Tuesday, November 17, 2009
This is a German word for scissors cutting, the ancient art of cutting paper into decorations. The finished product was then usually put against a darker background, sometimes hand-colored, and then framed. I've seen a few old examples with the paper written on in tiny script, covering most of the design.
Back in the 1970's or 80's scherenschnitte kits for Christmas ornaments were common, and could be found at craft stores. I even got my special scissors there. But, for whatever reason, it's now really hard to find these patterns anywhere but online. Which is a shame. Other than the initial investment of the scissors, which are 3 1/2" long, parchment paper is easily found, and after a little practice, the patterns are not difficult.
Most of the patterns I have are made like the snowflakes we all made in grade school: folding the paper to make the cuts symmetrical. In the case of my patterns, most are simpley folded in half, then you trace the pattern on one side, and keeping the paper folded, cut along the pencil lines, starting from the center, and cutting the overall shape at the very end. Then unfold the paper to reveal the full design.
Here is a picture of our Christmas tree showing this ornament:
I know, we have lots of ornaments, but I've been collecting for almost 40 years!!
Many thanks to Charlene, from the HeroArts Blog, who pointed me in the direction of the MoxieFab Old Country Christmas challenge - I think this qualifies!