Nothing says love more than a handmade keepsake: a paper baby mobile that adds some fun and fluff to your baby’s room. Using shiny colors make it perfect for the babies to reach for the stars!
This is designed to work for a boy or a girl, so change up the color according to your preference. If you want to, substitute more blue or more pink, especially with the fuzzy boas. I went with black and white since it takes two 6′ boas, and it added a little style. I got mine at Joann’s and the white one was by the yard.
The plan is simple: start with a 12″ diameter embroidery hoop and do the decorations on the inside hoop. When you are done, put on the outside hoop, tighten it, and wind the boas around it for fluff. A thought while you are making it is: don’t let anything fall off- tie those knots tight, and don’t hang anything that is heavy on the hoop. Under my boas, I will wrap some duct tape around both hoops before I gift it. Not all around, so it can be altered, but maybe 4 pieces. Keep referring to the photos.
Make your birds first: Using Extract, Moon, 140lb cover, 8.5″ x 11″, and print several sheets of designs; it will take at least 3. If you don’t have your own images, search for free images you can use and check their disclaimer. Flower images are nice and remember, you are looking for spots of bright color. Each bird can be cut from 1/2 of each printer sheet; I used my inkjet printer. Cut all six printed images first, and then cut 6 more from solid colored papers: Mohawk, Antique Vellum, Chili, 110 lb cover, Arturo, Celadon, 96 lb cover, Neenah Cotton, Blush, 90 lb cover, Basis, Medium Blue, 80 lb cover, Curious Skin, Violet, 100 lb cover, Shine, Moss, 107 lb cover.
Using ScorTape and glue, put the solid colored birds onto the printed birds. I found the side flaps on the wings, that fold, to be poorly attached to the wings – they tended to come off – so I put 1/8″ ScorTape over the part where the wings fold, on the back, where it is covered by the colored piece of paper. I reinforced both the printed and the solid color wings before glue and taping them together. Before you attach the wings, put a hole in the bird body proper, so you can put a ribbon through it. I used a 2 hole punch and pushed it in completely, then eased it out a bit; it will be cover by paper if you need 2 tries. Look at the photos and see where the ribbon attaches to the bird and see the reinforcement strip.
Pick some contrasting paper, use your 2 hole punch, punch a hole, then scoot it over about 1″ and do that again. Do one, and if looks right do more. Cut the paper to a strip that is 1″ wide. Cut the strip so the holes are in the middle of a 2″ by 1″ section. Score and fold it in the middle and do any adjustments to the hole by adding a score line on either side of the original so it is more flexible; glue and tape them on the birds in your choice of colors. I mixed and matched among the colors for variety and interest. Glue the little beaks on: use the beaks from the paper on the opposite side of the bird, for contrast. To attach the wings, add 1/8″ ScorTape to just the little 1/8″ wing flap that folds. Add some glue and it should fit just on top of, at the bottom of, the hole reinforcement strip you just glued on. To hold the wing more securely, use some Washi tape that looks good with it and glue it on; make the tape a little too long and trim it back. My Washi tape is different sizes, most of it 1/2″ and sometimes I added an extra 1/8″ of colored tape to break up the pattern. Glue all tapes with extra glue; use a toothpick.
The star is cut from Sizzix, Frameless Die Set, 5 pack, Stars, the largest and the third largest, 4 3/8″ and the 2 1/2″ dies. Cut the first star from Extract, Moon, 140 lb cover and the second from Curious Metallic, Super Gold, 111 lb cover. Tape and glue them together, and since a hole will weaken the structure, instead tie ribbon through the center hole to attach it to the hoop. Before using the ribbon, cut the ends at an angle and use a lighter and quick touch to seal the ends. Using the 1/8″ wide and 18″ long, white ribbon, tie the birds to the hoop and let extra ribbon drape over the loop and back down. I also added extra 12″ pieces of just ribbon for fluff. Cut 6 of the 5/8″ wide ribbon, 36″ long, and put them through the brass ring. Mine was a half ring, but a round one is pretty, too. Apply some 1/8″ tape to the inside of the ribbon, to hold it in the ring. I put all the ribbon through the ring and then did the tape under the ring, so the ribbon was flatter on the turn through the ring.
When you are done, all the ribbons will be taped to each other, on the inside. Using some 1/8″ ribbon tie it around the base of the ring just to make it pretty. Tie the ends of the ribbon to the hoop, adjusting it as you go, so the ring stays in the center. I held the ring with one hand and tied it with the other. Then I hung it from a nail and kept adjusting the ties around the hoop. When it looks good to you put the outside of the hoop over the whole thing and tighten it, adjusting it to suit. Use some tape, plain or pretty, in about 4 places to help hold the hoops together. I wound up bunching up some of the ribbons together in some groups of 2’s so that it had more interest. Tie 1.5″ yellow ribbon around the top and tie it to suit. I did a one sided bow. Wind the two boas around the hoop, putting them through the ribbons. Wind them back into themselves and tape them, discretely.
Papers used in this craft:
- Extract, Moon, 140 lb cover
- Mohawk Loop Antique Vellum, Chili, 110 lb cover
- Arturo, Celadon, 96 lb cover
- Curious Metallic, Super Gold, 111 lb cover
- Neenah Cotton, Blush, 110 lb cover
- Basis, Medium Blue, 80 lb cover
- Curious Skin, Violet, 100 lb cover
- Curious Skin, Pink, 100 lb cover
- Shine, Moss, 107 lb cover
Other materials used in this craft:
- Sizzix, 657120, Bird
- Sizzix, Frameless Die Set, 5 pack, Stars
- 1.5″ Brass Ring, full or half circle
- 5/8″ White Ribbon, 21 foot roll
- 3/8″ White Ribbon, 21 foot roll
- 1.5″ yellow ribbon
- (2) 6 foot boas, black and white
- ScoreTape, 1″, 1/2″ & 1/8″
- Cosmic Shimmer Acrylic Glue
- Hole Punch ( can use a 2 hole office punch)
- Washi Tape, 1/2″ & 1/8″