Monday, May 3, 2010
Fairy Bubble Wands
Once on vacation a long time ago before the days of children, well my children anyway, I saw these in a gift shop selling for $8! At the time I was totally into working with wire and knew right away I could make them myself, so I did! Just so happened I made 20 or so and my mom used to sell them when she went to craft bazaars for $5 a piece.
My daughter had an upcoming fairy party and I happend to spot these in my mom's craft room in the basement. Lucky for me there were 6 left. The exact number of guests I have coming to her party!
What you need:
A Wooden Chopstick, from a local Chinese takeout place
Craft Spray Paint, (I used pink and blue.)
Craft Wire (sorry been a while since I looked at gauges don't remember the size, but I actually bought my wire at a hardware store and know they still sell it.)
Ribbon of choice for decoration
Needle nose pliers to bend ends of wire so they are not sharp.
Paint your chopsticks with the spray paint. I put mine in a shoebox and went at them with two colors of spray paint. I carefully shook the box. so that all sides of the sticks got sprayed with color. Let them dry according to directions on the can.
Next take your spool of wire and start at the bottom with the marble. Using the pliers bend the wire tightly and start to make a spiral like a snail shell, make it flat to start. Once the outside of your snail shell shape is the same as the outside widest circumference of the marble, you will put the marble in the center of the snail shell shape and bend the wire up around the marble until the wire is around the center. Then holding the marble in place bend the wire continuing the spiral around the marble until you are at the top of the marble then bend the wire up at a 90degree angle from the marble,(may need pliers for the bend.)
Now you will have a marble on the end of a wire. The wire should still connected to the spool! Now grab your painted chopstick, and place the flat bottom side next to the 90 degree bend in the wire. With your hands begin to wrap the wire up the chopstick in a spiral pattern. Too close and you won't see the cool paint job, too far and it won't be sturdy enough. Make sure the wrap is tight so that the wire is touching the stick at all times.
Once you are at the top of the stick (wire still attached to spool) make a large circle shape at the top. Then you will want to measure out some wire by copying this shape again so you have two circles but add a little extra so that you have little less than two and a half circles of wire at the top then cut it from the spool. You can always trim but you can not add more wire once it is cut.
Find your first circle of wire again and hold it at the base so it stays in place. Then wind the cut end of the wire around the wire that is in a circle loosely spiraling it around the loop of wire. (loop the wire around the wire so to speak) once you are back the the base again it should be looking a bit more sturdy.
To end it, there is really no right or wrong way, it was different each time I did it depending on how much I had left and how sturdy the wand felt. I would take the extra wire and weave it thought the loop and around the stick, through the loop and around the stick. Or sometimes just around the stick at the top. Whatever you feel needs to be done with the end to make it look finished and give it more strength. Then find a hole to bury the cut end in so that it is not sticking out.
Any closed shape will make bubbles. To make make the other shapes you will bend the circle into those shapes when finished. Caution, other shapes take more wire so make your cirlce bigger to start with.
While any closed shape will make a bubble, wire does not hold as much bubble solution as some things do, so it doesn't go as far or work as long before re-dipping. To make these work great wrap some colored yarn around the wire shape on top. This will make your wand hold much more bubble solution and let you blow larger bubbles. ENJOY!