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Pipe-Cleaner Angel Ornament

Behold: our angelic disco dancers. Shape their arms, legs, and hairdos from chenille pipe cleaners, then twist metallic ones into wings, halos, and teeny-tiny high heels. Then dress them in "lamé" cupcake liners.

pipe-cleaner angel ornaments

Photography: Johnny Miller

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2020

Introduction

Learn how to make angel Christmas ornaments shaped from chenille pipe cleaners and dressed in cupcake-liner dresses—an easy and kid-friendly craft for the holiday season. For more ideas, scroll through our entire collection of handmade Christmas ornaments.

materials

  • Solid-color and metallic chenille pipe cleaners (Quccr Pipe Cleaners Craft Chenille Stems, Eyes, Pom-Poms Set, $17 for 1,080 pieces, amazon.com; Kinglake Colored Craft Pipe Cleaners Bump Chenille Stems, $8.50 for 120, amazon.com)

  • Hot-glue gun and glue sticks

  • Doll heads (Smile Mercantile Spun Cotton Heads with Faces, 20 mm, in Brown, Pink, and White, $5.50 for 8, smilemercantile.etsy.com)

  • Metallic baking cups (Gifbera Rose-Gold Foil Baking Cups, $7 for 100, amazon.com)

steps

  1. Bend a solid-color pipe cleaner in half, making a 3/4-inch flat section at center for the neck; hot-glue a doll head to it. Shape remaining lengths into shoulders and arms. At end of each arm, twist the cleaner into a 1/8-inch loop for a hand, leaving a short tail; bend tail out for the thumb.

  2. Bend a second same-colored pipe cleaner in half for the legs. Bend a 1/4-inch foot at each end. For high heels, cut 1 inch of metallic pipe cleaner, and wrap around the ankle, under the foot, and around the toe. Repeat on other foot.

  3. Bend a third same-colored pipe cleaner in half. Hang curved end over the neck and wrap the loose ends around the legs to make a 1 1/2-inch body.

  4. To make the dress, cut a slit in the side of a baking cup, through pleating to crease at bottom. Starting at slit, cut along the crease until you've gone about halfway around; trim and discard cut-off pleating. You should be left with the full baking cup bottom and about half the liner's pleating. To make neckline, hold baking cup with pleating at top, and cut a long, skinny upside-down U into baking-cup bottom, so that curve is near pleating. Then, make straps: Cut a straight line along one side of U down to pleating; cut along crease to end, and discard cut-out section. Repeat on other side. Wrap skirt around angel's waist; hot-glue in back to secure. Put straps over angel's shoulders, criss-cross them in back, and hot-glue to inside of skirt.

  5. Bend one metallic pipe cleaner into the shape of two wings and secure by twisting in the middle. Cut a 6-inch-length of pipe cleaner for halo. Twist a small circle at one end, then secure extra length around center of wings, so halo hovers just above angel's head. Dot hot glue on wings' center and attach to angel's back.

  6. Cut a length of fuzzy bump chenille pipe cleaner for hair and hot-glue to middle of angel's forehead. Hot-glue additional pieces until head is covered.

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