On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, three French Pens.
You know that drawer full of Holiday Inn, Acme Electric and Paul’s Plumbing pens you’ve been hoarding?
Hoard no more.
For these fancy French pens, all you need are some pens, yarn, string or ribbon, glue and double sided tape. You may wish to add beads or charms as well.
Thread Wrapped Pen
Place a strip double-sided tape around the pen at the point you wish to end the wrap. In this case, my pen had an interesting design near the tip (and I could still put the cap on the pen), so I began wrapping the pen a little further back.
To achieve an interesting pattern, use two or three complementary colors. Keeping the colors in order, begin by securing the strings to the pen with the loose strings facing the end of the pen. At the top of the pen (where the double sided tape ends) begin wrapping the strings around the pen, making sure to secure the strings on the tape. Once you have come to the end of the double sided tape, apply a thin layer of glue to the pen (Tacky glue or school glue is fine). Continue wrapping the string until you get to the end of the pen.
Once you get to the top of the pen, you can put a glop of glue and push a circlet of yarn or string (or whatever you are using) into the glue. You may wish to top the coil of string with a bead. Be sure to let it completely dry.
If you are going to string beads or letters, be sure to leave a few extra inches of string. Add the beads, letters or charm and make sure you tie a double knot at the end.
Yarn Wrapped Pen
Place a strip double-sided tape around the base of the pen at the point you wish to end the wrap.
Begin by securing the yarn to the pen with the loose end of the yarn facing the end of the pen. At the top of the pen (where the double sided tape ends) begin wrapping the yarn around the pen. Once you have some to the end of the double sided tape, apply a thin layer of glue to the pen (Tacky glue or school glue is fine). Continue wrapping the yarn until you get to about an inch from the end of the pen.
String the beads on to the yarn and then glue the beaded yarn to the pen. The beads will take longer to fully dry, so you will wish to let this set awhile before continuing.
Once the beads are dry, put a dab of glue at the top of the pen and apply some loose beads to cap the pen. Let dry thoroughly.
Basket Weave Pen
The basket weave pen is the most complicated (meaning…if you want to avoid tears, steer younger kids to the yarn and string wrapped pens).
For the basket weave, cut 7 pieces of ribbon about 9 inches long. Cut 3 ribbons of one color and 4 of another color.
After wrapping double sided tape at the head of the pen, place the ribbons in an alternating pattern around the pen (in the example, white/black/white/black, etc).
Place another piece of double sided tape over the alternating ribbons to hold them securely in place.
Cut a contrasting piece of ribbon (in the example, dark pink) to 24″. Wrap this ribbon one time around the very top of the pen to secure the alternating ribbon. Now, you will begin to weave over and under the alternating ribbons.
I promise you, the first part of this is the hardest. Once you get to the end of the double sided tape, the rest of the weave will be much simpler.
At the top, wrap another small piece of ribbon to hold the weave in place.
If you wish to place a charm on the pen, thread it on one of the ribbons.
Gather the ribbons at the top of the pen and wrap them with a small piece of ribbon.
Just in case you aren’t interested in making French Pens, take a look at the pens made over Thanksgiving.
Sorry, Holiday Inn, you’ll have to replace your pens more often!