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Homemade Christmas Ornaments: The Christmas Spider

Submitted by Valerie Shoemake

The Christmas Spider 1

"The Christmas Spider"

This ornament has been passed down through the generations from my husband's relatives that came over from Germany and is very simple to make. These spiders can be made small or a little larger, as you can see in the pictures, just depends on your taste.

Items Needed:

6mm-10mm glass Christmas ornament ball for the head (preferably silver or gold to stick with the story that goes with these ornaments, but we have done them in other colors as well. These smaller ornaments can be found  at Hobby Lobby as well as Wal-Mart in the section with the little Christmas villages.)

10mm-12mm glass Christmas ornament ball for the body (You need to make sure and choose sizes that coincide if you choose 6mm for the head then you need to use 10mm for the body and the same with 10mm and 12mm for the larger spiders so that they are proportional.)

1 roll of 20 gauge craft wire for the legs (can be found at any craft store and even Wal-Mart.)

Bangle beads (see legs in pics if unsure of what they are) that are the same color as the spider.

Hot glue and glue gun

The Christmas Spider 2

How to Make:

1. Take your smallest ornament you will be using for the head and remove the thing on top that the ornament hanger attaches to so all that's left is the glass ball. Do the same with the bigger glass ball you are going to use for the body.

2. Place a small amount of hot glue on the horn of the smaller ornament and gently slide it inside the horn of the larger ornament. {be careful seeing these are glass ornaments they are fragile and will brake if too much force is applied.}

3. Cut your wire into 3 or 4 pieces, depending on how many legs you want, each about 5-6 inches long. Apply just enough hot glue to attach the middles of the pieces of wires in-between the head and the body. Let dry a minute and make sure legs are held firmly in place.

The Christmas Spider 3

4. On both sides of the body separate your spider legs so they are not all one on top of the other. Start applying your beads one leg at a time, trying to ensure they all end up relatively the same length all the way around. If there is excess wire on the ends when you are done applying the beads, simply cut it off with wire cutters or scissors and bend the end under as not to leave a sharp edge and to ensure the beads do not fall off.

NOTE: If you are giving this as a gift or just to hang it on your tree, apply a small amount of hot glue and a piece of ribbon or string in between the head and the body to allow it to be hung on a tree. Also not that especially when giving as a gift make sure to include the story that accompanies the ornament. It is attached below.

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"The Legend of the Christmas Spider"

Once upon a time, in Germany, long ago, a gentle mother was busily cleaning the house for the most wonderful day of the year, Christmas Eve, the day on which the Christ Child was to come and bring gifts.

Not a speck of dust was left. Even the spiders had been banished from their cozy corner in the ceiling. To avoid the housewife's busy cleaning, they finally fled to the farthest corner of the forgotten attic.

Christmas Eve came at last! The tree was decorated and the children were delighted. But the poor spiders were frantic, for they could not see the tree nor be present for the Christ Child's visit.

But the oldest and wisest spider suggested that perhaps they could peep through the crack in the door and see Him. Silently they crept out of their attic and across the floor to wait in the crack on the threshold.

Suddenly the door opened a wee bit, and quickly the spiders sneaked into the room. The tree towered so high that they could see only one ornament at a time.

They scurried up the trunk and out along each branch, filled with a happy wonder at the glittering beauty. Every place they went, they left a trail of dusty gray web. When at last they had inspected every bit of the tree, it was shrouded in a dusty gray spider web.

When the Christ Child saw this, he smiled as he thought of the happy spiders seeing his tree. But as he thought of how broken hearted the mother would be over the dusty tree, he reached out his hand and touched the webs and blessed them. They all turned to shimmering, sparkling silver and gold. The tree glistened in greater beauty than ever before!

And so it became a custom in the Christmas season to have a spider among the other decorations on the tree.

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