Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Make a Paper Christmas Ornament: The Porcupine Ball

To go straight to the tutorial click here to go to the Make a Paper Christmas Ornament Squidoo lens I created. For the background story, keep reading.

Unwrapping Christmas presents at my maternal grandparents house was a slow and cautious affair. Scotch tape was carefully cut with scissors to keep from tearing the jewel-toned foil wrapping papers. Then the wrapping paper was carefully folded and put away in a special box. This was the collection for making the paper Christmas ornaments we called "porcupine balls".

I'm not sure where the pattern came from, or who found it, but I have memories of watching my uncle very painstakingly rolling the small sections of foil and tissue paper to make the points that would ultimately become a ball ornament. Then there was the problem of glue. We always used good old Elmer's white glue in the 1960's. After you got the point of paper rolled you had to somehow get the glue on the edge without losing the point (sometimes with a toothpick) and then hold it until it set up enough. It was a trick to keep the glue from getting on the foil and keeping it from being shiny. Thank goodness for glue sticks and all the other adhesive options we have these days!

But despite the surgeon-like concentration needed to make them, the end result was spectacular and a great way to keep the beautiful foil wrapping papers we all fell in love with and hated to throw away. In these days of green living awareness I thought it would be a great time to reintroduce the world to these ornaments. It seems somewhere in the last 10 years I've seen an article about them - perhaps in Martha Stewart Living - but I haven't seen them anywhere else.

Again, click here to see the tutorial.

1 comment:

Melissa said...

Thanks for the fabulous ornament tutorial! I followed the bread crumbs from 'Little Faerie Tales.'

~Holly Jolly~