Come visit with me as I stitch and craft my way from one Christmas to the next - I like to have Christmas projects close by me all year. I have a particular fondness for Santas and Angels. If you have the time, leave a comment so I know you've visited.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Making a Beaded Christmas Tree Ornament, and GG report for April

I can not believe the speed at which 2016 is passing. Already it is time for the April Gited Gorgeousness report.  I have been stitching away all month, and have made good progress on my stitching goals.  I finished the first row of pages of Christmas Dreams (pic is in the post immediately below this one), so I have now finished 6 of the 66 pages.  The chart, fabric, and most of the floss for Christmas Dreams was purchased with birthday gift money.  I have also stitched but not yet made up seven Christmas ornaments.  Two of them were beaded Christmas trees, and as several people have commented on my trees, I have taken some progress pics to show how I make them.  A word of caution - I now have a huge plastic box of assorted beads in my craft room - so don't get involved with these if you're frightened of adding another stash addiction to your life.

I start with a framework for my tree.  These days I usually use smyrna cross stitches (over 4) fr the tree, as they stitch up quickly and I like the look of it.  Then I add a pot for the tree (I always try to make the pots different). I don't have a particular formula for stitching the tree - I just let my needle play.  These are the two trees I started with for my ornaments this month.

The next thing I do is add some feature beads or perhaps tiny buttons.  I just anchor a double strand of floss on one side of the tree, add beads to the floss, anchor it down on the other side of the tree with a small double stitch, then from the back of the work, put in some tiny couching stitches to make the beaded floss sit nicely.  So, at the end of this stage my trees looked like this:

No hard and fast rules, but for these trees I alternated strands of stars separated by beads with strands of graduated beads.  Mine are always symmetrical (even when I deliberately try to have a more casual look),  I always think I will stop at this stage, but by now I'm in beading frenzy, so I never do!  My next step is to fill in the empty spaces with beads.

 I stitch backs for my ornaments, because I make them up by  hand stitching them.  So, this is what I have now:

The purple tree is a Christmas gift for a dear friend, and the golden tree is a Christmas gift for my youngest sister.  I will be making them up in the next week, so I will put up pics of the finishing process in my next blog post.

I also stitched a Baby's First Christmas ornament as a Christmas gift for the newest member of my extended family. The teddy design is a freebie from the DMC website.  I changed all the floss colours.

 And I stitched Santa alphabet ornaments as Christmas gifts for four young family members.  I have yet to add the beaded border to Sarben's ornament.  The Santa alphabet design is adapted from LA's Alphabets Galore (1998) booklet.  I filled in the holes in Santa, omitted the tree, and changed all the floss colours.  I also made a few changes to some of the letters.

And that's me done for this report.  I look forward to checking the blogs of GG participants.  I always enjoy all the lovely pics.


Le trame della Galaverna said...

I adore all your ornaments
You did an incredible work
Many compliments

Cathy said...

Thank you for the tutorial on making your beaded Christmas trees. The trees are beautiful. Your Santa and teddy bear ornaments are very nice as well.

Annie said...

Wonderful, wonderful ornaments! Thank you so much for sharing:)) The pictures are really great and make me think I could try to do something like it. But I would definitely need more beads since I only have seed beads... I'm looking forward to seeing how you finish them too! The recipients are soo lucky!
Have a nice weekend:)

Marie said...

Those beaded trees are amazing!
I really like the way that you personalized the back of the alphabet Santa ornaments; they all look wonderful.

Rachel Tomkins said...

I can't see me ever having the patience to make up trees like this but thank you so much for the tutorial. It's not as complicated as it looks. Any chance of a picture of your massive bead collection at some point? I'm sure I'm not the only one who would like to drool over your stash! :)

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

Thank you for taking part in GG this month.
And thank you so much for showing us how to make those gorgeous tree decoration! I do indeed feel the need to go and buy some bead packs and give it a go!
I agree with Rachel, we'd love to see some stash photos too.

Tiffstitch said...

What fantastic stitching! Thank you for the tutorial on your amazing Xmas trees!

Aurelia Eglantine said...

I love your Christmas tree ornaments! Very original and creative. Thanks so much for the tutorial, I may have to try this nearer to the Holidays this year :) Another idea might be to include small buttons for the larger ornaments.

Stitching Noni said...

Oh wow! I love your Christmas Trees! What a fantastic idea.. and thank you so much so showing us how you do them :o)
Hugs xx