3D Thursday: salty baubles. Really.

Thursdays seem to be coming around quick these days. Today I have another home made Christmas bauble/ornament to share. I have a bought a lot of fancy tree decorations in my time, and one of the favourites is the inspiration for this project.

Again I have used the kids toy balls that my sister covered with papier mache. This time I coated it with Brilliance Cosmic Copper pearlescent ink. The ink was still tacky after two days, which is odd, because it should dry on non-porous surfaces. As the next step was to paint on diluted pva I was worried it might slide off with the glue, but it was ok. So, I used approximately 2 parts glue to one part water and, resting the ornament in a votive candle holder (like an oversized boiled egg) I painted the glue on from the top to about 2/3rds of the way down. I had already decided to go for a rough edge and leave some of the shiny copper showing at the bottom. Partly a design feature, mostly practicality!

Then, the really quite astonishing bit – I threw Epsom salts over it! Honest! And look, you get this rather nice icy effect where they stick to the glue. Proper chuffed, I am. Also, clearly, becoming Yoda again.


I then made a couple of holly leaves from sheet music, distress inks and good old Smoky Quartz glitter, my ‘signature’ glitter shade this year! I bought a book of sheet music for craft purposes years ago. I think the sales assistant was confused by my reply to the ‘can I help you?’ question. ‘Oh yes, please. I need a big book with music that has LOTS of notes in it’. I expect the word ‘philistine’ popped into their head. Or maybe just ‘pleb’.

I tied the holly leaves on with garden twine and job done.

You can see the ‘blank’ ornament in the pictures above. Also, I finally have the tree up! No decorations yet, just lights. And one salty bauble, of course!

If you try the Epsom salts lobbing technique yourself, my top tip would be to stand the object to be a-salted (sorry) in a container which has quite high sides because the crystals ping around all over the place. I used a large cooking saucepan in the end, which did the trick nicely.

Hope everyone is steaming ahead with Christmas projects and chores!



63 thoughts on “3D Thursday: salty baubles. Really.

    1. Ooh, I hadn’t thought of that idea. This is actually the first time I have seen them I think, but they do have lots of snowy potential. Thanks for the tip!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. A new purpose for epsom salts! And if you get blocked or strain a muscle, you have a small but still useful emergency supply! Though your ornament is so pretty it’s worth a trip out for a new bag/box of epsom salts instead of an ornament sacrifice.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. (Gillian, this title threw me into a fit of giggles….reminded me a bit of a Saturday Night Live skit with Alec Baldwin titled “Schweddy Balls”. Look it up on YouTube, if you like silly double entendre. Or I can send a link.)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I found it! Sooo funny. I love the two women, with completely deadpan delivery of their lines! How they all kept going I don’t know! Thanks, it made me laugh a LOT! Now, in the holiday spirit of sharing, have you ever seen the Two Ronnies? Very British, 1970s and 1980s Saturday evening TV. Their sketch called ‘four candles’ is one of the most loved. Might be a bit too British to translate well, or maybe you have already seen it…but if not, here goes.. https://youtu.be/qu9MptWyCB8

      Liked by 3 people

    1. Other bloggers are mentioning all sorts of uses for Epsom salts. Now I just wish I had come across them as a craft material sooner. Thanks for the kind words.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Wanted a clever wisecrack about salty balls..thought perhaps I’d better not..
    Have you seen Himalayan pink salt? Could be interesting..loving the Smoky Quartz glitter 🙂 I thought I would have a go at drying some orange slices in the oven for decorations; I pondered the possibilities of lemons and limes. Then I bought organza ribbon and cinnamon sticks and I fully intend to do something craft-related with them…this “blogwashing” ability is a talent I hope you intend to nurture carefully as it will prove invaluable when we are in government…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I was tempted too with the title. I trod pretty carefully! I love that pink salt – delicious, but you are right, it could be great for crafty purposes too. I have done the dried oranges before and they work a treat. Lasted several years as well so no need to throw them out in January unless you want to. They took a long time, very low oven, maybe even crack the door open a bit if your oven is a bit feisty. I think I read somewhere about using a microwave too, but I might be imagining that? Can’t see any reason why lemons and limes wouldn’t work. Give it a go! Would love to see what you make?! And yes, blogwashing will have to make it into the manifesto somehow. Time for us all to rise up and…type???? Revert to type? Not be stereotyped?? Or typecast? Be atyp-ical?? Need a lie down….

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for the hint…grapefruit! Not quite sure where I’m going with this…a whole citrus celebration lies in front of me! I’m very taken with the idea of “winter warmers”, pine cones-the little ones, a slice of citrus and a stick of cinnamon enveloped in an organza bag and sealed with something festive like a reindeer…!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I am loving Samantha’s pink salt idea. Can we get it in bulk? I want it for shaker cards. And roast potatoes. And yes, I do remember the crystal growing thing. One of those Sunday afternoon experiments. I expect I tried to lick it. Xx

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Love this use of Epsom salts! [You beat me to it, BTW. :)] And, besides silver, copper is my favourite metal. In the 70s here in Canada [and probably the U.S.], you could buy every imaginable piece of copper kitchenware and home decor from a company called Coppercraft through direct marketing (similar to Tupperware or Avon). My dad used to call it Coppercrap. The company went out of business after a few years, but now, with my love for copper, I wish they’d bring it back. You could do this, Puff — as long as you coat everything liberally with Epsom salts — and don’t forget the smoky quartz glitter!

    BTW, as I type this, I notice that your template is actually “snowing”. WANT! (How did you get it to do this?)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Sorry for the delay in replying – I was away. The snow is under ‘settings’ and ‘holiday snow’ on my desktop version of WordPress, but it doesn’t seem to feature in the Android app version, so depending on what you use you might need to hunt around a bit. Copper is really doing it for me this year. Not sure why but who cares? I think I like your father’s sense of humour!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh this is great! I love your use of Epsom Salts! How clever! Thanks for the tip on the “snow”! I wondered how you did that! I’m still somewhat new to WordPress and haven’t played around with it too much yet. Thanks again for sharing this beautiful ornament! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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