Spiritual Gift Toppers:
Handmade Gift Jewel + Prayer Beads
‘Om Mani Padme Hung’
One of my most spiritual friends is a Buddhist. He is absolutely lovely, and one of the most giving people I know and wish to honor this holiday season.
(Not everyone who enjoys the holidays is Christian, after all.)
Just for them, I created this so-soulful ‘Om Mani Padme Hung’ holiday gift tag/topper/jewel from self-drying clay. Om mani padme hung is their phrase to honor all living beings.
I paired the personalized gift topper with nice sandalwood prayer beads, also called a mala. Both of these are gifts all by themselves. They are wrapped around a gift wrap in humble red; that quint-essential Buddhist color reminding us of lama robes.
The gift tag is sturdy enough to later be used as a necklace pendant; hung on a pair of keys like a key fob; or function as a bookmark jewelry.
It is very easy to translate this idea into a Christian spiritual gift giving idea by substituting the Buddhist prayer beads with a vintage or simple wooden rosary. As you can see, I wrapped the beads in a cross format, which is a Catholic symbol. Rosaries usually feature a little cross at the end, which makes an instant gift box topper. Add a twig of green as the cross is usually small. It is part of the rosary, after all.
How to Make Clay Gift Toppers
‘Om Mani Padme Hung’
I found my ‘om mani padme hung’ stamp in a little boutique shop in the Marais in Paris. But, you can find charms, plaques and jewelry online when searching for om mani padme hung. For example, here are two alternative stamps that would make great gift tags (bookmarks, etc.):
2. Flatten a small bit of clay. Use your hands to shape the clay rather than a rolling pin to create a natural look. Punch your stamp deeply into the clay, Make a small hole at the of top of your gift tag. Let the clay dry for a few days.
Paint clay tag with a water-based paint. I mixed a few colors in a recycled bottle cap to create natural stone colors. Mixing yellow with red and some dark brown (or other dark color) gives good results. Red + green makes brown. If you must use black, use sparingly. Let paint dry before adding hanging ribbon.
3. Attach tag to mala.Cross the prayer beads over red-wrapped present. Secure mala with sisal, raffia or other natural material.