Pipe Cleaner Ornaments
Christmas ornaments made from
ordinary pipe cleaners and inexpensive acrylic beads
are very pretty and easy to make. They look quite impressive
yet are easy enough for small children to make. This
is one Christmas craft idea to use again and again.
Older people will enjoy making this Christmas craft,
too, which can be varied to make a number of different
sparkling ornaments for your Christmas tree.
To make the bead and pipe cleaner ornaments, you need
common pipe cleaners in desired colors and acrylic beads.
Two types of beads are particularly effective when strung
on pipe cleaners. One type are called sunburst beads,
but are also known as paddlewheel beads, snowflake beads,
or starburst beads. These beads have six faceted paddles
spaced equally around a center that contains the hole
for stringing. When several of these sunburst beads
are strung consecutively, they fit against each other
in an interlocking pattern.
The other type of bead that is also effective for this
Christmas craft is called the tri bead or propeller
bead. It has three rounded bumps arranged around the
stringing hole. Like the sunburst beads, the tri beads
interlock when strung consecutively. For the most sparkly
and attractive Christmas ornaments, get tri beads and/or
sunburst beads in translucent colors of red, green,
and clear. The tri beads can also be found in metallic
gold and silver which can be used in this Christmas
craft as well.
Pipe cleaners can be found in silver and gold tinsel
as well as chenille of all colors. For the Christmas
craft, the best colors to use are the metallics and
Christmas colors. The beads cover the pipe cleaners,
but the ends will need to be twisted together and made
into hangers, so they show.
Anyone, even small children, can string these beads
on pipe cleaners. Bend up the end of the pipe cleaner
so the beads don't fall off. The pipe cleaner works
like a needle, making a needle unnecessary. For best
results, show the children how to alternate colors when
stringing, or start a pattern of three colors. When
the beads are strung on the pipe cleaners, they can
be bent into different Christmas shapes. For instance,
string red and clear beads alternately, then bend down
one end of the pipe cleaner for a candy cane shape.
Or alternate red and green beads and form a circle for
a wreath. Use red pipe cleaner to form a small bow to
decorate the wreath. Form a hanger for the Christmas
craft or simply slip the circle over a branch of the
If you experiment with clear beads and silver pipe cleaners,
you can make some beautiful snowflake or star ornaments.
Snowflake designs can be twisted of silver pipe cleaner
only, without the beads for a simple but pretty decoration.
Bead and pipe cleaner ornaments are a Christmas craft
you will find yourself using every year. Children and
their parents will both appreciate this simple yet pretty
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