Sunday, November 28, 2010

Holiday Ornament Cards

My apologies to anyone on our Christmas card list - you're seeing our holiday cards a bit early. But, each one is unique so you still won't know which is yours 'till they are all done and in your mail box.

This idea was inspired by something a friend did last year, they have a tree by their door and with every photo card they get, each one is bunched with a hole, a ribbon goes through it and adorns that tree. So I thought, why can't our card include an ornament???

The ornament on the front of the card actually comes off - there is a photo of the kids on one side, and a lyric from one of my favorite Christmas Songs. (I've set a slide show to the song for friends and family to  check out the rest of our year....)

Here is what I used to make the cards:

  • Pre-made cards, purchased at Michael's, 50 of them for $6 using a 40% coupon
  • Holiday scrapbook paper, cut into rectangles for the front and inside of the cards, then circles for the ornaments. 
  • Holiday messages printed on velim
  • Glue Sticks
  • Ribbon
  • Clear tape
  • Photo of the kids, cut into circles

To assemble the ornaments, I paired up coordinating papers and glued the picture to one side and the message to the other.

Then I punched a hole in the top of the ornament and strung a ribbon through it.

Next, time to create the cards. Simply glue one of the rectangles of scrapbook paper onto the front of the card. I also glued a circle to the front of the cards that were more plain so that once the ornament was removed the card could still be enjoyed.

For the inside of the card, I glued in another piece of paper and then our holiday message.

Then a small hole through the front of the card, and then the ribbon from the ornament is threaded through and taped to the inside.

And you've got a Holiday Ornament Card

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

It just isn't Thanksgiving without cranberry bread!

Hmmm Cranberry Bread - actually cranberry orange bread.

My mom and I used to make it each Thanksgiving, it wouldn't be Thanksgiving without it. But while her version is amazing. AMAZING... it takes a long time to make. There are many ingredients. Ingredients that need chopping.

A while back I tried the Pillsbury quick bread version and it just wasn't the same.

: )

So I started playing with it - and it turns out with just 2 added ingredients, you can get pretty damn close to Mom's amazing cranberry bread. Dried cranberries and orange juice.

First assemble your ingredients and helpers - just as mom passed her recipe down to me, I'm passing Pillsbury's down to my kids.

What you'll need to do is chop about half a cup of the dried cranberries and add them to the mix. (Pillsbury just doesn't include enough.)

And when it is time to add 1 cup of water, swap out 1/3rd of the water for orange juice.

And there you go - prepare as otherwise indicated.

There you go - my version of homemade cranberry bread.

Shhhhh, don't tell mom.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Multi Strand Bracelet Winner: Tanya!

The Random Number Generator has spoken:

That means Tanya is the winner of the Multi Strand Bracelet!

Shoot me an email with your address Tanya.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Crystal Garland

I bought this chandelier for $10 at the ReStore a few months ago, hoping to do something for my daughters room with it.

My plan for using it in my daughter's room didn't work out - but I held onto it knowing some use for it would come up. As the holidays are approaching it came to me - a crystal garland.

The crystals were very easy to remove from the fixture.

But they were filthy.

So they got a bath.

And then I simply attached them end to end, alternating so that the big crystals joined to the bigs and the little to the little.

And while I liked them draped on the light fixture in my dining room, I knew it was meant to be on our mantle. (Forgive my fall decorations, I haven't turned everything over yet - i just couldn't resist taking and sharing these pictures.)

I'll be sure to post an update when I get the holiday stuff up.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Wine Charm Winner - Kim!

Congrats Kim - Your number came up...

Shoot me an email with your address and I'll get them out to you.

If you had your eye on these, but didn't enter or win, I do have some of this set in my little online holiday craft show here.

There are still 3 days to enter to win a multi strand bracelet and there will be more tutorials and giveaways through Christmas.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Current Handmade Holiday Giveaways

I've got 2 giveaways going on right now.

You've got 'till Friday at 6:00 pm Eastern to enter the giveaway for the Wine Charms. Simply check out the tutorial and comment on it.

And there is the Multi Strand Bracelet - that giveaway closes Monday at 6:00 pm Eastern. Visit the tutorial to comment on it to enter.

Thanks for check them out - stick around for more Handmade Holiday ideas, tutorials and giveaways.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Multi Strand Bracelet - Handmade Holidays & Giveaways

I started making these bracelets about 6 weeks ago and I can't stop.

Interested in making your own? Here is what you need:

  • Various beads, I like to mix at least 3-5 types.
  • Stretch magic elastic
  • 2 10mm jump rings
  • 6 Crimp tubes
  • 6" length of ribbon
  • Scotch tape
  • Beading tray - not really required, but it helps
Step 1 - start planning out what you think you want to do with your 3 strands... Some things work, and some won't. Just keep playing with it - taking into account your desired length. I wanted one that was my wrist plus about 3/4".

Step 2- Cut 3 pieces of stretch magic that is the length of your finished bracelet plus about 3-4". Then secure one end with tape, this will keep the beads that your stringing on from falling off.

Step 3 - String the beads the onto the elastic, if you like, you can use a needle like this, it really helps get the beads onto the elastic.

Keep going and measuring along as you go. The beads will string different than they lay in the tray so sometimes what planned out to be 7" will string shorter or longer. When you get the length you want, tape the end while you move onto the other 2 strands.

Step 4 - Time to secure the ends of the bracelet to the jump rings.

Slide one of the crimp tubes to the elastic.

Then slide a jump ring onto the elastic.

Then loop the elastic over the ring and thread the end through the crimp tube again.

Sorry for the blurry picture, I hope you can see that I've tightened the elastic, tight but not too tight around the jump ring.

Then crimp.

You can either use pliers or a neat little tool like this. One notch crimps, the other folds it over on itself.

Then do the other end of the strand.

Repeat with the other 2 strands.

You'll see I added a little detail to this bracelet, a little word to inspire me...

Take your ribbon and fold it in half then thread the folded end through the jump rings. Pull the tail ends through your loop and you're bracelet is a bracelet.

You can secure it straight, or twist the strand prior to securing it with the ribbon.

I hope this tutorial inspires you to try one of your own - but if you LOVE love love one of the above bracelets and can't live without it... simply leave a comment here, and you'll be entered to win one of them! You've got 'till November 22nd at 6:00 pm to enter. If you'd like another chance, mention the giveaways on your blog on on twitter and leave a second comment.

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