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Crab Bride and Groom Ornaments

By: Toni Serini for
Crab Bride and Groom Ornaments
Crab Bride and Groom Ornaments
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"Painted and adorned crab ornaments, personalized for the bride and groom. The bride wore a white, off the shoulder gown with a rhinestone brooch at the waist, cathedral veil, and a pearl necklace; the groom wore a tux with tie, studs, cuff links and socks in blue to match the bride's shoes. I painted the underside of each crab white, and penned in the wedding date. Each crab has multiple coats of paint. I finished each crab with Mod Podge, to add sparkle."

Estimated Cost$11-$20

Time to CompleteIn an evening

MaterialsNature Material, Paint

Primary TechniquePainting



Project TypeMake a Project

Materials List

  • Crab shell
  • acrylic paints
  • tulle
  • beads, rhinestones
  • glue
  • paint brushes
  • Mod Podge
  • patience


  1. Enjoy yourself at a crab feast.  Save the 2 nicest crab shells, which will need to be scrubbed.  I typically boil them again to sterilize them, and scrub off any excess debris.

  2. It's painting project, with tweaks.  I painted the whole shell white, both sides, except the tips.  Allow time to dry between coats.  At least 2 coats will be needed to hide the red crab shell.  I did the eyes in black.  Once dry, I set about depicting the gown or tux. 

  3. For the bride, I outlined the gown in pale gray and added light swoops of grey to give the illusion of drape.  I used ivory for her shoulders and neck.  She wore a rhinestone brooch at the midriff.  I mirrored it with tiny rhinestones of varying shapes, glued in place with Mod Podge.  For her necklace of pearls, I strung pearly white beads and attached them with tiny drops of Elmer's glue.  On this bride, I looped a small piece of white ribbon, glued to the back between the eyes, for the hanger.  (I have subsequently made a longer string of pearls, using the excess for the loop.  A more elegant look, I think.)  The bride wore blue shoes which I represented with an ultra thin line of blue where the back fins had been.  Before adding the veil, I brushed on 2 coats of glossy Mod Podge, letting it dry between coats, to give her a certain sparkle when hung on the tree. 

  4. The bride wore a cathedral length veil, which I copied using white tulle (actually left over from her veil) cut in the shape of a stemless wine glass, and about as wide as the crab tip to tip.  With needle and thread, I made a one inch hem along the straight edge of the tulle, and gathered along the stitching line.  Using glue and patience, I attached the veil to the back of the crab, just below the eyes.  Lastly, I glued a tiny rhinestone on her left tip, for the ring.

  5. The groom received 2 coats of black paint, leaving a V at the neckline and a small strip of white just above the tips. With the bride's pale gray, (I might have lightened it more by mixing with white) I added a slight shadow for the shirt collar and edge of the shirt placket.  Adding black to that gray, I outlined the edge of the jacket collar, the front jacket flap, and the bottom of the jacket.  I added a belt buckle with gold paint, and used the bride's blue for the bow tie, studs and cuff links.  I glued 2 or 3 small black beads for jacket buttons.  I also gave him a boutonniere of painted blue flowers.  The groom wore blue socks to match the bride's shoes.  This I indicated with a thin line of blue on the very edge where the back fins had been.  A thin, black satin ribbon for the loop attaches on the back between the eyes.  As with the bride, the groom finally received 2 coats of glossy Mod Podge, with time to dry between coats.

  6. After the final coat of Mod Podge dried, I penned in their names and the wedding date on the back of each crab.

NotesI have made these for unique wedding gifts. Always well received, it's fun to see them hanging on the Christmas tree.

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