Introduction: Personalized Wreath Ornament With Tinkercad

About: Teacher of Engineering and Mathematics at Cedar Grove High School

Originally inspired by THIS Thingiverse post, I decided to create my own personalized version of a wreath ornament. I love designing 3D models in Tinkercad and thought this was a great way to spread a little holiday cheer.

I printed this model using a Lulzbot Taz 6 equipped with a Dual Extruder. If you don't have a dual-color extruder, the same effect can be achieve by a well timed hot-swap of filament.

I hope you enjoy this model and it inspires you to spread a little cheer in your neck of the woods.



3D printer (I used the Lulzbot Taz 6 with Dual Head Extruder)

PLA filaments: Pine Green, Fire Engine Red, Cool White

X-Acto Blade (to clean the prints before assembly)

Loctite Super Glue Gel Control


Step 1: Tinkercad Your Design

As I said, I love working with Tinkercad. The spatial visualization challenges presented with creating this design were easily solved using the available shapes in the Tinkercad library. I experienced a great sense of pride when I turned a bunch of asteroids and parabolas into a wreath and bow. Unfortunately, I did not have the time to explore the Tinkercad Codeblocks. This feature would have been perfect for creating the wreath.

First, I pulled the asteroid shape from the seventeenth page of the Shape Generators menu in Tinkercad. I wanted to try and replicate the realistic look of the wreath from THIS original design I cited in the intro. I turned the asteroid 90 degrees each time I replicated the shape to ensure my wreath did not appear to have a pattern.

Once I was pleased with my wreath, I tackled the bow. The bow in the original design is definitely superior to the one I created, but I love the fact that my design was created using seven parabolas. I pulled these from the Basic Shapes menu in Tinkercad. I cut the parabolas in half, laid them down on their new flat surface and adjusted their dimensions to form the bow. I decided to modify the ends of the bow to give it a more authentic look.

Next I added a snowflake to the center of my wreath. I retrieved this shape from the fourth page of the Shape Generator menu. I planned to personalize this design and wanted to give my model a little more strength and support in the center for the name.

I then added the name and date using the Script text tool located on the second page of the Shape Generator menu. I used this tool because it features more font options than the basic Text tool. I chose Script for the name and Bebas for the date.

Before I grouped the name to the wreath, I decided to make this a dual-color print. I duplicated the name and date, decreased the height, changed it to white, raised it above the design, removed some height of the original name and design, and lowered the duplicated personalization onto the top of the model. It is important that the new 'cap' is not grouped to the rest of the figure and that it is in perfect alignment. Otherwise the slicer software will not be able to accurately merge the two designs.

Lastly, I added a small hole at the top for the ribbon. I planned to use very narrow ribbon, so I made a small hole. Be sure to modify this is you have larger ribbon. Drilling into a semi-hollow model after it is printed is no fun.

Step 2: Print Your Designs

As I mentioned in the introduction, I used a Lulzbot Taz 6 with a dual-head extruder. If you do not have two-color print capabilities, you can still achieve this look with a well-timed hot-swap of the filament. Once you start to see that the wreath portion is complete, cut the green filament and start feeding in the white. There should be enough layers remaining to have the white filament fully cover the green name and date (as well as cover any light green transitional layers).

I printed the bow separately using the Lulzbot Taz 6 single-head extruder. Both the wreath and bow were printed using PLA filaments. The dual-color wreath took 3 hours and 12 minutes to print. The red bow took an additional 32 minutes.

Step 3: Assemble Your Project

Before you assemble your personalized ornament, you may want to sand the white name and date to give it a more professional look. I've sanded other projects made from PLA and have always been happy with the results, but this model has more of a craft design, so I kept it as is.

I used Loctite Super Glue Gel to attach the bow. I also put a dab of glue in the knot of my ribbon.

Full disclosure: Even after scraping away the bottom rim of the 3D printed bow (the print head was a little too low to the bed for the initial layer), the bow did not properly fit the design. Instead of reprinting the two-color wreath, I used my X-Acto blade to chip away some of the area surrounding the bow. Although this was not a difficult task, I still decided to adjust my wreath model for future prints. I expect that I will make a number of these for my family and friends and I don't want to be bogged down with a lot of post-print adjustments..

Step 4: Display Your Creation

Here is my design hanging on my Christmas tree. If you make this project, I'd love to see your designs. Please share them in the comment section. Also, be sure to check out the original model that inspired my build HERE and send some kudos to the designer on his Thingiverse page HERE.

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

- Dave

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