July 4th Kaleidoscope

Look into the eyepiece on one end of the cylinder and enjoy the mirrored reflections of glittery objects in the clear container attached to the other end. Turn the cylinder and watch the endless combination of beautiful reflections.

Look into the eyepiece on one end of the cylinder and enjoy the mirrored reflections of glittery objects in the clear container attached to the other end. Turn the cylinder and watch the endless combination of beautiful reflections.

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The kaleidoscope dates back to 1816 when the first one was invented by David Brewster for scientific study. Today you don’t see them often except as toys for children or elaborate and costly versions for collectors.  My inexpensive and super easy to make project is designed with a July 4th theme but it can be designed for any occasion with different colors.  Make one for everyone to pass around and enjoy at your holiday celebration.  Your friends will be oohing and aahing at more than the fireworks!

Directions

step 1 - Use a craft knife to cut the tube to 10”. 

step 1 - Use a craft knife to cut the tube to 10”. 

step 2 - An emery board will smooth out the rough edges.

step 2 - An emery board will smooth out the rough edges.

step 3 - Cut three panels from the mirrored plastic measuring 9” by 1 3/16” each.

step 3 - Cut three panels from the mirrored plastic measuring 9” by 1 3/16” each.

step 4 - Tape the panels together and remove the clear protective film the mirror side.

step 4 - Tape the panels together and remove the clear protective film the mirror side.

step 5 - Tape the panels into a triangle with the mirrors on the inside.

step 5 - Tape the panels into a triangle with the mirrors on the inside.

step 6 - Insert the triangle into the tube.  Stuff foam pieces around the triangle to prevent it from moving.

step 6 - Insert the triangle into the tube.  Stuff foam pieces around the triangle to prevent it from moving.

step 7 - Scuff the clear bottom of the plastic container with sandpaper.

step 7 - Scuff the clear bottom of the plastic container with sandpaper.

step 8 - Place red, blue, and clear rhinestones, beads and foil stars inside the container.  Allow them room to tumble around.

step 8 - Place red, blue, and clear rhinestones, beads and foil stars inside the container.  Allow them room to tumble around.

step 9 - Insert the container into the end of the tube. The size of the container fits the tube perfectly.

step 9 - Insert the container into the end of the tube. The size of the container fits the tube perfectly.

step 10 - Cut a hole in the tube cap.  Optional - cut a decorative cover for the hole from metallic card stock.

step 10 - Cut a hole in the tube cap.  Optional - cut a decorative cover for the hole from metallic card stock.

step 11- Print out July 4th images on a sheet of paper or find already decorated paper at craft stores.  Roll the paper around the tube and glue it in place.

step 11- Print out July 4th images on a sheet of paper or find already decorated paper at craft stores.  Roll the paper around the tube and glue it in place.

 

Supplies

At Craft Store

  •  decorative paper -  or print your own
  •  metallic card stock (optional)
  •  rhinestones, beads, shiny objects
  •  clear plastic craft container with screw on lid measuring 1 3/8”

 At Staples

  • 1.5” mailing tube
  •  paper glue

 Miscellaneous

  •  sandpaper
  •  emery board
  •  painters tape
  •  foam pieces (I used makeup wedges)

At Amazon

  • Darice Plastic mirror sheet 6" x 9"

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