11/17/14

DIY: Christmas Countdown Tutorial


Growing up, my family had a Christmas countdown made out of beads. Every day I made sure to move a bead until it was Christmas. I have looked everywhere for a countdown like the one we had growing up but I never found one. So I decided to take matters into my own hands and make one myself.  

Here are the materials you will need:




1. Wood platform from the craft store

2. Beads. I used 2 different kinds, red regular craft beads and clear jewelry beads.

3. Wire (I used 18 gauge copper wire) I found this wire at Home Depot and it was small enough to thread jewelry beads but also sturdy enough to hold its shape. 

4. Christmas buttons (I used Christmas light shapes which I found at Michaels)

5. Centerpiece. I searched for the perfect piece and finally found the Christmas tree at Hobby Lobby. You could use anything you want, like ornaments, small figurines, snow globe, a wrapped Christmas present, picture frame, etc.

6. Thread (I used gold)

7. Glue

8. Spray paint

Step 1:

Since my Christmas tree centerpiece came with a stem, I drilled a hole in the middle of the wood platform. I then put hot glue in the drilled hole and stuck my Christmas in. If your centerpiece does not have a stem, hot glue the bottom of your centerpiece to the middle of the platform and let it dry.


Step 2:

Drill 4 small holes for your wire evenly around the edge of the wood platform. Make sure the holes are deep enough for your wires to stay in place.


Step 3:

Cut 2 pieces of wire to arch over your centerpiece and place in the drilled holes. One of the arches should be about a half an inch taller than the other arched wire. Next, straighten the wires into arches. I used pliers to help straighten. 

P.S. Don't glue the wires in yet!


Step 4:

Spray paint the entire piece so far. Mine took about 4 coats. 



Step 5:

Once dry, put 24 beads of one color (I used clear) and 1 bead of a different color on one of the arches. Each bead represents a day in December and the colored bead is Christmas. After your beads are on, glue your wires into the drilled holes. I used a small dot of hot glue in the hole and stuck the wire in and held it until it dried. Super glue would also work, but it will take longer for it to dry, which is why I used hot glue.


Step 6:

Take your thread and string the Christmas buttons on. Hold the thread with buttons up to the wire and decide where you want it to hang. Next, put a dab of hot glue on the wire where you want the thread to hang. Place a small section of the thread on that dab of hot glue and let it dry. Once dry, wrap the thread around the dried hot glue to cover it up.

To make the buttons stay in place, place a small dot of hot glue on each button's hole. 


Step 7:

Display your countdown. Move a bead over every day until Christmas! 







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