Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Reusing Old, Removed Postage Stamps ~Christmas Ornament

This was the first year I did not make handmade ornaments.  I was stumped when someone very close to me asked for a handmade ornament.  This is what I came up with:

Note:  You don not need to go out and buy the styrofoam.  I found mine at a SCRAP store, but you can recycle styrofoam food trays, by cutting shapes and gluing several pieces together for thickness.  You can also use recycled cardboard.

How to Make a Styrofoam Stamp Heart Ornament

Items you need:
~ styrofoam hearts, size 3 inch, with a 1/2 inch width
~ old, removed, postmarked stamps (see notes at bottom for tips)
~ decoupage medium
~ flat edged paint brush
~ silver ribbon, wire edged,1/2 inch width
~ tacky glue
~ baby blue ribbon, 1/4 inch width or thinner
~ one straight pin
~ scissors

Safe working surface or piece of washed and dried cereal bag (waxed bag)

 Step 1:  Brush a coat of decoupage medium over one top side of the styrofoam heart.  Overlap the stamps and add a thin coat over the top of all the stamps.  Don't worry about the edges just yet.  Allow this side to completely dry.

Step 2:  When side one is dry, turn over and carefully and gently cut away the edges of the stamps that exceed from the edges.  In the above photo you can see the stamps sticking out.  Simply trim them away, but save the pieces to use for the other side if needed.

Here is a photo of two finished hearts, with both sides completely dried and trimmed.

Step 3:  Cut enough ribbon to cover the edges, around the heart.  Apply the ribbon, by bending it in place and pressing gently using the tacky glue to hold it in place.

Allow the glue to dry for a few minutes.  Then proceed with the next step.

Step 4:  Cut a piece of baby blue ribbon.  Tie a knot with the cut ends.  This is the hanger, and can be as short and as long as you prefer.  Push your pin through the ribbon, opposite of where you tied.  In other words, the knot is the top, and the bend of the ribbon at the other end is where you will pin it to the heart.

Once you push your pin through the ribbon, dip it in tacky glue and gently press it into the top center of the heart.  Adjust the ribbon if necessary.  Allow to completely dry.

Step 5:  Allow the entire ornament to dry.

You can use just about any size heart by simply adjusting the width of the ribbon you use.  You can also use any other shape of styrofoam for your ornament.  These are fun to make and make great gifts for ornament exchanges, postman gifts, teacher, friends and family.

Optional:  You can jazz these ornaments up with sequins and sequin pins also.  Dip the ends of the pins in tacky glue to secure them longer, and be creative.  You could simply add sequins to the edge or to the sides.

Enjoy!  SCRAP and Have Fun Making Art!

NOTE:  To removed postage stamps from envelopes, fill your sink (or a large flat bottom bowl) with warm water and a drop or two of dish detergent.  Tear off the portion of envelope where the stamps are glued to, and toss them into the water.  Allow them to soak, until the stamps start to float.  The dish detergent should gently remove the stamps for you.  Simply remove the stamps from the water and dry face down on a flat surface until completely dry.


ladaisi said...

What a great idea! I'd like to try this with a star shape.

- Lauren

Ladaisi Blog

Kristina said...

They are really fun to make.

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

What super cute ideas. Now I'm going to start keeping more stuff that I would normally throw away...knowing I can make cute stuff out of it ;) :) Have a great week. Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)