Oh the rows of bells at Thai temples! Ringing them is supposed to bring you good luck. Some people will walk along the rows, so hopeful, ringing every bell along the way. I’ve rung a few, but didn’t want to be too greedy.
Here are bells via 123RF stock photography, by Arnon Pipobpronchai:
So here’s how I made some stenciled bells …
I drew an outline from a Thai temple bell photo. Then I cut bells from grunge paper and spray painted the bells antique gold.
Choose a smaller stencil pattern for a project this size. I chose the Tulip Tiles stencil from Royal Design Studio.
Dab the stencil with a small Perfect Medium pad. You might need to use some pressure to get the medium onto the bell. I could see the gold paint color darkening, and that’s how I knew the medium was getting onto the bell.
I like the effect of the embossing powder when the extra is blown off the bell.
But unfortunately, the powder can rub off so it must be heated to set it permanently. Heat the powder with an embossing heat gun. Yes, I did this over an air return register in the floor — this way I knew the heat wouldn’t damage anything. And, well, the register was right behind where I was working!
Watch for the embossing powder to melt and look shiny. This is when it is set.
You can see the grunge paper buckled from the heat. Oops. I flipped it over and heated the back side and it flattened out.
Just to be sure the bell was flat, I pressed it under a heavy set of coasters. And, well, the coasters were right next to where I was working. (Hey the less time I spend moving around, the more time there is to create!)
Here’s how a few bells turned out. One was made with copper Perfect Pearl powder and the other was made with gold embossing powder.
They’re subtle. But they do have enough shine that will get reflected by lights on the Christmas tree.
Next, I added a copper tassel and elephant pendant to the copper embossed bell, and a ring at the top to hang it from the tree.
And here it is, hanging on the tree:
Hmmm. I might remove the elephant and replace it with copper beads. It feels a bit too kitschy. Nothing wrong with kitschy but it’s not the look I was going for on the tree. More like, global elegance.
I hope this helps you find new ways to use stencils!