How to build a velvet acorn with oak leaf in 14 easy steps

The one shown at the bottom right is the first of 150 I will make in the next two weeks. I am crazy. About crafts, that is!

Tools and Materials

velvet ribbon
matching thread
sewing machine (optional)
seed beads
needlenose pliers
cotton balls or polyfill
mechanical pencil
19 gauge wire stems
brown floral tape
tacky glue
natural acorn caps

1. Cut ribbons in 2 1/4″ pieces.

2. Fold each piece in half, right sides together. After all ribbon is cut and folded, use a sewing machine to sew ribbon sides together, 1/3″ from edge. (These can also be sewn by hand.)

3. Cut the ribbons apart, then turn them right side out. Using matching thread, sew a running stitch around one end of the ribbon opening, then draw the thread tight, forming the bottom of the acorn. Reinforce the bottom of the acorn with a small stitch, then add a seed bead when you sew a second stitch. Draw the needle up through the center of the acorn.

4. Thread a ball of cotton or polyfill onto the needle, drawing the cotton down into the acorn.

5. Use scissor tips or pliers to push the cotton down until it is flush with the top of the acorn. Pull the thread taught and tie a knot. Set aside. Repeat for each acorn.

6. Wrap 9″ length of 19 gauge wire with brown floral tape to create stem. Set aside. Repeat for each stem.

7. Bend the tip of the stem into a small loop.

8. Create an oak leaf template by tracing around a real leaf onto plastic or cardboard, or cut the leaf freehand. Trace the leaf shape onto the wrong side of the sheet of paper. Using a mechanical pencil without exposing the lead works well on heavier paper. Repeat for each leaf.

9. Cut out leaf.

10. On each leaf, apply thin line of tacky glue to the part of the stem that will attach to the back of the leaf. Press the leaf and wire “stem” in a book until dry (a few hours or overnight).

11. Draw veins on the leaf, using a mechanical pencil without lead, or the tip of a bone folder. Using a scissors as if curling ribbon, curl parts of the leaf to give it a realistic shape. Set aside.

12. Using the 1/8″ drill bit, or the size needed to create a hole large enough to pass the stem through, drill a hole through the center of the acorn caps.

13. Pass the stem end (with leaf attached at the other end) through the top of the acorn cap. Bend the wire inside the cap into a C-shape to secure wire. If you wish, bend the stem into desired shape. Set aside.

14. Fit acorns into caps before gluing, making sure they are neither too snug or too loose. Remove acorns from cap one at a time, then line the acorn cap with a thin layer of tacky glue, then replace acorn cap. Let dry overnight.

Rinse and repeat.