This morning, my Michigan friend, artist and Etsy shop keeper Felicia Kramer has posted an interview with "moi" as part of her blog series on Michigan artists & Etsy sellers. There is also a giveaway involved, so check out the interview and get yourself qualified for a chance to win one of my rosette corsages. Because of the interview, I know I will be having many new visitors here, so I want to welcome you all to my little corner of the blogosphere.
Although I consider myself more of a crafter than an artist, that's just semantics, and I'm not really sure where the line is drawn between the two anyway, are you? I'm also an antiques dealer, coffee fiend, full time school psychologist, amateur gardener and interior designer, spray paint aficionado, and dog lover. I am always running around with a price tag stuck to my foot, and I spend about two hours a week searching for lost scissors.
I'm a fan of the "maximum eye candy" look, as you can see in this picture of my retail space at the Antiques Market of Williamston, Michigan:
Many of my acquisitions come from auctions, and when I can't attend in person, my own "American Picker", my brother Mike, covers them for me. I've sold everything from a pink bathroom sink to jewelry, baby shoes to circus posters, and right now I'm hawking a tin bathtub that supposedly came from a bordello. Oh, the stories these old things could tell....
So now I want to show you my version of the Vintage Paper Wreath, something that will eventually be mass produced in China, but for now it's mostly being made by crafty folks with all sorts of variations popping up on the web. It's a very satisfying and relatively simple project. My first version, shown below, has one cone that is askew, so I'm keeping it for our house. Subsequent wreaths were placed in the antique mall for sale.
To make this wreath, you need some sheet music, preferably torn from an old songbook that is moldering away in some thrift store (this is a "green" craft, by the way), or pages from a book that you want to sacrifice. Once you have your paper, you're ready to roll.....
There's more than one way to roll a cone, and my favorite way was discovered through trial and error. Whatever you decide on, try to be consistent and roll somewhere between 15 and 20 cones in your preferred cone-rolling method. I began by securing mine with a glue stick, but later discovered that using a bit of masking tape was easier.
Next you need a cardboard circle that will serve as the base of your wreath. Mine were about 9" in diameter. Draw a belly button in the middle of your circle, and cut a slit for the ribbon hanger. In the picture below, I highlighted the slit so you can see it. Select some ribbon and thread it through the slit and tie in a knot or bow. You can make a big deal out of the hanger ribbon and bow, or make it small enough so that it can't be seen once the wreath is completed. It's totally up to you.
Here's the underside of a finished wreath, to show you the ribbon hanger:
Because I was using hot glue, I found it helpful to use a dowel to press the cone to the cardboard and guide it into the right position:
Once you have your cones glued to the base, you need to create a center medallion or decoration. I selected an image of Santa from the Graphics Fairy. I printed it out on cardstock, then glued it to a circle of manila folder to make it a little stiffer. I used glitter glue around the edges to add some sparkle. I also glued a ruffle that was sewn out of crepe paper on the underside. The lovely red ruffle was found in a box of crepe paper, and I just love it. Of course, you could make your own ruffle, or substitute gathered fabric or lace:
My other wreath was made with smaller size book pages rather than sheet music. The center medallion was created by sewing crepe paper into two rosettes, then adding a vintage tinsel ornament in the center. Last, I added a piece of vintage costume jewelry to the center of the tinsel star.
I'm really liking the combination of aqua and gold for Christmas decor this year:
I have a couple more wreaths awaiting their center medallions. That's the fun part for me, trying to find something colorful and pretty for the embellishment. I'm thinking that my other wreaths will have less holiday-oriented centers, just so they can be displayed throughout the year.
I hope you can try this easy project, and do please attempt your own variation. Who knows what kind of masterpiece you will come up with?