16 Dec

7 swans a-swimming!

How time flies! We can't believe we've reached seven swans on our 12 Days of Christmas craft projects already – and it's a beautiful tutorial for making gift wrap for a bottle by Clever Betty.

We hope you're having a great time making our arts and crafts projects as part of our 12 Days of Christmas feature on the blog. We've had some brilliant festive tutorials already and have reached number seven in the list – seven swans a-swimming. Lauren Engelkemeyer of blog Clever Betty has come up with this stunning gift wrap idea for a bottle. We love those little swan glass charms as well.

Here's how to go about making seven swimming swans.

You'll need

For the bag:
white, orange & black felt
fabric glue
sewing machine
For the charms:
20mm ear hoops
beads in 6 colors to fit 20mm hoops (I used Czech glass beads)
6 10.16cm strips of 24 gauge jewellery wire
jewellery pliers

Simply make the swan

1 Cut two white pieces of felt to 19x29.2cm.
2 Place pieces on top of each other and fold so four short ends are stacked horizontally.
3 Sew through all four sheets along the long side and one short side.
4 To flatten the bottom, fold the right sides of the fabric (the side without seams showing) together so the seams touch, forming a triangular shape. Measure 2.54cm down the seam and draw a perpendicular line. Sew along this line, then repeat for the other side. (There's no side seam here to match the bottom seam up with, but use an imaginary line where a seam would be).
5 Turn the sleeve right side out so the seams face the inside.
6 Trace and cut the head/neck shape and the wing shape on white felt (I cut two of each and glued them together to be the same thickness as the sleeve).
7 Cut a beak from orange felt and a face from black felt. Use fabric glue to adhere the beak and face to the white head/neck shape.
8 Insert the neck 0.5cm into the sleeve with the face side down, lining up the right bottom corner of the neck with the side seam of the sleeve.
9 Sew around the top of the sleeve, making sure to catch the neck as you go.
10 Glue the wing on the front of the sleeve.
11 Wrap the neck around the bottle so the face peeks around the opposite side.
12 Tie a ribbon around the swan's neck and the bottle neck to secure.

Simply make the charms

1 Choose your beads and thread them onto the hoops.
2 Use your pliers and fingernail to manipulate the wire into a swan-like shape, starting with the beak and ending with the wing.
3 Secure the end of the wire by crimping it around the neck of the swan with your pliers.
4 Thread the swan over the hoop by its wing and crimp the corner of the wing tightly so the swan lies flat and won't move easily on the hoop. Don't worry if they all look a little different – that's the charm of handmade!
6 Thread the charms onto the ribbon around the bottle gift bag's neck.

We love how elegant this little gift bag is - certainly one to add to the make-list. Have fun crafting your swan and see you tomorrow for eight maids a-milking!


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