Friday, November 29, 2013

Making Perler Bead Keepsake Christmas Ornaments


Every year, since our oldest was a baby, we've given each child a special ornament to hang on the Christmas tree.  We started out with store bought, keepsake ornaments, trying to match them to the children's interests each year.  Then, as the family grew, we switched over to mom-made ornaments some of which you can see here.

I was a little surprised to find out how much more I liked the homemade ornaments than the store bought variety.  They just mean more.  Then, a few years ago, we switched from mom-made to child-made ornaments, working from kits to create a family activity, as well as new sets of ornaments.

This year, I picked up a big bucket of Perler, fusible beads, thinking we'd create ornaments following a Nativity scene pattern from the Perler website.  The children had other ideas.  As soon as they saw the beads, they were abuzz with project ideas.


It just so happens that the beads, once fused, give a wonderful, pixelly impression, perfect for creating old video game characters, or bringing Minecraft creations to "life".  It might not have been quite what I had in mind, but when your sixteen year old son asks if he can be the first to work on a Christmas craft project...



...or when older sisters are more than happy to give their younger sisters a hand...



...well, you don't complain.  Besides, it was interesting to see what each child chose to create for their ornament.  They created a few of their patterns themselves, and found a few they liked online.

When they were satisfied with their designs, I ironed them following the normal instructions to melt the beads together.  Then, while they were still hot...


...I used a darning needle to poke a small hole through the plastic, near the top, so they'd be...


...ready for hooks...


...and ready for the tree.

It's great to be a homeschooler.

4 comments:

Christy Killoran said...

Fantastic! We have Perler beads that never seem to get played with; I think I need to show this post to my kids!

Natalie AfterschoolForSmartyPants said...

Super. We plan some perler beads ornaments here too if time allows. This week is crazy with final rehearsals and two days of shows for her school's theater production.

Ticia said...

I need to dig out our perler beads, and try them again, I've got some, but I don't think we've really used them.

jmommymom said...

My kids love these and have for years. I love the characters your kids made.