Monday, April 16, 2012

Rumi Ornaments Tutorial

A few years back at Christmas-time someone gave me a calendar with poems from the Sufi poet Rumi. The calendar had 12 pages of short poems accompanied by beautiful imagery of oriental carpets and middle eastern artwork. I kept the calendar after the year ended; such beautiful artwork needed to be saved for some special crafty project.
The other day I was wandering around JoAnn's Fabrics (as I generally do) and came upon a scallop-edged Squeeze Punch made by Fiskars. I counted the number of scallops around the circumference of the punch and realized there were 15 - easily divisible by three. Whoo Hoo! An idea sparked in my mind - I could use the punch to create three-dimensional ornaments out of the calendar images.
At home I dusted off my Rumi calendar, cut out some of its pages and started punching scallop-edged circles like the mad woman I am!

Each ornament requires 20 circles, but I found that a couple of the designs on the calendar pages weren't large enough to accommodate that many circles so I punched a few extras out of the parchment-colored plain portions so I could write out portions of Rumi's poems in my chicken-scratchy (read that as non-calligraphic) handwriting.

Working on another ornament, I realized the punch created a lovely medieval-esque arch design out of the leftovers. Note to self: file that baby away for a future project!

The next thing to do was fold the scallop-edge circles into triangles. Remember the punch has 15 scallops? That means each side of the triangle equals five scallops, so it was super easy to fold them.

The ornaments are essentially two segments of five triangles each flanked by a middle section of 10 triangles.

I created the top of each ornament by glueing five triangles to each other, then left that to dry as I worked on glueing the middle bits together. They're stuck together in a sort of zig-zag configuration. As anyone who knows me knows, when I even get close to glue it somehow spreads out and mysteriously ends up on everything within a five mile radius. I swear I don't know how it happens. That's why I used Elmer's transparent school glue. It (and everything it's stuck on) is washable.

Here's a shot of one ornament almost completely assembled:

And here are a trio of finished ornaments. I added a tassel to each one by attaching them to a string I threaded through the body of the ornaments, then slapped a couple of large fire-polish beads on top in accent colors.

Oh by the way, here's that ornament with the Rumi poem on it.

The entire poem reads:
I see my beauty in you,
A mirror that cannot close its eyes,
A moth caught in flame's allure.