Wine glass markers, those faddish hoops used to identify stemware at parties, are already incredibly trite and tacky. However, with some ingenuity they can be made even worse.
These are so simple and inexpensive to make that there’s no excuse to not whip up a batch. Keep some on hand for last-minute hostess or birthday gifts; your kind gesture is certain to be remembered for a long time to come.
You will need:
• Wire or wire earring hoops
• Needle nose pliers
• An assortment of beads or small bits of junk
• Small drill bit or large needle for piercing holes
• A theme for your wine charms
Wire earring hoops
You can, of course, use whatever wire you have laying around and bend it into a hoop shape. However, using ready-made wire hoops intended for earring design is tidy and makes the project go very quickly. These should be available in bead and craft stores
Notice that these hoops have a flat area at one end, which is just barely visible in our photo. Snip this off with your pliers.
Beads and assorted small junk
There are an amazing variety of beads these days. We’ve even seen a bead which represents a small metal outhouse, complete with a door which opens and a small seated figure which tips out when jostled.
If you can’t find beads which meet your needs, you may want to use other small items you have on hand, as with the miniature plastic pickle and Santa Claus in the photo at left. However, since items like these don’t have holes in them, you’ll have to pierce them with a small drill bit or a very large needle. (Be careful!)
Assembling the charms is simple
1. Using your needle-nose pliers, bend a loop in one end of an earring hoop.
2. Thread on your beads and flotsam as desired. Here we’ve chosen a baby theme with safety pins and beads in primary colors.
3. Once satisfied with your design, bend a loop in the other end of the earring hoop to prevent the beads from sliding off.
The theme makes the tackiness
Here are a few of our ideas.
“Form follows function.” Why not be frank about what you’re really feeding your guests?
These charms use alphabet beads readily found at bead or craft stores. These beads would also work well for making charms with people’s names or nicknames.
Here we’ve used a plastic fly purchased a million years ago from Archie Mc Phee. (Doesn’t everybody keep containers of plastic flies on hand?) Similar things can probably be found at novelty/party stores, toy stores or the floor of your child’s bedroom. (When in doubt, ask your child where to find some.)
Since the fly didn’t have a hole in its body, we had to drill one in order to insert the wire hoop. The brown and black beads represent flyspecks.
Naked baby charm
Like the fly, we had to drill a hole through this tiny plastic baby’s head in order to insert the hoop.
If the ideas above don’t inspire you, perhaps some of these will:
• An embarrassing event from your or someone else’s life (especially thoughtful for a hostess gift)
• Things people do while drunk
• Favorite monster movies
• A persistent nightmare or daydream
• A diet you’ve been on
• People’s nicknames
Of course, using whatever materials you happen to have on hand can yield astonishing results. Make a charm from random flotsam and see if people can guess its theme!