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Tuesday, February 16, 2016

My hands can do this --- Oriental Showcase Decor


 I get 3 good things when I eat in a Chinese buffet restaurant.  First, I can get all the foods and desserts I like to eat which I really, really enjoy eating them. Second, at the end of the meal, I receive a fortune cookie that gives me an inspiration for the day coupled with the lucky numbers that can make me win the lottery someday. Third, I can take home a pair of bamboo chop sticks I can use to make a nice, good project like this one.  You can display it in the best place where you like it to be depending on its usage.

Made of bamboo sticks to display little bath soaps, shampoos, or other small things, this project is really cute, unique, and stylish.  I’m also happy that I have these little figurines to display.


Oriental Showcase Decor (1)


Oriental Showcase Decor (2)


ORIENTAL SHOWCASE DÉCOR

Materials:
(3)  small sample soaps (square)
(1)  styrofoam (8 ½ in (L) X 3 in (W) X 1 ¾ (Thick) (old or new)
(2)  packs round dowels (hard wood) (8 counts / pack) (new)
(8)    sets bamboo chop sticks (twins) (used or new)
(2)  tissue paper (used or new)
(1)  roll ribbon ¼ inch wide (light color) (used or new)
(1)  roll ribbon 1 ½ inch wide (light color) (used or new)
(1)  roll ribbon 3/8 inch wide (light dark color) (used or new)
(1)  roll ribbon ½ inch wide (dark color, braid) (used or new)
(1)  floral foam (rectangular shape) (used or new)
(6)  dried mini roses with bulbs and many leaves
(3)  pins with plastic heads
       many sets of bamboo chop sticks (used or new) (single)
       Super glue Loctite
       Scotch square fastener (7/8 in X 7/8 in) (Velcro)
       Scotch tape (ordinary & moving and storage tape)
       tape measure
       scissor
       kitchen knife
       ice pick
       
Level of Difficulty – easy

Instructions:



Wrapping up the Styrofoam
Wrap the styrofoam with a tissue paper, as if you’re wrapping a gift.  Secure it with super glue and not a scotch tape only. Determine which one is the upper part, the bottom part, and the front side of your styrofoam.  (Note: This kind of tissue paper was used to wrap a single roll of toilet tissue.  The design fascinated me and that’s why I saved several of this.)


Attaching the Sticks on Sides
Level all your bamboo chopsticks (single) to determine which are of the same length. Use the chopsticks with the most counts of the same length as the styrofoam.  Set aside the other sticks.
 
FRONT SIDE—the pointed part of the chopstick should be aligned with the lower edge of the styrofoam. The round part of the chopstick should be aligned with  the upper part of the styrofoam. This uniformity in aligning the sticks helps determine the area for the top and the bottom. If there are chopsticks which are bigger than the others, cut them to have the same length. Use a knife and a chopping board to cut them.
 
Level the first chopstick a little bit higher then the styrofoam to provide space for aligning the small sticks when covering the top center later on.  Apply Super Glue on the wrapper and carefully align one chopstick at a time until the front side is filled up. They should be firmly attached to each other and the styrofoam.
 
BOTH SIDES – do the same procedure for both sides. 


BOTTOM SIDE -  Position the project upward with the pointed part of the chopsticks at the bottom.  Set the project at the center of a stick (round dowel). Using a tape measure, determine the length on both sides for equal spacing.  Apply Super Glue on the wrapper, carefully align one stick at a time, and press down firmly to hold.  Do the same procedure until the bottom part is filled up as shown above.




TOP CENTER (a) and (b) – Align one chopstick on top of the styrofoam and put a mark on one end to know where to cut the chopstick (single). Use a knife and a chopping board to cut this.  Make 9 pieces of the same length like the ones shown below in picture (a). Save these  excess sticks for later use. Glue each stick one at a time on the top center and hold firmly all the sides to stick them together.  Press down firmly all these sticks together on top after applying glue, for proper alignment. When done,  it will look like the one shown below in picture (b).



Top Center (a)


Top Center (b)



TOP SIDE – Since the bottom side has already the round dowels attached, position one dowel and mark it to determine its center. Lay the project flat on the table and apply glue on the marked area only. Attach the first dowel at the edge of the top center as shown below.   This will serve as a guide for aligning the succeeding dowels.



Attaching the First Dowel on Top


Twin Bamboo Chopsticks
Get another dowel and two bamboo chopsticks (twins) as shown above. Position them all together by inserting one set of chopsticks into one end of the dowel and the other set of chopsticks into the other end of the dowel forming a triangle.  Measure each end space 1 inch horizontally and 1 ½ inch vertically and mark each measurement on both sides as shown below.



1 inch horizontal measurement


1 ½ inch vertical measurement

 Apply glue on the flat top ends to connect them together forming a triangle. Apply glue on each side end of the dowel with markings. Set it aside. Do the same procedures as above to make another triangle.


Triangle-Shaped Roof
 Position the project upward. Align the first set of triangle on the top center to determine the areas where to apply the glue.  Apply glue on the marked areas and attach them to the first dowel and top center. Be sure all the ends are aligned. For the next set of triangle, align it with the first set of triangle before applying glue.  Then apply glue on the adjoining sides at the top that need to be attached with the first set of triangle. Hold them firmly. Next, apply glue on one lower side of the chopsticks. Be sure they are all aligned with each other and make adjustments, if possible. Hold them firmly again. Center and attach the last dowel only at the end. Hold them firmly again. The roof of the project is now  finished as shown below.


Finished Roof

 
Attaching the Ribbons on the Body
LIGHT-COLORED RIBBON
1)  Cut 26 inches of light-colored ribbon (1/4 inch wide) and fold into two to get its center. Lay the project flat with the front side facing the table and apply glue at the bottom center.  Attach the center of the ribbon first and press down to hold firmly. Continue applying glue along the chopsticks and attach the ribbon up to the edge of the top center. Carefully turn the project to its back side. Apply glue at the center of the styrofoam and press down the ribbon straight up to the edge of the top center. Apply glue on the chopsticks atop to attach the remaining ribbon ends. Tie the ribbon twice to tighten it. Apply glue at the center and press down each ribbon end to hide it. This provides support to hold all the round dowels on top and bottom sides. This center ribbon will  serve as a guide where to attach the soaps later on.
2)  Cut 11 inches of the same light-colored ribbon (1/4 inch wide), fold, and cut it into half.  Fold one ribbon to get its center. Set aside the other ribbon and lay the project flat on the table. From one side edge of the dowels, provide ¼ inch space before applying glue at the back of the bottom side. Apply glue on the dowels, attach the center of the ribbon first and then press down the ribbon straight to hold firmly. Position the project upward and hold it carefully. Apply glue on the dowels atop and then press down the ribbon straight. Apply glue on the ribbon itself to close its ends. Get the other ribbon and do the same procedure on the other side.  This additionally provides support to hold  all the round dowels at the bottom side.



DARK-COLORED RIBBON
3)  Cut 24 inches  of dark-colored ribbon (3/8 inch wide), fold, and cut into half.  Set aside the other ribbon and fold one ribbon to get its center. Apply glue at the upper center of the project (Front Side) and attach the center of the ribbon first. Continue applying glue on the sticks at one side, pull, and press down the ribbon straight on the sticks. Carefully hold the project upward with one hand while applying glue and attaching the ribbon on the side end. Do the same procedure on the other side.  Carefully turn the project to its back side. Apply glue on the styrofoam, pull, and press down the ribbon straight to hold firmly. Apply glue on the ribbon itself to close its ends.
Get the other ribbon and do the same procedure on the lower side. These ribbons provide support to hold all the sticks on the body of the styrofoam.
4)  Cut 24 inches of dark-colored ribbon (1/2 inch wide– braid), fold, and cut into half. Set aside the other ribbon and fold one ribbon to get its center.  Start applying glue at the upper center (Front Side) below the first ribbon and attach the center of the  braided ribbon first. Do the same procedure as per Instruction # 3 above. If there is an excess ribbon, cut its ends to stay flat at the back because this type of ribbon is thicker than the other ribbons. Apply additional glue on its end to keep the strands from getting loose.
Get the other ribbon and do the same procedure on the lower side.  These ribbons provide double support to hold all the sticks on the body of the styrofoam as shown below.

 
Attaching the Sticks on Top and Both Sides
1)  Get 4 small excess sticks you set aside. Starting from one side of the roof, apply glue on the sides of each dowel (slanting position) in the inside area of the roof and  on one small stick. Attach the stick near the dowels with the pointed end facing front.  Align one end of the stick at the edge of the dowels  (back side). Apply glue on the sides of each dowel (slanting position) in the outside area of the roof and on another small stick. Attach the stick near the dowels with the pointed end facing front. Align  one end of the stick at the edge of the dowels (back side). 
Get the other 2 small sticks and do the same procedure on the other side of the roof.  These sticks provide support to hold all the sticks of the roof as shown above.
2)  Get 2 sets of bamboo chopsticks (twins). Carefully hold the project in an upright position. At the lower end (right side), apply glue on top of the ribbon on one side of the dowels,  on the top end  of one set of twin chopstick, and on the sides of the first dowel (roof end). Attach the twin chopstick upside down on top of the ribbon at one edge and have its pointed ends be inserted into one end of the first dowel (roof end).  Get another set of twin chopsticks.  At the lower end (left side), apply glue on top of the ribbon on the other side of the dowels, on the top end of the twin chopstick, and on the side of the last dowel (roof end).  Attach the twin chopstick upside down on the top of the ribbon at the other edge and have its pointed ends be inserted into one end of the last dowel (roof end).  
Note:  If the twin bamboo sticks do not have exact length to reach the roof ends, try attaching the same light-colored ribbon (1/4 inch wide) on the same edge to provide adjustment.

Get another 2 sets of twin chopsticks and do the same procedure on the other side. These sticks provide double support to hold all the sticks of the roof as shown in the picture above.

Attaching the Ribbons on Top and Both Sides
DARK-COLORED RIBBON
Measure 38 inches of dark-colored ribbon (3/8 inch wide) and cut into half. Beginning from one side of the roof edge, insert one end of the ribbon below the twin chopsticks, apply glue on it, attach, and fold the ribbon around the twin chopsticks.  Apply more glue on the ribbon, press it, and turn the ribbon around the top of the dowel.  This will hold firmly both the twin chopsticks and the dowel (roof end) together. Apply glue only on the area where to attach the ribbon as you turn it around the twin chopsticks. Be sure to pull the ribbon tightly as you attach and turn the ribbon around the twin chopsticks until you reach the bottom part. The excess ribbon will be attached to the bottom area of the dowels to provide additional support. Apply glue on top of the first ribbon attached and press the new ribbon on it.  Cut any excess ribbon at the bottom end, if necessary.
Get the other ribbon and do the same procedure.   Be sure to match the number of rounds you make on the first twin chopsticks. The ribbon on each twin chopsticks should be  slanting  in different directions to meet together at the bottom side. See the picture below how the ribbons were attached in a slanting position.



LIGHT-COLORED RIBBON
1)  Cut 24 inches of light-colored ribbon (1 ½ inch wide), fold, and cut it into half. Insert one end of the ribbon in-between the last two dowels at the back and just hold it for a while. Apply glue all over the last dowel, the portion where to attach the ribbon only. Be sure to provide an allowance to roll one end of the ribbon around the dowel. The ribbon should also be near the side of the body of the project for further gluing of the sides. Hold it firmly after applying the glue. Insert the ribbon again in-between the two dowels facing the front side. Carefully turn the project to its back side. Apply glue on the little side of the body, pull the ribbon, and press down straight as you attach.  Continue applying glue on the remaining area up to the bottom side, pulling the ribbon, and pressing down straight as you attach it. Apply more glue to close its end at the bottom side.    
Get the other ribbon and do the same procedure on the other side.  These ribbons provide additional support to hold the sticks on top and bottom sides.  See the picture above .
2)  Measure 8 ½ inches of the same light-colored ribbon (1 ½ inch wide) and attach it to cover the top dowels (inside area of the roof). Apply glue on each dowel and press down the ribbon straight to hold firmly from one end side to another side. This ribbon provides additional support to hold all the dowels on top area.
3)  Cut 2 small pieces of scotch moving and storage tape and stick them to the adjoining ends of the twin chopsticks inside and above of the rooftop to securely hold it.  


Attaching the Soaps
1)  Get small 3 sample soaps, remove the wrapper, and cover the whole soap with scotch tape to prevent from having soap residue on the chopsticks and sliding down. Use a scissor in cutting the scotch tape to prevent soap breakage.
2)  Measure 9 inches of light-colored ribbon (1/4 inches wide), cut, and use this to attach around the edge of the soap. Apply glue on one end corner, center the ribbon, and press it. Do the same procedure until you reach the end corner again. Set it aside. Do the same procedure with the 2 remaining soaps.     
3)  Center the 3 soaps in the middle of the body with the light-colored ribbon as a guide. Be sure that this center ribbon will not be seen anymore as you attached the 3 soaps in a triangular position vertically.  First, have the sides of two soaps with the end ribbons be joined together with a glue. This will hide the joining ends of each ribbon. Do the same procedure with last soap. Be sure the 3 soaps are well aligned with equal spacing provided horizontally and vertically. Poke a pin at the center of the soap and press down carefully to the styrofoam. You have to feel if the end of the pin doesn’t poke any chopstick before pressing it down to the styrofoam.  See the picture above.



Cutting and Attaching the Floral Foam
Get the rectangular floral foam and cut it by 8.5 inches (L) X 2 inches (W) X 2 inches (T).  Use the roof of the project as pattern to cut and shape the foam with a kitchen knife. Be sure it will fit the roof when attached inside. Wrap it with a tissue paper, like you are wrapping a gift.  Apply glue on both edges of the light-colored ribbon (1 ½ inches wide) and attach the floral foam. You can also apply glue on the side areas of the roof to securely hold the foam also.


Flower Arranging (a)


Flower Arranging (b)


Flower Arranging (c)


Flower Arranging (d)



Flower Arranging (e)
1st LEVEL - Pictures (a), (b), and (c) – Using an ice pick, poke 2 small holes at the lower center of the floral foam and then insert the first 2 sets of leaves. Poke a small hole at the center of these leaves and then insert the first rose.   Insert 2 small rose bulbs on each side  of the rose and then the leaves again. Do the same flower arranging on the left and right sides of the first rose.  Insert 3 small rose bulbs on each side end and then the leaves again. On areas where the wrapper is visible, you can poke small holes on the floral foam to insert more leaves.
2nd LEVEL - Picture (d) – Poke small holes in between the first and second roses and in between the second and third roses. Insert a rose on each hole. Poke a hole on each side of the roses. Insert a bulb on each side of the roses. Poke small holes to insert the leaves and cover the visible areas of the wrapper.
3rd LEVEL – Picture (e) – Poke a small hole in between the 2 roses and insert the last rose. Poke 3 holes around this rose to insert the 3 rose bulbs.  Continue inserting leaves on the side of the rose and  bulbs to cover the visible areas of the wrapper.     
 


Hanging on the Wall
Find the right place to hang this in your bathroom or anywhere in your room you like best. Use 4 sets of Scotch fastener multi-purpose.  Align the project on the wall and mark the side corners of the body.  The project must be hanged at eye-level and at the center of the wall with equal spacing on both sides.  Join together  4 sets of fasteners. Don’t remove from the plastic films yet till you are ready to attach them.  Carefully hold the project in upright position while attaching the fasteners at the back side as instructed below.
UPPER SIDE -  Attach 1 set of fastener on the right-hand corner of the body of the  project (styrofoam). Attach the  other set of fastener on the left-hand corner of the body of the project.
LOWER SIDE – Do the same procedure for this side. Carefully align and attach the project on the wall where the marks are.   

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