In nature, dragonflies seem to be in constant motion with light reflecting off their wings and their splendid colors on full display. I thought it would be fun to capture this feeling using Shimmer Sheetz and the new ModaScrap Dragonfly die set – dragonflies dancing along a length of fine metallic braid, each one perched on the flat side of a half-inch marble accent (half marbles, sold by the bag and found in the floral décor aisle).
I chose Turquoise Gemstone Shimmer Sheetz, but there are many other colors that look like dragonflies, especially Gemstone and Iridescent. My favorites are on the supply list.
The weight of the marble accents keeps the strand straight when it’s hanging. They reflect the light and refract the colors while the dragonflies dance and spin when there is movement in the air.
Integral to the success of the project is Tombow Xtreme Tabs (they used to be called Power Tabs). They are ideal for glass and other non-porous surfaces like Shimmer Sheetz, and they hold up to 6.5 ounces, nearly half a pound – more than four times the weight of my project!
Good news: Shimmer Sheetz, Xtreme Tabs and Kreinik Metallic Braid are all waterproof so you can display Dancing Dragonflies outdoors or hang them on an indoor plant that will be watered.
Safety first: This project is decorative only, NOT A TOY OR A MOBILE FOR A BABY’S ROOM! Be sure to keep it away from infants, small children and pets!
Here are the easy steps:
- Die cut a series of dragonflies from Turquoise Gemstone Shimmer Sheetz or one or more other colors of choice. (See supply list for more options.) The number of dragonflies needed is determined by how long the strand will be and how much space is left between them. Shown: 19” strand; 3 large, 3 small, and one side view dragonfly; spaced at 3” intervals.
(Reminder: A metal adaptor plate or the Big Shot machine with Precision Base Plate is REQUIRED for die cutting Shimmer Sheetz with thin metal dies. Review Els van de Burgt’s YouTube tutorial if you are new to this technique.)
- Lightly sand each dragonfly’s wings, but not the body. This creates an ombre effect – sanding brings out the silvery core color of the Gemstone Shimmer Sheetz, but the body stays dark turquoise. (If Iridescent Shimmer Sheetz is used, the sanding will lighten the color to a whitish shade.)
- Cut a length of fine metallic braid that is approximately 6” longer than the finished strand. Make a loop at one end and secure it between the flat sides of two marble accents using one quarter of a Tombow Xtreme Tab. (Cut the Tabs with non-stick scissors.) Press firmly!
- Continue down the length of the braid, attaching one dragonfly at a time as follows: Sandwich the braid and a small snippet of an Xtreme Tab between each dragonfly and the flat side of a glass accent; repeat until 3” from the end of the braid. Sandwich the tail end of the braid and one quarter of an Xtreme Tab between the flat sides of two glass accents to complete the project. Press firmly!
- Hang your creation at a party, in a window, from a branch, or wherever you want some colorful sparkle! It’s sure to bring smiles…
CAUTION: The fine braid and intricate die cut shapes can get badly tangled if not handled carefully! When it’s not on display, hang the strand in a closet on a belt or jewelry rack rather than trying to store it flat.
Tombow Xtreme Tabs
Kreinik #8 Fine Metallic Braid color #329 Bahama Blue
Half-inch marble accents (flat-sided)