Thursday, December 10, 2009

Tutorial on Christmas Ornaments and Hangers

As promised, I'm posting a tutorial (OK - really two tutorials) on how I made my vintage-inspired ornaments that I posted about on Monday.  Here are some of the pictures of the ornaments that were created using graphics from Karen @ The Graphics Fairy.

This ended up being a long tutorial so I am going to post about making the wire hangers today and I will follow up with the ornament this weekend.   Here's the supplies you'll need for the wire hanger:

18 gauge wire, scrap piece of wood, 4 nails (finishing nails with no head), beads, wire cutters, small pliers, marker or round pencil, old spool, ruler.

Now bear with me with all of the instructions....I promise you, these are very quick and easy to make once you have the supplies ready.  I timed myself while making one and it took me 2 minutes.  

So here we go:

First, take the four finishing nails and nail them into the scrap piece of wood to make a template for the top of the wire hanger.  Nail the top nail in, nail a second nail 3/4" below the first nail, and then nail the remaining two nails 1/8" down and 1/2" over from the the second nail.  This is what your template should look like.

Now cut an 18" piece of wire for the hanger.

Make a small bend in the middle of the cut wire and place it over the top nail on the template.

Now cross one wire over the other (underneath the second nail) and then bring the wires up and around the two bottom nails.

Next, take the left wire and loop around the left nail bringing the wire back underneath the center nail.   Repeat the steps with the right wire.  This is what you should have at this point.

Now slide the wire off of the template.  Here's what it should look like.

Now pull the ends of wires together and slide a bead over both wires (note: when purchasing beads make sure the bead hole is large enough to accomodate the thickness of both wires).

Slide the bead to the top of the hanger.

and your hanger at this point should look like this:

Now it's time to shape the circle on both sides of the hanger.  To get a smooth circle you need to wrap the wire around a round shape.  This is where I used an old spool that I had in my supplies.

I could not get a good picture of the next step because I didn't have anyone to take the picture while I wrapped the wire.  The following picture is what the hanger should look like after wrapping one side around the spool.
The wire is too long at this point so you will want to cut to look like this (I adjusted the color on this picture and apparently I went a little too far....the wire looks green!)

Repeat the steps on the other side of the hanger and you are almost done!

At this point if you want to add some additional beads you need to add them now.  I added smaller red beads to both sides.

The last step is to take your small pliers and bend the edge of the wire around in a small loop to give the wire edge a decorative finish and to hold the beads in place.

And here's the finished hanger.

These last pictures show a quick way to make the wire jump rings that you will need to attach your ornament to the hanger.

Take a length of wire and wrap tightly around a pen, round pencil or dowel rod that you have handy.

Slide the wire off of the pen and you'll have this little spring

Now take your wire cutters and cut through the spring

You now have several jump rings to use for your project.

OK....I hope I haven't scared you away with all of these steps.  These really are easy to make and I think they look great with the ornament.

I'll be honest, this tutorial was a lot more difficult to write and photograph than I thought so if something isn't clear or you need more clarification please don't hesitate to leave me a comment or e-mail.

I'll be back this weekend with the tutorial on the ornament.

I'm linking with Jane @ Finding Fabulous for her Frugalicious Friday party.  Thanks to Jane for hosting the party.  Please be sure and visit Jane and all the other participants for some fabulous, frugal ideas!



  1. Hmmm...doesn't look too difficult! I would maek some of these but I don't need another project on my list right now....maybe next year! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Jane:
    This is a great tutorial. Easy to understand, great photos and a lovely and unique ornament hanger to show for a couple minutes of work. I may just have to try this! Thanks so much for the inspiration.

  3. Wow.. I'm so glad you taught us! THanks for sharing your crafty secrets!! I'm going to put this to good use!! :)

  4. This is adorable! And how clever. Thanks for sharing your secret. I had no clue how you would get the little hangers so perfect.

    I'll bookmark this page for next year. I just "mastered" (and I use that term loosely) a glass ornament wreath this year.

  5. Wow...such clear and concise directions...thanks! Enjoy your weekend

  6. Jane,
    You could write a book, everything was so clear! Oh to have an hour with you and watch your mind create! I am amazed to see how you even make your own jump rings! You so do inspire me... Dee Dee

  7. Thank you for posting a how to. I seen them on your earlier post and fill in love with them. I have my list and I'm headed to the hardware store, can't wait to make some of these Christmas ornament hangers.
    Merry Christmas,

  8. love these!! and easy to boot! looks better then the cheap store bought ones...
    thanks for sharing!

  9. You are brilliant!! Never in a million years would I have guessed that lovely ornament would be so easy to make.

  10. Thanks Jane, for the perfect tutorial! You are a pro, and obviously do things the right way, because everything that you make looks fabulous! I will definitely try this, because I'm tired of my wire looking so wonky when I try to bend it into shapes!
    Have a great weekend!

  11. Hi Jane !
    Your ornaments are GORGEOUS! I am definitely going to try and make some of these! And your tutorial is awesome! Easy enough that I can follow it! LOL (I'm a little challenged when it comes to crafts like this). Thanks for sharing your wonderful talent with us :)

  12. What a great tutorial! This will be going in my Christmas file! Thanks for dropping by! ~Lisa

  13. You did a great job explaining! Very clear and understandable. The pictures are great, too. Thanks!

  14. Your instructions were perfect. It was probably more of a pain to type out 'easy to follow' instructions than it is to actually do the ornaments.
    Living it up at Lakewood,

  15. Oh my goodness...........THANK YOU! What a great made it look so easy! And, I love the finished's FABULOUS!


  16. That is seriously clever! I'm sure if I tried this it wouldn't turn out looking half as good as yours, though!

  17. Jane this couldn't be more clear. It's just a wonderful tutorial. These hangers are so pretty and decorative. I cannot wait to give it a try. I hope you know how much I appreciate you sharing with us all. Think of how many of these you could have been making in the time it took you to do the tutorial!

  18. Your photos are wonderful and the tutorial is so clear. Now I just have to gather together the supplies. Thanks so much for sharing this!

  19. Wow! This looks like I can do it too! Where did you get your red beads? This is cute. Can't wait to see how you did the rest.

    Thank you!

  20. You are amazing!!! those are gorgeous!!!

  21. Jane... these are amazing ornaments, and thanks for the tutorial! You are SO talented!

    I have got to tell you how much I love your header. I love all the kids going to town on the tinsel, and you are standing there looking adorable. If your dad was like mine, it was one strand at a time. Then he would station Mama there as his guard dog. LOL! Oh, I loved being young!


    Sheila :-)

  22. Thanks for stopping by! I love this tutorial, I was telling a friend about it and said I thought the wire hangers were store bought! I really need to make these ( add to looooong list of what to make this year!) They make your ornaments look so special and the tutorial is really well done, easy to understand. ~ Theresa

  23. Another excellent tutorial, Miz Jane. You make it all look so easy.
    Have a great week

  24. OMG Just happened by your site because my mother's name was is unusual....point is, I love the way you made a series of jump rings. I never thought of doing it that way. Happy Sunday!

  25. Great tutorial Jane. You have a way of writing that makes it seem so easy. Thanks for sharing.

    Have a wonderful week.

  26. Great tutorial. I just found over 1000 antique and vintage post cards in my granparent's attic and this would be such a fun way to turn them into ornaments. Thanks for the detailed directions.

  27. You make it look so easy! I may try that after the holidays.

  28. Color me silly and uncreative, I never would have thought of making them so beautiful!

    I used to have a jig that would even make it easier, I wonder where that is??

  29. This is great...I love how you work with wire! And what fun ornaments! Thanks for sharing!

    jane @ Finding fabulous

  30. OK girl you needed to post these on my parties-you have too many good ideas. Google is not posting my updates it has been a night mare month.


Thanks for stopping by. I really enjoy reading all of your comments!