Un Automne Guirlande Facile

I love decorating for Fall. But with three busy kids, it is difficult to find the time. I came up with an easy diy Fall garland that I just love! It only requires a string of mini white lights, a hole punch and artificial leaves.

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Punch a hole in the center of each leaf. Attach one leaf to each individual light, carefully pulling the leaf onto the stem of the light (not on the bulb).

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It is so easy and beautiful. It really brings the outside colors of Fall in.

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At night, we love turning on the lights.

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Un automne guirlande facile!

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Tee Se-itse (Do-it-yourself in finnish) TUESDAY

I came across this easy and convenient diy. If your family is like mine, we can never find matches. I love this idea of placing wooden matches in a mason jar and placing sand paper on the top. It will look so cute on a mantel. And, it’s so convenient.

Another cute Tee-se-itse (do-it-yourself) project is to create your own art. But you don’t need to buy an expensive stretched canvas. Just buy a roll of canvas, paint it with colors that coordinate with your room (or add a pop of color) and hang. So artsy!

 

Easy DIY Personalized Gift Tags

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Every year I try to make the presentation of my gifts as personalized as the gift itself. I do this by making my very own personalized gift tags. All you need is a photo, a computer with a graphic oriented software (I use Microsoft Publisher, but I’m sure you could use Microsoft Word or WordPerfect as well), a color printer, a paper cutter (or scissors) and a hole punch. I used a picture of my family that we also used on our Christmas card.

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I uploaded it to my computer from my phone (or camera) and inserted it into my Microsoft Publisher document. Once I determined the size I wanted the gift tag to be, I copy and pasted it multiple times to fill an 8.5 inch x 11 inch page. If you use Microsoft Word or Word Perfect, I’m sure you could make a table or grid and insert the picture into each frame by the same copy and paste technique.

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I then printed the page out using my color printer.

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Using my paper cutter, I cut the sheet into individual tags. If you don’t have a paper cutter, scissors or an exacto knife with a ruler should work just fine.

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Then using my hole puncher, I punched a hole in each corner. Just run ribbon through the hole when wrapping your gift.

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An easy DIY personalized gift tag. I especially love to use these when I have to ship my gifts to friends and family who live far away. It adds a special and intimate touch to every gift.

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Merry Christmas! … and Merry Creating!

 

En Unik Adventskrans – A Unique Advent Wreath

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In Sweden (and in many other countries as well), the celebration of Advent (the days leading up to the celebration of Christmas) is very important and an integral part of the celebration of Christmas. Advent begins on the fourth Sunday before December 25th. The keeping of an Advent Wreath (adventskrans) is a common practice in homes and churches. It is usually comprised of an evergreen wreath with four candles, three purple and one pink and often a fifth white candle in the center. The first three Sundays are commemorated by the lighting of a purple candle (the color of Advent). The final pink candle is illumined on the last Sunday before Christmas and the optional white one is lit on Christmas.

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Above, Cranberry Morning incorporates a vintage thrift store find with the traditional greens and candles.

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Advent wreaths can be simple and uncomplicated. Better than a box features a simple and elegant do-it-yourself wreath that is both easy and inexpensive.

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 Natalja Oblonskaja incorporates blue spruce with green colored lichens and hypericum (St. John’s wort). You could use any form of greens. Olive branches or eucalyptus would be unique and beautiful.

My older sister, who is a very accomplished artist and overall creative individual, created her own Advent Wreath about 20 years ago. It is the epitome of En Unik Adventskrans! She began by making her own dough. She mixes 4 cups of flour, 1 cup of salt and 1.5 cups of warm water. Kneed well. You can double or triple this recipe if necessary. She then formed the base of the wreath and the individual figures of the nativity scene. Applying touches of water to the dough helps it adhere when attaching details. Once finished, bake at 300 degrees for 1 hour. Once completely cooled, she painted her “piece de resistance” with acrylic paint and sealed it with an acrylic spray.

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My sister allowed concaved spaces to hold pillar candles.

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She added animals and the characters of nativity.

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She made the infant Jesus separately so he can be removed and placed in the manger on Christmas day. My two nieces enjoyed placing him in the cradle every Christmas morning. What a wonderful memory for kids.

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My older sister’s Advent Wreath is the embodiment of En Unik Adventskrans – definitely unique and creative. I encourage you to always look for your own unique twist when creating something traditional. And, have a very Merry Creative Christmas!

Decorazione di Vino per il Natale

A wine decoration for Christmas? I found the perfect way to combine my love for Christmas with my love for wine!

It all began with the numerous wine corks that I have saved over the years. Ever wonder what to do with them? All you need are wine corks, a drill, twine and about 2 hours.

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I took a basic electric drill with a rather large bit (screw head) and drilled a single hole through each cork. It took me about 2 hours total.

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I held the cork with a clamp and stood the cork up on a piece of wood while I drilled.

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It was a bit messy so make sure to cover your work surface with paper. Once all the corks had holes, I carefully inserted twine through each one. I dipped the end of the twine in the liquid wax of  a candle and let it dry beforehand to stiffen the tip.

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I periodically had to drill more holes in corks until I got the length of twine I needed to go around my Christmas tree several times.

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I made sure to tie large knots on each end leaving a bit of extra twine so the garland wouldn’t be too rigid.

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We love Christmas so much in our house that we put a Christmas tree in our kitchen as well as our living room. I love to decorate it with kitchen/food-oriented items. This year I wrapped the tree in a natural looking burlap ribbon, hung artificial apples and cookie cutters. You could get very creative. In past years, I’ve hung utensils, popcorn and curly orange rinds.

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I love incorporating things that I love into my decorating, and that includes wine. I hope you enjoyed seeing how I made my Decorazione de Vino per il Natale!

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Branch Art…

I love bringing nature inside. And most of all, I adore saving money. Here is an easy Do It Yourself project that does both!

First, I clipped a few branches from the many trees in my yard (I literally have a forest around me)…

 

 

 Then, I spray painted them white, leaving a little natural brown to show through to give a more natural look.

 And voila! A natural and inexpensive addition to the corner of my living room!