Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Yummy Christmas Decorations

For my last Christmas of the year (and for a little while yet) I'd like to share with you a few of my not so perfect looking, but definitely yummy tasting, Christmas decorations.

Once a month I meet up with a small group of friends to craft together. We take it in turns to hold it at our houses and provide snacks & lunch. In december its normally held at my house so I like to reflect the season in the food I provide.
 This time, for the snacks I made a "Roses tree" a polystyrene tree, covered in green tissue paper & roses attached with a pin after the top twist of the wrapper. This tree was very popular over Christmas and, at the current time of writing this, has been filled 2 & 1/2 times - 1/2 because, as the tree was half bare and there were no more Roses sweets left (it takes almost a whole tin for this 30cm tree), I opened the celebrations & started using those.

I also made gingerbread sleighs to hold Elizabeth Shaw chocolates in. I havent made anything 3d out of gingerbread before & need to find a better recipe as this one was quite tricky and could have done with cooking a bit longer. As you can see, I need to practice my icing technique as well.

 Here is a clearer view of the sweets inside. Elizabeth Shaw sweets (a range of amaretto & mint ones) with layered die cut circles in top & underneath.

Once the gingerbread was eaten they were then transferred to this sleigh.... 
Made using the Sizzix bigz die - Sleigh favor box that I borrowed from a friend. I do love these sizzix dies as you can cut thick card which is necessary when using heavy contents.

Monday, 30 December 2013

Simple Kitchen Decorations (& a tutorial)

Pinterest is a wealth of inspiration, so when I saw a pin of decorated kitchen cupboards I knew I wanted to try & do my own.

I bought some wired ribbon, and raided my box of spare christmas decorations.

 So I can use them easily year after year I attached the ribbon together on the back of the door with a pin
I then set about making the decoration for the front, 2 plastic candy canes glued together using a heat gun, 2 bells, threaded with bakers twine & then hung over the candy canes & finally a bow glued to the front. All this was then glued onto the ribbon on the cupboard door. This was repeated for all of the cupboards that hang on the kitchen wall.

A simple decoration that was quick to make but looks great.

Sunday, 29 December 2013

A Yule Wreath

I currently really like Wreaths, I have one on every door downstairs. Some of these are card Wreaths (Check them out HERE), some made with tinsel, others sticks, the rag wreath you saw yesterday & the latest additions, 2 Wreaths made from evergreens.

It all started at the end of November (cue wavy, wobbly lines going down the screen as we go back in time)...
Our local town park holds the odd free workshop advertised online, this time they advertised a wreath making workshop for children aged 7 and above. Having been to a few of the workshops I got in contact with the organiser & asked (very nicely) if she'd let Kai attend (him being 6, but very well behaved). she remembered us and said he'd be fine to attend :)

On the day a lovely woman & her friend showed us how to make wreaths out of evergreens they'd found in the park (plus a couple of decorative pieces from her own garden). Zack & Kai were allowed to make one each which I really appreciated as they have very individual ideas - & I got to help Kai out :)

Kai's wreath was hung outside the front door & Zacks on the shed door which faces our lounge windows.

I learnt a few things about these natural wreaths rather quickly. If they are hung in a position where rain cant get to them then they need watering every 2 days which can be rather awkward, if they are in a position to be rained on then they are likely to be open to the other elements as well, including wind which can damage the foliage (aka blow it in weird positions & make them fall out); the berries die rather quickly, and a door frequently closed will shake items loose.

They lasted well for almost a month, by which time they need a bit of tarting up. So on our annual Yule walk Kai & I went foraging for evergreens. We only took a small amount from a number of areas but ended up with plenty. So we tarted up the wreaths. Though not as colourful as our previous ones, it was fun to create a new design.

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Rag Wreath tutorial

Before Christmas is totally over I'd like to share with you a few of my christmassy makes, starting with a rag wreath.
So how to make it....
Start with some material, these can be scraps, ribbon - I mainly used a christmassy tea towel, tartan table cloth & an old pair of black trousers - a wire ring (or 2, 3 etc attached together), and some decorations.

Cut the material to strips of about 1" by 6", then knot them to the wire ring

Keep going until the ring is full.

At this stage it'll look rather flat, all you need to do is turn a few of the pieces of cloth so they stick out at odd angles.

Finally add your decorations, you can glue them on (glue gun works well) wire, or tie them on. I wired on a "I believe in Santa" & tied on a Santa ornament.

Finally add ribbon to hang it up by.

EDIT: I've been asked where/how I got the wire ring, I got mine from a florists though I have seen them on markets & I'm sure craft shops which have flower arranging items would also have them.
Of course you might be clever enough to make your own with some thick wire & some soldering.

Friday, 27 December 2013

My Secret Santa

For the past couple of years I've joined in Whoopidooings Secret Santa, its always great fun with lovely people

This years was no exception. Christmas day I opened a nice pile of presents from my Secret Santa..

All individually wrapped & gorgeous! Santa must have done some pretty good stalking as they were spot on with these gifts. This photo doesnt show my most wonderful & magical gift though, handmade to such a high quality by my Secret Santa.
A Christmas album. Please click on the pictures so you can get a closer look.

 Flaps to lift up,
 Each of these star punched borders pull out a hidden page from a pocket.

Isnt it wonderful!? I'm a little scared to fill it in-case I mess it up, but it would be a waste not to fill it up, so in the future I shall show you it filled with family traditions, recipes & photos - I dont want to tie it down to a certain year as its something I'd like to be looked at far more often than that.

Finally I opened my card, which included the big reveal of who my Secret Santa is..
A gorgeous, modern day christmas card made with lovely inky techniques.
And who was my secret santa? The lovely Virginia from Celtic House.
Thank you so much Virginia, you have spoilt me & I am in awe of your album making skills.

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Merry Christmas!

To all my followers & readers :)

Or, as I put in this years Christmas card, Mrry Xmas all & a Hppy Nw Yr!
A fitting photo of my technology driven family :)


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