Decorating Your Arabesque Ornaments

Decorating your Arabesque ornaments can be hard.  They are everywhere across the web.  And they look so beautiful!  I will make it simple for you.  They come in different sizes and shapes but I can help there too.

The first thing you need to do is size your ornaments.  I sized these three sizes and you are welcome to those patterns.  But if you have a different size or shape to your ornaments, you will want to read my tutorial on sizing your Arabesque ornaments and it will tell you two methods for doing that.  If you need help working with your vinyl, read the tutorial here.

What you Will Need
  • Blank Arabesque Ornament
  • Removable or Permanent vinyl in various colors 
  • Clear Transfer Tape
  • Weeding tools
  • Glue Gun
  • Ribbon
  • Download File – Blank patterns and specific designs are both there
 
Cutting the Vinyl For Decorating Your Arabesque Ornaments
Unlike HTV or iron on designs, these designs do not need to be mirrored.  You cut the vinyl, transfer it to transfer tape then put the sticky side down. 
If your ornaments are the same dimensions as mine and you are using my designs,  They are all in the same Design Space file.  The SVG files are divided up by size.  Pick your size and design and hide the rest of the designs in the file by hitting the little eye in the layers menu.  I use the premium vinyl settings for cutting and this usually works with most brands of vinyl.  But if the vinyl is not cutting well, hit the C on your machine BEFORE you unload the mat to cut again.
If you want to make your own design or have a different size ornament that is covered in the next section.
Making Your own Pattern

Small ornaments work best if you slice a pattern out of a bigger pattern.  Make sure to keep a copy of the pattern for more ornaments before you slice.  Medium and large ornaments  have a little more room for creativity.  You can choose to repeat the same image, as in the Santa Hat or holly ornaments or put a single image in the middle and add flourishes around it as in the other ornaments.  Whatever you decide, place the pattern you either made or downloaded in the center and add images or text to it.  Keep with in the borders of the pattern and when you are done hide the pattern and cut the vinyl.

Weeding For Decorating Your Arabesque Ornaments

Once the Arabesque Ornament pattern is all cut, you need to weed it.  I have a Cricut Bright Pad.  They are about $48 at amazon.  You need some type of light source to put under the project.  Before I got the Brightpad, I used a LED lamp , a bowl and a piece of glass.  It wasn’t high tech but it worked.  Any light pad will work.  You can find others (smaller) on Amazon for under $20

 Also you will need a sharp pick.  I have a set from Harbor Freight that cost 2 or 3 dollars.  I have just found a pinpen from 651vinyl.com that works great.  While you are there look at the weeding ring.  It is great!  I used to stick the weeded vinyl to my hand but my skin had a reaction to the sticky.  The weeding ring solved that. 

These designs are small enough that you probably won’t need a light source.

Positioning Your Design
Use clear transfer tape.  I tried using painters tape and that is why the large ornament looks slightly off center.  You need to be able to see where your design is going, especially if you are fitting together multiple colors.  There are two methods for attaching multiple colors.  The first is to apply the bottom layer to your ornament first, then apply the layers up.  The other method is to put all the layers on the same transfer tape starting with the top layer. Then apply it all to your ornament.   If there is a lot of overlap I would use the first method, but both work.  Do whatever you are more comfortable with.
The ornaments do not require sealing.

 

Applying A Hanger
The hanger is applied using a glue gun.  They are ceramic and I have found that liquid glue just is not permanent enough.  Cut a small piece of ribbon about three times the length you want the hanger to be.  Glue the ends to the back of the ornament all the way to top.  This keeps the ornament hanging upright.
 

And  you are done decorating your Arabesque ornaments.

History of Arabesque Design
  • Arabesque uses intricate patterns of leaves and flowers.
  •  These patterns were common in wooden carvings, stone reliefs on buildings, textiles, and in decorated books.
  • In Europe from the Renaissance until the early 19th century, arabesques were used for the decoration of illuminated manuscripts, walls, furniture, metalwork and pottery. 
  • In 1757 the Comte de Caylus published his Recueil de peintures antiques and by 1770 engraved models for arabesques again were being published in Paris. 
Decorating Your Arabesque Ornaments

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