|Posted on November 14, 2012 at 9:35 AM||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.
|Posted on January 26, 2012 at 6:40 AM||comments (0)|
Valentine's Day isn't far off so I thought I would show you this lovely (I think!) Valentine heart I made from plastic bags. I didn't have enough red plastic bags so I finished it off with white ones. Easy-peasy - just cut out 1 inch by 4 inch (or approximately) strips of plastic and tie on to a heart-shaped wire form (I shaped a wire coat hanger into a heart). Takes only minutes and, yes, lasts forever.
|Posted on September 27, 2011 at 7:10 PM||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.
|Posted on April 18, 2011 at 7:52 AM||comments (2)|
At the Bytown market yesterday afternoon I spotted my favourite vendor selling pussy willow branches and, of course, I couldn't resist buying a few. I sometimes just place them in one of my old sap buckets but this time I wanted to create a nice wreath to remind me of spring. It's a perfect decoration if Easter is not a holiday you observe but still want something seasonal.
To make the wreath, I simply recycled a twig wreath that I had left over from Christmas. Here are the instructions. The wreath will last a long time.
|Posted on December 6, 2010 at 6:25 PM||comments (3)|
I've had a number of visitors complaining (in a nice way) that my Christmas posts have neglected nature. So, for those of you who love to craft and reuse natural materials, we'll start with pinecones (or pine cones).
Like Chris over at Just a Girl (check out her pinecone wreath!), I collect my own pinecones, venturing out into the park behind my house and along the Rideau Canal (although, technically you're not supposed to pick those particular pinecones??) hoping that I beat the squirrels to them. Friends who live in the country also bring me bagfuls.
An aside: I tend to choose projects where the finished product can be recycled or composted so I try to find ones that don't use glitter or anything else that is not suitable. If the instructions call for hot glue, if I can I use string or thin wire instead.
Image Just A Girl
Preparing Your Pinecones
If you've picked your cones outside off the ground, you may want to take some precautions to ensure that you don't bring in any undesirables. I usually leave mine out spread out over a picnic table in the sunshine. That's to ensure that whatever is in the cone, can leave. Then I place them in batches in a warm oven to open the 'leaves' and to dry the cones out. Then I'm ready to work. Here are some sites that have instructions for making Christmas pinecone wreaths.
The wreath above is the kind I usually make. I wire the pinecones to a (you guessed it) a wire coat hanger pulled into a round shape. First I add on the big cones and the fill in any spaces with little ones. Then I add a bow or other decoration or sometimes just leave as is. Easy, peasy.
This is my latest version of a simple pinecone wreath--just cones and a wire coat hanger. Instructions here.
The one shown above is easy as well and Rocio over at Casa Haus shows you how to make it. Yay, she uses a wire coat hanger, too.
Image Casa Haus
|Posted on December 5, 2010 at 9:58 AM||comments (0)|
If you find yourself with more Christmas cards on hand than you have space to display them, why not create a simple card wreath. I reused a wire coat hanger for my base but you can also cut a 12" to 14" round doughnut shape from a cardboard box to attach your cards with glue or tape. The instructions are included here.
Not into wreaths? Here are a few more ways to display your cards.