Thursday, April 11, 2013

Pine Cones Tutorial

I needed some pinecones for a layout and I was desperate to find a way somehow to make them and I searched the net and couldn't find anything or at least nothing I liked so I figured that I'm going to have to dig deep into the little bit of creativity I have lurking around somewhere and after lots of trials, this is the idea I came up with to solve my problem. I know there is a Sizzix die out there but I was not going to buy a new machine to solve my problem, however tempting it!!

You will need very basic materials:
Tan cardstock
Decorative scissors (scallops)
Walnut stain distress ink

Step 1.
Use a pencil and draw a spiral on the wrong side of your cardstock measuring approx. 7.5cm in diameter. I drew the spiral free hand as I don't know of any other way to do it.

Step 2.
Use your decorative scalloped scissors and cut out the spiral all along the pencil lines.

Step 3.
Turn the spiral over to the right side and ink the scalloped edges of the spiral with Walnut Stain distress ink.

Step 4.
Use your small scissors and make a small snit  a little more than half way between every scallop.

Step 5.
Turn your spiral over to the wrong side again, place it on a mousepad or any foam pad and roll the entire spiral with your styles, especially the pinecone petals, and you will find that your spiral starts curling. Don't worry about the pencil marks as they will not show once your little cone has been completed. This picture does not do justice to how you need to press down on the spiral and roll at the same time as it is pretty hard to do that with a camera in the left hand and a stylus in your right hand but I'm sure you get the idea. The down side of being alone at home most of the time is that you have nobody to take the photo when you need both!

This is what your spiral kind of looks like once you have finished the step with the stylus.

Step 6.
Now we need to start rolling this spiral. So, with the right side of the spial facing you, grab a thin paintbrush or knitting needle and secure the tip of the spiral to the spiral with some glue. I use a knitting needle and please ignore the "used" look of works hard especially when I use it to work with!

Step 7.
Start rolling the spiral and at the same time put a few blobs of glue at intervals along the bottom edge to secure the spiral. Roll the spiral round and round and with each twirl roll it slightly downwards so that with each turn your petals will be below the prevoius layer of petal. You don't want it to become a flower. By the way, this method makes the cutest little flowers too. Once you have done a few turns, remove the knitting needle or whatever it is that you are using and turn it with your fingers....much easier and you have more control.

Keep rolling around and downwards and don't forget the little blobs of glue at intervals and it should start looking like the one in the pictures below.

Step 8.
When you get to the end, put a good blob of glue in the centre to secure the bottom edge of the spiral to the bottom of your little cone. Oops, it looks like I put too much glue on but it worked out well in the end. Press the end of the spiral firmly against the bottom of your cone and leave it until the glue is dry.

It should now look similar like the one in the picture below which is a sideview of the cone.

And here is a picture of what your cone should look like at the bottom.

Step 9.
Once the glue is dry you can now take a pair of tweezers or something and just gently start folding each little petal slightly outwards.

And this is what your little cones will look like when they are finished. I hope you like them :)

It took me quite a while to complete this tutorial because I had to rush out to the vet to get some cortisone for Miss Molly and on my way home I found a newborn calf in the middle of nowhere and his mother was nowhere to be seen. I couldn't just leave the little baby and started devising all sorts of schemes to get this little calf home at least until I could get hold of the SPCA to come and collect him. Little did I know that this rescue mission was going to be a case of biting off more than I can chew. Nobody wanted to help me get the little calf into my car because they were afraid of being accused of stocktheft. Well, that was the least of my problems and when I finally  got the little calf home I realised how dehydrated the little creature was. How do I get him to drink something?? I proceeded to pour some milk into a bucket, held my fingers in the milk and pushed his head down into the bucket and he immediately started suckling on my fingers and that way the two of us managed to get some milk down his little throat. Needless to say that by this time I actually became quite attached to the little calf and wanted to keep him but I knew that my husband would most definitely draw the line right there. A cow in my neighbourhood??? He doesn't think!! Well now the little calf is with the SPCA and I'm feeling quite bereft....:(. And now that I've got that off my chest I hope you enjoy and understand my tutorial :) I'm not very good at explaining things. I would much rather show than! If you would like to give this a go and there is something you don't understand OR you have a better way of making pinecones, please let me know :) I would be very happy to hear from you :)

Till next time, take care and be happy!xx


  1. Cathy I think this tutorial and this story tell a lot about you. These pine cones are such a big job to make but you make them and then you even create such a great tutorial and in between you also manage to rescue a calf - wow! you are an amazing woman!♥ sending you hugs, my friend! ♥

  2. I cannot tell you how like me you are with the calf story, I've been known to carry one home when I was a child and as an adult encouraged my farming girlfriend to bottle feed rejected calves. She rings me daily with her updates on a recent twin that mum didn't want to feed, he doing really well. I got a video of him yesterday and he's bouncing all over the place.
    Oh and I must say I love your tutorial on the pine cone.

  3. OMG... you made a totally cool!!

  4. This is so creatively kewl. Your amazing. So love everything you do and I am inspired each time I see one of your projects. :) Hugs Mary > Abbygirl

  5. This is awesome! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Thanks for sharing. This is amazing and you are so creative.

  7. Nice story about the calf,and so sad to hear that people are afraid to help. That's the way it goed so many times. Standing there, doing nothing, living for theirself. The pinecone is gorgeous, takes some patience and time to make them. Thats why your LO 's are so super. You take time for the little accents, beautiful!

  8. Just found this tutorial and you are so talented!!! Going to make a bowl of these for my dinning table this winter Thank you for sharing!!!