At Christmas I always try to come up with gifts I can make. I think it just makes it that bit more special with the time you spend making the gift and usually it works out much cheaper. For my Cousins and Aunties I saw a great post on Open Seeds Blog – zentangle bangles!
I got my wooden bangles from Fire Mountain Gems based in America, even though I am from the UK these worked out cheaper than anything I could get here, plus delivery was very quick.
I used a black Sakura Indenti-Pen to draw the designs on with the thin end. It took me ages to decide what tangles to use. You can not be a perfectionist when it comes to drawing on a wooden bangle and you do get a slight bleed sometimes but I think this really adds to the design. I even used pencil to shade as I was going to seal them.
To finish off the bangles I used Beeswax and Coconut oil (1:4 ratio) with a hint of Cinnamon and Orange Fragrance Oil Concentrate (I had all this to hand as they are ingredients used in bathbomb making). I found it was best to put this on as it was just starting to set and rubbed it in with my fingers (a brush really did not work) about 3 times all the way around and inside. Let it dry for a few hours or longer before you buff it gently, I just used an old tea towel. Now do not worry if you get a black tea towel that’s why I said old, at first it may look like you are blurring your design and smudging it all but it all works out fine. I was amazed that even the pencil shading stayed in place with just a slight decrease in shade.
I let the bangles dry fully for a good few days until they were totally touch dry. When I started to package them I noticed that the design had really sunk into the wood and looked like it was part of it, rather than just on top.
Tips through error – Now a big mistake I made with some of my bangles was filling it with lots of black. I found it bled too much and smudged when sealing them with beeswax and coconut oil. You maybe better with a varnish for block filled designs or maybe use the beeswax and coconut oil when it is fully hardened or decrease the amount of coconut oil. It’s a case of trial and error. Those that go wrong you can just decoupage over.
I hope they really liked them and if not they can put them in their knickers draw to smell of Cinnamon and Orange.