Google+ House Revivals: F is for Finding Christmas in an Egg Carton, part one

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

F is for Finding Christmas in an Egg Carton, part one

Many of you may remember when I shared these darling ornaments (they can be adapted as gift tie-ons for baby gifts, or wedding gifts, or just presented as a small hostess or teacher or neighbor gift).  I promised you all a tutorial was coming.  Who knew it would take TEN months! Better late than never, right?

In the earlier post, I rambled on about seeing little old-fashioned cars at breakfast every morning for two decades.

And showed a couple of pictures that I found on my hard drive.  I didn't even know what blogging was at the time I made these, so I'm really lucky to have found any pictures at all!

Alas, I have no pictures of the canoes and sailboats made from egg cartons (and everything I own is still in storage, and will be for many more months), so I opened up good old Paint, and drew some for you!
Today, I thought I would share the first in a series of tutorials on how to make several different Christmas ornaments from one egg carton.  These projects can be simplified and adapted for children to do, too!

--Start with an eighteen count egg carton, like the one shown here.

-- You're looking for the kind that have a lid that looks like this when opened.  See the four little old-fashioned coupes?

-- The bottom of the cups should look like little rings -- these will be your tires!

-- In a perfect world, all of your little tires will be perfect, but in my world one or two are always smashed...

-- Start by cutting the lid and the tray apart along the "hinge."

-- Next cut the lid apart, as shown.  Leave a little flange around the edges of the car bodies.

-- Now take the tray and cut the cups apart.  If you plan to make only the transportation ornaments, just chop them apart like this (using strong old scissors).

-- If you plan to use the little peaks that separate the cups to make sweet little baskets for table favors (an upcoming tutorial, I promise.  Really.), cut the cups apart more carefully, like this.

-- You will end up with a pile of roughly chopped apart cups.

-- Now, go back and cut the bottoms of the cups off a little more carefully -- they don't have to be perfect, yet, you can refine them later.  Set the scraps aside for making paper, if you're into that -- or toss them into the recycling.

-- If you live in that perfect world, you can store your little car parts in a cute little bowl in your studio for easy access.  I don't live in a perfect world.  My world has dust... and dog hair.  And it can take us a long time to eat enough eggs to do an ornament making marathon (think twenty egg cartons) -- that's how I roll.  Week long marathons, making dozens of ornaments at a time.

-- So, I keep the "parts" in zipper type bags. It keeps them clean and allergen free.

-- Trim around the car bodies, leaving a scant quarter inch flange on all sides. 

-- Just stack them up and throw them in the cute bowl, if you're doing the perfect world thing -- otherwise, they can go into the zipper baggie.  Four little chassis will make three cars and an airplane, or two little coupes and one stretch limo.  You can't make four cars, because each car needs five tires, and the carton only holds eighteen eggs....

-- At this point, you will be left with these parts.

-- I usually cut mine into pieces something like this, but it really just depends on what I'm making.  Here, I've roughly cut out pieces to make two sailboats, a canoe, a set of airplane wings, and a "spare parts" piece.   Other times, I focus more on canoes (as they are the fastest to make, so you get more return on your time investment).
-- To cut out the boat hulls, I stack same length pieces together, same sides facing, and trim them into the desired shape.  If I'm working with an edge piece, I leave the edge as the top edge of the boat side -- it gives it a nice finish.

--Next time we will get the glue out and build some boats!

-- P.S.  If you're not a follower, and you don't want to miss the rest of the tutorials, be sure to click "follow", in the side bar.  Next, we will put together a canoe, and start on a sailboat.  Coming tutorials will give instructions for the cars and airplanes!

 Happy crafting!