Autumn Leaves Mobile
You will need:
* Leaf template (Use this one or make your own)
* Red cardstock, two Letter (A4) sheets or enough to make 22 leaves
* Orange cardstock, two Letter (A4) sheets or enough to make 23 leaves
* Yellow cardstock, enough to make 5 leaves
* Green cardstock, enough to make 3 leaves
* Seed beads, clear, orange or yellow
* Monofilament fishing line
* Two tissue paper rolls
* 1 yard of hemp or twine
* Craft glue
* Spring-type clothespins or paper clips
* Stylus or spent ballpoint pen for scoring lines
To make the hanger:
Flatten the tissue paper rolls and cut each one into eight pieces. You'll need 12 flattened pieces for the hanger. Glue six pieces together to form a flower; use clothespins or clips to keep them together until they dry. Glue one flattened piece between each of the six petals to form an outer ring of petals. Clip together until dry and remove the clothespins. Cut the hemp into three equal lengths. Knot one piece securely onto the inner point of an outer petal. Skip the next outer petal and tie another piece of hemp onto the inner point of the third outer petal; skip the next and tie the last piece of hemp onto the inner point of the fifth outer petal. Bring the ends of the hemp together and tie them in one overhand knot, making sure that hanger is balanced. Trim off any excess hemp.
To make the strings of leaves:
Using the template as a guide, trace and cut the indicated number of leaves from the cardstock. Score veins on each leaf using a stylus or spent ballpoint pen. Curl the edges of the leaves using the stylus/pen or scissors. Pierce a small hole on each of the leaves in random places with a needle so that the leaves fall in different positions when strung up.
Work on the center string first, which consists of five yellow and green leaves. Cut a 24-inch length of monofilament fishing line. Thread on a seed bead, and secure it near the end of the string with two overhand knots. Thread on a green leaf. Thread on another seed bead, and secure it in place with double knots around 4 inches away from the first seed bead. Thread on a yellow leaf, then thread on and secure another seed bead, repeating the process until there are five leaves on the string. Thread on another seed bead and bring it as close as you can to the leaf so that the leaf is pinned between the beads and lies horizontally. Secure the seed bead with a double knot, and set the string aside.
Next, work on the inner ring, which is made up of six strings. Each string consists of five leaves, mostly red and orange, with an odd yellow leaf to break the monotony. Vary the order of the colors as you add the leaves. String up the seed beads and leaves as explained above, and set aside.
Work on the outer ring next, which also consists of six strings, with each string having three leaves in a combination of red and orange. Use an 18-inch length of monofilament for each string, and thread on the seed beads and leaves in the same way as before. Set the strings aside.
To assemble the mobile:
Tie the center string (with the green and yellow leaves) to the middle of the hanger, passing it over two opposite petal points. Secure it in place with double knots. Next, attach and secure the strings for the inner ring (those with five leaves per string), then tie and secure the strings for the outer ring (those with three leaves per string). Trim off any excess monofilament. Now hang up your mobile, step back and admire your handiwork!
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