Month: December 2013

Festive flowers DIY

festive flowers DIYWell, it hit this weekend – the festive spirit. I caught it and I’m rolling with it. It was spurred on by a phone call to the radio station to be assigned a ‘Santa’s Anonymous’ child. In the past I’ve just picked up an extra toy and donated it but this year I actually got paired with a real, live kiddo. She’s 10 years old and asked for a jewelry making kit – so up my alley. Well, I had a ridiculous amount of fun choosing a kit for her, then adding other craft items and stocking-stuffer type goodies. Seriously….So. Much. Fun. After that I was headed to a very good friend’s house to watch the Lighted Truck Parade from the warmth and comfort of her cozy third floor condo. I knew I wanted to take her a little hostess gift, something pretty but not too fussy or expensive. I saw ‘canning jar flower arrangements’ at the grocery store for $15 and knew I could knock them off for much less.
festive flowers DIYI picked up a small bunch of white alstromeria and another of white carnations (poor carnations get such a bad wrap but they last for almost ever). Then I pulled out my Felcos and wandered to the vacant lot next door for evergreen branches and red twigs. If you don’t have a vacant lot, you may want to disguise your snips or scissors as you casually wander the neighborhood or local park for suitable greenery! Canning jars came out of storage and a few minutes later I had 3 little floral arrangements. Oh how I love when a plan comes together! These were quick, cheap and easy. I started with the largest branches then added some trimmed cedar boughs and twigs. Lastly the flowers got tucked in and the jars filled with water.
festive flowers DIYI like that they’re Christmas-y with a rustic feel and that the boughs and flowers will last for weeks. Three flower arrangements for $8, yay! So, if you’re having any trouble getting into holiday mode, I strongly recommend getting a kid and some flowers. Totally worked for me!

Little gifts – a handmade wrap up

My absolute favourite part of the holiday season is making and giving gifts. I love treating my friends and family to little goodies I’ve made just for them. If you’re thinking of going homemade this season, you need to get on it. Here’s a wrap-up of some recent projects that would be perfect to whip up for the nice people on your list!
lip balm DIYThis recipe for Lip Balm is one of my all time favourites. It’s quick, easy and cheap to mix up a batch.
imageTeam the lip balm with this Lemon Sugar Scrub or Dry Shampoo…add a candle and you’ve got a spa themed gift. What girl doesn’t appreciate that?!
rustic tray DIYI’m still a total fan of all things chalkboard painted. If you’ve got some building skills, put together a Rustic Tray. If that’s a bit ambitious, how about these Chalkboard Placemats?!
Chalkboard placematsOr try Chalkboard Painted Glassware and even fill that glassware with Sugar and Spice flavoured sugar.
chalkboard paint on glass DIYflavoured sugarSo many options and I haven’t even started on the edible gifts! Get crafty this weekend and I bet you’ll have more fun giving gifts than ever before…and really, isn’t that what it’s all about!?

Heart on a map – DIY art

heart on a map DIYThere are a lot of little projects around my place that I call homemade ‘art’. My aim is to have only original, meaningful art in my tiny home. So, I have a pretty loose interpretation of ‘art’ and try to get creative with it. Seriously, my gallery wall includes a framed CT scan of my brain! Today I want to share a loved-up map I made. Super simple but it’s quite a conversation starter – since I live in Canada, visitors are curious why I have a map of California displayed! It’s actually where I was born and to make it more personal, I added a heart to my hometown Long Beach. Popped it in a frame and voila!
heart on a map DIYTo make your own, search google for maps of your desired location. I had the best luck when I searched for ‘isolated’ maps. They don’t have all the surrounding land and are often in brighter colors. Check out maps and atlases at your local library or thrift store too. I used a craft punch and a paint chip for my heart but you absolutely could cut one out of any colored paper freehand then use a dab of glue stick to attach it. I used a pre-cut mat from the dollar store and a white frame to finish mine off, since I’m still in my ‘white phase’ of decorating. Choose what you like.
heart on a map DIYI think a series of these could look great. Maybe a map for the birthplace of each family member, your favourite vacation spots or all the places you’ve lived? Happy ‘art’ making!