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Decorated rock slabs instructions
Decorated slabs project.

Decorated rock slabs for any holiday ornaments is a fun craft project for young and old. (This project can easily be adapted for a neat wind chime.) Paint scenes depicting Christmas, Easter, Valentine's Day, Halloween, etc. Thin translucent slabs are nice to use for the rock slab, but the usual 1/4" slabs will work also. For a decorated slab for hanging, a list of supplies is as follows: rock slab from 2" to 6" in size, large fold-over bails (about 1 1/4" long), small bottles of assorted acrylic paints, cotton swabs on sticks, Bond 527 Multi-Purpose Cement, (Registered Trademark), Elmer's Glue All, Multi-Purpose Glue, (Registered Trademark), scissors, glitter, toothpicks, 1/8" ribbon or other tie material, hanger for the ornament, & newspaper or wax paper for protecting the work area. Attaching the fold-over bail to a slab: Pick the spot on the slab for placing the fold-over bail. The bail is going to be used to hold a ribbon for decoration and a place to attach a Christmas ornament hanger. Center the bail on the slab edge and then press the bail ends over the sides of the slab. (Note: some of your slab edges may be tapered if the slab is from a round rock so take care to replace the bail and slab in the same position.) Remove the bail from the slab and press the bail ends together slightly so the opening is just a little smaller and this will assure a tight fit around the slab when you are ready to attach it to the slab with glue. Check again that the bail and the slab are in the correct position for proper alignment, then apply Bond 527, Multi-Purpose Glue with a toothpick to the underside of both ends of the bail, then slide the slab into the bail. Leave a slight gap between the bail and the outer edge of the slab for a ribbon and a hanger to be inserted later. If your bail does not appear to close tightly on the slab, use a clothespin to help hold the bail firm against the slab until the glue dries, normally 2-24 hours. Make sure the bail gap at the top is still opened slightly and free from glue. If some glue has squeezed into this area, use a toothpick to remove the fresh glue from the bail opening for the ribbon. Let the slab and fold-over bail dry completely before proceeding to decorate the slab. (It is best to bring the prepared slab with glued bail to the painting session.) Decorating the slab: Snip the ends of the cotton swab with a pair of scissors to remove the cotton and proceed to use the stick only for painting your scenes or designs with the acrylic paint. (These inexpensive paint brushes are very handy if you are helping a classroom of students and don't happen to have 50 small paint brushes.) For a group painting session, use the individual cups from a styrofoam egg carton as a small container for the paint. This way one 2 oz. bottle of acrylic paint ($2.00) can easily accomodate 50 artists. (Colors of red, yellow, green, white, and black were all that was needed.) The use of a toothpick comes in handy for very small lines or dots of paint. Since the paint needs 20 minutes or so to dry, be patient applying paint over another paint color. When the paint is dry, apply Elmer's Glue to areas you want some sparkle added, such as around the edge of the slab, etc. Place a clean sheet of paper down on the work area before sprinkling glitter on the glue design, and then sprinkle the glitter. When the glitter has set on the glue for a minute or so, turn the slab over and let the excess glitter fall away on the paper. The paper can then be carefully folded in half and the glitter funneled back into the glitter bottle. When the slab appears dry, add your ribbon and ornament hanger to the bail and allow the paint 24 hours to completely dry and ENJOY!