Monday, 3 December 2012

A Cretaceous Christmas

Ok, when it comes to Christmas I begrudge spending top dollar on decorations that I will only have on display for less than one month of the year, Especially when I cant find EXACTLY what I want.
I tend to be fairly frugal any how, I think making things I one of the most important part of the festive feeling, but hey that could just be me…

So when it comes to decorating my mini Christmas tree (Poundland for a £1!) I wanted something extra special, If you didn’t already know I ABSOLUTELY LOVE Dinosaurs, and after seeing the monstrosity of a ceramic diplodocus tree decoration in PaperChase for the princely sum of £14, it got me thinking ‘I could do something much more tastefull for A LOT less…
So for this Cretaceous Craft you will require the following:
  •           A handful of the cheapest Plastic Dinosaur toys (mine are fairly small but this would work with any size)
  •          Paint, I used matt emulsion I had lying about in the basement (homebase’s ‘just one coat matt classic cream emulsion)
  •     Sandpaper
  •      Elastic: Colour and thickness is your choice but I used 1mm Red  ‘Elastic string’
  •      Jewellery Findings, I picked 20 of these up in TIGER for  £1, but I imagine you could find these in the jewellery section of any hobby/craft shop, shapes vary mae sure its thin enough to bend with fingers or pliers
  •        Length of thread.
  •       Your trusty Glue Gun, locked and loaded
  •      A can of clear coat (optional) mine will probably need the protection ,I used Plastikote’s Krystal Clear 

2. Pick your lovely dinosaurs.

Here I have a nice range everything from a stegosaurus to some weird mutated kangaroo beast, rub them up the wrong way with some sand paper to give some bite for your paint, this prevents it from flaking off like my first one did…

2. Paint your Dinosaurs with your desired paint I’d recommend priming them with white if you are planning to use a lighter colour (I had to do about 5 coats to get an even coverage in white) It’s worth noting using a brush to do several thinner layers will allow more detail to show though (faces and scales) on smaller toys
3.Leave these to dry, and if you have decided to, give them a quick coat of clear coat to minimalize chipping, set aside

4.Next take the required amount of your chosen elastic 
(I used about 3 inches) Make a loop and tie the ends in a big double thickness single knot. Pull tight, but knot too tight (I couldn't resist) you want it to be larger than the hole in your ‘finding’ but smaller than the finding itself.

5.Now for the tricky part, threading the loop through the ‘finding’
The elastic will fit but needs some help, so I enlisted the help of some thread, thread it through the hole, loop  though the elastic, thread it back through the hole again, grab both ends and firmly pull, your elastic should pop through with minimal fuss.


Here you can see a before and after 

6.Trim the knot ends

7.Now all it’s a case of hot gluing the loops to the dinosaurs
 I folded my findings slightly to match the curves of the dinosaurs before applying glue to minimalize fuss and burnt fingers, It’s worth noting I actually folded the finding backwards in the case of the Stegosaur to fit it tidily between his plates

Feel free to add glitter, tie ribbon around the necks ect, if these were bigger I’d put santa hats on them. I guess this could be used with any toys (Pokemon, farmyard animals, fish ect ) the world is your metaphorical oyster!