues. The look of Finnish strawcraft... in paper! Today I'm walking you through the Himmeli-look bells. They are much easier to make than they look. Once you cut out and crease the pieces, they almost make themselves. It looks like there's a lot going on, but each bell only has three pieces (not counting the jingle bell clapper or optional bow).

Here are your free downloads:
Himmeli-Look Bell
1 See - only three pieces! Cut out the pieces. Score and crease the folds as shown. 

2 To assemble the bell body, glue the adjacent tabs - tahdah - dome shape. Bend the handle with a soft fold at the top. Glue it together just above the base folds. Glue the little hexagon underneath the handle to stabilise the join. 
3 Time to attach the clapper. Thread a jingle bell onto a piece of craft thread. Knot the thread to mark the height of the bell drop (about 4.5cm/1-3.4in). With jingle bell inside, tie thread tails as shown, on opposite side of bell. Knot the thread ends at centre top, and tie another knot around the first knot to secure. Trim the thread ends.
4 Next, glue the handle onto the bell top. The v-shaped tabs on the handle match those on the bell top - take care to align the edges.
5 Add a bow at the handle base. Your choice - ribbon or paper! If you want a paper bow, find one here. (Reduce the size of the bow to fit the bell.)

All done. Now you can deck the halls!

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Himmeli-Look Wreath Ornaments

More Himmeli-look ornaments today - the wreaths I previewed in my previous blogpost. Both are super-easy to make.

Here are your free files:


The wreath above has 8 pie-slice segments. I know, it looks a bit like a ferris wheel - or a hamster wheel. To make each segment, crease folds as shown above. The folding is easy - simply fold each section in half.
Glue one end to the opposite end, then fold and glue the base. Glue 8 adjacent sections side-to-side to assemble the wreath.
One creased unit of the star wreath is shown above. To assemble the unit, glue the short tab at the inner edge to the opposite side. Next, glue the edges of the adjacent triangles. 

Now- there are two methods of assembling the wreath. You can glue the units together side-by-side - in which case you need six of them. Or, you can thread the units onto a piece of ribbon - bead style - and tie them together with a knotted bow - in which case, you only need five units! (Thread the ribbon through the cut-off side of the unit.)

Of course, you can reduce or enlarge the size of each unit to make smaller- or larger- wreaths. 

If you want a papercraft bow to decorate the wreaths, I have given you one in my previous post.

I'm not done yet with my Himmeli binge! Coming up soon: Himmeli-Look Bells. A little bit steampunk, lots of fun to make:
There will be a tut for them, so watch this space.

Friday, 14 August 2015

Himmeli-Look Ornaments

Himmeli-look geometric decorations are a very popular craft trend. I read about them recently in this fun article by Rachel Basinger in the Guardian's Do Something supplement. I bought a pack of paper straws and got to work with a tapestry needle and my baker's twine. Well - I could appreciate the appeal, but I didn't have the patience. All that knotting.  So, of course I got to thinking about how you could approximate the look in digital papercrafts. And I have been on a Himmeli-Look binge ever since. 

Quick background info: Himmeli ornaments are traditional Finnish Christmas decorations. They were originally made using real straw, but now are made with paper straws or metal tubing. There are some pretty fantastic creations around. Mega-mobiles, lighting fixtures. Google it!

Anyway, back to my papercraft Himmeli: they are easy to fold and assemble because all the sides just need to be creased in half. They almost assemble themselves. I have designed lots of shapes, but I am starting you out easily with these pretty pendant-type ornaments.

You can make two styles of Prism from the template: jingle bell pendant or shape-within-a-shape.

Here are your free files:


Himmeli-Look Prism Ornaments

All-in-one Prism (jingle bell)

1 Cut out the shapes. Digital papercutting is best.

2 You can either score-and-crease the folds or simply crease the folds by folding each strut in half. If you score-and-crease, use a fine-point embossing tool held agains a metal ruler. Use a bone folder to crease the folds.

3 Cut a piece of craft thread and loop through a jingle bell. Decide where you want the bell to fall within the pendant and make a knot in the thread that distance from the bell. A double-knot, in fact. 

4 Fold the prism with the jingle bell cord extending outside. Glue the tabs - the long one, and the shorter base tab. Tah-dah: your finished faux Himmeli pendant. 

Two-in one Prism Ornament
This is so much easier than it looks. Simply fold the Himmeli-look diamond for the base, then glue on the open-base pyramid on top.
Thread a hanging loop through the top.

I've also given you a papercraft bow for a finishing touch.

There's more to come, coming attraction above. The Himmeli-look shapes are modular units, and it's like being a construction-toy mad kid in a toyshop! You can make garlands, mobiles, wreathes - all sorts of papermakes.

So - I hope that I have not offended Himmeli traditionalists, but I am having big fun!


Thursday, 6 August 2015

Xmas Tree Pyramid Treat Box

These cute little pyramid boxes are just the right size for a choc truffle or a similar confectionery treat. You can print up a batch, score and fold them, and have them ready for filling when the holiday season arrives. They are ideal as stocking fillers - or just for spreading festive cheer.

Here is your free printable papercraft:

To make:
Print, cut, score fold. Here's how to lace the top:
You need 25cm(10in) of ribbon. Tie it in a bow and trim the ends (obviously after you have placed the contents). Make sure the flaps lie within the box.

I had so much fun designing this project that I've crafted a stacking treat box version- a three-tiered Xmas tree. Watch this space!

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Happy Birthday Reversi-Bunting

Both sides now! I am probably re-inventing the wheel here, but it occurred to me that a double-sided bunting would be very useful for decking the halls. Very often buntings are suspended to hang free - and you'd want the same message on both sides. So - there's no way to show you from the pic, but trust me, it is exactly the same on the flip side. Handy for getting the message across!

So - here's a print-and-cut birthday bunting. There are four pages of templates. Use the assembly key on the last page or you will do your head in - take care to select the correct letter pairs in the correct sequence because there are some duplicate letters! (It would probably have been easy for Leondardo da Vinci...) It's fun though - like a puzzle.

Here are your print-and-cuts:




Apart from keeping the letters in the right order, assembling the bunting is a piece of cake. Just fold each pennant in half (I favour a soft fold rather than a hard crease - much more pleasing). A bit of d/s tape holds the sides together. Then thread the pennants onto a ribbon.
You can, of course, enlarge the templates as required (I had to fit a reasonable number onto a page).

You can make teeny Reversi-Buntings and use them as cake-toppers, mounting them on cake pop sticks, clothesline style.

If you feel adventurous, you can make your own Reversi-Buntings. The font I used is Bambi. Just plan them out on paper first. You could, of course, have a different message on the reverse of the bunting - but it would have to have exactly the same number of letters.

So - have fun with your festive messages.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Back-to-School Mug Hug Tutorial

Today is National Colouring Book Day - which is why I am giving you a useful project to make! :) You have plenty of time before the new term commences to make several of these very useful stationery-themed organisers. Make them for kids, friends, teachers. 

The B-T-S Mug Hug organiser is comprised of holster-style accordion pockets, plus a pencil holder and a paperclip box that sit within the mug. 

The project fits an 8cm(3-1/8in)-diameter mug - that's standard garden variety.

This is a straightforward print-and-cut project. Take it one step at a time. I'll talk you through it.

Here are your printables. Four files are needed to make the works. I am supplying you with .pdf files (for handmade - I'm not counting the use of a printer), and .studio and .svg files for all you digital papercrafters out there. 




Back-to-School Mug Hug Organiser

1 Print all of the files on 160gsm white photocopier cardstock. Score the folds using a fine-point embossing tool held against a small metal ruler. Cut the templates out. Crease the folds. Use a bone folder for nice, crisp folds (this is especially desirable on the accordion pockets).

2 Glue the reinforcements over the holes on the Mug Hug base. For a super-durable Mug Hug, glue reinforcements onto both the front and
back sides. Note how the base is colour-coded for easy pocket placement.

3 Time to make the pockets. You need 5, total. Three of one colourway, two of the other. Or, if you prefer - all the same. As long as you make 5! Okay - the pockets have already been scored and creased. Accordion the sides as shown. Glue the side flap onto the back of the pocket (not inside it), then turn up the bottom flap and glue it in place. You can use either tacky PVAglue applied with a cocktail stick or d/s tape.

4 Next, attach the pockets to the Mug Hug Base as shown. Use tacky PVA glue or d/s tape, as before. The photo above shows a foolproof method for placing the pockets. Crease the folds of the base before attaching the pocket. This works a treat for easy alignment, and it also gives you a whisper of ease between the pockets.

5 Time to attach the Mug Hug to the mug. You need 35cm(14in) of ribbon and a tapestry needle. Lace the Mug Hug in place underneath the handle. Thread the ribbon through the holes shoelace-style (under first, then criss-cross, then out either side). Tie in a bow. Trim the ends of the ribbon I like to seal the ribbon ends with sparingly-applied PVA glue, to prevent fraying.

6 Next, make the hexagonal mini-box. This sits in the base of the mug. The folds have been creased - all you have to do turn up the box sides and glue (or tape) the adjacent sides. The box is swirl-close. Turn down the flaps consecutively (the square side of each flap belongs underneath, the tabs belong on top). Tuck the tabs under where necessary. Tah-dah- a nifty self-locking spiral.

7 Now it is time to make the hexagonal pencil holder. You've already creased the folds. Join the pencil holder to make a cylinder.Turn the base tabs under and glue them under the base hexagon - take care aligning the edges. Finally turn the top tabs inside and stick them down, for a clean finish.

And that's it. Enjoy making your Back-to-School Mug Hug(s). And enjoy the summer hols!