Friday, May 15, 2015

Diamond Back Weaving Projects...Blooming Pen & Dance Fan Wand

A pen in bloom ;)
Let's begin with my first ever shout-out to a fellow blogger ( for teaching me something new...diamond back weaving! I'm a very visual person, so I really appreciated the photos in her blog to get me started (Mine are not great, I apologize!).  Now, I must say I'm not from the South so I didn't know anything about homecoming mums (gasp!), but I guess this form of weaving is widely used in the making of them.  I switched it up a bit and did my diamond back weaving around some ordinary ball point pens for our dance team competition gift table (so they wouldn't walk away), and for some spirit sticks for our fans at the recent state competition.  I had so much fun I even made a ribbon wand for my niece, which I forgot to photograph!  Anyway, I'm not going to include directions here because in addition to the blog I mentioned above, there's also some YouTube videos that clearly show how to do it.  I'm simply sharing my take on how to use this pretty technique.  And, I will share a couple of tips to make the two projects pictured here.  

First, the pen.  I bought a couple of bunches of small scale flowers in the team's school colors and taped the stems (wrapping the tape around the stem and pen in two places) down the length of the pen.  Then I made the two-color sections of narrow grosgrain ribbon (glue the ends of one of each of the ribbons at an angle, tucking the ends), hot glued those to the pen's tip and worked the braid up the pen to the top end where it met the flowers. I glued again here, and made bows with the ribbon tails.  I finished it with a jewel for some sparkle, it is dance team after all! Our customer's just loved them, and thought they were for sale so maybe I'll make some to sell in the future!
Second, the spirit stick or fan wand. My daughter's team is the Liberty Belles, so I cut a Dollar Store Christmas garland I had been saving to add a bell to the end of the wand.  It came on a string of little plastic gold beads, so I just cut it between the bells and tied the ends into a loop using some button hole thread. Then I used a small piece of ribbon to glue it up and over the end of the stick before doing the braid.  For this project, I used inexpensive satin ribbon from JoAnn's in the school's colors.  And, instead of making the two-colored sections like for the pen, I just took the lengths of ribbon and glued them across the end of the little dowel I used (also from JoAnn's) and started the braid that way.  Here's a hint...the wider the dowel, the wider you're ribbon should be.  This is a 1/4" ribbon around a 1/4" dowel.  As I'm explaining all this, I feel it might be a little confusing but trust me once you get the hang of this braid it will all make sense!  So, to finish off this project, I just tied some extra gold ribbons into the tails of the braided ribbon to add the last of the 3 school colors.  Oh, and a looped a few around the top of the bell.  I made 20, and it made for a nice effect when the fan section were all waving their ribbons at once! Go Belles!

I'm thinking this would be a fun team bonding activity for the summer, so I'll keep you updated if we can fit that into the schedule!  Take care!

Spirit Stick -- Fan Wand

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