- Wooden dowels (allow about a foot in length per wand) - got these from Spotlight
- Thick Satin Ribbon (I used ribbon that was 5cm thick for most of the wands, 4cm for the wands I did for the 1 year olds like Ana. I bought lengths that were 3m long for the bigger cousins which was a nice length, and I think Ana's is only 2m long - easier for the little ones to play with without knotting it up)
- Eye-hooks (these are
something used for blinds or curtains or something?! It took the
ladies at spotlight a little minute to figure out what I was after, thank
godness I knew what they looked like!...) You bought them seperately for a few cents each :)
- Fishing swivels (yeah..
weird. AND my first real sojourn into Anaconda. But
they're the secret to making the ribbon wands get the movement they really
need!! So there I was in the fishing section, choosing the most
flexible and aesthetically pleasing kind of 'barrel swivel' I
could find :)) Here are the ones I settled on...
- Optional: paint/wood stain
- Needle and thread the colour
of your ribbon-ish (Okay, if it's going to annoy you, you'd better find a
thread the EXACT same colour of your ribbon... I always kind of like that
my thread's a tiny bit darker or lighter than the fabric I'm using... and
still wondering why I do not celebrate a great deal of sewing success!!
How to make them:
1. Cut the dowel to size. I (haha - okay, James) cut most of the pieces about a foot long, but did a couple of smaller pieces for the babies. For example the one we made for Ana was only 9 inches, or about 23cm long.
2. Paint/stain the dowel. We just stained ours (okay, James did this bit for me too :)) using leftover wood stain from some shelves a couple of years ago. Here's the before/after wood:
3. I'm sure I could have managed steps 1 and 2 myself, but James was happy to participate in making the gifts, which was nice... plus he took the wood to work and cut it on some big machine and it took 2 seconds...
4. Screw in the eye-hooks, into the centre of one end of the piece of dowel - I ended up needing to use pliers or something to turn the eye-hook near the end, to make sure it was in nice and tight!
5. Slip one end of the swivel onto the eye-hook, and close the eye hook up again nice and tight again with pliers or something (okay, I admit, James did this too...but again, it's all doable - I was just keen to get him on board Christmas-ing! :))
6. Get out your ribbon!! This is the bit that I really enjoyed, partially I guess because I actually DID this bit, but also because it's kind of nice and therapeutic to do a little hand sewing every now and then! Especially if it really is just a little.. :) I threaded the ribbon through the loose end of the swivel, and then I folded the end over a couple of times, then sewed it together. I folded it over a few times so it wouldn't fray.. and then I sewed it all around the folds, as you can see in the pics. My sewing is nothing special at all (except for therapeutic for me!), and looks kind of awful I guess, but you can't tell unless you're taking close up photos to put on your blog (sigh) :) I'm sure you could do this and maybe make it look a little more professional!! :)
7. Grab a match/candle/lighter/whatever brand of fire you like, and burn the end a little to seal it and so it doesn't fray! :)
And you're done!! :) Simple, cute and a lot of fun!!! Hopefully whoever you're sewing it for, loves it as much as my little one does! :)