Friday, December 10, 2010

Seaside Ornaments

Every year for Thanksgiving we do an ornament exchange between the sisters and mom.  We all have trees with a theme/feel/color story so it is so much fun to find things that fit into the sisters decor.  Unless you get Carrie!  She has a very cute nautical themed tree.  Don't get me wrong, I lover her tree, it is just impossible to find cute ornaments when you don't live in California or Maine.  Of course, this year I got Carrie :(  So I decided to challenge myself to make her some great ornaments.  I have to say, I am totally in LOVE with them... and she seemed pretty happy with them too.

I started off by using 4 old ornaments that I already had.  They are just foam balls with satin wrapped around.  You can use foam balls if you don't have some old ornaments that will work.  Then I bought a bag of seashells.

Then I fired up my little hot glue gun and started glueing the seashells around the ornament.

And kept glueing...

Till I ended up with this:

Next I rigged up this handy device to hang the ornaments on while I applied the latex coating.  I used an old shoebox and safety pins (I would have loved to use paper clips, but couldn't seem to find any, if you have them I would use them because the ornaments kept slipping off the safety pins).

I used the left over EnviroTex Lite Pour on High Gloss Finish that I bought for the Fall Leaf Chargers that I did for Thanksgiving. I don't remember how much I mixed for all 4 ornaments, but I think I weighed out 1.5 oz of each solution with my kitchen scale, then mix thoroughly.  Using a sponge brush, start painting the finish to the ornaments.  It didn't work to keep them hanging on the box because I needed more control while trying to get into all the little nooks and crannies, so I ended up holding it by the hanger for most of it (don't worry too much about getting the latex finish all over your hands, it washed off really easy as soon as I was done).

After they were all covered, I hung them on the fancy contraption.  Then waited for them to dry.  Don't go too far while waiting for them to dry though, you will need to keep a close eye on drips so you can brush them off before they dry.

Just brush the foam brush over the drips a couple times to remove them... then do it again... and again... and again until you don't see the drips forming anymore and the finish is getting dry.  I watched them for about an hour checking on them ever 5-10 minutes (more frequently at first, then a little less frequently as the drips slowed down).

Give them about 48-72 hours to fully dry and cure so they are really hard.  Then I used a pretty blue ribbon and made a loop to hang the ornaments to the tree.

Oh so simple!

And now your ornaments are all done and ready to adorn your tree.

I packed them up so pretty to give to Carrie.  I used another old shoe box (I have a plethora of empty shoe boxes hanging around).  Then using some printed brown paper and spray glue, I wrapped the lid and the base of the box.  Put in a few sheets of tissue paper, and snuggle the ornaments in tight.

Merry Christmas!


  1. I would love to have a Christmas tree at a beach house, you know, like in Cottage Living? This ornament looks like it came from that magazine. Gorgeous!

  2. I do LOVE them Kati!!! They look beautiful on my tree! Although, this is the first time I am learning that I am the hard one to do ornaments for... I love my tree, it represents me, my family, and the things we love... so to have ornaments made by my sisters make it that much better! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!!

  3. Very nice. I have lots of shells and this is just beautiful. Thanks for sharing. Linda