Through the years I've made a LOT of ornaments...most of which I've given away to family and friends, but from most series (every year I do a different themed ornament; one year it was mittens, another year stars, etc) I've kept some examples of my own. I've also tried to make at least one ornament for each child every year, with their name and the year written on the back of it so that when the kids grow up and leave the house, they can take their own collection of ornaments with them to begin their own traditions with.
It's so much fun to unwrap each little ornament and see what it is, while memories from Christmases past come rushing in. I used to love doing that when I was a girl, and hopefully my kids will be excited to see ornaments from when they were little too.
As you can probably see, these mitten ornaments are pretty tiny. It was pretty tricky to get the snowflake details just right - I had to use a toothpick to pick up the tiny little strips of Sculpey clay and position them properly.
Any of you who have worked with Sculpey also know about the inherent "dangers" of the red clay...the color comes off on your hands and fingers, and then when you touch the white clay it stains it red! Yes, I learned about that the hard way...
I think the mitten series has to be one of my favorites.
These stockings were really fun to do too...actually to tell you the truth the stripes on the one in the foreground really drove me crazy to finish - it's pretty tedious, but the results are sure fun! I love the colors of these ones, even if they're not traditional Christmas colors.
Another snowflake ornament. After I started it I was wishing that I had just done one big snowflake in the middle = it's really tricky (and time consuming) to work that small!
At our house we usually have two trees - one with all the randomly colored ornaments, like the one at right, and one that changes from year to year based on a color scheme or theme.
Eliza was really big into ballet a year or two ago, so one year I made her these ballet slippers.
This was Eliza's first ornament (back when I had more time, obviously). It's an unfortunate mix of styles (I'm thinking a cross between Wallace & Grommet and, um, Botticelli?) which is regrettable, but by the time I put the Wallace-esque face on I had already spent so much time on it that I just went with it. The homage to Wallace, by the way, was unintentionally done - that was NOT the look I was aiming for! :-)
More ornaments for the kids....
This one is for Hyrum, and he was very excited to pick out his own colors.
Hyrum LOVES trains, and has for years. I think I made this 2 years ago, and he's still very excited about it.
I did a series of angels for everyone the first year Steve and I were married. I made them with all different hair colors, styles of dresses, and I think wing shapes too.
I always think of our first year together when I see this one.
This sweet little Teddy is one of my all-time favorites! He took me a good little while to make, but I just love the little guy...and his little teddy bear too! I did this one (and the ones shown below) based on the characters of Suzy's Zoo. Remember those cute little animals? I loved them.
Here's that cute little turtle. I made this one with bread-glue dough, back in the days before I knew about Sculpey clay. The colors have faded quite a bit, even with the topcoat of lacquer.
...and here we have Mr. Walrus. He was made with salt dough, which was always tricky for me to work with because the dough would always puff up and distort when it was baked, so things never looked the same when they were done. This guy doesn't seem to mind.
I used a ceramic cookie press to get the snowflake images on these clay discs, and then I added all the little pinprick dots and the golden border.
One year I made a series of star ornaments, all in white. I put them on a tree with white seashells and seastars, glass icicles and red glass ornaments. It was a gorgeous tree.
Another one from my white star series.
I didn't make these, but my Dad did! These are just a few (you can't really tell, but they're 2 different sizes) of the ornaments my Dad sells as part of his business, Design In Metal. You can order them directly from him if you're interested.
I didn't make this one either (Hallmark did) but it's one of my favorites. I just love the clean lines and the fun little details of this white, gift-laden deer.
These are store-bought too - aren't they so much fun? We just had to have some ornaments that will remind us of our time spent here in Hawaii.
Mr. Snorkel Santa...
...and of course Mr. Shaka Santa (shaka is the gesture the locals make with their hand, with the pinky and the thumb sticking out). Santa needs to work on his shaka a little more.
And, finally, to wrap the post up, we have my fading, bread-glue-dough rendition of my all-time, absolute favorite characters ever; the immortal Calvin and Hobbes. Always up to something, those two.
Have a merry tree-decorating time, if you haven't done it already!