When I was searching for crib mobiles, I couldn't find one that I loved that wasn't too expensive, so I decided to create my own. I wanted something that looked good from below, where my baby girl will be seeing it. If you don't have all the tools I used, that's ok, this tutorial will show you the basic steps and you can just improvise the rest - it doesn't have to be perfect!
- 16" wood embroidery hoop
- Craft paint if you want to paint the hoop
- 5 sheets scrapbook paper (8.5x11 or 12x12 will work, and double sided paper makes for prettier pinwheels)
- Craft glue
- Ribbon, one really thin, one a little wider
- Rivets or hole punch and brads for securing pinwheel
- Optional: decorative buttons or beads
2. Use a paper cutter or ruler and scissors to cut (4) 6" squares for the outside ring of pinwheels, and (1) 8" square for the larger, center pinwheel.
3. To create your pinwheels, lightly draw diagonal lines from one corner to the opposite corner, making an X in the center. Then cut about 3/4 down each line towards the center. Use an exacto knife or hole punch to punch a hole in the center, and every other corner of your paper. Fold the holes towards the center and secure with a brad. I actually used a scrapbook rivet tool to secure the layers together, leaving a hole in the center. If you don't have brads or the rivet tool, you could also use ribbon with a bead tied on both sides of the center of the pinwheel to secure it together.
tip: experiment with which sides of the paper make for the prettiest pinwheel for baby and still look good for the grown-ups looking at the mobile from above
for a step-by-step pinwheel tutorial with pictures, I used this tutorial from The Sweetest Occasion blog
4. Measure and lightly mark with a pencil equally around your hoop for the 4 outside pinwheels. Don't worry about it being exactly perfect, they are so light that if they are a little off its not going to hang lopsided.
5. Decide how far down you want the outer pinwheels to hang and cut 4 equal pieces of ribbon, leaving enough length to wrap some around the hoop. Thread ribbon through center of pinwheel or tie to the brad and use craft glue to wrap and secure the other end to the hoop. Hold the glued end with a clothespin if necessary while the glue dries.
6. Measure 4 additional spots in the center of the spaces between the outer pinwheels for the ribbon "tent" that comes from the top. Cross in the center and secure ends with craft glue. I used my rivet tool here as well to secure the cross in the center and create a hole for the center pinwheel to thread through. Its ok if you don't have this tool, a brad or knot will work.
7. Use the intersection of your top ribbons to hang the large center pinwheel at a level below the outer layer. Use another piece of ribbon for hanging from the ceiling.
8. If you want, create a more finished look by gluing ribbon all the way around the hoop.
Don't worry about it being totally perfect, the pinwheels are so light that its ok if everything is not perfectly measured, it will still hang straight. If measuring and gluing seems like too much, you can always use an old mobile and remove the plush toys it came with. Replace with your pinwheels and you are good to go!