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Project

Faberge Egg Ornaments

One Faberge egg is beautiful, but a collection of the valuable, meticulously crafted pieces is even more striking. Try making your own version to use as ornaments. These eggs are made from cardboard egg boxes and ornate beads and trimmings instead of precious metals and stones.

Introduction

The key to this project is to simulate the vibrant colors of the original Russian Faberge eggs. You can achieve a deep rose color by layering burgundy and copper spray paints and topping them with a clear lacquer. This is much easier than the process used by Peter Carl Faberge and his craftsmen: a technique called translucent enameling, which involved firing as many as five or six layers of enamel -- one layer at a time -- on the surface of each egg.

 

These eggs make wonderful ornaments and are a creative way to wrap small gifts. Enclose the gift inside a decorated egg, and place it in a box or hang it from your Christmas tree with a name tag attached.

Materials

  • Cardboard egg boxes
  • Spray primer
  • Spray paint
  • Spray lacquer
  • Leafing supplies (instructions follow)
  • Magna-Tac glue
  • Various trims and cords
  • Tweezers
  • Various rhinestones, gems, and beads
  • Large needle
  • Thin cord for hanging
  • Small scissors
  • Brush
  • Gilder's tip
  • Gold and silver leaf
  • Petroleum jelly, optional
  • Cotton balls
  • Lacquer

Steps

  1. Step 1

    Prime, paint, and lacquer eggs to reflect the colors of Russian Faberge eggs. Add gold and silver leaf, if desired (instructions follow).

  2. Step 2

    Apply Magna-Tac in the desired pattern, and carefully press down trim, making sure the ends meet. Using a pair of tweezers, apply rhinestones, gems, and beads.

  3. Step 3

    Using a long needle, thread a thin hanging cord through the top half of the egg before closing it. Tie the thread into a loop, so the egg can hang from a tree branch.

  4. Step 4

    After the egg is primed, apply leafing size with a brush. Wait approximately 15 minutes for the size to get tacky.

  5. Step 5

    Brush the gilder's tip against your arm to create static, so you can pick up the leaf. Another technique is to use a light coating of petroleum jelly on your arm to transfer onto the tip to pick up the leaf.

  6. Step 6

    Apply the leaf to the egg, and smooth on using a soft brush. Continue until the egg is covered. Small pieces of leaf can be used to fill in spaces.

  7. Step 7

    Buff the leaf using cotton balls to give the egg a glowing finish. Apply lacquer. Let dry approximately 2 hours.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, April 2001

Reviews (2)

  • 6 Dec, 2011

    I think they mean these: http://www.vintage-ornaments.com/unfinished-papier-mache-egg-box-pm076

  • 5 Dec, 2010

    My egg cartons are not the shape of eggs that look like these. How does one get that real egg look?