Really bad, huh? Even for me...moo-ey....but hey, it's Christmas...
The luncheon went well at work, although I have to tell ya, there was more cake left over than I'd expected. Usually, when I take treats in they are wolfed down within the hour (The Little One says you can feel the earth rumble as they all make their way to where the treats are)...we did have an awful lot of stuff there though, so I am going to attribute it to that...'cause the cake was darned good!
And, now...I am finishing up the ornaments I want to give my co-workers. This is the first one I got finished. My "real" job deals with agriculture, and one of the offices in the building deals specifically with milk. This ornament is for Cathy, who works in that office. It seemed only appropriate that I something cute using cows for her.
One of my favorite ornaments on my tree is a crescent moon with a cow dangling over it that I made several years ago (you can see the moon behind these cows)...the cow jumping over the moon. I liked how the cow turned out when I made it, and thought I'd use the same sort of thing for this. The moon one is made of salt dough, this one is made of polymer clay.
Dragging out my most sophisticated crafting tools, I began by drawing a circle (around a lid of a bottle of "snow" that I thought would be about the right size, see how sophisticated??) on a piece of cardboard covered with aluminum foil. I kneaded some of the clay and pressed it into a flattened circle that is just a shade over 1/4 inch thick. The white pieces are explained in a bit.
I wanted to have two cows enclosed in a fence with a "Merry Christmas" banner hovering over it. To make the cow, I need 4 small pieces of clay for the legs, one larger piece for the body, one piece that is a bit smaller for the head, and a few small scraps for the tail, ears, and "tuft" of fir on the head. (The white pieces I told you I would explain.)
I roll the leg pieces into upside down cone shapes, and put four of them close together. The body is rolled into an oval shape and squished onto the legs, the head done the same way, with one end of the oval smaller than the other, and attached on one side of the body. I then attach the tuft, the ears and a tiny tail to each cow, and tuck them onto the grass. Usually, I use a small piece of floral wire that extends from the base, between the legs and into the body to help secure it.
I used brown clay to roll a cylinder that I cut into four short pieces to make the fence posts. Each of them are attached with a small piece of wire inserted into them and the base clay to support the post. You can see the arched banner above the cows in the pic. And, here a note about doing as I say...not as I do...I made the round wire inserts to use as a place to tie a ribbon through at the top of the banner for the hanger...however, I forgot that the base had to hang from that banner as well. What I should have done was insert a straight wire, and then made the loops after the clay was cured. As it was, I had to go to plan be...which you'll see in a minute.
I measured wire to cover with the clay to use as the slats for the fence. It is important here to measure each side individually, it isn't likely that you will cut all four sides the same lengths...or, at least I have never found that I am that symmetrical....if you are, I definitely bow to you...
I thinly roll a covering of the clay on the wires and insert to make the fence slats on all four sides. Then it is into the oven to bake for the time the clay suggested...along with a couple of other ornaments that I'll be sharing in the next few days...
When it was finished baking, I added some painted details...black spots, a peach muzzle and some eyes. I baked the ornament another 5 minutes to set the paint. At this point I covered it all with a glaze to protect it...and figured out plan be...I tied the ribbon to two of the corners and ran the ribbon up the back of the finished banner banner, then tied it into bows through the hanging loops I had created earlier. It worked, so no one has to ever know...right?
I added the snow from the bottle I had used earlier to draw the base, and then tossed some ultra fine glitter over it while it was wet...wrote "Merry Christmas" on the banner, glazed it, and added snow and glitter to it too. One cannot have enough glitter this time of the year (and just wait until Valentine's Day!!)!!
I did end up making a brass wire hanger that went from loop to loop (since they had been crowded with the ribbon bows from plan b), and I think, in the end, it is adorable....let's hope Cathy likes it too!
Next up...Christmas Trees (with a free pattern) that were inspired by the trees on the cake I made for the luncheon....