While Waiting for the Blossoms to Arrive...

I have a little tiny glass jar that I keep above my kitchen sink.  It is always ready for the little blooms that little Pickles bring to me:  a pungent dandelion, a delicate violet, a sturdy lily of the valley.  

But spring blossoms are scarce as of late, and we needed a little color in our jar.

 Little flowers cut from plastic containers, colored with permanent markers, baked to curl, and arranged atop wire with beads...Spring bloomed before our eyes and now sits in its rightful home in the place of honor above the kitchen sink.

Here's what you need:

1.  Cut shapes from plastic salad containers (often the clam shell style, ie, tomato containers, berry containers, bulk food containers, salad containers).  Flowers, leaves, birds, sunshine...you can go all out here!  Be sure to punch a hole in the center so you can attach it to the wire later.

2.  Color the plastic shapes with colored permanent markers.  Yes, once again, go all out!

3.  Heat oven to about 300 degrees Fahrenheit.  Working with just a few plastic pieces at a time, lay them on a piece of wrinkled aluminum foil on a baking sheet.  (The wrinkles make it easier to pick up the plastic pieces without getting burnt on the hot tray later.)

4.  (Use care and caution here.  Working with an oven isn't a game, but it is a great tool for creativity when used by an adult and with plenty of supervision.)  Place tray with plastic pieces in the oven.  In a matter of a few SECONDS they will begin to soften and warp.  Watch carefully and remove from oven immediately.  Different thicknesses of plastic will soften at different rates.  For some pieces, we simply warmed them 'til we could bend them in our hands...which had to be done in approximately 2.5 seconds from the time they were removed from the oven.  If you like the more free-spirited approach, let the heat of the oven curl them as it will!

5.   Cut lengths of wire for the stems.  Using beads and bending the wire, secure the flower to the wire.  For this one, I coiled the end, added a bead, added the flower, added a bead, and did a ziggy zaggy thing.  Every flower was different.  Some had little jingle bells that make such a happy sound.  MMhhhmmmm, go all out.  

6.  I poured some tiny colored glass beads in the bottom of our jar, and then to prevent the inevitable spilling that would occur, I sealed our flower arrangement in place with hot glue in the opening of the bottle.

 Waiting for the real blossoms never looked so pretty.

Always be creative,
Marie Winfield

originally published April 13, 2015


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