Gifts Kids Can Make: Gary the Unicorn Ornament
By Kevin Naulls, CBC Kids Staff
Dec 5, 2017
You know who loves the holidays? Gary the Unicorn. We also love Gary the Unicorn, of course, so we thought it'd be great to figure out an easy way for kids to make their very own Gary for the holidays! So, we turned the huggable unicorn into a fuse bead ornament, and it's actually not difficult at all to make. It's also a super-reliable way to keep your kids' little fingers busy for a while, if you have chores to do or just want a new craft for them to try out. Bonus? It makes a great gift!
What you need:
- Gary the Unicorn ornament template
- Fuse beads (also known as Perler beads)
- Bead board (should be at least 30x30 pegs)
- Iron (adults should take care of this step)
- Parchment paper
- Embroidery thread, yarn or fishing line for finishing
First thing's first, you need a template. And we've got one for you to use as a guide.
Feel free to print this as a reference, or just keep this page up on a tablet. Either is fine. And any colour references we suggest can be changed, because your kids should make it their own! But if they want to make it exactly like this one, they'll need the following beads:
- 15 light blue for right-side shading
- 61 cornflower blue for Gary's fur
- 15 dark blue for left-side highlights (we used a translucent dark blue with sparkles)
- 8 black for eyes
- 46 white for eyes and teeth
- 12 pink for Gary's mouth/tongue
- 6 dark purple for eyebrows
- 31 lavender for Gary's hair
- 56 peach/pinky-peach for Gary's snout
- 2 orange or darker peach for Gary's nostrils
- 2 green, 3 aqua/turquoise, 2 red and 4 yellow for Gary's horn
What's fun about this craft project isn't just the fact that it's a Gary ornament, or that Gary is an adorable unicorn. Although, those are both true statements. What really makes it a great activity is that it combines holiday crafting with building skills like colour recognition and counting. If the little ones aren't quite able to count to 61, this is a great time for you to offer a hand.
If your strategy is going line by line, we recommend numbering the grid. This will make it easier for your kids to track their progress.
We suggest starting with Gary's horn at the centre of your 30x30 bead board (that's the 15th or 16th peg). Then just follow the template, line by line, counting how many beads you'll need for each line.
After a line is completed, your child can draw a line through it so they know they're always on the next line! When all lines are crossed out? It's done!
When every bead is in place, get your iron set to medium heat. Next, place the parchment over the design and firmly press the iron on top. For approximately 30 seconds, make circular motions with the iron on the paper covering the design. You'll want to ensure you heat all parts of your ornament from horn to snout. And because all irons are different, use your judgment for doneness! Thankfully, it's easy to see when your beads have fused through the paper.
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After your beads have fused, let the ornament completely cool. This could take ten to 15 minutes. When it's cool, pull off the parchment and turn it over!
To finish, feed embroidery thread through Gary's horn. Knot once to secure to the bead, and then create a loop by knotting the thread again a few inches up and snipping away any excess. If you're happy with the size of your loop and everything is knotted tightly, it's ready to package for gift giving. Or it's ready to hang on your tree!
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