craftiness · it's all about me · organising /good ideas at the time

Hit me with your ribbon stick (climbing back into the craft saddle)

Being fifty-something, I’m nothing if not persistent.

The horror of my near-death-by-scrapbooking experience is slowly fading. So much so that last weekend I climbed back into the crafting saddle … boots and all.

Inspired by the lithe young gymnasts at the London Olympics, I resolved to attempt a gymnast’s ribbon wand as a gift for my Great Niece, Miss E, for her third birthday.

Photo courtesy Singapore 2010 Youth Olympics Games on

In fact, I decided to triple up the fun and make three ribbon sticks so Miss E’s siblings, 4-year old Miss A and 1-year old Master S, didn’t miss out on the fun.

I checked out some online DIYs, and it all seemed easy enough, so I took a deep breath … and gathered my materials.

Wooden dowels, ribbon (3 metres for each), screw-in eyelets and “spinners” – I upcycled mine from some old swipe card clips. You can also source spinners at fishing tackle suppliers.

I sprayed the dowels (each about 30cm long) with silver paint. No such thing as too much bling.

For each dowel, I screwed in an eyelet, split the ring on the spinner to attach it to the eyelet before threading the ribbon through the other split ring and stitching it firm.

I sealed the long end of the ribbon by holding it a few centimetres above a flame, for just a few seconds.

Tadah! Three ribbon wands, not quite of Olympic proportions, but certainly fun enough to entertain three little cuties for a few hours. I added a book and sweet little notelets, a hand-made card and I was satisfied with another crafty gift, wrapped and in the bag.

Well, not quite satisfied.

I was feeling pretty comfy in the saddle so I risked another project (without dismounting). Remember all those vintage Fowler’s Vacola jars my sister K presented my with? I upcycled six of them into Candles in the Wind … one for each of the ladies at the birthday celebrations, each complete with personalised leather initials/motifs.

That’s six Fowler’s jars down. Ninety-four to go.

The ribbon wands were a hit with the little-uns at the recent family birthday gathering.

Even Master S got in on the act to give us a ribbon wanding performance.

Not all went perfectly to plan. Seems the girls had caught some of the fencing competition during the Olympics broadcast … because there was a little light-hearted hit-me-with-your-ribbon-stick action. No one was hurt. Yes, there were tears.

And one of the eyelets kept finding its way loose under the pressure of all that twirling. Miss E got very adept at just twisting it back in and getting on with the show.

Some of mum’s “good” glue would fix it for good.

A little crafter in the making.

I think she got it from her mum (my niece E) who created a fabulous birthday cake for event. How clever is she?

Here we are (me on the far left) blowing out the candles with my fellow birthday buddies at our annual August/September birthday celebration.

That’s fifty-three down … and many, many more to go.

(And if you haven’t got “Hit me with your ribbon stick” playing in your head all day long, I have failed. Hit me. Hit me.)

6 thoughts on “Hit me with your ribbon stick (climbing back into the craft saddle)

  1. The grandies adored the ribbon sticks and are getting very adept with the twirling and other actions necessary as they perfect their concert routine. My candle is occupying pride of place on the front hall table for all to see. I’m lovin’ you “getting your crafty on”. Can’t wait to see what emerges next… pressure though.

    1. Thanks, Kez. they’re such great little munchkins, your grandies. I enjoyed making the ribbon sticks and the candles. Much more fun than shopping. Not sure what I’ll attempt next … watch this space. S. x

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