Sunday, December 1, 2019

50s Style Ornament Tutorial

I was inspired to make this little tree ornament based off of an ornament in my A Very Vintage Christmas book by Bob Richter. Inside is a sequined and beaded  tree that his mother made in a social group in the 50s. I have admired this ornament for a long time and I decided to make my own version. Mine is more extravagant than hers but that was because I ran out of green sequins and needed to fill up the gaps with beads and other charms. I guess, long story short, plan before your craft :)
To start, I needed a tree shaped a foam to serve as my base and to do that I took and egg shaped foam and chopped off the larger bottom bit to get a flat edge. Then I shaved off the sides to smooth them into a rough tree shape.

 One I had chopped my tree (get it ? . . . I chopped my tree) I could get to decorating it with my green sequins, beads, and other bits and pieces. I even saved a piece of gold trim to serve as my garland. I have my box of pins at the ready as well and a dab of glue. As I pinned on a sequin or a bead I dipped my pin a bit of glue so that it would stay put.

 I started with adding my green sequins as I intended to do the whole thing in green sequins and then add in the beads as more decoration . . . When I was about half way I realized I did not have enough green sequins and di have to move around my first green sequins. to fill in my gaps. I did start with a pattern but then I decided to place them at random . . .

 Once I had enough of my trimmings on I added my tree topper and base. To do the topper, I had a little plastic angel that I glued to a jewelry thing then I pinned a large ribbon loop to serve as a means to hang my ornament. I did not cut my ribbon but instead, once I had my loop and had glued and pinned on my topper, I looped my ribbon around my tree pinning it at the bottom. I then snipped off the extra ribbon or "garland".
 For the base, I took a long triangular jewelry thing and added a bead and then a long pearl topped pin. Dabbed with glue, I pushed in my tree base and tada. My tree now had a base. As you can see, I ran out of green sequins entirely here and di not do my bottom (ooops).

There you have it, my little sequined tree. Although I am kind of sad that I was not able to make it look like the one in the book, I know that this little tree is all me. . .I made it myself and I am sure I will fondly remember it as a reason to make sure I have all the supplies I need before I start. As a final note, this ornament turned out kind of heavy so I will have to make sure that I place it on a sturdy branch.


  1. I remember making sequin ornaments (balls, not trees) in the mid-60s. I loved them- I have always had a weakness for shiny things. The problem with the sequin ornaments, I discovered after a few years, is that the pins work out of the styrofoam and after a few years of shoving them back in, won't stay at all unless glued. Putting a touch of glue on the business end of the pin at the very start might prevent this!

    1. I learned how to make the ball ones first. Ice made so many over the years I wanted to get creative with them I think they are so much fun!