You will enjoy making these simple seashell Christmas ornaments. Hang them on your coastal style Christmas tree, give them as gifts, or party favors to your favorite beach lover or seashell enthusiast.
14″ piece of Ribbon or string for hanger
Skewer or ice pick
To make the seashell ball ornaments you will need to make a hole from one side of the styrofoam ball all the way through the center and out the other side of the ball. I did this with a wooden skewer, but you can use whatever you have on hand such as an ice pick or long nail, as long as it goes all the way through.
Once you have a hole made, take your 14″ piece of ribbon and fold it in half. Using your skewer push the two loose ends through the hole all the way through to the other side. Then tie a knot with the two loose ends on the bottom of the ball. You may need to make a double or triple knot so that it does not slip back through the hole. Put a dab of glue at the opening of the hole to help keep it snug. Then, do the same thing on the top of the ball with the ribbon.
Now, it is time to glue on the shells one by one. It helps to have a small cup to set the ornament in as you are working on gluing the shells. Only glue a few at a time and let them set for a while, so they don’t slip around. You may need to hold the shell in place for a second or two till it starts to grab. Try to get them as close to each other as possible.
Keep gluing the shells one at a time until you have the whole ball covered.
Now that the whole ball is covered, it is time to add any embellishments like starfish, sand dollars, pearls, etc…
To find the center of the ball, let it hang until it is still, then mark it with a marker.
Now, you can add the extras. I added some half pearls and a starfish.
Last, make a small bow with the ribbon you have left and glue it on top of the ball. I used a piece of jute twine I had laying around to make a bow, then added a pearl in the center.
If you need seashell pieces or seashells, sand dollars or starfish to make these ornaments you can purchase them from my Etsy Shop here:
For the seashell pieces, starfish and sand dollars used in this article visit our shop below:
I used Aileen’s Tacky Glue to glue the shells on the styrofoam balls. Don’t use E6000 or any epoxy glue because it will melt the styrofoam.
I used E6000 glue for starfish, sand dollars, pearls and bows on top of the shells that were already glued on the styrofoam.
In my last post I started the topic of the endless variety of seashells. I covered the different shapes of shells that I have used in my shell art and shell crafts. Today, I will cover the vast array of colors of seashells that are available, as well as, suggested uses for those seashells. There is a seashell available for every spectrum of the rainbow. They range in color from a light red tint to deep violet clam. There are also white, black, brown, tan, and gray colors. I have some suggested ones listed below.
- Red–red coral, abalone, strawberry shells
- Pink–melissas, coquinas, white cup shells, pink tellins, rose cups
- Orange–cup shells, pectins, coquinas
- Yellow–litorinas, tiny white cups, coquinas, pectins
- Green–limpets, green litorinas, sea glass, abalone
- Blue–cockles, periwinkles,abalone, coral, sea glass
- Indigo–coquinas, purple clams
- Violet–coquinas, purple clams, sea glass
- Black–zebras, clams, scallops, pectins, columbella
- White–coquinas, litorinas, arks, scallops, pectins, coral
- Brown–Nassa persica, chulas, columbella, arks, pectins, scallops
- Tan–umboniums, nassa persica, chulas, cowries, pectins, clams coquinas, arks
- Gray–umboniums, litorinas, columbella, scallops, pectins, cup shells
I use the color of the seashells to work for me in the background of my seascapes. I use the lighter coquinas and gradually build up to the darker hues of the same color for the sunset. I do the same thing for the water area of the picture. Using the lighter, almost white with some lavender and build up to the deep violet color, using some white in between rows to represent the waves of the water. Check out the dolphin sunset picture above.
I have also used colored shells for my Shell flowers. Using shells with a light hue as one flower, and then using darker hues of the same color for other flowers, makes a nice flower picture. Check out the picture above, and the one below.
With all the colors available to us it is hard not to be creative. I hope you have been inspired. Leave your comment or post your project below. I would love to see what you have created.
Next blog post will be about all the sizes of seashells.
Nature provides us with an almost endless variety of shapes, colors, and sizes of seashells. And, they are just waiting there on the beach for us to put them to good use. I haven’t used every type of shell, but I have used quite a few different types in my artwork and shell crafts. Let me give you a few examples and suggested uses to get you inspired.
I will start with some of the different shapes of shells that I have used in my work. One shape of shell I use most often is the gastropods, or snail shaped shells. Mostly, I use the snail shaped shells for accents on my shell art, borders on frames, and crosses. Some are used to make jewelry, windchimes and in Sailor’s Valentines. Here is a list of common gastropods used in shell crafts.
- nassa persica
- strawberry shells
- tree snails
Another shape is the bivalve, or clam shaped shells. These are the shapes I use for making windchimes, shell mobiles, mirrors and frames. Some of them make beautiful shell flowers. And, the smaller ones make wonderful backgrounds for shell art. Here is a list of common bivalve shells.
- cup shells
- angel wings
- turkey wings
Then there are the cephalopods which are beautifully shaped. Some examples are listed below.
- Ram’s Horn
One more shell shape all its own is the scaphopods, which is the tusk shell. I use these for some flowers and accents on some of my shell art pictures.
- tusk shell
These are some other forms of sea life or beach finds that are not actually seashells, but I think they are worth mentioning. I have used these for shell art projects, as well as alone as room decor. Some examples are listed below.
- sea urchins
- sea urchin spines
- sand dollars
- sea fans
- sea glass
I hope with all the different types of seashell shapes and suggested uses that you will be inspired to create your own beautiful piece of shell art. Leave me a note or post a pic of your finished shell art or craft. I would really enjoy seeing how you have been inspired.
Next blog post will be on the different colors of seashells. See you then!