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Christmas Holiday Wreaths - Final

Posted on October 6, 2014 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)



Okay - just one two last wreaths and only because I think both look so great and because you could use these all year round - not just during the Christmas holidays. 


By the way, if you don't have enough (or any) fabric to tear up into strips (or don't have the time or inclination), you could substitute that pile of ribbons you 've been hoarding since whenever. I have two bags full!


Anyway, the fabric wreath is from here - it's an online shop and a blog (shlog??) and in Dutch and there are no instructions.  However there is a good fabric (ribbon) wreath tutorial here.




The second wreath is made from toilet rolls, mailing tubes, and paper-towel rolls, and it's from the American magazine, Country Living - looks so easy to make. I love the look of this wreath and will probably attempt it. There are oodles of other great Christmas holiday ideas and projects at this online magazine for you to enjoy. Bet you spend a bit of time there!


Anyway, the instructions for the above wreath are here.


Next time, a roundup of Christmas houses and templates.


Christmas Holiday Wreaths - Use What You Have

Posted on October 1, 2014 at 6:00 AM Comments comments (0)


Okay, we have established that you can make a Christmas holiday wreath out of almost anything (even clothespins). There are literally 1000s of ideas and projects on the web - some better than others. The trick is not to copy what you see but to re-interpret using what you already have on hand. For example, my little guy has 100s of little toy cars. I'm going to use the lightweight plastic ones to create a wreath for his room this Christmas.


Here are a few more ideas to inspire you:


Walnut Wreath




Only got some nuts? See what Matthew Mead did with walnuts. He hot glued the walnuts to a straw form. No straw wreath base - you could easly cover a foam base with some old cloth. To save cost on walnuts, go to your local organic food store and ask if they have any stale walnuts they will be tossing out and offer to take them. Don’t ever be shy about asking for free stuff – I’m shameless about asking for things from shops and stores. Hey – it’s all about recycling, no?


Yarn Ball Wreath



Who doesn't have a bunch of yarn balls from unfinished knitting/crochet projects? Even if you don't, you could use old rolled up socks (washed, of course) or make your own balls by unravelling old knits. Bloggers over at Two Junk Chix show you how to make this wreath.


Toilet Roll Wreath



Here’s a simple, modern wreath made from the ubiquitous toilet roll. The post is in Hungarian but the step-by-step photos are easy to follow. By the way, I’m not a fan of using toilet paper rolls for crafts (after all – we know where they’ve been – shred the toilet rolls and put in your compost instead). You can substitute cardboard rolls from giftwrap, paper kitchen towels, etc. whenever a projects uses toilet rolls.  


Click here for instructions.


Next time, a round-up of my most favourite wreaths.

Christmas Holiday Wreaths - Pinecones

Posted on September 30, 2014 at 1:35 PM Comments comments (2)

I adore pinecone wreaths. They’re eco-friendly, easy to make, and you can almost always get the cones for free (I collect mine from the local park and from a neighbour's yard). If you don’t have access to evergreen tree cones, ask neighbours, friends, or colleagues at work if they do and offer to clean up their yards for them. It’s really worth it as these wreaths really are very festive whether you celebrate Christmas or not and will last forever. They also make great gifts.

Here are a few examples I found:


Pinecone Wreath Using Glue Gun



If a glue gun is your craft tool of choice, Melissa at Keep Calm and Decorate shows you how to make a simple but elegant pinecone wreath using a foam base and glue gun. Ready, steady, shoot (er - I mean stick). Here are the instructions.

Pinecone Wreath Without Using Glue Gun


If, however, you'd rather not use a glue gun (more eco-friendly), Felicia at her Felicia Kramer blog shows you how to make a wreath using a wire wreath form and floral wire – not a glue stick in sight! Go here for the how-tos.

Pinecone Wreath Using a Wire Coat Hanger


This is more my kind of wreath using only a wire coat hanger to create a beautiful pinecone wreath. DIY Divas, Megan and Stephanie, show you how here

For more wreath idea, just click on Wreaths under Categories.

Christmas Holiday Wreaths - The Incredible Edibles

Posted on September 29, 2014 at 2:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Christmas is a’coming and the goose is … well, you know the rest. For our family, Christmas decorating starts with making wreaths. I prefer the natural ones made from whatever we can gather from the woods, fields, and hedgerows. You may, however, prefer variations on tradition. Along with the traditional materials, wreaths can be made out of anything: nuts, paper, textiles, photos, old greeting cards, postcards, corks – you name it. But there’s no need to head for the shops to gather your own materials – just take a wander around your own home to find all you will need to make a fun, original wreath (or two).


Here are a few of my favourite edible wreaths:


Candy Wreath




Who would have thought that edible wreaths would be popular; but it seems these are very much in vogue. Sweet Paul makes this this cute little Christmas candy wreath and it’s perfect for the little ones to whip up. Just have a few extra candies on hand - these do have a habit of disappearing at our house. Here are the instructions.


Gingerbread Cookie Wreath



Jan Scott gives her recipe for this cookie wreath at the iVillage website (although why she calls them gingerbread men cookies is a mystery to me - these look like stars to me??). Still the wreath looks pretty and the recipe is an easy one.  Get the recipe here.



Our lady Martha does have a gingerbread man wreath that looks wonderful and the recipe is also an easy one. We made the gingerbread men last year but they never made it into a wreath. Go here for Martha's instructions (and you pay attention!). 


Marshmallow Wreath (yes, marshmallows)



Sara over at the Fat Hydrangea blog has the recipe for this wreath. Might get a little dusty by the time you get to eating these but never mind, the wreath looks gorgeous. Here are her instructions.


Popcorn Wreath



Another one from Sweet Paul. This one would probably never make it to the wall or door at our place but you can try. Instructions here.


These are just a tiny sample of the kind of edible Christmas wreaths you could create. And here's me thinking that these would make a great late night snack - move over Santa.

Tubular Christmas Advent Calendar

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 9:35 AM Comments comments (0)


I know that you can buy Advent calendars at any dollar or department store but you can't always control what's in the little compartments. Dollar store chocolate?? I don't think so. Besides, it's more fun for you (or maybe you can get some help from your older kids) to rifle through the recycling bin to see what you can reuse, recycle, upcycle, repurpose. Start now if you want to meet the December 1 deadline! The one shown above along with good how-to instructions is from Disney's Spoonful craft site. It's made from cardboard tubes of different sizes and glued together to make a neat wreath (two for one, yay!!). I would use a clean paper grocery bag to wrap the individual little gifts. Don't limit yourself to candy--consider age-appropriate treats like action figures, cars, puzzles, jokes, etc. Think about what your little ones like when filling the compartments.


More Advent calendar ideas to come next time.


Recycling garden cleanup

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 7:10 PM Comments comments (0)

Helping out friends with gardening cleanups in the fall is always a chance for me to bring home all kinds of material that I need to inspire my articles. And because I'm not particularly handy, the simpler the idea, the better. Anything too complicated is beyond my feeble brain. 


 

My next article in the Citizen is on Thanksgiving Day decor ideas (we Canadians have an early Thanksgiving) and so I can't show you pictures of what I came up with. However, here's a taste of what is possible. This hydrangea wreath is easy to do - just stick the stem ends into the twig base form and you're done. No glue required. The base is a twig wreath form made from a friend's grapevine cuttings. Also simple to make - just twist and turn while the vine is still pliable. Use a bit of thin wire to hold it together.


Next, my Halloweeeeeeeen ideas.