The Making of an Icicle TiaraI promised in my All-Hallows Aftermath post to provide some more information on the construction of the crown or tiara that I made for my costume this year. When we started out on our search for suitable party gear at the second-hand and thrift shops in the area a couple of months ago, I really had no idea what I was looking for. Our theme, as I mentioned in a previous post, was a Princess Party. It originally came about after my oldest granddaughter's remark one day while we were out Thrifting, that we needed an excuse to dress up in some of the fabulous formal wear that one so often finds, for literally a fraction of its original cost, at these shops. When it was time to start planning the Halloween Barn Party, that conversation sprang back to mind— we added tiaras, crowns and/or jewels to the mix— and we had a theme. Sorry guys. We will try to come up with something more unisex next year.
My youngest daughter, Gaia and I, took a ride at first opportunity, down to that group of thrift stores we had not visited in months. It was kismet, perhaps, as we both found dresses that day, not at the same shop but at two that are just a few blocks apart. Mine was the silver-gray with icy glitter accents that provides a background for some of these photos, and hers was an oriental style tunic or mini. Now we were getting somewhere.
Pinterest and found a selection of crowns and tiaras. I immediately knew what I wanted— I just was not sure how to go about creating it. After searching online for icicles and crystals that would fit the bill, I finally stumbled across the Factory Direct Craft web site. As always, cost is a big factor with me, and I not only found the supplies I was looking for, but at far more reasonable prices and shipping than other sources I came across. I ordered two sizes of the acrylic twisted and swirled iridescent icicles, and a package of beautiful crystal look garland. Within a few days, I was ready to go...
Since I already had other supplies on hand (being the craftaholic magpie that I am), I will provide a list of everything that I used in the crown construction. I already had two or three metal headbands, the kind with the teeth. You could use something else, but I do not know of another type that would provide enough stability as a base. They do carry them at Factory Direct Craft, but only in black as far as I can tell. I used a silver-toned one, but it will be mostly covered when the project is completed. I am certain they are available—a quick Google search yielded a couple of sources for under $9.00, but not at suppliers I have used or can recommend. So, here is the supply list for the tiara/crown I made.
- 1 Jewelry Designer Metal Headband (with teeth)
- 1 Package 4" iridescent icicle ornaments (15 in package, I used 14 of them)
- 1 Package 5" clear acrylic icicle ornaments (6 in package, I used 5)
- 1 package Silver iridescent Diamond Twist Garland (I used about 28")
- A roll of 24 gauge silver craft wire
- Hot glue gun and glue sticks
My first step was to lay out a pattern of sorts. I seldom sketch things out, but I know that some people like to. I ended up with a design that sort of rose and fell, giving it some symmetry without being too structured. If you need to know, my pattern was, from left to right, as follows:
3- 4" icicles, 1-5" icicle, 2-4" icicles, 1-5" icicle, 2-4" icicles, 1-5" icicle, 2-4" icicles, 1-5" icicle, 2-4" icicles, 1-5" icicle, 3- 4" icicles. (a total of 19 icicles)
Having removed the hanging ties included on the icicle ornaments, I cut a long piece of wire (about 2 to 3 feet) and began wiring the icicles into place. Be certain that the icicles are facing away from the metal teeth of your headband base. Begin where the teeth start, and wrap the wire once or twice around the band between each new icicle.
You will need something to support the crown when your start hot gluing. I just used a small box I had handy. Since it is a little unstable at this point, I recommend, hot gluing 4 or 5 icicles into place, then setting them on your support to cool and harden before moving on to the next group. That gives you a chance to make certain that the icicles stay properly oriented as you work.
Since the garland I choose was fairly thin, I cut a piece long enough to be double across the face of the headband, covering both the band and the glued base of the icicles. Just for fun, I let about 3" of garland dangle to one side. Start the garland at the same place as you began the icicles, where the teeth start on the headband. It is 12" or 13" across the base of the crown, so cut your length accordingly. I used about 28".
You've just made a crown worthy of any Ice Queen or other Cool Character you can dream up.
|Mab, the Queen of Winter Faerie|
My Snowflake earrings were nothing more than two lightweight Christmas ornaments I put on earring wires. It was all easy and fun.
I will close this post today with just a couple of observations about the Princess Mentality that has become so pervasive in our culture. After an epoch of being the oppressed gender, of being chattels, servants and often having little more to say on their own behalves than slaves, it is perhaps understandable that in a more egalitarian age, Girls and Women want to feel special, to be more than just ordinary. However, It worries me to see the Great Divide between sexes widening again. I am not telling women to be like men, but I am suggesting that they tread carefully through the minefield of their hard-won equal rights. If you are going to be a Princess, be a Self-Rescuing One. Blessings to All...